Tuzbekov A. I. Stones in the rites of the Southern Ural Turkic population (.pdf)
The author analyzes and structures the beliefs of the Southern Ural Turkic peoples associated with stones, mountains, menhirs, the so called “karasky”, stony tumulus, saints’ graves, etc. The investigations of sacral life, religion and beliefs of the Southern Ural population within the boundaries of Bashkortostan, Kurgan, Orenburg and Chelyabinsk regions, made by the archaeologists and ethnographers, show a huge number of stone objects and complexes used in the rites of the Turkiс peoples. The comparison of sacral views of contemporary Turkic peoples of the Southern Urals with different types of hierotopies with stones at the center enables to divide the beliefs linked with stones and stone facilities into 2 groups: 1) the beliefs associated with stones of natural (divine) origin and 2) the beliefs associated with artificial stones. The author also considers the problems of forming new sacral areas within the boundaries of the Southern Urals. Several examples of the monuments dating back to the Bronze Age, the Early Iron Age and the Middle Ages (tumuli and tumulus graves) as the archeological objects becoming the part of the religion systems of the contemporary Turkic population are analyzed. The author describes the forms and methods of using archeological objects in the rites and defines sacralization and desacralization processes on the examples of the objects of religious worship of the Southern Urals.
Key words: cult of stone, karasky, auliya kabere (saint’s grave), sacral space, sacralization, desacralization, ethnography, archeology, the Southern Urals.