One of the important customs kids were taught is how
to greet people with respect and honor. Elders were greeted first with a
verbal well wishing greeting. People, even today, greet each other with wishes
that all is well in your life. They say things like - "May your herd be peaceful." "Let your
journey be lucky."
Here are some of the rules of the
ancient Mongol world:
You may not beat horses, dogs, or animals. It
would be the same as beating a close friend.
You may not throw any waste into water including
rivers and lakes.
You must feed all guests, or at least offer food.
You must build two bonfires with an open path
between them and direct traders to walk along the path
between the fires to be purified before trade can occur.
Greet all people with a well wish.
Deep respect can be shown by putting your hand on
your heart and bowing.
The highest form of greeting is to give a gift of
a blue scarf.
It is forbidden to be unfair. Here are two old Mongol
sayings or proverbs:
"Better the bone be broken than ones reputation."
"Better to die with a good reputation than be alive with a bad
The Mongols had an enormous number of taboos,
restrictions, and unwritten laws. Each generation taught these rules to
their children, who taught them to their children.
One of the ways the Mongols taught their children good behavior
was by using stories, myths, and legends to make a point.
Warrior Well is
a story we created that is loosely based on
an ancient Mongol myth. What do you think this story might teach
an ancient Mongol child about his or her own customs?
Myths & Stories to teach customs
Mongols for Kids Index