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Amdo is in blue
 • Total 720,000 km2 (280,000 sq mi)
 • Total 5,626,722
 • Density 7.8/km2 (20/sq mi)
  population of Qinghai province[1]

Amdo (Tibetan: ཨ༌མདོ [ʔam˥˥.to˥˥]; Chinese: 安多; pinyin: Ānduō [antwó]) is one of the three traditional regions of Tibet, the other two being Ü-Tsang and Kham; it is also the birthplace of the 14th Dalai Lama. Amdo encompasses a large area from the Machu (Yellow River) to the Drichu (Yangtze).[nb 1] In the Han dynasty (206 BCE–220 CE), Qinghai Lake was called the West Sea (Chinese: 西海; pinyin: Xī Hǎi), and substantial numbers of Han Chinese lived in the Xining valley.[2] While historically, culturally, and ethnically a Tibetan area, Amdo was administered by a series of local rulers since the mid-18th century and the Dalai Lamas have not governed the area directly since that time.[3] From 1917 to 1928, much of Amdo was occupied intermittently by the Hui Muslim warlords of the Ma clique. In 1928, the Ma Clique joined the Kuomintang (Chinese Nationalist Party), and during the period from 1928 to 1949, much of Amdo was gradually assimilated into the Qinghai province (and part of Gansu province) of the Kuomintang Republic of China. By 1952, Communist Party of China forces had defeated both the Kuomintang and the local Tibetans and had assumed control of the region, solidifying their hold on the area by 1958 and formally spelling the end of the political existence of Amdo as a distinct Tibetan province.

Amdo was and is the home of many important Tibetan Buddhist monks or lamas, scholars who had a major influence on both politics and religious development of Tibet like the 14th Dalai Lama, Choekyi Gyaltsen, 10th Panchen Lama, and the great Gelug reformer Je Tsongkhapa.

YouTube Encyclopedic

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  • Amdo Tibetan dialect w/ English Subtitles | The Jesus Film (1979)
  • Amdo — A Journey through Eastern Tibet
  • Amdo, il Tibet perduto (lost Tibet)
  • Tibetan Medicine Training in Amdo, Tibet
  • Amdo Tibetan dialect w/ English and Chinese Subtitles | The Evening's Moment of Silence


Dear Theophilus: I am writing to you, an orderly account of the things that have taken place among us, so that you may know the absolute truth about everything. In the days when Caesar Augustus was emperor of Rome and when Herod the great was king of Judea, God sent the angel Gabriel to visit a virgin girl in the city of Nazareth. And the virgin's name was Mary. Fear not Mary, For you have found favor with God. You will conceive and give birth to a Son and you will call His name, Jesus. How can this be? I am a virgin. The Holy Spirit will come upon you. For this reason the Holy Child will be called the Son of the Most High God. His kingdom will never end. So Mary traveled to a town in Judea to visit her cousin Elizabeth who was also miraculously with child. Elizabeth. Mary! You are the most blessed of all women. And blessed is the Child you will bear. For as soon as I heard your greeting, the baby within me jumped with joy. My soul magnifies the Lord, and my spirit rejoices in God my Savior. From now on, all generations will call me blessed. Know all men of Nazareth, that by command of Caesar Augustus, there will be conducted a census of the subject territories of Galilee and Judea. All men must register forthwith in the towns and cities of their ancestraI birth. And Mary went to Bethlehem in Judea to register with Joseph, her betrothed. But there was no room for them in Bethlehem. And the only lodging they could find was a humble stable. Now there were some shepherds in that part of the country how were taking care of their flock at night when an angeI of God appeared to them and the glory of God was shining around them. This very day in David's town, your Savior was born, Christ the Lord. The shepherds hurried to see the newborn baby in the manger, and were the first to spread the Good News, or GospeI of the virgin mother and the savior's birth. A week later, when the time came for the baby to be circumcised, He was given the name Jesus and Joseph and Mary took the Child to to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord. He was given the name Jesus and Joseph and Mary took the Child to to Jerusalem to present him to the Lord. In the temple there was a good and devout man who the Holy Spirit had promised would not die untiI he had seen the Christ. His name was Simeon. Lord, now You can let me, thy servant, depart in peace, according to thy word. For mine eyes have seen thy salvation. This child is chosen by God. May you both be blessed. And when they had completed all their duties according to the law of Moses, they left Jerusalem and returned to Nazareth. When Jesus was twelve years old, Joseph and Mary took Him to Jerusalem for the passover feast. But, when they started back home, thinking that the boy was with them, Jesus stayed behind. They returned to the city looking for him but were unable to find him. And on the third day, found him in the temple sitting with the rabbis and the elders. Whose child is this who asks such questions? He's from Nazareth. We thought he had left with us. Please, forgive him his zeal. All who heard him were amazed. Son. Why have You done this to us? Your father and I have been terribly worried trying to find you. How is it that you looked for me? Did you not know that I must be about my Father's business? And he came with them to Nazareth and increased in wisdom and stature and in favor with God and with man. Inspirational Films Presents A documentary taken entirely from the Gospel of Luke The Story of Jesus Christ In the fifteenth year of the rule of the emperor Tiberius, Pontius Pilate being governor of Judea, and Herod, the ruler of Galilee, and Annas and Caiaphas the high priests, The word of God came to John in the desert, and he came into all the country near the Jordan river, preaching the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins. Turn away from your sins. And be baptized. And God will forgive your sins. As it is written in the book of the Prophet Isaiah: Someone is shouting in the desert: Get the road ready for the Lord. Make a straight path for Him to traveI. Every valley must be filled up. Every hill and mountain leveled off. The winding roads must be made straight. And the rough paths made smooth, and all mankind will see God's salvation. What shall we do? You brood of vipers! (Yea, what should we do?) What do you want us to do? Tell us! How should we go about repenting? Whoever has two shirts, must give one to the man who has none. And whoever has food must share it. Teacher, we are tax collectors. What shall we do? Don't collect more than is legaI. And what about us? What are we to do? Don't take money from anyone by force. And don't accuse anyone falsely. Be content with your pay. Tell us. Are you the Christ? I baptize you with water. But someone is coming who is much greater than I. I'm not good enough even to untie his sandals. He will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and fire. He has his grain shoveI with him, to thresh out all the grain and gather the wheat into his barn. And the Holy Spirit came down on Jesus in bodily form like a dove. And a voice from Heaven said: You are My beloved son, in you I am well pleased. When Jesus began his work, he was about 30 years old. He returned from the Jordan river full of the Holy Spirit, and was led by the Spirit into the desert, where he was tempted by the deviI for 40 days. In all this time, he ate nothing. The deviI said to him: If you are God's son, order this stone to become bread. It is written, that man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God. Then the deviI took him up and showed him all the kingdoms of the world. I will give you all this power and all this wealth. It has all been handed over to me, And I can give it to anyone I choose. All this will be yours then, if you worship me. It is written: You shall worship the Lord your God. and Him only shall you serve. Then the deviI took him to Jerusalem and set him on the highest point of the temple. If you are God's son, throw yourself down from here, for the Scripture says: God will order His angels to take good care of you. It also says they will hold you up with their hands, so that not even your feet will be hurt on the stones. The Scripture says: You shall not put the Lord your God to the test. And he came to Nazareth where he had been brought up. Hello. Hello. And on the Sabbath day of rest, he went as usuaI to the synagogue. And he was called upon to read a portion of the prophet Isaiah. The Spirit of the Lord is upon me. Because He has chosen me to bring good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim release to the captives, and recovery of sight to the blind. To set at liberty those who are oppressed, and announce that the time has come when the Lord will save His people. That was good. This Scripture has come true today, as you heard it being read. The Scripture come true? But only the Messiah can fulfill that promise. Do you know our Scripture? Doubtless you will quote the proverb to Me, Physician, heaI Thyself. You'll also say to me, do the things in your own home town that we heard were done in Capernaum. I tell you this: No Prophet is ever welcome in his hometown! They threw him out because he declared himself the Messiah of God. The Messiah is he who was the expected and promised deliverer of the Jewish people. But those Jews rejected his claim to being the Messiah. They then tried throwing him off of a cliff. But he just walked through the crowd... and went on his way. And Jesus came to Capernaum, a city of Galilee. The Roman occupation of the nation was in evidence everywhere. And the people longed for the Messiah to come, to free them from the tyranny. Peace be with you. And you, Master. Will your boat bear me, Simon? Why not? He's not going to leave, is he? Speak to us. Speak to us. (Speak to us!) Jesus Christ, speak to us! Once there were two men who went up to the temple to pray. One was a Pharisee. The other was a tax collector. The Pharisee stood apart by himself and prayed, I thank You, God, that I am not greedy or dishonest or an adulterer like everybody else. I thank You that I am not like that tax collector over there. I fast twice a week, and I give You one tenth of all my income. But the tax collector stood at a distance and would not even raise his face to heaven. But beat upon his breast and said, God, have pity on me, a sinner. I tell you, the tax collector, not the Pharisee was in the right with God when he went home. For the man who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted. Come to Me and listen to My words, hear Me, and you shall have life. Seek the Lord while He may be found call on Him while He is near. Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts And let him return to the Lord and He will have compassion on him. For He will abundantly pardon. You shall go out with joy and be led forth with peace. Look! He's coming. He's here. Jesus! Jesus! I beg you to save my only daughter. She's only 12 years old, and dying. Please come with me. Jairus, I'm sorry. Jesus! Your daughter has died. Don't bother the teacher any longer. Don't be afraid. Only believe and she will be well. Do not weep. She's not dead, but only sleeping. My child, arise. Give her something to eat. I charge you, tell no one what has happened here. And after this, he saw a tax collector named Matthew Levi, sitting at the toll gate for the receipt of the customs. Follow me. And Jesus went up to the hill to pray, and spent the whole night there praying to God. And when day came, he greeted the 12 of them whom he named Apostles. Simon, whom he also named Peter, and Andrew, his brother, James, John, Philip, Bartholomew, Matthew, Thomas, James, the son of Alphaeus, Simon called Zealotes, Judas, the brother of James, and last but not least, Judas Iscariot, the traitor. Blessed are you who are poor, for yours is the Kingdom of God. Blessed are you who hunger now, for you shall be filled. Blessed are you who weep now, for you shall laugh. Blessed are you when men hate you and reject you and insult you and say you are eviI, all because of the Son of Man. Be glad when that happens, and dance for joy, because a great reward is kept for you in Heaven. For their ancestors did the same thing to the Prophets. 16... 17... 18... 19... 20 even... That's all I've got. What do you mean that's all you've got?! How terrible for you who are rich now. You have had your easy life. He doesn't want to be rich. He must be mad. How terrible for you who laugh now, for you shall mourn and weep. How terrible when all men speak well of you. For their ancestors said the very same things about the false Prophets. But I tell you who hear me, love your enemies. Do good to those who hate you. Bless those who curse you. And pray for people who mistreat you. If anyone hits you on one cheek, let him hit the other one also. And if someone takes away your coat, let him have your shirt as well. Give to everyone who begs from you. And if someone takes what is yours, do not ask for it back again. Do for others only what you would have others do for you. If you love only the people who love you, why should you receive a blessing? For even sinners love those who love them. And if you do good to those who do good to you, why should you receive a blessing? Even sinners do that. How could he touch her? How could he talk to her? Disgusting. No. Love your enemies, and do good to them. And lend expecting nothing back. And then you will have a great reward. For you will be sons of the Most High God. Since He is good to the ungratefuI and to the wicked, be mercifuI, just as your Father is mercifuI. Save us, Jesus! Judge not, and you will not be judged. Condemn not, and you will not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven. Lead us in thy path, O Lord! Give, and it will be given to you. For the measure you give will be the measure you get back. One blind man cannot lead another. If he does, they both will fall into a ditch. Why do you see the speck that is in your brother's eye but pay no attention to the log in your own eye? Guide us, Oh Master! We need you now, Lord! How happy is the mother who bore you and nursed you! [Hahaha] rather how happy are those who hear the word of God, and obey it. I would like to know this man. Do you think he might be, the Messiah? This Pharisee invited Jesus to have dinner with him. And Jesus went to his house and sat down to eat. Come along children, off you go. You heard me. Go. They get by with all the mischief they can. What is she doing here? I don't know. What is she doing here? I don't know. What does she want? If this man really were a Prophet, He would know who this woman is who is touching him. He would know what kind of sinfuI life she lives. I know who this woman is, Simon. He would know what kind of sinfuI life she lives. I know who this woman is, Simon. Let me tell you something. There were two men who owed money to a moneylender. One owed him 500 silver coins, and the other owed 50. Neither of them could pay him back, so he cancelled the debts of both. Which one then will love him more? I suppose that it would be the one who was forgiven more. You are right. Do you see this woman? I came into your home. You gave me no water for my feet, yet she has washed my feet with her tears, and dried them with her hair. You did not welcome me with a kiss. But since I came she has not stopped kissing my feet. You provided no olive oiI for my head. Yet she has anointed my feet with perfume. I tell you then, the great love she has shown proves that her many sins are forgiven. But whoever is forgiven little, shows only a little love. Your sins are forgiven you. Your faith has saved you. Go in peace. I... I... And Jesus traveled, teaching the good news of the Kingdom of God. And the twelve disciples went with him. And so did some women who had been healed of eviI spirits: Mary, who was called Magdalene, Joanna, whose husband, Chuza, was steward in Herod's court, and Susanna. But Herod, the Roman appointed ruler of Galilee, threw John the Baptist in prison, because he had condemned his marriage to his brother's wife. Well? As we arrived at the gate of Nain, a funeraI procession came out. The dead was the only son of a widow. When Jesus saw the widow, his heart was filled with compassion. He touched the coffin and said, "young man, get up I tell you!" Then, the dead man sat up. And Jesus gave him back to his mother. Ask him, say, "are you the one John said was going to come?" "Or should we expect someone else?" Master. Master. John the Baptist sent us to ask If you are the one who is going to come, or should we expect someone else? Go back and tell John what you have seen and heard. The blind can see, the lame can walk. How happy are those who have no doubts about me. Please, pick me up. Onto my shoulder. Can you see now? I can see. A sower went out to sow his seed. And as he scattered the grain some of it fell by the path and was trodden on, And the birds of the air devoured it. And some fell on rocky ground, and when the plants sprouted, they withered away because they had no moisture. And some seeds fell among thorns. And the thorns grew up with the plants, and choked them. And some seeds fell in good soiI, And the plants grew and bore grain, 100 grains each. Master, why do You speak in parables whenever a crowd is near? The knowledge of the secrets of the Kingdom of God have been given to you. But to others it comes by means of parables... So they may look but not see... And listen but not understand. This is what the parable means. The seed is the word of God. The seeds that fell along the path stand for those who hear. But the deviI comes and takes the message away from their hearts in order to keep them from believing and being saved. The seeds that fell on rocky ground stand for those who hear the message and receive it gladly. But they have no roots. They believe only for a while. And when the time of testing comes, they fall away. The seeds that fell among the thorns stand for those who hear, but the worries and riches and pleasures of this life crowd in and choke them. And their fruit never ripens. And the seeds that fell in good soiI, Stand for those who hear the message and retain it in a good and obedient heart. And they persist untiI they bear fruit. No one lights a lamp and covers it with a bowI, or puts it under a bed. Instead, he puts it on the stand so that people may see the light as they come in. Whatever is hidden away will be brought out in the open. And whatever is covered up will be found and brought to light. Be carefuI then, how you listen. Because whoever has will be given more. But he who has not will have taken away from him even the little he thinks he has. Teacher, your mother and brothers are standing outside. They want to see you. My mother and brothers are those who hear the word of God, and obey it. One day Jesus got into a boat with his disciples, and said to them, Let us go across to the other side of the lake. And as they were sailing, he fell asleep. Master! Master! Jesus! We are about to die. The waves are swamping us, we'll all drown! We're going to be saved. Where is your faith? And they sailed on over to Gadara, which is across the lake from Galilee. Jesus, Son of the Most High God, we (two) have nothing to do with one another! I beg you, don't punish me. What is your name? Legion. Lord, we beg you, do not, send us into the abyss. Let us enter, into the herd, of swine. Hey. Come back. Stop! Stop! And the demons went out of the man, and into the pigs. Go away from here! You, magician! Leave us! Go away from this place! Leave us! Go away from here! I'll follow you wherever you go. Let me, come with you. Go back home, and tell what God has done for you. Jesus and his disciples set off for Bethsaida But as soon as the masses learned this, they followed As the sun was setting, Peter said: Master, send the people away, so that then they can go to the villages and farms around here, and find food and lodging. This is a lonely place. You yourselves them something to eat. But all we have are five loaves of bread and two fish. Blessed are Thou, O Lord our God, King of the universe, Who brings forth bread from the earth. It's a miracle. Unbelievable. Who do the crowds say I am? Some say you are John the Baptist, others say that you are Elijah, While others say that one of the Prophets of long ago, has come back to life. What about you? Who do you say that I am? You are God's Messiah. You shall tell no man of this. The Son of Man must suffer much and be rejected. He will be put to death. But three days later, He will be raised to life. Will any of you come with me? I will follow You Master. But first, let me go and say goodbye to my family. Anyone who starts to plow and then keeps looking back will be unable to reach the Kingdom of God. If anyone wants to come with me, he must forget himself, Take up his cross every day and follow me. For whoever would save his own life will lose it. and whoever would lose his life for my sake will save it. What will it profit a man if he gains the whole earth and loses his own souI? If any man is ashamed of me and my teachings, then the Son of Man will be ashamed of him when he comes in his glory, and the glory of the Father and the holy angels. I assure you there are some here who will not die untiI they have seen the Kingdom of God. Then Jesus took John and James and Peter with Him and went up the hill to pray. And while he was praying, his face changed its appearance and his clothes became shining white. Suddenly two men were talking with him. They were Moses and Elijah, who appeared in heavenly glory. You will fulfill God's purpose. You will die in Jerusalem. As they were leaving, Peter said to Jesus, Master, how good it is that we are here. We will make three tents. One for You, one for Moses, and one for Elijah. As Peter spoke, a cloud came and covered them, And the disciples were afraid. Then, a voice came from the cloud saying, This is My Son, the 'Chosen One'. Listen to him. Teacher. Teacher. I beg you, look at my son. Please, please help him. He is my only child. I begged your disciples to cast out the eviI spirit... but they could not. Oh faithless and perverse generation. How long am I to be with you and bear with you? Bring your son here. His face has been healed too. How wonderfuI. Teach us to pray, just as John taught his disciples. When you pray, say: Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be Thy Name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us each day our daily bread, and forgive us our sins, for we also forgive everyone who has done wrong to us. And lead us not into temptation. But deliver us from eviI. Ask, and you will receive. Seek, and you will find. Knock, and the door will be opened to you. For everyone who asks will receive, and he who seeks will find, and the door will be opened to anyone who knocks. Would any of you who are fathers give a snake to your son when he asks for a fish? Or give a scorpion when he asks for an egg? As bad as you are, you know how to give good things to your children. How much more, then, would your Heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him. I tell you this, Take no thought in your life for what you shall eat. Nor for your body as to what you shall wear. For life is more than food, and the body more than clothing. Consider the ravens, They neither sow nor reap, have neither storehouse or barn, yet God feeds them. Of how much more worth are you than the birds. Which of you by being anxious, can add to the length of your life? If you cannot do such a small thing, why do you worry about the rest? Look at the lilies, how they grow. They neither toiI nor spin, yet King Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like a single one of them. If God, Who clothes the wild grass today, which tomorrow is thrown onto a fire, How much more sure is He to clothe you. Oh ye of little faith... Make our faith greater. If you had faith as big as a mustard seed, you could say to this tree: "pull yourself up by the roots and plant yourself in the sea!", and it would obey you. Temptations to sin will come, but woe to him by whom they come. It would be better for him that a stone were put about his neck and he were cast into the sea than that he should cause one of these little ones to sin. What is the Kingdom of God like? It is like this: A man takes a grain of mustard seed and plants it in his field. The plant grows and becomes a tree and the birds make their nests in its branches. I'm not sure what he's talking about. Why do you eat and drink with tax collectors and other outcasts? People who are well do not need a doctor, but only those who are sick. I have not come to call respectable people to repent... but outcasts. Tell us again about the Kingdom. Is there anything else? Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father is pleased to give you the Kingdom. Sell all your belongings and give the money to the poor. Provide for yourselves purses that don't wear out and save your riches in heaven, where they will never decrease, because no thief can steaI them, and no moth can destroy them. For your heart will always be where your riches are. Auntie, you are free from your sickness. Look. Look. She's cured. It's a miracle. Look, she's cured. Come and see. Praise to the Lord. 18 years. God keep you, Rabbi. There are 6 days in which we should work, So come on one of those days to be healed, but not on the Sabbath. You hypocrites. Any of you would untie his ox or his donkey and take it out from the stall to give it water on the Sabbath. Now, here is this descendant of Abraham whom Satan has kept in bonds these 18 years. Should she not be set free on the Sabbath? Good teacher, what must I do to receive eternaI life? Why do you call me good? No one is good save God alone. You know the commandments: Do not commit adultery, do not commit murder, do not accuse anyone falsely. Respect your mother and father. Ever since I was young, I have obeyed all these commandments. There is still one more thing you need to do. You must sell all you have and give the money to the poor, And you will have riches in heaven. Then come and follow me. But we are merchants. Wealthy. How hard it is for a rich person to enter the Kingdom of God. It is harder for a rich person to enter the Kingdom of God, than for a cameI to pass through the eye of a needle. Who, then, who can be saved? What is impossible for man is possible for God. Exactly where will this be, God's Kingdom? The Kingdom of God does not come in such a way as to be seen. No one will say, "Look, there it is," or "Here it is." Because the Kingdom of God is within you. The time will come when you will wish that you could see one of the days of the Son of Man, But you will not see it. As the lightning flashes and lights up the entire sky, so will the coming of the Son of Man be on His day. But first I must suffer much and be rejected by the people of this day. It is easier for heaven and earth to disappear than for the smallest detaiI of the law to be done away with. For I tell you many Prophets and kings desired to see what you see and did not see it. And to hear what you hear and did not hear it. What should we do? What do the Scriptures say? How do you interpret them? Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your souI, with all your strength, and with all your mind, and love your neighbor as you love yourself. You are right. Do this and you will live. Who is my neighbor? It can't be the Roman soldiers, can it? Who is my neighbor? It can't be the Roman soldiers, can it? How about Caesar? There once was a man going down from Jerusalem to Jericho. When robbers attacked him, stripped him, beat him, leaving him half dead. It so happened that a Jewish priest came that way. When he saw the man, he walked by on the other side. In the same way a Levite also came there, went over and looked at the man, and then walked by on the other side. But a Samaritan who was traveling on that road came across the man. And when he saw him his heart was filled with pity. He went over to the man, poured oiI and wine on his wounds and bandaged them. Then he put him on his own animaI and took him to an inn, where he took care of him. The next day he gave the innkeeper two silver coins. And he told him to take care of the man. He said: When I come back, I will pay you whatever else you spend on him. Which one of these three men acted like a neighbor toward the man who was attacked by the robbers? The one who was kind to him. You, then, do the same. Let the little children to come unto me and do not forbid them. For of such is the Kingdom of God. Truly I say to you, If you do not accept the Kingdom of God as a little child does, there is no way you can get in. If you do not accept the Kingdom of God as a little child does, there is no way you can get in. Anyone who welcomes this child in my name also welcomes me. And anyone who welcomes me welcomes the One who sent me. For the one who is most humble among you all is the greatest. Hey, what's happening? What's going on? Jesus of Nazareth is passing by. Jesus! Jesus! Son of David. Have mercy on me. What do you want me to do for you? I want to see again. Then see. Your faith has made you well. I can see. I can see... I can see! As Jesus traveled to Jericho There were many eager to see him They asked him to show them the path to salvation; also, to tell them more about the Kingdom of God This man really is a Prophet. My Lord and Master, save me. Oh Lord, save us. Save us. Praise the Lord. Show us the true way, Lord. The people began accepting Jesus as a leader and a teacher. In Jericho there was a tax collector named Zaccheus who longed to see Jesus. However, because he was short in stature and was unable to see through the throngs of people, he climbed up a tree That's the tax collector. However, because he was short in stature and was unable to see through the throngs of people, he climbed up a tree That's the tax collector. Hurry down, Zaccheus. For I must stay in your house today. My house? Who'd want to stay in his house? How does Zaccheus know Jesus? Listen. I give half of my belongings to the poor, and if I have cheated anyone, I will pay him back four times as much. I don't believe it. A tax collector paying back his taxes. Impossible. Salvation has come to this house today. For this man also is a descendent of Abraham. The Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost. Listen. We are going to Jerusalem, where everything the prophets wrote about the Son of Man will come true. He will be handed over to the Gentiles. They will mock him, and treat him shamefully and spit on him. He will be whipped and killed. But on the third day, he will rise. For the sake of man's salvation Jesus gave his own life, and resolutely took the road for Jerusalem. A great many rejoiced at his arrival and proclaimed him King. Rabbi, command your disciples to be quiet. I tell you that if they were to be quiet, the stones themselves would begin shouting. Peace, honor, health. Upon arriving at the city of Jerusalem and gazing upon it, Jesus lamented: If only, on this your day you had known the path for peace, but you have failed to see it. The days will come when your enemies, will build ramparts to surround you and hem you in pressing hard from every side, and within these walls they will destroy you. You and your children, and they will not leave one stone upon another in you, because you did not recognize the time of your visitation. The Temple in Jerusalem had been repurposed as a marketplace, no longer was it a holy place of worship. 5, 6, 7, 8, 9... 21, 22, 23, 24, 25... It is written, "My house shall be a house of prayer." But you have turned it into a den of thieves. He's heading for my animals. Stop him. Stop him. Get the guards. Get the guards. Because many had hailed Jesus as King, the number of political and religious leaders opposed to Jesus grew more and more, by the day. I understand that many have already hailed him as King. A King? A King of beggars, whores, and thieves. We've seen his like before. They come, they make their claims, they go. They're forgotten. Don't be blind. His following is growing by the day. The people admire him... ...and think he is a King. Let me give you a warning. If this man should threaten the peace further, I shall look to you. Perhaps he's right. It's time we confronted the Galilean. And as the hypocriticaI section of the scribes and Pharisees, came increasingly under his attack, so his following among the Jews grew, and so did the opposition from those he condemned. so his following among the Jews grew, and so did the opposition from those he condemned. Jesus noticed a widow making a donation of two coins What a small donation Could you please donate a little more!? I tell you, that this poor widow put in more than all the others. Could you please donate a little more!? I tell you, that this poor widow put in more than all the others. For the others offered their gifts from what they had to spare of their riches. But she, poor as she is, put in all the living that she had. Tell us, what right do you have to say these things? Who gave you such right? Now let me ask you a question. Tell me, did John's right to baptize come from God or from man? What shall we say? If we were to say, from God, He will say, why then, don't you believe John? But if we say, from man, this whole crowd here will stone us. They're all convinced that John was a Prophet. We don't know where it came from. Neither will I tell you then by what right I do these things. There was once a man who planted a vineyard, rented it out to some tenants, and then left home for a long time. When the time came to gather the grapes, he sent a slave to the tenants, to receive from them his share of the harvest. But the tenants beat the slave and sent him back without a thing. So he sent another slave. But the tenants beat him, too, treated him shamefully and sent him back without a thing. Then he sent a third slave. But the tenants wounded him, too, and threw him out. Then the owner of the vineyard said to himself, What shall I do? I will send my own dear son. Surely they will respect him. But when the tenants saw him coming, they said to one another, This is the owner's son. Let's kill him and his property will be ours. Please continue... So they threw him out of the vineyard, and killed him. Please continue... So they threw him out of the vineyard, and killed him. What, then, will the owner of the vineyard do to those tenants? He will come and kill those men and give the vineyard over to other tenants. He will come and kill those men and give the vineyard over to other tenants. What, then, does this Scripture mean? The stone which the builders rejected as worthless, turned out to be the most important stone of all. Everyone who falls on that stone will be cut to pieces. And if that stone falls on someone, it will crush him to dust. Teacher, we know that what you say and teach is right. We know that you pay no attention to man's status, But you teach the truth about God's will for man. Tell us, is it against our law for us to pay taxes to the Roman emperor or not? Lord, be careful. It's a trap! for us to pay taxes to the Roman emperor or not? for us to pay taxes to the Roman emperor or not? Show me a silver coin. Whose face and name are these on it? Caesar. Then give to Caesar the things that are Caesar's, and give to God the things that are God's. Do you have anything more to say!? Now the festivaI of unleavened bread drew near, which is called The Passover. And Jesus sent Simon Peter and John ahead to prepare the Passover meaI. I have wanted so much to eat this Passover meaI with you before I suffer. For I tell you, I will never eat it untiI it is given its full meaning in the Kingdom of God. Blessed art Thou, O Lord, our God, King of the Universe, Who brings forth fruit from the vine. Take this and share it among yourselves. For I say to you, I will not drink of the fruit of the vine untiI the Kingdom of God comes. Blessed art Thou, O Lord, our God, King of the Universe, who brings forth bread from the earth. This is my body which is given for you. This do in remembrance of me. This cup is the new testament in my blood, which is shed for you. But behold, the person who will betray me is here at this table. And truly the Son of Man must die as God has determined, But woe unto that man by whom He is betrayed. It can't be. Impossible. Name the traitor, Lord? The greatest one among you must be like the youngest. And the leader must be like the servant. For who is greater? The one who sits down to eat? Or the one who serves? The one who sits down, of course. But I am among you as one who serves. You have stayed with me all through my trials. And just as my Father has given Me the right to rule, So I will give you the same right. You will eat and drink at my table in my Kingdom. And you will sit on thrones to rule over the 12 tribes of IsraeI. Then there is no traitor. Simon, Simon, behold, Satan has desired to test all of you, to separate the good from the bad as a farmer separates the wheat from the chaff. But I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not faiI. And when you have turned back to me, you must strengthen your brethren. Lord, I am ready to go to prison with You, and to die with You. I tell you, Peter, the cock will not crow today before you deny three times that you know me. When I sent you out without purse or bag or shoes, did you lack anything? No, not a thing. But now, whoever has a purse or bag must take it. And whoever has no sword must sell his mantle and buy one. For I tell you, it is written in the Scriptures, And He was reckoned among the transgressors. And what was written about me is coming true. Look, Lord, here are two swords. That is enough. And the counciI of the elders met to see how they might rid themselves of Jesus. Then entered Satan into Judas, surnamed Iscariot, who was one of the twelve. Jesus went up to the Mount of Olives to pray. Pray that you may not enter into temptation. For a trifling sum of 30 pieces of silver, Judas betrayed Jesus. Jesus knew that for the sake of redeeming all of mankind from sin, the time for him to sacrifice his life was near. Therefore, he prayed, saying: Father, if Thou be willing, Remove this hardship from me. Never-the-less, not my will but thy will be done. And an angeI from heaven appeared to him to strengthen him. And his sweat was as though it were great drops of blood falling to the ground. Why are you sleeping? Get up, and pray that you do not fall into temptation. Judas. Is it with a kiss that you betray the Son of Man? Lord, shall we smite with our swords? Come on, arrest him. Enough of this. A miracle. Did you have to bring swords and clubs as though I were an outlaw? I was with you every day in the temple and you did not try to arrest me. But this is your hour to act, when the power of darkness rules. Arrest him! Guard him well. The soldiers threw Jesus in a courtyard. Jeering and mocking him in saying that he is the king of the Jews. Here's a cloak worn by a king. Tell us what's going to happen. Are you going to save us, Your Majesty? Are you going to save us? This man was with Jesus, too. Woman, I don't even know him. I saw them together. Your humble servants. How does it feeI to look up to somebody? You are one of them too. But I am not. There is no doubt that this man was with Jesus. Because he is also a Galilean. Get out of here! I don't know what - what you're talking about. Jesus then turned to look at Peter. And Peter remebered what Jesus had said about his thrice denying him before the cock would crow. Lord, we beseech Thee, Do as thou ought. In accordance with the greatness of Thy power. Thou, Who did forgive our fathers when they rebelled against Thy word. Thou, Who was angry with them, Thou did not destroy them. Because of Thy love for them and for Thy Covenant's and faithfulness' sake, Thou did spare them. Who hit you? Guess. Prophesy. Who will hit you next? Stop it. Stop it I said. Bring him before the counciI. Go. The Council of Elders congregated to interrogate Jesus. Tell us, are You the Messiah? If I tell you, you will not believe me. And if I ask you a question, you will not answer me. But from now on the Son of Man will be seated at the right side of Almighty God. Are You, then, the Son of God? You say that I am. Who gives him the authority to say that? Guilty. We ourselves have heard what He said. We will take him to Pilate. Yes, yes, away with him. Move. And they took Jesus before Pontius Pilate, the most vicious of all Roman procurators, alone responsible for the crucifixion of thousands. And what do you want here, at this hour of the morning? We caught this man perverting our people. He caused an uproar in the temple market. What will be his punishment? Sentence him. I see no reason to condemn this man, no reason. We found him guilty. Telling them not to pay taxes to the emperor. Claiming himself to be the Messiah, a King. A King? Are you the King of the Jews? So you say. He began in Galilee and now he has come here. In Galilee? Is this man a Galilean? In that case, we'll let Herod deaI with Him. He's still here in Jerusalem, isn't he? Take him to Herod. Who is it that you say you are? Who are those you call your disciples? It is said by many You can perform signs. Do something for me. My Lord, he has been corrupting all the people. He calls Himself, the King. This man? A King? Your Majesty. Mark him well. Send him back to Pilate. This is his province. This man has done nothing to deserve death. So I will have him whipped and let him go. You are obliged to release one man to us at this festivaI. Release to us, Barabbas. You are obliged to release one man to us at this festivaI. Release to us, Barabbas. And away with this man. OK, release Barabas. Crucify him. Yes. Crucify him. You, you, whip him. What are you waiting for, Pilate? He is Jesus! Why do you torment him so? Leave him alone, He's the Messiah. He has done nothing wrong. However, because many people cried out for Jesus to be crucified, Pilate thus sentenced Jesus to death, released Barabas from prison, and ordering the guards to crucify Jesus. Back. Get back. Move! Get back. Move! Out of the way! Out of the way! Out of the way! You, out of the way. Move, when I tell you. Get up. Get up. You! What's your name?! Simon of Cyrene, sir. What's your name?! Simon of Cyrene, sir. Step over here. Cut the ropes. You... carry it. Come on, move. Move on. Clear the way there. Back, get back. Get back. We weep for you, Lord, we weep. Drink this. Drink. Drink, Lord. Women of Jerusalem, don't weep for me, but weep for yourselves and for your children. For if things as these take place when the wood is green, what will happen when it is dry? God help you. We will pray for you. Move. Down here. Come on. Quicker, quicker. Now you go. Go on. Keep up. Quicker. Come on. Quicker. Now, move. move. Now, you go ahead. Come on now. Get on with it. Raise. Put the peg in. Stay ropes loose. Forgive them, Father, for they do not know what they are doing. He has saved others. Let him save himself. Yes, save yourself if you're the Messiah. Yes. Come down from the cross. Show us one of your miracles. Jesus was put on the cross. To his left and right side were thieves also being crucified. Thus fulfilling the hundreds of years-old prophesies of the Prophets of old. This is no ordinary mystic's garment. Let go. No, don't tear it. Let's play for this. Ah, you lucky deviI. What will you do with it now that you've won it? Above Jesus' head was placed a sign reading: This is the King of the Jews. Save yourself if you are the King of the Jews. Aren't you... ...the Messiah? Then... save yourself... and us. Don't you fear God? He received the same sentence you did, but... He has done nothing wrong. Remember me, Jesus, when you come as King. I promise you. Today, you will be in paradise, with me. It was about noon and a darkness fell across the whole land for three hours, untiI about 3:00 in the afternoon. The curtain of the temple was torn right down the middle. Father... my spirit, into thy hands, I commit! A soldier who witnessed this final prayer, proclaimed God's glory. Glory be to God. Certainly, this was a righteous man. Joseph of Arimathea, a righteous member of the religious counciI who had not consented to this deed, got permission from Pontius Pilate to lay Jesus' body in a tomb before the Sabbath began at sundown. Forgive us. We are following the body of our Lord. All are welcome. But come, the Sabbath is approaching. Very early on the Sunday morning they came to the tomb carrying the spices they had prepared. They noticed that the boulder at the door of the tomb had been moved, and when they entered, they saw that Jesus' body was no longer there. Why do you seek the living among the dead? He is not here. He is risen. Remember what he said to you while he was in Galilee: The Son of Man will be handed over to sinfuI men, be crucified, And on the third day rise again. The Son of Man will be handed over to sinfuI men, be crucified, And on the third day rise again. The stone was rolled away. Listen. The stone was rolled away. The stone was rolled away. We... entered and the body of our Lord was... gone... What? The body of our Lord, gone? And two men appeared to us... What? The body of our Lord, gone? And two men appeared to us... angels, shining, like the sun. They said to us: Why do you look for the living among the dead? It's true. Believe us. Believe us. We saw them. Believe us. Believe us. We saw them. The tomb was empty. Our Lord was gone. Go and see for yourself. The tomb was empty. Our Lord was gone. The tomb was empty. Our Lord was gone. Go and see for yourself. Peter, you must believe us. Jesus appeared to two of his disciples, who were extremely excited upon returning amongst the others. The Lord is risen indeed. He has appeared to Simon. On the road... We didn't recognize him. On the road... But when he broke bread, We didn't recognize him. On the road... On the road... But when he broke bread, But when he broke bread, then we knew him. (At Emmaus?) How strange he should go there. Peace be with you. Why are you troubled? Why are these doubts coming up in your minds? Look, my hands and my feet, and see that it is I, myself. FeeI me and you will know. For a spirit does not have flesh and bones as you see I have. These are the very things I told you about, while I was still with you. That everything written about me in the Law of Moses and the writings of the Prophets and the Psalms had to come true. This is what is written: The Messiah must suffer, and rise from the dead on the third day. And in his name, the message of repentance and the forgiveness of sins must be preached to all nations, beginning in Jerusalem. You are witnesses of these things. And I myself bring the promise of my Father upon you. But you must wait in the city, untiI the power from above comes down upon you. The Lord bless you and keep you. All power is given to me in heaven and in earth. Go, therefore and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost. Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you. And lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.



Amdo consists of all of former northeastern Tibet, including the upper reaches of the Machu or Yellow River and Lake Qinghai. Its southern border is the Bayan Har Mountains.[4] The area is wind-swept and tree-less, with lots of grass. Animals of the region consist of the wild yak and the kiang. Domesticated animals of the region consist of the domestic yak and dzo, goats, sheep, and the Mongolian horse.[5]


Historical demographics

In historical times, the people of the region were typically non-Tibetan, such as Mongols or Tibetan speakers of non-Tibetan origin such as the Hor people.[6]

Present demographics

The Tibetan inhabitants of Amdo are referred to as Amdowa (Tibetan: ཨ་མདོ་པ།; amdo pa) as a regional distinction from the Tibetans of Kham (Khampa) and U-Tsang (Central Tibet), however, they are all considered ethnically Tibetan.

Today, ethnic Tibetans predominate in the western and southern parts of Amdo, which are now administered as various Tibetan, Tibetan-Qiang, or Mongol-Tibetan autonomous prefectures. The Han Chinese are a majority in the eastern part of Qinghai and the provincial capital Xining. While geographically small compared to the rest of Qinghai, this area has the largest population density, with the result that the Han Chinese outnumber other ethnicities in Qinghai generally. The northern part of Qinghai has a Mongol majority. For details on the demographics of various Tibetan entities in Amdo and Tibet generally, see Tibet - Major ethnic groups in Greater Tibet by region, 2000 census.

The majority of Amdo Tibetans live in the larger part of Qinghai Province, including the Mtsho byang (Tibetan: མཚོ་བྱང་།; Ch. Haibei) TAP, Mtsho lho (Tibetan: མཚོ་ལྷོ་།; Ch. Hainan) TAP, Rma lho (Tibetan: རྨ་ལྷོ་།; Ch. Huangnan) TAP, and Mgo log (Tibetan: མགོ་ལོག།; Ch. Guoluo) TAP[7], as well as in the Kan lho (Tibetan: ཀན་ལྷོ།; Ch. Gannan) TAP of the southwest Gansu province, and sections of the Rnga ba (Tibetan: རྔ་བ།; Ch. Aba) Tibetan and Qiang Autonomous prefecture of north-west Sichuan Province. Additionally, a great many Amdo Tibetans live within the Haidong (Tibetan: མཚོ་ཤར།; Wylie: mtsho shar) Prefecture of Qinghai which is located to the east of the Blue Lake (Tibetan: མཚོ་སྔོན།, Wylie: Mtsho sngon; Kokonor) and around Xining city, but they constitute only a minority (ca. 8.5%) of the total population there and so the region did not attain TAP status. The vast Haixi (Mstho nub) Mongolian and Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, to the west of the Blue Lake, also has a minority Tibetan population (ca. 10%), and only those Tibetans in the eastern parts of this Prefecture are Amdo inhabitants.[8]

Mongols too have been long-term settlers in Amdo, arriving first during the time of Genghis Khan, but particularly in a series of settlement waves during the Ming period. Over the centuries, most of the Amdo Mongols have become highly Tibetanised and, superficially at least, it is now difficult to discern their original non-Tibetan ethnicity.[8] Amdo has been famous in epic story and in history as a land where splendid horses are raised and run wild.[9]


There are many dialects of the Tibetan language spoken in Amdo due to the geographical isolation of many groups. Written Tibetan is the same throughout Tibetan-speaking regions and is based on Classical Tibetan.


3rd century

The Ch'iang people were early users of iron and stories abound of them in their iron breast-plates with iron swords.[10]

7th century

From the seventh through the ninth century, the Tibetan Empire extended as far north as the Tarim Basin, south until India and Nepal, east to Tang China, and west to Kashmir.[11] During this period, control of Amdo moved from Songtsen Gampo and his successors to the royal family's ministers, the Gar (Wylie: 'gar). These ministers had their positions inherited from their parents, similar to the emperor. King Tüsong tried to wrest control of this area from the ministers, unsuccessfully.[12]

9th century

In the 9th century, the central Tibetan kingdom broke into smaller polities; however Amdo and Kham maintained close culturally and religiously to the central Tibet. These small polities were small kingdoms or even governed as tribes and were officially under Chinese and Tibetan rule; however they held no allegiance to either.[13] During this same time period the Buddhist monks were forced out of their temples by rampaging Chinese. These monks wandered for a period to settle in the Amdo region.[14]

There is a historical account of an official from the 9th century sent to collect taxes to Amdo. Instead, he acquires a fief. He then tells of the 10 virtues of the land. Two of the virtues are in the grass, one for meadows near home, one for distant pastures. Two virtues in soil, one to build houses and one for good fields. Two virtues are in the water, one for drinking and one for irrigation. There are two in the stone, one for building and one for milling. The timber has two virtues, one for building and one for firewood.[5] Other stories talk about the original inhabitants of the Amdo region. These consist of the forest-dwellers (nags-pa), the mountain-dwellers (ri-pa), the plains-dwellers (thang-pa), the grass-men (rtsa-mi), and the woodsmen (shing-mi). The grass men were famous for their horses.[15]

10th century

Gewasel is a monk that helped resurrect Tibetan Buddhism. He was taught as a child and showed amazing enthusiasm for the religion. When he was ordained he went in search of teachings. After obtaining the Vinaya, he was set to travel to Central Tibet, but for a drought. Instead he chose to travel in solitude to Amdo. Locals had heard of him and his solitude was not to be as he was sought after. In time he established a line of refugee monks in Amdo and with the wealth that he acquired he built temples and stupas also.[16]

11th century

The historical Qiang came into contact with the Sumpa, then with the Tuyuhun. Then around 1032, they formed the Western Xia, which lasted into the 13th century.[17]

13th century

The Mongols conquered eastern Amdo by 1240,[18] and made the whole Tibetan region under Yuan rule, separated from the territory of former Song dynasty of China.[19][20] A patron and priest relationship began in 1253 when a Tibetan priest, Phagspa, visited Kublai Khan he became so popular that he was made Kublai's spiritual guide and later appointed by him to the rank of priest king of Tibet and constituted ruler of (1) Tibet Proper, comprising the thirteen states of U-Tsang Province; (2) Kham, and (3) Amdo.[21] He spent his later years at Sakya Monastery in Central Tibet, which required that he travel through Amdo regularly. On one of these trips, he encountered armed resistance in Amdo and required escorts from Mongol Princes to travel through Amdo.[22] Tibet regained its independence from the Mongols before native Chinese overthrew the Yuan dynasty in 1368, although it avoided directly resisting the Yuan court until the latter's fall.[23] Under the Mongol Yuan dynasty of Kublai Khan, Amdo and Kham were split into two commandaries, which, along with Ü-Tsang, were collectively referred to as the three commandaries of Tibet.

14th century through the 16th century

The following Ming Dynasty nominally largely maintained the Mongol divisions of Tibet with some sub-division. However, from the middle of the Ming era, the Chinese government lost control in Amdo, and the Mongols again seized political control.[24]

17th century

Power struggles among various Mongol factions in Tibet and Amdo led to a period alternating between the supremacy of the Dalai Lama (nominally) and Mongol overlords. In 1642 the fifth Dalai Lama received both spiritual and temporal authority from the Mongol king, Güshi Khan. This allowed the Gelugpa Buddhist sect and the Dalai Lama to gain enough power to last til the present day.[25] The Mongol king also gave portions of Eastern Tiber (Kham) back to the Tibetans; however Amdo remained under Mongol control.[25]

18th century

In 1705, with the approval of the Kangxi Emperor of the Qing dynasty, Lha-bzang Khan of the Khoshud deposed the regent and sent the 6th Dalai Lama to Beijing; the 6th Dalai Lama died soon after, probably near Qinghai Lake (Koko nur) in Amdo. The Dzungar Mongols invaded Tibet during the chaos, and held the entire region until their final defeat by an expedition of the Qing imperial army in 1720.[26][27]

When the Manchu Qing dynasty rose to power in the early 18th century it established Xining, a town to the north of Amdo, as the administrative base for the area. Amdo was placed within the Qinghai Province.[28] During this period they were ruled by the Amban, who allowed near total autonomy by the monasteries and the other local leaders.[29]

The 18th century saw the Qing Empire continue to expand further and further into Tibet as it engulfed Eastern Tibet including Amdo and even assumed control over Central Tibet.[30]

Shadzong Ritro near Taktser in Amdo
Shadzong Ritro near Taktser in Amdo

The Yongzheng Emperor seized full control of Qinghai (Amdo) in the 1720s. The boundaries of Xining Prefecture, which contains most of Amdo, with Sichuan and Tibet-proper was established following this. The boundary of Xining Prefecture and Xizang, or central Tibet, was the Dangla Mountains. This roughly corresponds with the modern boundary of Qinghai with the Tibet Autonomous Region. The boundary of Xining Prefecture with Sichuan was also set at this time, dividing the Ngaba area of the former Amdo into Sichuan. This boundary also roughly corresponds with the modern boundary of Qinghai with Sichuan. A new boundary, following the Ning-ching mountain range, was established between Sichuan and Tibet. East of these mountains, local chieftains ruled under the nominal authority of the Sichuan provincial government; Lhasa administered the area to the west. The 1720s thus saw Tibet's first major reduction in area in centuries.[nb 2] Other parts of old Amdo was administered by the Administrator of Qinghai. Kokonor Mongols from northern Xinjiang moved into Qinghai in this period.

In all these predominantly culturally Tibetan areas, the Qing Empire used a system of administration relying on local, Tibetan, rulers. A 1977 University of Chicago PhD. thesis, described the political history of the Tibetan region in Gansu (which was historically one part of Amdo) during the Qing dynasty as follows:

In the time of the Manchu dynasty, the entire region was administered by a viceroy of the Imperial Government. That portion of the country occupied by Chinese Moslems and some other, smaller, racial units was under traditional Chinese law. The Tibetans enjoyed almost complete independence and varying degrees of prestige. The Chone Prince ruled over the forty-eight "banners" of one group of Tibetans; other Tibetan rulers or chiefs held grants or commissions- some of them hundreds of years old- from the Imperial Government. At that time the ethnic frontier corresponded almost exactly with the administrative frontier.[32]

20th century

In 1906, the 13th Dalai Lama while touring the country, was enticed by a procession of a thousand lamas, to stay at the temple at Kumbum. He spent a year resting and learning among other things Sanskrit and poetry.[33]

In 1912, Qing Dynasty collapsed and relative independence followed with the Dalai Lama ruling Central Tibet. Eastern Tibet, including Amdo and Kham, were ruled by local and regional warlords and chiefs.[34] The Hui Muslims administered the agricultural areas in the north and east of the region.[29] Amdo saw numerous powerful leaders including both secular and non. The monasteries, such as Labrang, Repkong, and Taktsang Lhamo supervised the choosing of the local leaders or headmen in the areas under their control. These tribes consisted of several thousand nomads.[29] Meanwhile, Sokwo, Ngawa, and Choni, had secular leaders appointed, with some becoming kings and even creating familial dynasties. This secular form of government went as far as Machu.[35]

The Muslim warlord Ma Qi waged war in the name of the Republic of China against the Labrang monastery and Ngoloks. After ethnic rioting between Muslims and Tibetans emerged in 1918, Ma Qi defeated the Tibetans, then commenced to tax the town heavily for 8 years. In 1925, a Tibetan rebellion broke out, with thousands of Tibetans driving out the Muslims. Ma Qi responded with 3,000 Chinese Muslim troops, who retook Labrang and machine gunned thousands of Tibetan monks as they tried to flee.[36][37] Ma Qi besieged Labrang numerous times, the Tibetans and Mongols fought against his Muslim forces for control of Labrang, until Ma Qi gave it up in 1927.[38] His forces were praised by foreigners who traveled through Qinghai for their fighting abilities.[39] However, that was not the last Labrang saw of General Ma. The Muslim forces looted and ravaged the monastery again.[38]

In 1928, the Ma Clique formed an alliance with the Kuomintang. In the 1930s, the Muslim warlord Ma Bufang, the son of Ma Qi, seized the northeast corner of Amdo in the name of Chiang Kai-shek's weak central government, effectively incorporating it into the Chinese province of Qinghai.[40] From that point until 1949, much of the rest of Amdo was gradually assimilated into the Kuomintang Chinese provincial system, with the major portion of it becoming nominally part of Qinghai province and a smaller portion becoming part of Gansu province.[41] Due to the lack of a Chinese administrative presence in the region, however, most of the communities of the rural areas of Amdo and Kham remained under their own local, Tibetan lay and monastic leaders into the 1950s. Tibetan region of Lho-Jang and Gyarong in Kham, and Ngapa (Chinese Aba) and Golok in Amdo, were still independent of Chinese hegemony, despite the creation on paper of Qinghai Province in 1927.[42]

The 14th Dalai Lama was born in the Amdo region, in 1935, and when he was announced as a possible candidate, Ma Bufang tried to prevent the boy from travelling to Tibet. He demanded a ransom of 300,000 dollars, which was paid and then he escorted the young boy to Tibet.[43]

In May 1949, Ma Bufang was appointed Military Governor of Northwest China, making him the highest-ranked administrator of the Amdo region. However, by August 1949, the advancing People's Liberation Army had annihilated Ma's army, though residual forces took several years to defeat. By 1949, advance units of the Chinese People's Liberation Army (the PLA) had taken much of Amdo from the Nationalists.[44] By 1952, the major towns in the region were fully under the control of People's Republic of China, though many of the rural areas continued to enjoy de facto autonomy for several more years.[45]

In 1958, Chinese communists assumed official control of Tibetan regions in Kham and Amdo. Many of the nomads of Amdo revolted. Some areas were reported virtually empty of men: They either had been killed or imprisoned or had fled. The largest monastery in Amdo was forced to close. Of its three thousand monks, two thousand were arrested.[46]

In July 1958 as the revolutionary fervor of the Great Leap Forward swept across the People’s Republic of China, Zeku County in the Amdo region of cultural Tibet erupted in violence against efforts by the Chinese Communist Party to impose rapid collectivization on the pastoral communities of the grasslands. Rebellion also stirred the region at the beginning of the 1950s as “Liberation” first settled on the northeastern Tibetan plateau. The immediate ramifications of each disturbance both for the Amdo Tibetan elites and commoners, and for the Han cadres in their midst, elucidates early PRC nation-building and state-building struggles in minority nationality areas and the influence of this crucial transitional period on relations between Han and Tibetan in Amdo decades later.[47]

As a prelude to the Beijing Olympics, protests broke out in 2008 in Amdo, among other places. Some were violent; however the majority were peaceful.[48]


Panoramic view of Kumbum Monastery in Amdo
Panoramic view of Kumbum Monastery in Amdo

Amdo was traditionally a place of great learning and scholarship and contains many great monasteries including Kumbum Monastery near Xining, Labrang Monastery south of Lanzhou, and the Kirti Gompas of Ngawa Tibetan and Qiang Autonomous Prefecture and Taktsang Lhamo in Dzoge County.

Traditional pastoral economy

Amdo Tibetans' traditional lifestyle and economy is centred on agriculture. Depending on the region and environment they live in they are either nomads (Drog pa) or farmers (Sheng pa). This economy has been prevalent throughout history and has changed little in the modern time. It typically consists of a dual homes or bases for the families as, in the summer they move up the mountains with their animals for better grazing, then in the harsh winters come down to the valleys, where they have small agricultural fields that grow fodder for their livestock. Some villages have less of a trek involved as their pasture may be near by and they can come home every night.[49]

Local government

After 1949, the Chinese communists inherited and adopted the earlier Republican county system, and the basic arrangements of local government in Amdo have changed little up to the present day. With the advent of communist administrators in Amdo during the 1950s, a series of larger Tibetan autonomous prefectures were newly established on top of the existing county system in those places where Tibetans formed the majority of the population. This development was in line with the policy towards minority nationalities set down in the new constitution of the PRC.[50]


  1. ^ Note: The identically-named, sparsely-populated Amdo County in the Tibet Autonomous Region (TAR) is not part of the historical Amdo province. It was directly administered by the Dalai Lama from Lhasa and is today a part of the Changtang region administered by Nagqu Prefecture in the northern part of the TAR.
  2. ^ Kolmas 1967, pp. 41-2 quoted by Goldstein[31]



  1. ^ "Communiqué of the National Bureau of Statistics of People's Republic of China on Major Figures of the 2010 Population Census [1] (No. 2)". National Bureau of Statistics of China. 29 April 2011. Archived from the original on July 27, 2013. Retrieved 4 August 2013. 
  2. ^ Harris, Richard B. (2008). Wildlife Conservation in China: Preserving the Habitat of China's Wild West. M.E. Sharpe. pp. 130–132. 
  3. ^ Grunfield 1996, p. 245
  4. ^ Stein 1972, p. 20
  5. ^ a b Stein 1972, p. 23
  6. ^ Stein 1972, p. 22.
  7. ^ Shakya, Tsering (1999). The Dragon in the Land of Snows : a History of Modern Tibet Since 1947. New York: Columbia University Press. p. 137. ISBN 9780231118149. OCLC 40783846. 
  8. ^ a b Huber 2002, pp. xiii-xv
  9. ^ Stein 1972, p. 24
  10. ^ Stein 1972, p. 62
  11. ^ Hoiberg 2010, p. 1
  12. ^ Stein 1972, p. 63.
  13. ^ Yeh 2003, p. 508
  14. ^ Van Schaik 2011, pp. 49–50
  15. ^ Stein 1972, pp. 23–24
  16. ^ Van Schaik 2011, pp. 50–51
  17. ^ Stein 1972, p. 29.
  18. ^ Van Schaik 2011, p. 76
  19. ^ Petech 1990, pp. 7–8
  20. ^ Schirokauer 2006, p. 174
  21. ^ Patterson 1960, pp. 87–88
  22. ^ Van Schaik 2011, p. 80
  23. ^ Craig 2000, pp. 33–34
  24. ^ Petech 1990, pp. 136–137
  25. ^ a b Davis 2008, p. 242
  26. ^ Richardson 1986, pp. 48–49
  27. ^ Schirokauer 2006, p. 242
  28. ^ Van Schaik 2011, pp. 140–141
  29. ^ a b c Pirie 2005, p. 85
  30. ^ Davis 2008, p. 243
  31. ^ Goldstein 1994, pp. 80–81
  32. ^ Ekvall 1977, p. 6
  33. ^ Van Schaik 2011, pp. 182–183
  34. ^ Barney 2008, p. 71
  35. ^ Pirie 2005, p. 86
  36. ^ Tyson Jr. & Tyson 1995, p. 123
  37. ^ Nietupski 1999, p. 87
  38. ^ a b Nietupski 1999, p. 90
  39. ^ Fletcher 1980, p. 43
  40. ^ Laird 2006, p. 262
  41. ^ Anon 2013
  42. ^ Tibet Environmental Watch 2013
  43. ^ Richardson 1962, pp. 151–153
  44. ^ Craig 2000, p. 44
  45. ^ Jiao 2013
  46. ^ Laird 2006, p. 382
  47. ^ Weiner 2012, pp. 398–405,427
  48. ^ Van Schaik 2011, pp. 265–266
  49. ^ Stein 1972, pp. 123–124
  50. ^ Huber 2002, p. xviii


Further reading

  • Dhondup, Yangdon; Diemberger, Hildegard (2002). "Introduction: Mongols and Tibetans". Inner Asia. The White Horse Press for the Mongolia and Inner Asia Studies Unit at the University of Cambridge. 4 (2): 171–180. 
  • Goldstein, Melvyn C. (2007). A History of Modern Tibet. 2: The Calm Before the Storm, 1951-1955. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press. ISBN 978-0-520-24941-7. 
  • Gruschke, Andreas (2001). The Cultural Monuments of Tibet's Outer Provinces: Amdo. Bangkok: White Lotus Press. ISBN 978-9747534597. 
  • Kolmas, Josef (1967). "Tibet and Imperial China: A Survey of Sino-Tibetan Relations up to the End of the Manchu Dynasty in 1912". Occasional Paper. Canberra, Australia: The Australian National University, Centre of Oriental Studies (7). 
  • Max Oidtmann, Qing Colonial Legal Culture in Amdo Tibet (original title: A Document from the Xunhua Archives, International Society for Chinese Law & History — 中國法律与歷史國際學會, vol. 1, No 1, November 2014)

External links

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