Buddhist Group Keeps Heritage Alive Among the Children

December 14, 2009

Author: Michelle Gladdon

Source: Asbury Park Press


When Khermesh Badushov of Rutherford began attending Kalmyk Kids' Nomin classes here this July, she had no idea of the ancestral enlightenment she'd get.

"Not a lot of us are fortunate enough to have people available to teach us,'' the 16-year-old said of the Buddhist teachings. "When I began, I didn't believe in reincarnation, but after our menya (teachers) explained it to us in detail, I'm very thankful for it. I'm thankful that eventually I'll get to meet my family and my family's family in the next life. I see how it is all a cycle.''

Badushov is one of about 15 children, ages 3 to 18, participating in the newly formed Kalmyk Kids' Nomin classes offered twice monthly on a rotating basis at the township's three Buddhist temples.

Nomin is the Mongolian word for Buddhist teachings, program coordinator Maria Taunov said. Kalmyk Mongolians are devout followers of the Dalai Lama.