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0117 History of the Expedition in Asia, 1927-1935 : vol.2
History of the Expedition in Asia, 1927-1935 : vol.2 / Page 117 (Color Image)

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doi: 10.20676/00000210
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At the foot of a hill rose the little temple, abandoned by the lamas, that had given the station its name and now stood as a memorial to the religion that with wise and tactful means ERIKSSON was combatting. He had transformed the interior and was now holding Christian services there. At the bottom of the hill lay the mission-station that he had erected on the Mongolian steppe with his own hands. These small white-washed houses were a Christian Swedish outpost in the land of the nomads. One of the houses served as a dwelling for ERIKSSON, his wife and three children and a trained nurse, VIVAN ALMQVIST, a sister of Mrs ERIKSSON's. In another house we found the clinic, the medical supplies and the hospital as well as a guest-room. In addition there were the school, the church-hall and the dwellings of the servants.

ERIKSSON had work enough and to spare. He was builder, mason, house-painter, smith, car-mechanic, gardener, physician and missionary in one person. In his leisure hours he also collected plants for Swedish museums, purchased prehistoric finds that the Mongols hit upon in the earth and much else besides. He could turn his hand to everything, was always cheerful, willing and friendly, and the Mongols loved him. They were constantly visiting him with their sick, and he helped all alike. The most wide-spread disease among these people, so vigorous in former times, is syphilis, which is now decimating the population. ERIKSSON undertook long journeys in his car to visit his patients, and in this way he came into much more intimate contact with the Mongols than did missionaries who only

  • preached. His reputation stood so high all over the country that even the bandits left him in peace. He had many times on his journeys been attacked by highwaymen intending to rob him; but as soon as they had recognized him they had let him go on his way unmolested. On one occasion not long since, a young woman who was driving in his car had been fatally shot by bandits, but the miscreants were in despair when they found out that they had wronged a man who had so often tended and cured members of their own band. Sometimes robbers would pay a visit in Khadain-sume, where they were kindly and hospitably received, and they therefore never stole anything belonging to the family.


As has already been mentioned, in the summer of 1929 the TASHI LAMA made a royal tour of these parts of Inner Mongolia, extending his blessings to the orthodox Mongols, fettered in the yellow faith of Lamaism. The Mongols call him PANCHEN BOGDO, the Tibetans PANCHEN RINPOCHE, or the Precious Teacher.

About 1,000 li to the east of Khadain-sume there is a monastery called Bandegegene-khit, where the TASHI LAMA had his headquarters for two or three months.