Tibetan local customs, Tibetan culture and Taboos
The Tibetan Buddhism was introduced to Tibet from the mainland and India in the seventh century. The Tibetan Buddhism consists of four major sects, the Ge lug pa Sect, the Nying ma pa Sect, the Saturday kya pa Sect, and the Ka gyu pa Sect.
Pilgrimage is the tradition of Buddhist in Tibet, for the ordinary Tibetan, pilgrimage is a means of accumulating merit or good luck. They may go on pilgrimage in the hope of winning a better rebirth, cure an illness, end a spate of bad luck or simply because of a vow to take a pilgrimage if a bodhisattva granted a wish.
Toast and Tea
When you come to a Tibetan family, the host will usually entertain you with toast and barley wine. You should sip three times and then drink up. To entertain guests with tea is a daily etiquette. The guest has not to drink until the host presents the tea to you.
Present Khada (or hada) is a common practice among the Tibetan people to express their best wishes on many occasions, such as wedding ceremonies, festivals, visiting the elders and the betters, and entertaining guests. The white hada, a long narrow scarf made of silk, embodies purity and good fortune.
Sky burial is a common form in Tibet. There are many prohibitions. Strangers are not allowed to attend the ceremony. Visitors should respect this custom and keep away from such occasions.
Customs and Taboos Related to Tibetan Religion:
(1) People can not enter a monastery without permission.
(2) Once get in a monastery, never smoke or take photos; never touch, walk over or sit on any religious texts, objects or prayer flags in monasteries.
(3) Don't wear shorts or short skirts in a monastery. Take your hat off when you go into a monastery.
(4) Walk clockwise around a monastery, mani stones, pagodas, or other religious structures. Prayer wheels should also be turned clockwise.
(5) Keep quiet during religious ceremonies in the monastery.
(6) When meeting a lama, it is not appropriate to hug him or shake hands with him. The proper way is to hold the two hands upright, palms together in front of the chest, and lower the head. Don't talk with them on sensitive topics, such as marriage and the eating of meat.
With the fast developing tourism, the above rules are not obeyed as strictly as before. But it will be good for you to follow the advice above.
Yes, Tibet Custom is very Unique and Special, please follow this link to learn more Tibet facts.