Atsagat datsan - one of the oldest in Russia

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Atsagat datsan - one of the oldest in Russia
Atsagat datsan - one of the oldest in Russia

Buddhist traditions reign on the territory of Buryatia. This was greatly facilitated by the proximity of Mongolia, a country professing this faith. Today there are several dozens of datsans in Buryatia. Moreover, it is here that the highest Buddhist religious institution, the Dashi Choynhorlin University, functions.

General information

Immediately after her ascension to the throne, Empress Elizaveta Petrovna officially gave Buddhism the status of one of the Russian religions. At that time, there were eleven dugans and datsans in Buryatia, and if the first ones were just Buddhist temples, then the second ones are a monastery and a university in one complex. The pearl and heart of the Buddhist traditional sangha in Russia is the Ivolginsky datsan - it was here that Pandito Khambo Lama settled, therefore the Ivolginsky Monastery is considered the most important Buddhist temple in our country. In turn, one of the oldest is the Atsagat datsan (photos below).

The territory of the datsan

Again Buddhist Academy is located on its territory. Moreover, Atsagatskydatsan in Buryatia is the only temple from which seven Pandito Khambo Lamas, as well as many outstanding Buddhist leaders, who are known not only in Russia, but also abroad, have come out. The most famous of them is Khambo Lama Dorzhiev, a theologian, scientist and educator who initiated the construction of the first Buddhist monastery in Europe - the Kalachakra temple, located on the territory of St. Petersburg.

Atsagat datsan - how to get there

This Buddhist monastery is located in the Zaigraevsky district of Buryatia on the western outskirts of the village of Naryn-Atsagat. It is only fifty kilometers from Ulan-Ude. You can get to Atsagat Datsan on your own by public transport from the capital of Buryatia along the route Ulan-Ude - Unetegey. Departure from Food Street.

Historical background

In the past, the Atsagat datsan was called Kurbinsky. It was founded in 1824 near the ulus of the same name in the Boro-Toontoy region. The first wooden sume temple was built without official permission.

In 1831, the taisha of the Khori Buryats wrote a petition to the governor of the Irkutsk province, in which they asked to allow the activity of the Atsagat datsan. On May 5, 1831, prayer services were allowed.

Ten years later, Kurbinsky, and now Atsagatsky datsan, began to expand. In 1841, the main cathedral temple Tsogchen-dugan, two sumes - Dara-Ekhyn and Khurdyn were built on its territory. At that time there were already seventeen lamas and eleven huvaraks. The arrival of the Atsagat datsan stretched from the eastern borders of the town of Verkhneudinsk along both banks of the Uda up toto the Hudan River. By the end of the 19th century, it included almost five thousand people.


Initially, the Atsagat datsan was located in an uncomfortable damp lowland. In 1868, parishioners filed a petition for permission to build a new, no longer wooden, but stone church in another place. After exploring the area, the construction of new buildings of the Atsagat datsan began, three versts from the old building in the Enger-Tugla area.

The arrival of the monastery

Tsogchen-dugan was built first. Its three-story building combined Tibetan and Chinese architectural styles. The first floor was stone, while the other two were wooden.

In 1880, the parishioners again turned to the governor, this time with a request to be allowed to move to a new location two wooden sume buildings that remained on the old territory, which they were allowed to. At the beginning of the 20th century, a wooden Judd-dugan was built in the Atsagat datsan.

School of Tibetan Medicine

In 1911, Pandito Khambo Lama Iroltuev the 11th, already retired, moved here. Soon the Atsangat datsan becomes a major center where people are treated with the help of Tibetan medicine. Iroltuev conducted classes in Mamba-Dugan, specially built for this purpose - a small wooden building covered with an iron roof. There were about fifty students in the school.

Datsan stupa

Soon an infirmary, a medical school building, outbuildings, for example, baths, barns, imports, etc. were built. A telephone connection was established in the hospital. Teachers even came from Mongolia, and medicineswere brought from China.


Presumably, it originated in the second half of the 19th century. About 46 titles of books in Tibetan and the same number in Mongolian were published in the Atsagat datsan. The building of the printing house can still be seen today on the northeast side of the monastery. In addition to books, woodcut prints of images of Khii Morin and Burkhanov were also printed here.

Soviet period

In October 1922, the first spiritual congress of all Buddhists was held here. Believers of the RSFSR and the Far Eastern Republic took part in it. At the congress, the Charter and the regulation concerning the spiritual affairs of Buddhists in Siberia were adopted, and a central administrative body, the spiritual council, was created. In December 1925, the entire property of the datsan was transferred to the state, and the school of Tibetan medicine functioning on its territory was taxed. In 1933, a state farm was organized on the lands of the temple, and three years later, the Atsagat datsan was completely liquidated. All buildings were transferred to the boarding school.

Dalai Lamas

As a result, both sume and Jud-dugan were lost, the monastery walls and stupas-suburgans were destroyed, and the buildings of Tsogchen- and Choyra-dugan were rebuilt.


In 1991, the 14th Dalai Lama came to Atsagat Datsan and consecrated the site of future construction. In 1992, the Atsagat datsan began to be restored. The new building stands in a different place, near Mount Tamkhityn-daba. In November 1992, the first service was here.

Datsan fence

Since 1999, the house-museum of Dorzhiev has been operating at the datsan, which hasRepublican status.

Interesting facts

In June 1891, Tsarevich Nikolai Alexandrovich came here, who was returning from a trip around the world. To commemorate his stay at the place where the royal tent was set up, in 1897 a sume of Tsagan-Dara Ehe was built. This wooden two-storey building was the largest on the territory of the datsan: 14 fathoms was the length of its walls. A school of theology functioned in sume.

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