The typical nature of the Tibetan people is candid, optimistic, passionate, humorous, courageous, and slow to act on impulses or bold. Included in this generalization and perhaps most representative of it is the Khampa people of Chamdo in eastern Tibet.
Rough and weather-beaten, Khampa men wear red "hero knots" tied around their heads and carry long, Tibetan-style knives on their waists. They are tall and have dark complexions. They are the Tibetan race's symbol of bravery, assailing the modern spirit of mankind as ferociously as the immensely powerful plateau winds.
Khampa men have always given us a variety of fabled impressions, the most common one being—cool! They are all taller than 180 cm, have incredibly sharp senses, and have the beauty of a carved statue.
They keep their hair long, tied in a Tibetan braid, in accordance with tradition. The braids are weaved with black silk thread, finishing in four petals, six petals or eight petals lotus flower designs.
Strung in the braid are pieces of coral and ivory inlaid in rings of gold and silver. The coral pieces in the rings, one ring having at most nine, represent the sun and moon.
In works of literature, this is how Khampa men are described: "They are swift and warlike, having well-defined likes and dislikes, and a nomadic nature. They are Tibet's gypsies."”
Khampa are good businessmen, with more and more businesses emerging. The famous Khampa merchant is one of the major benefactors of temples in Tibetan-inhabited areas. They repeatedly demonstrate righteousness, dare to take risks, and do business everywhere—their footprints are all over Tibet and the surrounding areas.
Starting in 336 B.C., Alexander the Great conquered Syria, Egypt, and all of Persia in just four years, crossed the Indus River on armored horses and defeated Porus’s elephant troops.
After his army was driven west and out of the Ganges River basin, it is said that a group of his soldiers remained behind in northern India, moving into the Himalayas and eventually into Khampa area. Legend states that these were the ancestors of modern day Khampa people.
The people here are Buddhists, worshipping nature's endlessly stretching mountains, fertile pastures, and clear streams. It is here that these brave and rough, powerful and free spirits are brought up.
A stylish Khampa tourguide.
A Khampa man living city life.
In a horse race, circling the mountains, the moors and the pastures, Khampa men use the world as their stage, rushing to their hearts' content in the grasslands, clambering vigorously between snowy peaks.