The area between Irkutsk and the Baikalsee has many religions which were either exiled or in hiding after the 1917 Revolution. They all survived and are thriving here. The photos in the gallery below are of an Orthodox Christian Church, Shaman Prayer Flags and a Buddhist Temple.
There was evidence of Shamanism everywhere: colorful ribbons tied to trees and rocks and occasionally, a more formal, sacred, place of prayer as shown below. The ritual at this place is to take a glass of vodka, dip a forefinger into the drink and flick some vodka to the four winds while making wishes, blessings or prayers of your choosing before drinking the rest. I sent messages of love to my whole family, living and deceased. I have to say that it made no less sense to me than many of the religious rituals which I have witnessed.
Here are some images of the surrounding landscape. I have never seen so many grasshoppers, crickets and other insects as there were moving about her amongst the grass.
Stopping on route for a comfort break, I spotted this little church on a remote hillside and while the rest of the group were using the facilities, I marched up there to take a closer look.