Rukhnama 2

by Nathan Hamm on 7/14/2004

Coming in September. I don’t even have part 1 yet.

Interfax stories have a way of disappearing rather quickly, so here’s the whole deal.

Turkmen President Saparmurat Niyazov announced on national television on Monday that he has written a second volume of the “book of spirit,” or Rukhnama, which is expected to be published in September.

In 1998, Niyazov proposed the idea of developing a program for the spiritual development of the nation. The “book of spirit,” or Rukhnama, has become “a code of conduct” for Turkmen society.

Niyazov argued that the main idea of the book is to provide spiritual guidance to the people, to restore the old customs and traditions and to revive the national spirit. Rukhnama is the way along which the current and future generations of the Turkmen people will advance, he said.

The book’s first volume, published in 2001, has been translated into Russian, English, French, Japanese, Urdu, Arabic, Ukrainian and other languages, including Zulu. Its print exceeds a million copies.

The month of September has been named after Rukhnama and Saturday is now called Rukhgyun (spiritual day) in Turkmenistan.


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Nathan is the founder and Principal Analyst for Registan, which he launched in 2003. He was a Peace Corps Volunteer in Uzbekistan 2000-2001 and received his MA in Central Asian Studies from the University of Washington in 2007. Since 2007, he has worked full-time as an analyst, consulting with private and government clients on Central Asian affairs, specializing in how socio-cultural and political factors shape risks and opportunities and how organizations can adjust their strategic and operational plans to account for these variables. More information on Registan's services can be found here, and Nathan can be contacted via Twitter or email.

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