Tarih ve Kültür Penceresinden Su ve Sağlık İlişkisi Uluslararası Sempozyumu, İstanbul, Turkey, 10 - 11 June 2019, pp.69-108
When the beliefs of various peoples that lived in the Eurasian steppes and especially those of Ancient Turks are examined, it can be observed that they usually consisted of beliefs related with nature. Beliefs of pre-Islamic Turks have been generally classified by researchers as Täñri (Tengri), Umay, cults related with nature and the ancestral cult. Among these, cults related with nature have been referred in the Türk (Tujue, Gokturk) inscriptions as Ïduq Yir Sub (“Sacred Spirits of Earth and Water”). Starting from Herodotus, various Turkic, Chinese, Greco-Romano-Byzantine and Arabo-Persian sources have transmitted records providing information on the water cult within the beliefs of steppe peoples, such as the Scythians, Caucasian Huns, Tabghach, Türks, Kyrgyz, Shatuo Turks, On Oq, Kimäks, Bulgars, Oghuz and Mongols. Modern researches that started in the 19th century have also revealed that beliefs related with water can still be observed among Turko-Mongol peoples belonging to different religions both in Central Asia and in Turkey. In this paper, we will examine the beliefs related with the cult of water among the peoples dwelling in the Eurasian steppes based on historical sources and modern literatures, with more emphasis put on the pre-Islamic period.