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Education

Published on February 5, 2008

Author: Viviana

Source: authorstream.com

Hmong Shamanism:  Hmong Shamanism August 30, 2000 Right now you are receiving::  Right now you are receiving: Reading guide for “Hmong Cultural Values, Biomedicine, and Liver Disease”. Please use this to help guide your preparation for next week’s section meetings Topic list to choose from for your first segment paper, due September 25th Announcement on Wed 12:50 sections Make-up sections next week for Monday (Labor Day) sections:  Make-up sections next week for Monday (Labor Day) sections 9:35 am Monday section (with Sam) will meet at 7pm on Wednesday in Hines 104 11:45 am Monday section (with Sam)will meet at 8pm on Wednesday in Hines 104 1:55 pm Monday section (with Sefla) will meet at 7pm Thursday in Maxwell 110 4pm Monday section (with Steve) will meet at 7pm on Tuesday in Maxwell 108 Defining “shamanism”:  Defining “shamanism” “Shaman” is not a Hmong word; it is a Tungus word. The shaman in Hmong is known as Txiv Neeb (“master of spirits”) Defining “shamanism”:  Defining “shamanism” Shamanism is a belief system found throughout the world in which an individual is chosen by the spirits to heal the afflictions of others, and does so by achieving an altered state of consciousness (ASC), thereby enabling his soul to cross over to the spirit world in order to dialogue with the spirits, either to tap their power or to persuade them to cease and desist and then to cross back over to the world of the living key point: shamanism is not spirit possession Dale’s affliction:  Dale’s affliction Dale is young Hmong man who lives in Syracuse About a year ago, began to lose weight, energy, desire to interact Went to a doctor, who diagnosed “depression”; prescribed counseling and visit to neurologist for possible chemical imbalance Family dissatisfied Hmong: A People from the hills of Southeast Asia:  Hmong: A People from the hills of Southeast Asia Small rice and maize villages in the hills of south China, Thailand, Laos, Vietnam Strong value of independence Hmong: “free people” Where the Hmong now live:  Where the Hmong now live In China: 3 million In Vietnam: 200,000 In Thailand: 200,000 In Laos (“the homeland”): 100,000 In the U.S.: 100,000 A devil’s bargain: becoming guerrilla fighters for the CIA:  A devil’s bargain: becoming guerrilla fighters for the CIA 1960s: recruited by CIA to fight Viet Cong Experts in mountain and forest habitats In proportion to population, lost 10 times as many soldiers as did the Americans Becoming refugees:  Becoming refugees Reprisals against Hmong after 1975 10s of 1000s fled to refugee camps in Thailand Horrible exodus Hmong refugees in the United States:  Hmong refugees in the United States About 100,000 Seattle, Minneapolis, southern California about 600 in Syracuse Syracuse community small and traditional Dale’s diagnosis by the shaman:  Dale’s diagnosis by the shaman Dale’s mother went to cousin who is a “txiv neeb” the cousin threw divination “horns” diagnosed Dale’s illness as loss of soul: it had wandered in search of girl, captured by evil spirits Agreed to go to Otherworld and negotiate release The Hmong View of Souls:  The Hmong View of Souls The body houses between five and thirty different souls or life-forces These occupy the body loosely, especially the younger one is Can wander off at night, or when visiting unfamiliar places Health, Illness and Soul-Loss:  Health, Illness and Soul-Loss For Hmong, the body is healthy when all souls remain in the body, cooperating harmoniously Illness is due to prolonged separation of one of the souls from the body: getting “caught” in the Otherworld Soul-loss due to longing for a loved one, sudden frights, spiritual kidnapping, wandering into the otherworld Soul-loss fear as reflection of Hmong social values:  Soul-loss fear as reflection of Hmong social values The body sometimes called the soul’s “house” or “village” The idea of a solitary soul that has strayed from the body is frightening and dangerous reflects Hmong value that a person should not want to be independent of the group; one who has strayed from the group is dangerously vulnerable and alone Physical health is achieved by return of soul to body; social health achieved by return of person to group The shaman’s journey for Dale:  The shaman’s journey for Dale Family built altar and “horse” Extended family filled house Shaman entered trance (opium, sonic driving) Traveled with his spirit-helpers on a horse to the Otherworld to find lost soul Pig sacrificed, blood daubed on Dale Negotiated with evil spirit for soul’s release Returned and bound the soul to Dale’s body Feast Why did it work?:  Why did it work? The Hmong view The non-Hmong view --- next time! How shamanism looks:  How shamanism looks Watch how the shaman gallops into the Otherworld The sacrifice of the pig

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