Portraits of Hmong Shamans

This section consists of four portraits of Hmong shamans. Two are already Hmong shamans and have been conducting ceremonies and rituals for fourteen years. A third is becoming a shaman later in life and a fourth a shaman who became ill and could no longer continue his practice.

Hmong Homes: My Sites of Study

Most Hmong religious practices, traditions, ceremonies and rituals are private, often occurring in the home and not in a public space, like a temple or a church. Although it is usually just families and relatives who attend these religious events in homes, outsiders may be welcome if they have a connection with the family. This really depends on who the outsider is and what connection they have with the family that is in need of a “neeb.” Therefore, homes of shamans and future shamans are the homes that I will call, “my sites.” Their homes are interconnected with what they do and religiously practice. Their altars are my particular focus.

Another area for future study would be to interview those young Hmong people who are in the process of becoming shamans.