Exploring modern Korea in ancient trappings

Exploring modern Korea in ancient trappings  Beneath its ultramodern facade, Korea is a country with all the trappings of shamanism and Confucianism, a new book says. In “Contemporary Korean Culture: the Persistence of Shamanistic and Confucian Values and Practices,” coauthors Kim Eun-gi and Choi Joon-sik seek to explain the social fabric and the mindset of Koreans through the lens of shamanism and Confucianism, examining the origins and manifestation of some of the most enigmatic Korean customs as well as their critique.

Many Native American Communities Struggle With Effects Of Heroin Use

Many Native American Communities Struggle With Effects Of Heroin UseA decade ago, Ken Lewis almost lost his arm to an intravenous (IV) drug addiction. Twice he developed cysts in his veins that exploded in the hospital. When he came out of surgery the doctor prescribed painkillers. So he traded his meth and heroin for the prescribed opiates.

How an American NGO Worker Became an In-Demand Shaman in Cambodia

How an American NGO Worker Became an In-Demand Shaman in CambodiaWhen praying mantis aliens tell you to quit your job and become a soothsayer, sometimes you follow their orders. At least that’s what one woman here in Phnom Penh did earlier this year. Eileen, who declined to give her full name in case her mom found out about her drastic career change, was working in international development in Cambodia but now sits in a colorful stall in one of Phnom Penh’s teeming markets. Her fortune-telling services have proven popular with locals who have dubbed her “Kru Khmer Barang”—the Western shaman.

When Science, Faith Clash

When Science, Faith ClashInside his mud-walled house, the witch doctor cast his curse. Here, in the remote Dorma Village of Sierra Leone, where some of the poorest people in the world spend most of their day struggling to feed their families, the witch doctor’s power over life and death was well known. Like his neighbors, the witch doctor, lived without running water, sanitation or electricity; one might say his home was powered with magic, a trade that has brought him both respect and income in a land where both are painfully scarce for the vast majority of people.

Why traditional healing has a place in modern health care

Why traditional healing has a place in modern health careI have an early childhood memory of my grandmother boiling water on a wood stove. A soft, cedar scent emanated from the pot. Grandma was coming down with a cold, so she was making a rust-coloured tea from a mix of leaves and branches she had gathered in the woods. The tea was going to help her feel better, help her get better.