Category:Animism in Asia
This category has the following 2 subcategories, out of 2 total.
This category has the following 2 subcategories, out of 2 total.
1. Bodo people – The Bodos are an ethnic and linguistic aboriginal group of the Brahmaputra valley in the northeast part of India. The Bodos are recognized as a tribe in the Sixth Schedule of the Indian Constitution. Udalguri, Chirang, Baksa, Sonitpur, Goalpara, Dhemaji, Lakhimpur, Darrang, Bongaigaon, the Bodos living in West Bengal, Nagaland and Nepal are called Mech. The Bodos use the term Bodosa to describe themselves, though spread in different parts of this region, as well as, in the neighbouring countries, majority of their population is found in Assam. The Boro people form the largest indigenous group in the present demography of the region, the language belongs to the Tibeto-Burman language family. According to the report of 1971, the population of the Boros was 610,459. The Boro Socio-political organisations however do not accept this figure and they claim their population to be not less than 4 million in 1990. This discrepancy is believed to have crept in because of deliberate doctoring of some census officials, the census reports of the Government conducted every 10 years are believed to have presented the Hinduised Boros as Assamese. This misclassification has reduced the Boro population in the record by a big margin. He also observed that the increase in Kamrup and Darrang is so great as to suggest the suspicion that a number of Koch have turned themselves into Kalitas. The Koches are the Hinduised Boros and the Kalitas are one of the castes of the Assamese community. This process of infringement has continued through successive census, as a result, the successive census reports give inconsistent figures of population of this people. For instance, in 1881, the Boro population was 894,885, while in 1891, it rose to 1,058,496, in 1961, their population figured at 1,228,450, while in 1971, it fell to 610,459. Such fluctuation in the figure cannot be analysed by any natural law of demography. Thus the census reports of the Government of India, which ought to be the most authentic documents, have suffered from anomalies, under such circumstances, the population figures furnished by the Boro socio-political organizations appear more convincing. The present Boro population inclusive of all groups is not less than 9.5 million. Bodos traditionally practise Bathouism, which is the worshiping of forefathers, the shijou plant is taken as the symbol of Bathou and worshiped. It is also claimed as the supreme god, in Bodo language, Ba means five and thou means deep
2. Hyang – A hyang is an unseen spiritual entity that has supernatural power in ancient Indonesian mythology. This spirit can be either divine or ancestral, the reverence for this spiritual entity can be found in Sunda Wiwitan, Kejawen, and Balinese Hinduism. In the modern Indonesian this term tends to be associated with gods, devata, the realm where the hyangs reside is called kahyangan, now a synonym for svarga or heaven in modern Indonesian. The term hyang now widely associated with Balinese Hinduism developed in ancient Java, however this term actually has an older origin, it has its root in the indigenous animism and dynamism beliefs of Austronesian people that inhabit the Indonesian archipelago. The hyang concept indigenously developed in the archipelago and not considered to have originated from Indian dharmic religions, before the adoption of Hinduism, Buddhism and Islam, the natives of the Indonesian archipelago believed in powerful but unseen spiritual entities that can be both benevolent or malevolent. They also believed that the ancestor is not gone away or disappeared completely. The ancestral spirit may gain god-like spiritual power and remain involved in their offsprings worldly affairs, in ancient Sundanese, Javanese, and Balinese society, this unseen spiritual entity is identified as hyang. These ancestral divine spirits are believed to inhabit high places, such as mountains, hills and these mountainous regions are considered sacred realms, as the abode of gods and the resting place for the soul of the ancestors. In Sundanese, the term nga-hyang means disappear or unseen and it is suggested that the word hyang has linguistic relation with the Indonesian word, hilang which means disappear. In its development, the term hyang become the word for many terms that still known and used in modern Indonesian. If the word hyang is attached with prefixes attribute Sang-, Dang-, Ra-, to form the word Sanghyang, Danghyang, or Rahyang, it is meant to honor ar revere gods or the deceased ancestors. For example, Sanghyang Sri Pohaci and Sang Hyang Widhi refer to gods, the term Danghyang or Danyang is refer to the guardian spirits of certain sacred or haunted places. The name of Srivijayan empire founder, Dapunta Hyang Sri Jayanasa, kahyangan, from the word ka-hyang-an, is the realm where hyangs resides. Because of the belief that hyang prefer high places, some regions is considered as the abode of hyang. For example, Parahyangan refer to mountainous region of West Java, originated from combined words para-hyang-an, para indicate plural, while the suffix -an shows the place, so Parahyangan means the abode of hyangs. The term parahyangan is also used as the type of Pura or Balinese temple, Pura parahyangan is Balinese temple that located in mountainous region as the counterparts of pura segara, Balinese temple located by the sea. Dieng Plateau in Central Java also shared the same origin, it is from the combined words di-hyang which also means hyangs place, the word sembahyang in Indonesian is synonymous with the Islamic shalat ritual. It actually originated from the combined word sembah-hyang which means worship the hyang, the Balinese Sanghyang Dedari sacred dance involved some pre-pubescent girls dances in trance condition
3. Kaharingan – Kaharingan is a folk religion professed by many Dayaks in Kalimantan, Indonesia, particularly Central Kalimantan, although many have converted to Christianity or Islam. The main festival of Kaharingan is the Tiwah festival, which lasts for thirty days, and involves the sacrifice many animals like buffaloes, cows, pigs, the supreme God in Kaharingan is called Ranying. In addition, it has ritual offerings called Yadnya, place of worship called Balai Basarah or Balai Kaharingan and holy book called Panaturan, Talatah Basarah, the term Kaharingan comes from the Old Dayak word “Haring” meaning “Life” or “Alive”. This concept is expressed in the symbol of the depicting the Tree of Life. This Tree of Life resembles a spear that has three branches on eitherside, some facing up and some down, at the bottom of the symbol are two receptacles, while at the very top are a hornbill and the sun. The hornbill bird and the sun represent Ranying Mahalala meaning God Almighty, the spear and its branches denote the upper world and the afterlife, while the lower part where are the receptacles convey the idea of man’s earthly life. Although both the world and the earthly world are different, but they are closely connected to one another and are inseparable since they are both interdependent. The branches where some face up while others face down mean that there is a balance between the earthly and the afterlife. That life on earth is temporary, and that life is designed for the hereafter. This is also the concept of the Balinese Hindu religion. In practice the Ngaju Dayaks focus on the world of spirits. For them, the funeral is most important, usually held after several months or even years after burial. During the second funeral rites the bones are exhumed and cleansed then placed in a special mausoleum, the spirit of the deceased is then believed to watch over the village. The mausoleums are often beautifully decorated showing scenes of the upper world, an ornate ship of the dead made of rubber is usually placed next to the remains depiciting his entourage that accompany the soul to paradise. One of the most outstanding features of the Dayak faith is their Local Wisdom and innate concern to preserve the forest, there are strict rules and directives on how to treat the rainforests, what may be done or taken from the forests and what are taboo. Said gtoup were more open to technological and cultural influences from outside than most other Dayak, with the arrival of the Dutch and - in 1835 - the missionary Rheinische Mission (later followed up by the Basler Mission, many converted to Christianity. The missionaries founded very good schools, so that the Christianized areas nowadays have a lot illiteracy rate, education stimulated a national awakening among the Ngaju and Maanyan Dayak. This development was even encouraged by the Dutch rule, aimed at the ban of Islam from the inlands
4. Malaysian folk religion – Malaysian folk religion refers to the animistic and polytheistic beliefs and practices that are still held by many in the Islamic-majority country of Malaysia. Malaysian folk faith is practiced either openly or covertly depending on the type of rituals performed, some forms of belief are not recognised by the government as a religion for statistical purposes although such practices are not outlawed. There is a interaction between the Chinese folk religion of the large Malaysian Chinese population, and the indigenous Malaysian folk religion. There are different types of Malaysian folk religion practised throughout the country, shamanic performances are held by people known as dukuns, otherwise also known as dukun or pawang. Most Orang Aslis are religiously animist and believe in spirits residing in certain objects, however, some have recently converted to mainstream religions due to state-sponsored Islamic dawah or evangelised by Christian missionaries. In Indonesia indigenous religions are practised by various Borneo tribal groups. The Chinese generally practice their religion which is also animistic in nature. Generally speaking, Indonesians have deep superstitious belief, especially more so in the rural areas, in the peninsula, widespread Islamification is said to have begun in 1409 after Parameswara became Sultan of Malacca and converted into Islam after marrying a princess from Pasai. Since then, other Sultanates in the Malay peninsula have adopted Islam, also since then, and continuing after the independence of Malaysia, Islam played a central role in Malaysian society. Similarly in East Malaysia, folk religion was widespread prior to the arrival of Christian missionaries from Europe, the practice of headhunting was quite common in these societies. In Sabah, the Kadazan-dusuns would worship Kinoingan or rice spirit, during Kaamatan, there are certain rituals which has to be carried out by the high-priestesses known as the bobohizans. Today, most Kadazandusuns have adopted Christianity but some would still celebrate Kaamatan, however, the number of bobohizans has tremendously dropped and is in the brink of extinction. In Sarawak, it has said that the animism practised by the Ibans and other related groups is the most developed, elaborated. Folk religious practice in East Malaysia is related to the religion of Kaharingan in Kalimantan, Indonesia, however, the rituals involved are not entirely similar with variations depending on the ethnic subgroups which practices it. The shamans bomohs or witch doctors still practice their craft in Malaysia, the bomoh practice by Malays have been integrated into Islam and is not forbidden. They are also known as traditional healers and sometimes serve as an alternative to modern medicine. However, the practice has sometimes been viewed negatively by Malaysian society as in some instances bomohs have the power to cast spells and have used them on people with ill effects. The number practitioners of bomohs has also dropped, the bobohizans of Sabah are also shamans and are traditional healers
5. Mo (religion) – Mo or Moism, occasionally called Zhuang Shigongism, is the religion of most Zhuang people, the largest ethnic minority of China. It has a presence in Guangxi. While it has a god, the creator Bu Luotuo. Mo is animistic, teaching that spirits are present in everything, the Cultural Revolution of China weakened Mo, though the religion has undergone a revival since the 1980s. Moism varies from region to region, the religion is animistic, teaching that spirits are present in everything. The spirits are seen as immortal and subject to changes in mood, Mo exhibits totemism and the cult of reproduction. In Mo, Bu Luotuo is considered the god, creator. The Flower Mother, Me Hoa, is seen as the creator of humanity, as the goddess of reproduction, she is seen as governing a large garden of golden flowers and silver flowers. Whoever behaves with good sense and sentiment will receive good flowers, other gods include Tudigong, who is thought to protect the village, She Shen, who is the village tutelary spirit, the Shan Shen, and the Dragon King. Rice is seen as important, there is therefore a field god, in Mo, spirits are thought to be present in everything, and even inanimate things such as water are considered to have souls. Mo spirits include deities and ancestors as well as devils, people are considered to have three souls after death, One goes to the sky, one to the cemetery and one comes back to the deceased’s family. Souls of the dead enter a netherworld but can continue to assist the living, according to the religion, people who have died by violence can become evil spirits. Praying is common within this religion, sorcerers venerate their masters as well as the founders of witchcraft in their family. There are temples dedicated to land gods, the sun god is celebrated and given offerings. Mo has the sacred epic Buluotuo, concerning the creation of the universe, according to Mo, every person is a flower in the garden of Molujia, the goddess of birth. On February 29 of the almanac, the goddesss birthday, women pick flowers. She is said to have born in a flower at the beginning of the world. There is a festival for her, which varies in place, date, the religion has the custom of burying the dead twice
6. Spirit house – For the spirit house used by the Dakelh people of British Columbia, see Spirit house. Most houses and businesses have a spirit house placed in an auspicious spot, the location may be chosen after consultation with a Brahmin priest. The spirit house is normally in the form of a house or temple. The house is intended to provide a shelter for spirits that could cause problems for the if not appeased. The shrines often include images of people and animals, votive offerings are left at the house to propitiate the spirits. More elaborate installations include an altar for this purpose, di Penates Erawan Shrine Hokora Kamidana Lak Mueang Nat Thai folklore Tutelary deity Media related to Spirit houses at Wikimedia Commons The Thai Spirit House
7. Sunda Wiwitan – Sunda Wiwitan is a religious belief system of traditional Sundanese. It venerates the power of nature and the spirit of ancestors, in Carita Parahyangan this faith is called Jatisunda. Its practitioners assert that Sunda Wiwitan has been part of their way of life since ancient times, before the arrival of Hinduism, the sacred book of Sunda Wiwitan is called Sanghyang siksakanda ng karesian, it is a didactic text of religious and moral guidance, rules and lessons. The text is identified as Kropak 630 by National Library of Indonesia, however, over the course of time Sunda Wiwitan has been influenced by and incorporated Hindu, and to some extent, Islamic elements. The highest spiritual power in Sunda Wiwitan is Sang Hyang Kersa or Nu Ngersakeun and this supreme being is also referred to by several names or divine titles, such as Batara Tunggal, Batara Jagat, and Batara Seda Niskala. Sang Hyang Kersa resides in the highest and most sacred realm called Buana Nyungcung, the Hindu gods are considered subordinates of Sang Hyang Kersa. According to Sunda Wiwitan ontology, the universe consists of three realms, Buana Nyungcung, the uppermost realm, the abode of the supreme highest Sang Hyang Kersa. Buana Panca Tengah, earth, the realm of human beings and animals, with five cardinal directions, east, west, north, south, Buana Larang, hell, the realm of demons and lowly spirits, the lowermost realm. Between Buana Nyungcung and Buana Panca Tengah, there are 18 layers of realms, the uppermost of these heavenly realms is called Bumi Suci Alam Padang, or according to Kropak 630, Alam Kahyangan or Mandala Hyang. This second-highest realm is the abode of Nyi Pohaci Sanghyang Asri, Sang Hyang Kersa created seven bataras in Sasaka Pusaka Buana. The oldest of these bataras is called Batara Cikal and is considered to be the ancestor of the Kanekes people, other bataras ruled various locations in Sunda lands. The value system of Sunda Wiwitan is based on written and unwritten norms, the written norms are rules and taboos that govern the way of life of adherents, while the unwritten norms are internal and individual understandings of the faith. Sunda Wiwitans basic and principle concepts are based on two things, Cara Ciri Manusia and Cara Ciri Bangsa and these two principles are mentioned by Sunda Wiwitan elders, yet are not explicitly mentioned in the Siksa Kanda-ng Karesian, the sacred text of Sunda Wiwitan. Cara Ciri Manusia comprises the elements of human life. This principle refers to the human characteristic of always being wary or suspicious of foreign or unknown influences. This reflects an inherent conservatism and resistance to change in village life. It implies that influences incompatible with tradition must be rejected, the second concept of Cara Ciri Bangsa states that people have universals or similarities in basic human traits, yet express diversity from one individual or community to another. Originally Sunda Wiwitan did not incorporate many taboos or prohibitions, the most numerous taboos are applied to those living within the most sacred place on earth—the people of Baduy Dalam that inhabit Sasaka Pusaka Buana