Volume 1 Number 1 (Spring 1993)
AKE HULTKRANTZ (Stockholm): Introductory Remarks on
the Study of Shamanism
GIOVANNI STARY (Venice): "Praying in the Darkness":
New Texts for a Little-Known Manchu Shamanic Rite
Tuibumbi is a technical term for special prayers, which
are recited at the end of Manchu shamanic rites, when
the lanterns have already been extinguished. It is,
therefore, possible to paraphrase it as "praying
in the darkness". The origin of this ceremony is
still unknown, though some explanation can be found
for it in Manchu folk tales. These prayers are generally
addressed to female divinities, and some examples are
already known from the Manchu dynasty’s "Imperial
Shamanic Ritual" Manjusai wecere metere kooli bithe.
In this paper, the author gives a translation and a
critical analysis of some newly discovered tuibumbi-prayers,
collected mostly in 1981 in Jilin province, Manchuria.
MARI YOSHINAGA and YIJI SASAKI (University of Tokyo):
Kamidari as a Key Concept of Okinawan Shamanism
Kamidari occurs predominantly among the shamans of
the Okinawan district during the initiation period.
Kamidari includes a wide range of states: psychosis,
various hallucinations, and somatic complains, which
are often the concomitants of daily difficulties such
as economic hardship or conflicts among the family members.
The authors found that the shaman's personality factor,
unfortunate life events and the environment were all
causes of the symptoms of kamidari. The practice of
worship as well as the human relationships surrounding
the shaman help her or him to overcome the dysphoric
state of kamidari. Based on these results, the clinical
and cultural aspects of kamidari are discussed from
the viewpoint of social psychiatry.
SHI KUN (The Ohio State University): Shamanistic Studies
in China. A Preliminary Survey of the Last Decade
ROY ANDREW MILLER und NELLY NAUMANN. Altjapanisch FaFuri.
Zu Priestertum und Schamanismus im vorbuddhistischen
Japan (by Catherine U. Köhalmi)
GIOVANNI STARY. Das "Schamanenbuch" der Sibe-Mandschuren.
TATJANA A. PANG. Die sibemandschurische Handschrift
"Der Schamanenhof". Die sibemandschurische
Handschrift Saman kuwaran-i bithe aus der Sammlung N.
Krotkov. ALESSANDRA POZZI. Manchu-Shamanica Illustrata.
Die mandschurische Handschrift 2774 der Toyobunka Kenkyusho,
Tokyo Daikaku (Shamanica Manchurica Collecta. Vols.
1–3) (by Catherine U. Köhalmi)
News and Notes
MIHÁLY HOPPÁL (Budapest): Report on the First International
Conference of the International Society for Shamanistic
MIHÁLY HOPPÁL (Budapest): Report on the "Shamanism
as a Religion: Origin, Reconstruction and Traditions"
Conference Held in Yakutsk, August 15-22, 1992.
Volume 1 Number 2 (Autumn 1993)
ROBERTE N. HAMAYON (EPHE, Paris): Are "Trance,"
"Ecstasy" and Similar Concepts Appropriate
in the Study of Shamanism?
The terms "trance" and "ecstasy"
are used in many definitions of shamanism to mean both
a culturally defined form of behavior and a specific
correlative physical and mental state. In fact, however,
there is no evidence to indicate that this identification
is warranted. According to the symbolic representations
of shamanistic societies, the shaman's ritual behavior
is the mode of his direct contact with his spirits;
hence it is functional behavior that follows a prescribed
pattern. The use of the word "trance" to describe
the shaman's behavior, associated as it is with a specific
physical and psychological state, has given Western
religions an excuse to condemn this type of behavior,
the associated state being considered in the seventeenth
and eighteenth centuries as wild and devilish, and later,
as pathological. What is in fact condemned is the assumption
implicit in shamanism, i.e. that man and the spirits
are similar in essence and status, a hypothesis which
is unacceptable to ideologies based on divine transcendence.
ANDRÁS HÖFER (Heidelberg University): Some Hyperpragmatic
Patterns in Tamang Shamanic Recitations, Nepal
The article focuses on the classificatory logic in
the oral poetry of the Tamang shamans in Nepal. Three
types of specific phraseological configurations are
examined to demonstrate how and to what extent "doctrinal
content" of extra-textual provenance and intra-textual
phonic-prosodic potentials interact. This interaction,
it is argued, results in poetic qualities which are
likely to enhance the persuasive effect of the text
in performance, and also to condition the formation
of the text as part of an oral tradition. The discussion
concludes with a plea for a more text-based approach
to shamanism in ethnography and comparative research.
AKE HULTKRANTZ (Stockholm): The Shaman in Myths and
This article points out two different types of folk
tales that have been grown up around shamans. Where
shamanism occurs among simple hunting peoples the shaman
is likely to be spoken of as a gifted and distinctive
individual, and will, perhaps, be considered to be more
mysterious after his/her death. However, as a rule,
he/she is still considered to be a human being. Among
the nomads of northern Siberia, however, the shaman
is part of a more complex society: after death, he/she
may be the object of a regular cult, and the tales told
will make him/her into a hero/heroine of divine status.
The tales, thus, become myths, and the shamans are transformed
TATJANA ALEKSANDROVNA PANG (St. Petersburg): The Kun-ning-gung
Palace in Peking: The Manchu Dynasty's Shaman Centre
in the "Forbidden City"
The Kun-ning-gung, located behind the main palaces
of the "Forbidden City," was—together with
the Tangzi temple—the Qing court's centre for shamanic
rituals. While the Tangzi has been completely destroyed,
the Kun-ning-gung palace is still open the public: visitors
to the main hall will find some shamanic furniture,
and can then proceed to the kitchen where the sacrificial
meat was cooked. The rituals celebrated in this hall
were carefully described in the "Imperial Shamanic
Ritual" (in Manchu Hesei toktobuha Manjusai wecere
metere koolo bithe) completed in 1747; it is the most
significant passages and prayers of this ritual that
are translated here.
MARJORIE MANDELSTAM BALZER (Georgetown University):
Shamanism and the Politics of Culture: An Anthropological
View of the 1992 International Conference on Shamanism,
Yakutsk, the Sakha Republic