Court: Brazil On The Brink Of Civil War

Court: Brazil On The Brink Of Civil War(AP) Deep in the northernmost reaches of the Amazon jungle, a land conflict between rice farmers and a handful of Indian tribes has turned so violent that the country's Supreme Court warns it could escalate into civil war.

The court is expected to decide in August if the government can keep evicting rice farmers from a 4.2 million acre Indian reservation decreed by President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva in 2005. The evictions were stopped in April when rice farmers started burning bridges and blockading roads, and justices said they feared a "veritable civil war."

The best of Russia Close-Up: Shamans and lamas buddy buddy in Tyva

The best of Russia Close-Up: Shamans and lamas buddy buddy in TyvaSpirituality runs deep in the remote Russian Republic of Tyva. While Shamanism is the unofficial religion there, Lamaism, or Tibetan Buddhism, is the official one. But most people donít have to choose between the two, since shamans and lamas donít have a grudge against each other.

Hmong Funeral Home: A change of spiritual address

Hmong Funeral Home: A change of spiritual addressHmong shaman Mai Yang, of Maplewood, began a ceremony to communicate with spirits inside the Hmong Funeral Home. She struck a gong to persuade them to leave the building because it will soon be demolished. Craig OíBrien of the Office of Planning and Economic Development is behind her.

A shaman performed a ceremony to coax souls from the building in St. Paul and prepare it for its next life.

The healing power of medicine dolls

The healing power of medicine dollsSeveral months ago, the city-owned art gallery in South Norfolk launched a project to help nine Oscar Smith Middle School students cope with acute emotional stress and deep trauma in their lives.

The boys and girls, ages 10 to 13, were encouraged to find healing by crafting ancient medicine dolls known as shaman.

Colombia's Cofan still fighting for survival

ColombiaAlthough he is only 21, Camilo Yoge has seen his indigenous tribe lose its culture, territory and traditions.

Yoge, a member of the Cofan tribe, has seen farmers, ranchers and oilmen invade his ancestral lands to plant illegal coca crops, raise cattle and search for oil. He has seen many young Cofan take to wearing Western-style clothes, listening to popular music and abandoning their native language for Spanish.

"We're losing out traditional dress, our environment," lamented Yoge, who is studying to become a taita, or shaman. "We are no longer free in our own territory."