Malaysian villagers offer prayers to end quake aftershocks
Borneo tribal shamans chanted age-old prayers yesterday in a ceremony in Malaysia aimed at soothing spirits and bringing an end to disturbing aftershocks from an earthquake that killed 18 people.
About 100 members of the Kadazan Dusun, the largest tribal group in the Malaysian state of Sabah, held the ritual in the state’s Tamparuli district after a 5.1-magnitude aftershock shook the area yesterday.
DNA from the 8,500-year-old skeleton of an adult man found in 1996, in Washington, is more closely related to Native American populations than to any other population in the world, according to an international collaborative study conducted by scientists at the University of Copenhagen and the Stanford University School of Medicine.Shaman performs ritual and sacrifice to appease spirits of Mount Kinabalu
Ancient prayers were chanted while buffaloes were slaughtered in a Kadazandusun ritual to appease the spirits of Mount Kinabalu, two weeks after an earthquake killed 18 people there.
The monolob ritual was carried out simultaneously at the Kinabalu Park in Kundasang and Mamut in Ranau.
The women sat in a circle — their eyes closed and their ears tuned into the soothing voice of Donna La Chapelle.
“Soft,” she coached, as the handful of mostly American Indian women in their 60s inhaled through their noses.
“Belly,” she said, signaling them to exhale from their mouths.
As a young girl danced alone ceremoniously around a fire, surrounded by people stamping their feet, banging drums and chanting ritualistically, photographer Heidi Laughton looked on, with a feeling of unease.