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Unique shaman-granting ceremony of Tay ethnic minorities in Bac Kan

Unique shaman-granting ceremony of Tay ethnic minorities in Bac Kan

The Tay and Nung people in northern Vietnam believe that a Tao (shaman) is one who can communicate with the spirit world, helping villages exorcise evil spirits and pray for a bountiful harvest and peaceful life. The ceremony granting identity to a Tao shaman is a unique folkloric activity, a valuable form of ritual culture in the spiritual lives of ethnic minority people and been promoted and mai

In order to become a practitioner of the Tao religion, a Tay man is required to undergo the “cai lau Tao” ceremony, also known as a ceremony granting identity.

This is a particularly important ritual for the Tao shamans in the Tay community in Bac Kan province. The ceremony is usually conducted for 3 days and 2 nights and involves many rituals.

The person being granted identity in this case is Lưu Đình Hỷ, whose family has had 9 generations of religious practitioners. This is the first time in the village that someone has been granted identity, so family members, friends, and neighbours flock to celebrate.

After Tao shamans perform rituals to invite the ancestors, they perform other rituals according to their lineage’s beliefs. After receiving the seal, Hỷ officially became a Tào shaman.

The identity granting ceremony is a unique cultural feature of the Tay people in Bac Kan. Through the ceremony, we can better understand their concept of life./.