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|KL 02 Small wallet with lining|
|Lisu young lady in Mae Hong Son|
|code||price incl. VAT|
|KL 01||Small wallet without lining||1,35|
|KL 02||Small wallet with lining||2,50|
|KL 03||Large wallet||7,50|
|KL 05||Bag with beads||8,75
(temporarily sold out)
|KL 07||Pink wallet with lining||4,00|
|KL 08||Pink wallet medium||7,50|
|KL 09||Pink wallet large||12,50|
Each bag or wallet has been individually hand-made, so they vary a bit in size and design.
|KL 05 Bag with beads|
|KL 06 Shoulderbag.|
|T 07 wooden "talking" frog
Of course, this frog doesn't really "talk", but when you stroke its back with the stick, it makes a croaking sound.
|code||price incl. VAT|
|T 01||.||Thai amulets||1,00|
|T 07||.||wooden talking frog, small||8,00|
|T 14||.||wooden talking frog, big||30,00|
|The meaning of the name Lisu is not known.
The Lisu probably originated in Tibet, first entering Thailand in Chiang Mai Province in the last quarter of the 19th century. Settlement has spread into Chiang Mai, Mae Hong Son, and other provinces in the North, where now the largest number of Lisu live. There are about 20,000 in Thailand.
Most Lisu in Thailand are of the sub-group called sometimes Variegated or Flowery Lisu, because of the colorful dress of the womenfolk, and sometimes Chinese Lisu, because of their esteem for Chinese culture and because of intermarriage with Chinese.
The Lisu are divided into clans, some having Lisu names, some having Chinese names, and each having customs which distinguish it from others. Clansmen are expected to assist, support, visit, and receive one another but are not to marry within the clan, though some clans are more rigorous than others in observing this prohibition.
Lisu seek land suited to their crops. The site should be remote enough that the village is not disturbed by outsiders and yet close enough to a market that transportation costs for necessities and luxuries purchased are not too high.
|Lisu ladies in Mae Hong Son|
|Once a village is founded, it may grow quickly, but then splits occur and factions depart to set up their own villages, often nearby.
At a point dominating the village, the shrine of the village guardian spirit is installed beneath a tree and the area is fenced off. The guardian spirit protects all who dwell in the village and wreaks retribution on those who violate custom. The shrine may be approached by men only on ritual occasions and never by women.
Houses may be raised on posts or built directly on the ground. Both types of house are entered from a covered porch extending the length of the front, which faces downhill. Inside, on the uphill wall opposite the door is the ancestral altar, a shelf bearing cups of water, which represent certain ancestors. On either side of the altar, bedrooms may be partitioned off, and to the front are a kitchen area and a guest area, each with a hearth, both sacred.
The guardian spirit shrine and the village's relations with this spirit are the responsibility of the village priest. The worship of the guardian spirit and the honor accorded the priest are extremely important sources of cohesion in a Lisu village.
The priest is chosen by village elders, an informal grouping of men whose personalities, wealth, experience, and clan connections make them influential in village affairs. The people of each clan in a village honor the oldest man of their clan and regard him as an arbiter and spokesman in clan affairs.
|In Lisu society there are still shamans. When a man suffers from an uncharacteristic malaise, behaves bizarrely, and reacts violently to foods taboo to shamans, it is a sign the spirits want him. At a conclave in the woods several shamans gather and call into themselves powerful spirits able to fend off dangerous spirits desirous of trying out a novice shaman. On this occasion, the novice is possessed by the least powerful of his senior ancestral spirits. Following this, he is instructed by a shaman of his clan.|
|If someone falls sick, rituals are necessary, that consume much of the swine and poultry raised by Lisu.|
|In particular, when the cause of an illness is not obvious, it is often attributed to an ancestor, usually one recently deceased, and curing involves sacrifice of several pigs or chickens.
On the other hand, an ancestral spirit may assist in the cure by informing the living what offense has been committed against which spirit and what sacrifice is required.
The medium in this communication is the shaman. In the presence of the patient and others among the living, he enters a trance before the ancestral altar and is possessed by a senior ancestral spirit, with whom the living engage in a dialog to find out what they must do.
|This information and the last two pictures are from Chiang Mai & the Hill Tribes;
Sangdad Publishing; Bangkok, 1992.
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