Friday, March 6, 2015

Interview with Korean dancer-shaman Hi-ah Park

At the initiation ceremony, the minyong was placed leading onto the upstage portion of the house as a bridge between the heaven and the earth. To test my psychic ability and to determine if I could identify the deities who had descended on me, my Godmother and her assistant shaman, who serves as a messenger, sat at the end of the minyong, in a sense ending in heaven. A straw mat was placed downstage. Each question asked by the head shaman was repeated by her assistant. Instead of answering the questions directly, I began dancing. Then, kneeling down on the straw mat, I answered the questions orally. The dance seemed to heighten the trance state so that my answer came without thinking as if I know everything already.
The first question was, “If you become a shaman, through which gate will you enter?”
I started singing in an occult nature, previously unknown to me. Again I danced until possessed and knelt down to wait for the next question.
--Hi-ah Park as interviewed by Lauren W. Deutsch
Read more at:

Meeting With Sanshin:
An Interview with Hiah Park, Lover of the Mountain God
by Lauren W. Deutsch, Kyoto Journal, 1993

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