Hầu Đồng: The Spirits Mediums of Vietnam

Đạo Mẫu -Mother Goddess worship- is a syncretic religious tradition that mixes elements of traditional goddess worship and other indigenous beliefs, with Taoist and Buddhist elements.

Hầu Đồng (also Lên đồng) is one of the main rituals of Đạo Mẫu, and exemplifies the worship of mother goddesses in Vietnam. During these rituals, the mediums go into trances so their bodies can receive the spirits of various deities. The journey of the spirits into the bodies of the mediums is an incarnation, and the process involves the spirits briefly hovering then moving into the mediums. The mediums change their costumes to indicate which deity has entered their body.

Here are portraits of some of the mediums who perform the ritual of Hầu Đồng.

All Photographs © 2015 Tewfic El-Sawy. All text and images appearing on this web site are protected by United States and international copyright laws.

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