Sham or Shaman?

The use of shamans, spiritual priests said to have a direct link to dead spirits, is making a comeback in Mongolia.

The use of Shamans – people who have direct links to the spirits of dead ancestors – is reportedly making a comeback in outer Mongolia as people who are down on their luck try to flip their fortunes. Although Shamanism has a strong history in Mongolia it came close to dying out in the 1990s as there were only a handful of practising Shamans lef. "Over the last 15 years, though, shamanism has been making a comeback. And over the last year, it’s boomed. Shamanism is a decentralized practice, and there are no statistics measuring the numbers of shamans and those seeking help from shamans… but it has now re-entered the mainstream in Mongolia, even among the urbane youth of the capital Ulaanbaatar. It’s reached a point where shamans advertise on television, and even well known actors are becoming shamans," according to eurasianet.org.

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