In the fifth part of “Paranormal Activities,” the story of the possession of a family, which leads to a witch cult whose intentions are not mentioned other than they wanting to raise an army of possessed first borns. The story concentrates on Jesse, a young highs cool graduate who lives with his father, sister and […]Read more "Possession and Exorcism in the Latin American Community"
Exorcisms have been a staple of the Hollywood horror scene since they were introduced to moviegoers by William Friedkin’s The Exorcist. Since then there have been numerous follow ups – direct sequels, ones focused on gore and magic, ones who blend the beliefs and rituals of multiple religions and ones that largely divorce the concept […]Read more "Catholicism’s Take on Hollywood Exorcisms"
In Cuneo’s first chapter he talks a lot about the decline of the Catholic priesthood in the United States. He attributes this to a variety of factors including the Second Vatican Council, which made priesthood “less prestigious and its benefits less clear-cut,” as well as scandals ranging from sexual deviancy to assault. All of these […]Read more "How Does Hollywood Create Religious Heroes?"
In the thirteenth century, King Frederick II of Germany decided to conduct an experiment. He wanted to determine what language children would speak if never permitted to hear the spoken word. So he assigned foster mothers to care for fifty infants. The women were instructed to bathe and nurse the babies but not to fondle, […]Read more "Condition or Effect? Both."
My parents are Taiwanese and in Taiwan one of the main religions in Buddhism. My family is minimally religious so I don’t know much about Buddhism. What I do know is that there is no obvious indication of being religious in our culture. Asides from truly significant dates, people do not visit temples or have […]Read more "My Family’s Rituals"
This week, we discussed habitus and agreed that habitus must be social. It is not an individualistic idea as it is one that is shared and to be shared. Indeed, habitus can be hard to comprehend. We often don’t ponder over our behavior and daily activities. What happens when we do question it, then? I […]Read more "On Habitus"
Before entering a discussion on spiritual possession, please watch this clip of a Candomblé/Umbanda ritual from one of my favorite Brazilian films, Orfeu Negro (1959), by Marcel Camus. To give some context, Orfeu Negro is an French filmed, Afro-Brazilian adaptation of the Greek legend Black Orpheus and takes place within one of Rio de Janeiro’s favelas (slums) during Carnaval. In this scene, […]Read more "Spiritual Possession in Afro-Brazilian Candomblé"