Faith-Healers in the Himalaya

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Item Code: IDI910
Author: Casper J. Miller Dev
Publisher: Book Faith India
Edition: 1997
ISBN: 8173030529
Pages: 287 (Black & White Illus: 87)
Cover: Paperback
Other Details 8.5" X 5.6"
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Book Description
Back Of Book

An Investigation of Traditional Healers and their Festivals in the Dolakha District of Nepal

Long out-of-print,Faith Healers in the Himalaya is a reprint of a classic anthropoligical study of the shamans of Nepal. With the introduction of western medicine and so-called modern amenities, this is a fascinationg account of a traditional way of life that is slowly disappearing in the Himalayan kingdom.

Spirit-possession, magic, witchcraft, and occult healing ceremonies are still daily realities in the villages of Nepal. Who afficted members of the community? This absorbing in depth study reveals the amazing secrets of traditional Himalayan shamans (known locally as Jhankris) and their clients in the Dolakha district, a remote mountainous region of Nepal inhabited by the Thami people.

Although initially describing Nepalese shamans or spirit masters in anthropological terms, author Cap Miller presents these spirit masters in dramatic action, beginning with their roles in an annual "Pilgrimage for Power" to a sacred mountain top, the scene of magical battles.

"A valuable insight into the mysterious world of shamans and their clients."


Casper J. ("Cap") Miller was born in Clevaland, Ohio (USA), in 1933 and entered the Jesuits in 1951. In 1958, Cap volunteered to teach in Nepal as a life-time commitment. He was ordained a Roman Catholic priest in1964 and he became a Nepali citizen in 1971. Except for short breaks for home leave and a year of study at the University of Oxford, he has been in Nepal continuously during all this time, sometimes in Kathmandu, sometimes in villages in the central hills of Nepal.

He is fluent in the Nepali language, having spent long stretches of time in different Nepali homes. Besides his formal studies in Social Anthropology on Nepal, he has made the study of folk and classical music a life-time hobby.

Father Miller began his formal studies in Social Anthropology in 1973, while principal of St. Xavier's Godavari School, and now holds degrees from Tribhuvan University, Kathmandu. Since 1989 he has been Dean of Studies at the Jesuit Training Centre, Kamal Niwas, in Patan, Kathmandu.

Table Of Contents

Dedication v
About the Author vii
Note on Transliteration xi
List of Photographs xiii
Acknowledgements xvii
Foreword xix
Introduction: Faith-Healers, Spirit-Masters 1
1. Pilgrimage for Power 11
2. Choice of the Goddess 65
3. Priests and Healers 113
4. Choice of the Great God 139
5. Pilgrimage of Life 201
6. The Healer's View of the World 259
Glossary 267
Biblography 271
Index 283
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