Monday, May 24, 2010


Why do people form biases against one another and how do these biases affect our own understanding of and actions in the world?

I think that people form biases because we all have our own opinions and ideas about others opinion and ideas. We all want things to be right. No one ever wants things to not be how they want it to be, and so that's how biases are formed. Sometimes bias can change or reflect on our own thinking.

For instence, movie critics say bad things about movies and actors/actresses all the time and so that way people will listen to what they say and sometimes think it's true because they know nothing about what the movie critics are saying, or they just believe everything that they say. Sometimes people may disagree and that creates biases also.

How does bias appear in the media?

In the media, just like the movie critics, can also change others thoughts about a certain subject. Stereotypes are also very big on bias; if someone says that all Mexicans are immagrants then someone else may stick up and and say something, and they all might have disagreements and create bias. If someone says all asians eat dogs and cats, then others might disagree and bias will form again.

The media has all sorts of biases and it only depends if people agree with what they say or not, if they do then that's great, but if they don't then there will be arguments and biases form again.

How can you tell when someone is presenting an opinion as fact?

You can tell whether someone is stating an opnion as a fact is when they state what they think and say it's a fact, or if you already know what the subject that they're talking about is then it's absolutely an opinion from their thoughts. A fact isn't always a fact unless you already know what the true meaning of it. Usually people in the media try to portray their opinion into facts, especially on celebreties and famous people, maybe because they don't like a certain subject or they just want people to agree with them.

How do our own biases affect our understanding when we read?

Biases can affect us by trying to make us believe what is being said or told. It can also affect our reading because if all is not true then we'll all get the wrong message of the reading.

Sometimes when I read I disagree on somethings that I might not agree with. If you know that something that's been said is wrong then it's best to create biases.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Shaman Videos

How a Shaman performs.

Monday, May 17, 2010

About Shamanism

Shamanism is a religious. You can not make yourself a shaman, you have to be chosen to be one. If you deny the request then sickness will approach you until you've agreed to become a shaman. This religious is a practice of going into the other side of the world to talk to spirits or souls. They are to bring back your runaway soul, and heal you. It is said that when the shaman goes to the other side of the world they ride a white horse, and chases after the runaway soul.

Tools needed:

-A gong



-long wooden chair

-Ring Bells

-Split horns

-Red head cover

-and other shaman tools depending on how vast the journey will be

The shaman would have to gamble with the soul agreeing to give them either a pig, chicken, cow, or all. If they agree to either one of those then the family will have to butcher a pig, chicken, cow, or all of those to give to the runaway soul. The shaman must be respected by all Hmong and relatives. After the ceremony the family that the shaman is performing for has to give him the head of the pig, if they butchered a cow they have to give them the thigh, if a chicken then the drumstick and thigh.

In the Media:

I tried finding stuff about Hmong shamans in the media and news, but found nothing. Hmong shamans aren't really in the news yet. It's usually in non-common medias if it's being portrayed.

On I found a video with Hmong shamans in one of the series of Grey's Anatomy. I thought that it was pretty neat to see Hmong shamans in a popular drama.

In Merced, California, the Mercy Medical Center had welcome Hmong shamans to come in and perform their ceremony to help heal the Hmong patient's soul. This is the first time that any hospital or medical center has ever welcome a Hmong shaman to come in and perform their ceremony right in the room of the patient. When I found out about this it really shocked me that they would actually welcome a shaman to come in and perform their "soul calling" ceremony.(

In the movie Gran Torino, they showed how the shaman is performing their "soul calling" ceremony. I think that it's all wrong. Everything was incorrect. Butchering a chicken is supposed to be done by the wives and daughters, not the shaman.

Yes, someone does hold the chicken for them to butcher, but not in that way. In Gran Torino the shaman was performing a "soul calling" chant for a newborn child, and again the process was wrong.

How it's supposed to be done:

When the shaman is calling the soul for a new born child it's usually done by the door and lasts for about a good 15 minute, sometimes even longer. No one stands around and watches the shaman call the soul at this point; the shaman is supposed to be alone when they're calling a new born's soul. They would place a half cooked chicken on a plate with a hard boiled egg next to the chicken. The shaman will chant and use two split horn, knock it on the door and then throw it on the floor. If both the horns are faced up that means that the soul will come, but if it faces down, or if one of them is up and the other one is down, they would have to keep on persuading the soul to come, and when it decides to come then the wives and daughters will cook and reboil the chicken again.

If the ceremony was to be big, people can stand around and watch the shaman perform and the relatives are given pieces of cotton strings after the ceremony so they can tie the person, or family, that is having their souls called and wish them wealth. There will be a big feast and it's also a time where relatives get a chance to mingle again.