[New Paper] Potent Places in Central Vietnam: ‘Everything that Comes Out of the Earth is Cham’

New paper in the Asia Pacific Journal of Anthropology by Anne-Valérie Schweyer:

Set apart from the so-called ‘Hinduisation’ process, the Cham country is characterised by the presence of many sites or shrines dedicated to local deities. This paper—based on the analysis of archaeological and anthropological evidence—aims to identify these cults, to clarify the associated practices and to demonstrate how the local cults map out the entire local geography. Moreover, in central Vietnam, it is possible to precisely examine ‘potent places’ in order to achieve a better understanding of the local cults and the persistence of those cults from antiquity to the present. In ancient times, each local deity was connected to a political power, which ‘exhaled’ it and, at the same time, put a mark on the territory. The diversity of potent places allows a better understanding of puzzling territories. The continuity of ritual practices performed at Cham potent places, centuries after the disappearance of any form of Cham political power, shows the link between the first occupants of the land and the following Viet inhabitants.

Source: Potent Places in Central Vietnam: ‘Everything that Comes Out of the Earth is Cham’

Felled sacred tree given new life as sculptures

A sacred rosewood tree that was controversially cut down last year in Siem Reap gets a new life as sacred sculptures.

Wood from a revered rosewood tree that Apsara Authority employees cut down in November has found new life as five sculptures depicting historical and folk spirits, appeasing villagers upset by the felling of their sacred tree.

Five employees for Apsara, which manages Angkor Archaeological Park in Siem Reap province, were arrested under orders from Prime Minister Hun Sen following a national outcry over the fate of the centuries-old tree from Siem Reap City’s Kokchak commune.

Source: Felled Angkor Rosewood Tree Reborn as Sacred Sculptures – The Cambodia Daily