Religion and Beliefs
At first sight Asia’s rich and enigmatic culture seems to have fallen victim to the relentless pursuit of material wealth and the onslaught of the fast-food lifestyle. But look more closely and cracks in the glossy veneer of progress are appearing. Fissures that reveal the remarkable survival of age-old traditions and customs, in spite of or, perhaps more accurately, precisely as a result of the rising tide of globalization and the resulting cultural alienation.
For many people all over Asia, life’s crucial decisions such as marriage, moving to a new city or the purchase of property, are too important to be left to the rational mind alone. There are other, more ethereal, forces at work. Spirits and deities are ubiquitous, their beneficent or malevolent nature can express itself at any time. As a hedge against future uncertainties these spirits need to be placated, worshipped and feted. And should misfortune strike, a healer or shaman navigates the spirit realms in search of a cure.
DIVINE ENCOUNTERS is a photographic odyssey exploring an Asia hiding in plain sight, resilient and vibrant. For just behind the neon signs, the marble and stainless steel facades, the luxury cars and glitzy shopping malls, lies a different world. A world revealing itself through elaborate spirit rituals, blood curdling ceremonies and exuberant festivals taking place all over the continent.