Writes Indagare member Pamela Murdock:
We participated in a very moving ceremony known as Su Khouan (Calling of the Soul), at the Amantaka just before sunset. We were met by one of the village elders accompanied by five older ladies who were all seated on the ground around a Pah Khouan (a beautiful vertical tower of offering trays). After paying our respects, we touched the Pah Khouan as the mo pohn (village elder) chanted a mantra calling upon the wandering Khouan to return and inhabit our bodies. “The Khouan are 32 spirits believed to watch over the human body’s 32 organs which are thought to constitute a person’s spiritual essence”. When he finished the invocation, he placed some symbolic food into our upturned hands and then took a white cotton thread from the Pha Khouan and tied it around each of our wrists to bind the Khouan in place. Two other women also tied a thread. Afterwards, he chanted a shorter version of the invocation to strengthen the power of the blessings. The ceremony ended with all of us touching the Pah Khouan again.
Tip: If you want your wishes to come true, keep the strings tied around your wrist(s) for at least three days but it’s best to let them fall off naturally. If you want to remove them after three days, untie the strings instead of cutting them as the good wishes might be severed.