Lawa Hilltribe

On what turned out to be our longest travel day during our recent visit to the North Thai Hilltribes our group swapped our comfortable 10 seater van for a four wheel drive Nissan Patrol and headed off towards the Lawa village of Chang Mor, high in the hills above Hod, Chiang Mai Thailand. Chang Mor village is home to Lawa people, once more prosperous, and numerous, and living more on the plains around Chiang Mai they were pushed some centuries ago into the mountains south of Chiang Mai by one of the Thai Kings. They certainly inhabited parts of Thailand more than 800 years ago and according to some anthropologists were in Thailand before the Thais arrived. It is believed that they migrated from Cambodia, but some anthropologists believe their origins lie in...

Red Lahu Merit Day

One of the villages we visit as a part of our North Thai Healers journey is a Red Lahu (Lahu Nyi) village. Our visit is timed to coincide with the Full moon so that we are able to share in an important village ceremony. Lahu believe in worldly spirits called “Ne” and an inner soul which they call “Aw Ha”. For health and survival, they appeal to two deities; a supreme one they call “G’ui Sha”, who created the heavens, and his wife, “Ai Ma” (great mother), who created the earth. Their roots go back to the mountains of southwest China. As their hilltribe ancestors have for generations, they cultivate the surrounding jungle to sustain the growth of wild herbs for their traditional healing remedies. Lahu men are enthusiastic hunters and it is not...