Balancing The Universe: Shamanism in the Lesser Sundas – Flores Islands

Flores, and Timor, are more mountainous than the rolling hills of Sumba, but the shamanic culture is much the same. Both islands are now predominantly christian, although, like most of the cultures throughout the Lesser Sunda Islands, they have integrated the newer belief systems with their ancient roots in Animism. (see Timor and several neighboring Lesser Sunda Islands in the following posts)

Volcano God Effigy (exceptionally rare), Flores Island, Lesser Sunda Islands, Indonesia, Manga Lewa Village, Mid 18th c, Stone, cloth. Used by shaman for predicting volcanic eruptions. Passed down through four generations. 15” x 5 ½ x 5 ¾”, sold
Volcano God Effigy (exceptionally rare), Flores Island, Lesser Sunda Islands, Indonesia, Manga Lewa Village, Mid 18th c, Stone, cloth

Used by shaman for predicting volcanic eruptions. Passed down through four generations. 15” x 5 ½ x 5 ¾”, SOLD

Shaman Healing Figures, Male and Female Couple, Flores Island, Lesser Sunda Islands, Mid 20th c. Wood, patinated with use and age. One of the pair held in each hand during a ceremonial dance for healing a marriage. (female - 8” x 7 ¾” x 1”); (male - 8” x 8” x 1 ½”), $590 (sold as pair)
Shaman Healing Figures, Male, Flores Island, Lesser Sunda Islands, Mid 20th c.
Wood

One of the pair held in each hand during a ceremonial dance for healing a marriage. (female – 8” x 7 ¾” x 1”); (male – 8” x 8” x 1 ½”), $590. sold aspair

Magic Protection Figures East Flores Island, Lesser Sunda Islands, Indonesia, Mid 20th c, Wood, bamboo, thread. Kept in household kitchen to protect the home. Dimensions: 10" to 17" tall; $135. to $225.
Magic Protection Figures, East Flores Island, Lesser Sunda Islands, Indonesia, Mid 20th c, Wood, bamboo, thread

Kept in household kitchen to protect the home. Dimensions: 10″ to 17″ tall; $135. to $225.

Magic Talisman Figure, Flores Island, Lesser Sunda Islands, Indonesia, Bajawa village, Mid 20th c, Wood Used for healing rituals. 15 ½” x 6 ½” x 4”, $320.
Magic Talisman Figure, Flores Island, Lesser Sunda Islands, Indonesia, Bajawa village, Mid 20th c, Wood

Used for healing rituals. 15 ½” x 6 ½” x 4”, $320.

'Caci', Ritual Fighting Whip - Caci Flores Island, Lesser Sunda Islands, Indonesia Manggarai tribe Early 20th c. Wood, rattan, bark, smooth patina from use and age Caci is a powerful magic whip-fighting ritual performed during a harvest festival with complex ritual preparations. It is played by 2 men, usually from different villages. The Whip symbolizes the male phallus, the father and the sky. The shield used with it symbolizes the female, the womb and the earth. These elements are united when the whip hits the shield symbolizing life giving sexual unity. It is a playful event but any blood shed is considered an offering to the ancestors who will then ensure fertility of the land. 14” x 10” x 2 ½” $520.
‘Caci’, Ritual Fighting Whip, Flores Island, Lesser Sunda Islands, Indonesia, Manggarai tribe, Early 20th c, Wood, rattan, bark

‘Caci’ is a powerful magic whip-fighting ritual performed during a harvest festival with complex ritual preparations. It is played by 2 men, usually from different villages. The Whip symbolizes the male phallus, the father and the sky. The shield used with it symbolizes the female, the womb and the earth. These elements are united when the whip hits the shield symbolizing life giving sexual unity. It is a playful event but any blood shed is considered an offering to the ancestors who will then ensure fertility of the land. 14” x 10” x 2 ½”, $520.

Effigy Figure, Flores Island, Lesser Sunda Islands, Indonesia, Late 19th to early 20th c, Aggregate Stone, Used by shaman for healing and divination, 11” x 8” x 6”, sold
Effigy Figure, Flores Island, Lesser Sunda Islands, Indonesia, Late 19th to early 20th c, Aggregate Stone

Used by shaman for healing and divination, 11” x 8” x 6”, sold

Shaman's Effigy Figure, West Flores Island, Lesser Sunda Islands, Indonesia, Bena village, Early to mid 10th c. Stone, Used by shaman for healing and divination. 11 ½” x 7 ½” x 5 ½”, Sold
Shaman’s Effigy Figure, West Flores Island, Lesser Sunda Islands, Indonesia, Bena village, Early to mid 10th c, Stone

Used by shaman for healing and divination. 11 ½” x 7 ½” x 5 ½”, Sold

Shaman Figure, Central Flores Island, Lesser Sunda Islands, Indonesia Island, Japu village, Early 20th c, Stone, cloth strap. For protecting the clan house and for divination, 11” x 3 ½” x 5 ½”, $800.
Shaman Figure, Central Flores Island, Lesser Sunda Islands, Indonesia Island, Japu village, Early 20th c, Stone, cloth strap

For protecting the clan house and for divination, 11” x 3 ½” x 5 ½”, $800.

Nitta Watu (rare), Kitchen Protector Figure - Shaman Power Object, West Flores Island, Lesser Sunda Islands, Indonesia, Maumere district, Nita or Bena Village, Early to mid 19th c, Stone, pigment, cloth strap for hanging. Used to protect a house or home. 14” x 5 ½” x 6”, $1700.
Nitta Watu (rare), Kitchen Protector Figure – Shaman Power Object, West Flores Island, Lesser Sunda Islands, Indonesia, Maumere district, Nita or Bena Village, Early to mid 19th c, Stone, pigment, cloth strap for hanging

Used to protect a house or home. 14” x 5 ½” x 6”, $1700.

Magic House Protector, West Flores Island, Lesser Sunda Islands, Indonesia, Early to mid 19th c, stone, cloth strap, 19” x 5 ¾” x 4 ¼”, $1800.
Magic House Protector, West Flores Island, Lesser Sunda Islands, Indonesia, Early to mid 19th c, stone

Magic House Protector, West Flores Island, Lesser Sunda Islands, Indonesia, Early to mid 19th c, stone, cloth strap, 19” x 5 ¾” x 4 ¼”, $1800.

group photo (above) of the 3 previous house protectors figures
Nita Ina, Shaman Magic Figure Flores Island, Lesser Sunda Islands, Indonesia, Maumere district, Nita Village, Late 19th to early 20th c, Tree bark, cloth, shell. Used for either ‘white’ or ‘black’ ritual magic (dark energy does not inhabit the figure itself) (male figure -26 ½” x 14 ½” x 6 ½”,$1900.), (female figure -23” x 10” x 5”, $1400.)
Nita Ina, Magic Figure,
Flores Island, Lesser Sunda Islands, Indonesia, Maumere district, Nita Village, Late 19th to early 20th c, Tree bark, cloth, shell

Used for either ‘white’ or ‘black’ ritual magic (dark energy does not inhabit the figure itself) (male figure – 26 ½” x 14 ½” x 6 ½”,$1900.), (female figure – 23” x 10” x 5”, $1400.)


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