Saturday, March 31, 2012

YW and the Price of Adat Pt. 2

After finding YW in his honai in late Stages of AIDS, I urged him to go to the hospital.  We chartered a car to take him to the Emergency Room.  YW made some progress but after 3 days he checked himself out because he wanted to do a traditional (Adat) method of healing.

On a random day, I visited his home to check his condition and discovered a pig laying on the ground in front of his honai on its last breath.  I talked to his family member and he told me that they just purchased a pig for 2.500.00IDR = $300 to do "Adat".  It's a quite expensive purchase but it's a common practice in Papua to kill a pig and examine its inside in order to find causes of one's illness and cure it.  If a pig is too expensive, they would also settle for rabbits.  One spend a fortune, killing up 7-10 pigs to cure an illness until the person is cured by some coincidence, run out of money, or die.  

 I've been urging YW to go back to the hospital.  I told him that if he wanted to do an "Adat" that was his right and I can't stop him.  Nevertheless, I told him that he should stay in the hospital and let his family member do it for him.

YW purchased a pig from the local market for 2.500.000IDR = $300.  The pig was stabbed on the side puncturing its heart, lungs, and other internal organs

A fire pit already prepared by a family member

The body of the pig is washed with water before placing it above the fire

Fire is used to burn off the pig's hair so it's easier to scrape it off,

Once all its hair is burned off, the pig is placed on banana leaf to be cut and examined.

A family elder was chosen to make the incision.

The pig's blood is drained into a bowl.

A family member examined the color of the blood.  They said there's a lot of "dirty" blood which is more black in color than red. 
Internal organs of the pig were dissected and examined including the heart, lungs, and linings.

A family member found a "worm" clinging on the wall of the pig's lungs which they believed caused YW sickness. 

YW's wife washed the inside of the pig with water.

YW's wife examined the pig's internal organs.  She washed it and removed all the "infected" parts of the pig and burn it.  It is believed that this would cure the illness that YW is suffering.
The meat of the pig is then distributed to family members.  Several days later I visited YW's house and other than his wife the same family members I saw were no longer there. 

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