Baci Ceremony

Buddhist Baci bracelets are handmade string bracelets tied onto your wrist to keep the spirits tied to you and to bring you good luck and health. There are a variety of different bracelet colors and each represents something different such as wisdom, compassion, or spirituality. Often, long strands are blessed by monks at large ceremonies and are later turned into bracelets. People hold baci ceremonies for weddings, funerals, and other special events. At these ceremonies a short mantra is recited, dry rice and flower petals are thrown over the attendees, and then people tie bracelets to one another while giving them small gifts. The bracelets then remain tied to your wrist until they fall off. My favorite moment in Laos was last Wednesday when the women at the VFI human trafficking shelter hosted a Baci ceremony for Caroline, Milena, and I as a thank you.

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Cambodia

Last weekend I was lucky enough to take a quick trip to Phnom Penh, Cambodia to visit a friend from home. In three days, I saw my friend’s work creating a robot that will detonate UXO, visited the Killing Fields and S-21 Genocide museum, and saw the immense differences between Vientiane and Phnom Penh, two Southeast Asian capitals. My biggest takeaway from this trip was a reaffirmation that Southeast Asia does not receive nearly as much attention as it deserves.

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Week Three (Part 2): Wow! Attending the Inaugural Asian Human Rights Court Simulation!

Week 3 Part Two (7/25 – 7/28)

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Week Three (Part 1): Disinformation and (non)Mongolian BBQ

Week Three (part 1) at the Taiwan Foundation for Democracy (7/21 – 7/24)

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