The Mentawai Sikerei, shaman, have a strong connection with the spirit world and through this, and their expert understanding of natural medicines, they are able to offer protection from illness and death for their people. Sikerei are the community’s doctors. Pictured here is Sikerei, Aman Ipae. Photograph by @tariqzaidiphoto #Indonesia #westsumatra #siberut #tribe #mentawai #onassignment @asworldsdivide
The Mentawai, an islander people situated on a remote archipelago off the coast of Sumatra, Indonesia. They formed a lifestyle and a sustainable existence by developing a culture which pays reverence to the land, plants, animals, water and sky – all that provide them life. The native people and this indigenous lifestyle flourished here for thousands of years. But over the past few years, through the introduction of nationalized development and civilization programs, the Mentawai has experienced significant change. All that remains of their lifestyle today is a tiny community of tribes-people living in the remote hinterlands of Siberut Island, trying desperately to maintain their native way of life. ©Tariq Zaidi Photography. All Rights Reserved.