TEXT AND CONTEXT OF MUSIC IN SANTO DAIME: SOME THOUGHTS ON THE CONCEPT OF THE "SELF"

Lucas Kastrup F. Rehen About the author

Abstract

This article considers the centrality of music in Santo Daime rituals. In this Amazonian religion, some ceremonies last the whole night, with followers chanting hundreds of songs of praise. A given hymnal (the set of hymns sung on these occasions) can be interpreted as a biography of its owner, whether he be a leader or follower of the religion. The article focuses on the analysis of the narrated "self", which is often present in these religious songs. It investigates the relationship between the lyrics being sung, which are almost always in the first person singular, and the ritual context in which they are sung, which involves the collective use of the Santo Daime drink. It also discusses the musical-bodily performances and the spatial disposition of the participants in the hall of the Daimist church, which enforces a strict separation of people according to gender and age.

Key Words:
Ritual; Music; Self; Psychotics; Ayahuasca; Santo Daime

Programa de Pós-Graduação em Antropologia Social - PPGAS-Museu Nacional, da Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro - UFRJ Quinta da Boa Vista s/n - São Cristóvão, 20940-040 Rio de Janeiro RJ Brazil, Tel.: +55 21 2568-9642, Fax: +55 21 2254-6695 - Rio de Janeiro - RJ - Brazil
E-mail: revistamanappgas@gmail.com