Spirit Locks of the Hmong by Sarah Corbett
Spirit Locks are pendants worn by the Hmong and Akha hill tribe people of Thailand, Burma and Laos.
Traditionally these Padlock- esque pendants are worn around the neck often as a counter weight at the back of a neck ring.
The spirit lock is believed to keep the soul, which resides within the head locked to the body.
Spirit locks are gifted to babies to prevent bad spirits from taking the spirit of the child.
In Thai beliefs, an unhappy spirit will leave a body and return to nature within the forest. Fear or stress can be factors which cause a person to lose their spirit. The loss could leave you dull and unable to focus.
If a soul or a spirit appears to have left a person, symptoms of this can be disease, depression and distraction, the Hmong Shaman may perform a soul calling ritual. Once the ritual has recalled the spirit to a person their integrity of life will also be returned and a spirit lock will be used to prevent such a loss in the future.