Theyyam is a corruption of the word “daivam,” which means “god” in Malayalam. An incredibly vibrant tradition that has been in practice for the last 1,500 years, Theyyam is a folk religion with deep roots in Malabar, the northern region of Kerala. In Theyyam, the practitioner, or oracle, enters a state of exalted trance in which he becomes the physical manifestation of a deity. He is believed to be possessed with divine powers to heal, foretell the future, and confer blessings on de