From the tribe that dresses up their dead as if still alive to the wives who light themselves on fire to mourn for their de.ad husbands, here are 10 of the creepiest funeral customs from around the world!
#Zoroastrian Vulture Funeral
Apparently, Zoroastrians in Mumbai, India don’t need funeral plans. As part of their culture, they leave their dead in “dakhma” or the “Tower of Silence,” which will be eaten by vultures after the bodies are cleaned. They believe that the dead body becomes a source of defilement and corruption that could pollute sacred elements on Earth. Hence, they must be consumed by vultures.
#The Ifugao Let Their Corpses Stick (and Stink) Around for Eight Days
The Ifugao people of Benguet, Philippines, they beg to call bullshit on the whole “haul the body off as soon as possible” part of our death rituals, and go for the exact opposite with their own. Whenever there’s a death, the close relatives of the deceased prop up the body in a chair in front of his house, as if he was sitting on the porch and hanging around. The arms and legs are tied to the chair to keep the corpse in position. Its eyes are covered with a blindfold.
Oh, and the body stays there for eight days. In the heat and humidity of the freaking Philippines. The slowly breaking body poses no horror to them, and they don’t even mind the ever-present stink of death.
#The Yanomami Make Soup Out of Their Dead
The Yanomami are an indigenous tribe in the thick jungles of Venezuela, and there’s no easy way to say this so we’re just going to get it out of the way: They make soup out of their dead like it ain’t no thing.
Their funerals are a months-long process that begins when the remains of the deceased are taken far away from the village and ritually burned until only bones and ash remain. These are then collected in special containers and taken back to the village, where they play the most important part of the actual funeral ceremony: snacks.
The charred bones are beaten into fine powder and mixed into a banana stew with the ashes. The ensuing cocktail is then consumed by the family (and often the entire community) as a gesture of remembrance, love, and casual endocannibalism.
#The Dani People Cut Off Their Fingers to Honor the Dead
A typically unique way of grieving is that of the Dani (an Indonesian tribe). Finger-cutting is a fundamental part of grieving for women of the Dani tribe and pertains to their women only.Upon the death of a loved one, the top joint of one of a woman’s fingers would be amputated, and smear ashes and clay across their faces.Prior to amputation, a string would be firmly tied to the upper half of the woman’s finger for 30 minutes, to cause numbness.This was to reduce the pain from amputating the tip. In most cases, the responsibility of cutting off the top joint of the finger is assigned to one of the woman’s immediate family member, mostly a sibling or parent.Once the top joint is cut off, the open wound is cauterised to prevent infection, stop bleeding and form new stony fingertips.
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