Every culture has their different ways of showing respect to their dead. One village called Toraja in South Sulawesi, Indonesia takes customs and practices involving respect to the dead a little further than most. Once a year, they literally dig up their dead in order to wash and groom the remains and dress them in new clothes. During this celebration they then parade the newly stylized deceased through their village following straight paths. According to their beliefs if someone were to die while traveling, their remains must return to their origins. Because of this belief, few people were willing to travel far from the village in fear that they might pass away and be unable to return home.
Here you see them cleaning off a deceased member of their village.
They dress their deceased in new clothes.
They even go as far as brushing their hair.
Here are two deceased members of their village that have been cleaned up and are ready for their walk about.
This one breaks my heart. No parent should ever have to bury their child.
But it does seem to bring peace to the families of those involved.
After the ceremonies, they return them back into their coffins.
It’s interesting how traditions can vary so much culture to culture.
In this village, everyone helps out with the ceremonies.
This ritual is called Ma’nene, which is the Ceremony Of Cleaning Corpses.
We might not understand this tradition, but it is sweet in its own way. Personally, I would hate if one of my children died and I had to re-bury them year after year. Maybe practicing this type of respect to the dead allows them to feel close to their dead and make them a real part of their lives.
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