The Tojarans of Indonesia dig up dead relatives to celebrate Ma’nene Festival

0
The ritual, known as MaiNene, involves exhumed up dead family members, cleaning them and re-dressing them. Image source: dailymail.co.uk
  • Every three years the Ma’nene Festival takes place
  • Loved ones unbury the deceased, clean them, and parade them around the village
  • This practice helps them maintain the relationship between life and death

Here, rest, is an operative word. The Tojarans let their deceased loved ones rest in more than one place. Expensive burials are part of the tradition. A large space in the village is cleared out so that a proper burial can be completed. Once the body has been buried, these natives of Indonesia believe that the soul of the deceased lives on in the village for days after the death. All of these traditions seem normal, but the Tojaran people want to make sure their loved ones feel as though they are part of the family long after they have died.

In fact, every three years they up heave them from their graves, clean off the corpses and then parade them around as part of the Ma’nene Festival. The population consists of 650,000 people, many of whom are Christian or Muslim, some still practice the ancient beliefs of “Aluk Todolo.” What may come across to many as a peculiar ritual is a way that the Tojarans strengthen the bond between them and their deceased loved ones. On the island of Sulawesi, Indonesia, the indigenous people celebrate life.

Follow NewsGram on Facebook: NewsGram.com

The ceremony has its ancient roots in a story involving a man by the name of Pong Rumasek. An animal hunter, Rumasek came across a decomposing body under a tree. Not having been properly buried, the animal hunter took it upon himself to do so. Dressing the corpse in his clothes, and then giving it the proper burial it deserved, Rumasek went on his way. After his actions, he was convinced he was graced with good luck. Thus, ‘the ceremony of cleaning corpses,’ or the Ma’nene Festival, was born.

Torjajan Girls. Wikimedia Commons
Torjajan Girls. Image source: Wikimedia Commons

These mummified bodies are well kept. After death the bodies are prepared with formalin. This chemical helps mummify the body, and is the initial step to making sure that later on the body can be dug up to celebrate. Once the body is dug up, loved ones dust and clean them. The family members also make sure that artifacts, such as a pair of glasses, are preserved and cleaned as well.

The clothing on the body is changed and loved ones have intimate moments with the corpses. While the corpses are out of their burial sites, coffins are either replaced or repaired. Once the corpses are dressed in their more modern attire, they are paraded around the town but only on paths that create straight lines. It is believed that by following straight lines the people will be connected with Hyang. Hyang is a spiritual being with mystical powers that only moves in straight lines.

Follow NewsGram on Twitter: @newsgram1

This ritual is considered to be one of the most important rituals in the village. Burials can be expensive, and many of the people save up money their whole lives so that they may rest in peace properly. The Tojarans also understand certain precautions must be taken when handling the corpses. Many wear masks so they do not breathe in the dust from the exhumed bodies.

The expensive aspect from this ritual does not stem from the maintenance of the corpse. Rather, sacrifices are made, and with these, the more the merrier. In one case, a tourist witnessed 17 water buffalo sacrificed for just one woman. Interestingly this woman had already been dead for over 20 years.

The practice of up heaving the dead from their graves comes across as appalling to many. When reading about the practice you come to realize that it is purely out of love and respect that the corpses are paraded around. These indigenous people see it as including the deceased into their lives long after they are able to participate.

-by Abigail Andrea, an intern at NewsGram. Twitter: @abby_kono

ALSO READ: 

Next Story

Lungs of Deceased COVID-19 Patients Show Distinctive Features

Patients with COVID-19 showed widespread blood clotting

0
chemistry lungs
a team of international researchers examined seven lungs obtained during autopsy from patients who died of Covid-19. Pixabay

To help create the vaccine for the novel coronavirus infection, a team of researchers has described the clinical features of the lungs of deceased Covid-19 patients according to Coronavirus Vaccine News.

According to the study, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, Steven J Mentzer, a thoracic surgeon at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and a team of international researchers examined seven lungs obtained during autopsy from patients who died of Covid-19.

They compared this group to seven autopsied lungs obtained from patients who died of acute respiratory distress syndrome secondary to influenza A (H1N1) infection as well as to 10 age-matched uninfected control lungs.

Both Covid-19 and influenza are the same category of virus and both infect the respiratory tract.

While the lungs shared some common features, there were distinctive features related to blood vessels seen in the lungs of patients who had died of Covid-19.

The research team observed that COVID-19 damaged the endothelial cells (vascular lining cells), causing severe endothelial injury.

diagnosis lungs
Covid-19 infects the respiratory tract. Pixabay

Patients with COVID-19 showed widespread blood clotting as well as new vessel growth — the latter likely a result of the body’s response to the virus.

Also Read: Special Olympics Partners Microsoft, Xbox to Organise Online Gaming Tournament

he team saw signs of a distinctive pattern of pulmonary vascular disease progression in some cases of COVID-19 compared to that of equally severe influenza virus infection.

Some of the key points from the study are: the damage to vascular cells helps explain the serious blot clotting observed in patients and a unique response, intussusceptive angiogenesis (IA), is the way the body compensates for the thrombosis and blood vessel damage.

This study shows the need for more research on angiogenesis and the vascular effects of Covid-19. (IANS)

Next Story

Commute to Work by Walking, Cycling Instead of Car to Reduce Early Death Risk

Driving to work may increase risk of early death

0
person death
Cycling your way to work may reduce risk of early death. Pixabay

People who walk, cycle and travel by train to work are at reduced risk of early death or illness compared with those who commute by car, according to a new study.

For the findings, published in the journal The Lancet Planetary Health, the researchers conducted a study on more than 300,000 commuters in England and Wales. They used census data to track the same people for up to 25 years, between 1991-2016. The researchers from Imperial College London and the University of Cambridge in the UK, suggest increased walking and cycling post-lockdown may reduce deaths from heart disease and cancer.

“As large numbers of people begin to return to work as the COVID-19 lockdown eases, it is a good time for everyone to rethink their transport choices,” said study researcher Dr Richard Patterson from the University of Cambridge.

train death
People travel by train to work are at reduced risk of early death or illness. Pixabay

The research team found that compared with those who drove, those who cycled to work had a 20 per cent reduced rate of early death, 24 per cent reduced rate of death from cardiovascular disease during the study period, a 16 per cent reduced rate of death from cancer, and an 11 per cent reduced rate of a cancer diagnosis.

Walking to work was associated with a seven per cent reduced rate in cancer diagnosis, compared to driving. The team explain that associations between walking and other outcomes, such as rates of death from cancer and heart disease, were less certain.

One potential reason for this is people who walk to work are, on average, in less affluent occupations than people who drive to work, and more likely to have underlying health conditions which could not be fully accounted for.

car death
The study shows that those who drove had a 20 per cent increased rate of early death compared to those who cycled to work. Pixabay

Also Read: IMPPA Clarifies Rumours of Shoot Restart, Says Decision Remains Pending

The research also revealed that compared with those who drove to work, rail commuters had a 10 per cent reduced rate of early death, a 20 per cent reduced rate of death from cardiovascular disease, and a 12 per cent reduced rate of cancer diagnosis.

This is likely due to them walking or cycling to transit points, although rail commuters also tend to be more affluent and less likely to have other underlying conditions.”With severe and prolonged limits in public transport capacity likely, switching to private car use would be disastrous for our health and the environment,” Patterson said.”Encouraging more people to walk and cycle will help limit the longer-term consequences of the pandemic,” Patterson wrote. (IANS)

Next Story

Workplace Stress Can Increase Likelihood of Death: Study

The study, which was published in the Journal of Applied Psychology tells that workload can increase the risk of death

0
death
A recent study shows that demanding jobs can lead to depression and death. Pixabay

Researchers have revealed that stress, lack of autonomy and ability at the workplace or due to the demanding jobs can lead to depression and death.

The study, published in the Journal of Applied Psychology, found that our mental health and mortality have a strong correlation with the amount of autonomy we have at our job, our workload and job demands, and our cognitive ability to deal with those demands.

“When job demands are greater than the control afforded by the job or an individual’s ability to deal with those demands, there is a deterioration of their mental health and, accordingly, an increased likelihood of death,” said study lead author Erik Gonzalez-Mule from Indiana University in the US.

For the findings, the researchers used data from 3,148 Wisconsin residents who participated in the nationally representative, longitudinal Midlife in the US survey. Of those in their sample, 211 participants died during the 20-year study.

work-managementdeath
Time pressure or workload affect mental and physical health and, ultimately, death. Pixabay

They examined how job control — or the amount of autonomy employees have at work — and cognitive ability — or people’s ability to learn and solve problems — influence how work stressors such as time pressure or workload affect mental and physical health and, ultimately, death.

“We found that work stressors are more likely to cause depression and death as a result of jobs in which workers have little control or for people with lower cognitive ability,” Gonzalez-Mule said.

Also Read: Safely Disinfect Your Prized Designer Shoes

On the other hand, the research team also found that job demands resulted in better physical health and lower likelihood of death when paired with more control of work responsibilities.

“COVID-19 might be causing more mental health issues, so it’s particularly important that work not exacerbate those problems,” Gonzalez-Mule said.

“This includes managing and perhaps reducing employee demands, being aware of employees’ cognitive capability to handle demands and providing employees with autonomy are even more important than before the pandemic began,” he noted. (IANS)