Top 10 Bizarre Religious Traditions

While most traditions have been accepted over the years, the following are quite bizarre and will shock you!


1. Iyomante Ritual

This tradition is native to the Ainu people and they carry out the slaughter of such bears that are hibernating in their caves. They retrieve her cubs and raise them for a few years after which they are choked to death as well. They do this because they believe that bears are god-like creatures that walk amongst us.


2. Living with the Dead

This tradition is carried out by an ethnic group of Indonesia. When a person dies, they wrap up the corpse and keep it in the house. They believe that this will help preserve the soul that stays intact till the body is buried.


3. Masai Spitting

The Masai Tribe is native to parts of Tanzania and Kenya and their traditions are quite bizarre in the sense that they greet each other on religious holidays by spitting on each other. Also, the men take a new born into their arms and spit on it repeatedly. The belief behind this is that if they don’t, the child will be on the receiving end of some bad luck for the rest of their lives.


4. Feeding the Dead

It was recently discovered that Romans, in the past, would have meals with the corpses of loved ones and also feed the food to them. They did so with the help of such pipes that were attached to their organs. They then poured food, honey and wine through it.


5. Yanomamö Ash Eating

The Yanomamö are such tribes which belong to parts of Brazil and Venezuela. Because they try to stay away from modern life and stick to their traditions, many of them are still in use. When a family member of the tribe dies, they burn the body thoroughly and then eat the ashes.


6. Hanging Coffins

People of China and some known as the Toraja follow this particular religious tradition wherein they bury their family members and then hang them over some cliffs. If you stand at the bottom of any of these cliffs, you will be able to see a clear dotting of brown and black entities which are infact coffins. They focus on this belief mainly when children and elites pass away.


7. Mourning of Muharram

On the death anniversary of Husayn Ibn Ali, a number of groups consisting of Shia muslims go out into the streets with whips attached with knives and blades and beat themselves up repeatedly. Others may also cut their own heads off with these knives. While it may seem cruel, it is a tradition that has been passed over from generations and is followed voluntarily by these groups.


8. Satere-Mawe Initiation Rite

The Satere-Mawe people ask their young boys to wear a glove which is covered and inserted with such bullet ants that are drugged. They are known to have extremely painful stings and the boy can only remove it after 10 minutes. He must repeat in for several months till the family tells him it is okay to stop.


9. Baby Tossing

This tradition is followed by families living in Solapur in India. They are required to take their babies till the terrace of 50 foot tower and throw them off. People holding sheets at the foot of the tower will catch it safely. This ensures that the baby has a long and healthy life.


10. Eating Death

The Aghoris follow this tradition and delve into the practice of cannibalism. They also live solely in cremation grounds and sustain themselves as well as they can from the resources available there.

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