Have you ever wondered what kind of bizarre rituals are in the world? Believe it or not, there’s quite a few out there. Through religion or tradition, rituals have been handed down for thousands of years and because of their ancient nature, many can be dangerous and disturbing. Despite the harm they cause to themselves or others, people keep doing these things. Be warned, some of these rituals are not for the faint of heart and have graphic images. With that said, here are 25 Incredibly Bizarre Rituals From Around The World.
Phuket Vegetarian Festival
Don’t let the name fool you, the Phuket Vegetarian Festival isn’t all about vegetables. During the festival, people abstain from meat for nine days. That may sound bad enough, but it gets much, much worse. To honor the animals, they shove sharp objects through their mouths and cheeks.
Ainu Bear Worship
The Ainu people, indigenous to Japan and Russia, have a bizarre custom of sacrificing bears. Believing the bears are gods, the Ainu sacrifice the bears to bless the souls of mankind. The practice involves killing a mother while she hibernates in her den and then raising her cubs in captivity for two years before choking or spearing them.
In India, parents of newborn babies drop their infants off the roof of a 30-foot tall shrine. The ritual is believed to give their baby good health and has been around for almost 700 years. How did this practice start? Well, when it first started, the baby mortality rate was high, and parents were desperate for answers. A saint advised the parents to drop their children as an act of faith that God will protect their children. Technically, the practice is illegal, but some parents still do it.
While rare, Tibetan monks are known to practice self-immolation, the act of lighting oneself on fire, to protest something they believe is wrong. It’s a horrific and disturbing ritual and was also practiced by Buddhist monks during the Vietnam war.
Cutting Off Fingers
Most people when they grieve have a good cry, eat a tub of ice cream, and maybe go see a counselor. But, the Dani Tribe in Papua New Guinea do something quite extreme when they grieve. They cut off their own fingers. Usually, the ritual happens after a loved one dies and some of the relatives cut off their fingers as an act of grieving. This practice has been banned in recent years, but you’ll find some older members of the tribe continuing with tradition.