When people die they are buried and left to rest in peace, surprisingly the opposite is what happens on the Indonesian island of Sulawesi.
Every three years the Torajan people, an ethnic group indigenous to the mountainous region of Tana Toraja, dig up the decaying bodies of their dead relatives. The bizarre ritual is part of the Ma'nene festival, in which villages dig up the dead and give them a complete hair and clothing makeover.
Though not too different from the looks of a zombie movie, but it is actually part of a sacred celebration of life. Reason why they perform such act is to keep their relatives alive in their hearts and minds and to strengthen the bond with the dead.
Relatives can be seen parading their deceased family members around in colourful shirts, army uniforms and eye-glasses. A couple can be seen been dressed in what appears to be wedding attire, complete with a bouquet of flowers.
In broad daylight even the dead bodies of young children and babies are exhumed from the ground. Damaged coffins are fixed or replaced before the mummies are walked around the area by following a path of straight lines during The Ceremony of Cleaning Corpses.
The villagers carefully clean the bodies using brushes, to avoid damaging them. For Torajans, death isn’t seen as an abrupt event and attempts are made to keep them part of the family.
Late loved ones are kept at home for weeks, months, or even years after death and funerals are often delayed to gather relatives.
According to their ancient beliefs, the spirit of a dead person must return to his village of origin. The ceremony is often described as lavish and expensive.