Across the world, there are thousands of tribes who follow their own indigenous practices. Cultural practices, in any case, vary globally and some are indeed unique and comes as a surprise to people belonging to other cultures. However, some are more than bizarre! They often verge on cruel and we have to ask WHY such practices have been prevelant! Here, we take a look at one such strange and quite a disturbing practice, where women’s fingers are chopped off every time a member in the family passes away!
Yes, you heard that right! In some parts of Indonesia, this practice of amputing women’s fingers is practised by the Dani tribe. The practice is known by Ikipalin and in this, when one beloved member of the family passes, the women have to chop off the upper part of the fingers. It is believed that once the finger is chopped, the soul of the ancestors find peace.
To carry out this practice, first the woman’s fingers are securely tied tightly using a rope. That way the blood circulation stops, which is meant to ease the pain of chopping fingers, however much possible. Then it’s chopped off using an axe. According to the Dani tribe, the pain that a woman feels post te chopping of the finger helps in reducing the pain caused by the death of the loved family member.
However one must note that this is not done to men and the onus of lessening the pain for the death of a loved one falls on the women and they have to undergo this horrific and painful ritual. There have been several protests in Indonesia against the practice which many terms as barbaric. The government has also become alert and have taken strong measures in an attempt to ban the practice.