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Odd Funeral, Death Rituals and Customs , Part 2

What happens to the household of a deceased person and the family members that still live there? In this article, you will learn how some people in Africa view this part of the funeral process. Additionally, you will learn superstitions regarding birds, as well as the purpose of salt in one tradition of the dead.

4) When a door doesn’t stay shut, it is often considered what is known as a ‘death omen.’

5) In Egypt, the afterlife serves as a significant part of grasping the concept of death, as the people of this country typically believe in its existence. The notion of such a place is highly respected throughout the culture. Egyptians believed that the body must stay in one piece in order for it to pass into the next world. To make sure this practice was upheld, the mummification process took place.

6) When it comes to death, birds are considered an unlucky sign. Some believe that if a bird is seen flying into a house, it is a sign that a death is about to take place. It is thought that if a pregnant woman catches sight of a dead bird, her baby will become stillborn.

7) In Africa, the preparation of a household after the passing of a loved one is a rather significant part of funeral rites in this part of the world. Windows are often smeared with ashes. The photographs hanging on the wall are turned around. Any kind of object in the home that creates a reflection is covered, including mirrors and television sets.

The bedroom in which the deceased person once slept is removed and the women of the household sit on the floor on top of a mattress or cushion. The next week or so, the locals within their community will pay visits, offering their respects to their lost loved one, as well as other condolences.

8) In Bali, a burial involving fire was commonplace. The body of the deceased was bathed and situated on a table where offerings of food were placed beside it. This was supposed to accompany the dead on their journey to the next world. Decorating the path to the deceased hut, lanterns were placed. This alerted the neighboring locals that someone passed away. The body is then placed in a mass grave with other residents of the same village who have lost their lives. When an adequate amount of bodies accumulated, a mass cremation is held.

9) In some Christian homes in Africa, the deceased is brought home on the day before their funeral and situated in their old bedroom. Members of his or her family then hold a vigil by their bedside until the next morning rises. Usually, funerals are held before the rising of the sun. The reasoning behind this is that locals believe that sorcerers and witches are sleeping at this time and are not as likely to meddle with the corpse during the death ceremony.

10) In order to keep spirits from crossing the threshold of a door, some will pour salt in the region, as it is believed that they are unable to cross salt.