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Old 16 January 2010, 12:30 AM
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Ariadne Ariadne is offline
Join Date: 02 March 2006
Location: Colorado
Posts: 1,455

Isn't this a traditional way of disposing of the dead in some cultures? It's been a long time, but I once took an anthropology class about death rituals and it seems this happens somewhere in India.

Personally, I wouldn't mind being disposed of in this way. Circle of life and all that.

ETA: It seems to be Zoroastrainism. From this article on Asian vultures:

India's Zoroastrian community – known as Parsis – are also feeling the loss of the once-abundant birds. For centuries they have relied on the vultures to dispose of their dead, leaving bodies out in the open to be consumed by the birds.

It is against the Parsis' faith to bury, burn or submerge their dead in water, which means vultures provided them with a hygienic solution. An entire human carcass can be consumed to the bone within a matter of hours by a large group of vultures. But now that their numbers are dwindling, half-eaten bodies can be left for days, leaving the community susceptible to disease.
I'm sure there is a better source out there, but I'm on my way out and don't have time to look. I don't know if that's what is happening here, but it seems possible.

Last edited by Ariadne; 16 January 2010 at 12:35 AM.
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