Sokushinbutsu - The ancient Japanese monks mummified to death

Sokushinbutsu and the ancient Japanese monks that mummified themselves to death

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Sokushinbutsu of  Dainichi Temple – Atlas Obscura. Available from: http://www.atlasobscura.com/places/sokushinbutsu-dainichi-temple

By April Holloway

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These monks were trying to reach the highest forms of Enlightenment by denying themselves everything of the "Real" world. By eliminating food, water, the only left would be the mind and spirit. Since those two are housed in the body, their non-decaying state shows that they have reached full Enlightment and no longer affected by outside forces. They never considered it suicide because they really haven't died, they've transcended. Technically, any monk who attempted to do this to become famous would fail since they were still holding onto the trappings of the material world.

Don't forget similar ascetic practices are found in the stories of the western Catholic saints. In Eastern philosophies there are many, many paths that one could take to reach Enlightment. Everything from the techniques practiced by these Shingon monks, the altruist Shakyamuni warrior monks, and even to sexual Tantric practices. Any of these school and the hundreds of other schools of thought if done properly will take a person to buddha-hood. To a Buddhist, this is a proper reflection of how varied reality can be.

Does anyone know why the chap in the middle is rocking out his eternity in a fetching pair of shades? My best guess is that when you see other spontaneously mummified corpses, the eyes tend to end up a bit gooey... Sorry for that image! The article was great and the comment above very insightful (thank you, Mr Strauss), by the way.

imo , to partake in the elements and become energy for non human life sources would be the ultimate consideration of life . Ending in preservation of vessel is not natural , I don't think , for our life form I am thinking . Harmony is denial of self , but to render uselessness for nonhuman energy strikes me as not the ultimate destination.

They were doing this in India a lot longer ago than 1000 years.

The middle guy looks like a ghoul from Fallout 3

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