On mentioning Mosuo people, we always come to one thing:
the "running marriage", which means " there are no traditional
marriages. If they love each other, the man will go
to the woman's house and leave the following morning.
When a child is born, it is the female who is responsible
for raising. The one that the man raise is his sister's
As a matter of fact, their attitude
to death is somewhat special and different from others.
When one is about to die, a special
room will be prepared to await that moment. The relatives
are around. They are not in great grieves because they
realize it is natural for everyone to be faced with
Then comes the cremation ceremony. There
are rites to expel ghosts and dances at the previous
night. First, the sorcerer leads the family members
to get a board on the roof and a bowl of rice. The former
represents the house and the latter represents the food,
which combines the meaning of separating property between
the living and the dead.
The dance rite is performed by youngsters
who wear broadswords and yak hair on the trouser legs.
They dance gaily to see the dead off to herding places.
On the exact day, the body will be
put in a small wooden cabin. In the meantime, reciting
is necessary for sending the soul. They deeply suppose
if the fire burns rapidly, it means the soul is leaving
quickly too. On the contrary, it means the soul remains
there. That's why the relatives of the dead will keep
saying, "Just leave at ease and don't follow us!" That
is the saddest moment of the ceremony.
In the light of this, we can see that
the Mosuo's ceremony does surpass the idea of paying
the last attribute. It is an open-minded thought merging
the living and dead!