Tribe digs up family corpses and lights cigarettes for them in yearly tradition

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An Indonesian tribe has celebrated the yearly tradition of digging up their loved ones' corpses and lighting a cigarette for them.

Photographs show families holding up corpses and placing a cigarette in the mouth.

The ritual takes place in a bid to "obtain good fortune" and is common within the Toraja Tribe, who live in South Sulawesi.

In the images, corpses can be seen dressed up with one even wearing a snapback and bandanas as they all pose for pictures.

The tribe consists of around one million people, who believe after death the soul still lives in the house so the body is treated to food, clothes, water and cigarettes, reports The Sun.

Bodies are often kept at home for months and will be fed three to four times a day and are wrapped in blankets.

Pictures captured by freelance photojournalist Hariandi Hafid show the "Manene" ritual which occurs every few years around July, August and September.

"My mother died suddenly, so we aren’t ready yet to let her go," a Torajan woman, Yohana Palangda, spoke to National Geographic in 2016.

She added: "I can’t accept burying her too quickly."

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The bodies are exhumed and cleaned and the tribe believe death is part of the soul's journey through the universe.

Corpses remain in family homes for decades until the family throw a huge party in their honour.

Villagers treat the corpses as "sick" until they finally find peace after funeral rites known as "Rambu Solo".

The death ritual of the Torajan people doesn't believe someone has passed away until their Rambu Solo – even if they've been clinically dead for years.

Because the funeral ritual is so expensive, involving the sacrifice of a buffalo or cow, it can take many years for a family to save up.

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