The Konyaks people traditionally have a strong warrior tradition and are mostly famous because they were still headhunting until the late 1960′s-70′S. This is the reason why their villages are only situated on hilltops, in order to prevent attacks from other tribes.
It’s not difficult to recognise the last living Konyak headhunters. As an honourary mark, a young man would receive a prominent facial tattoo when he managed to take an enemy’s head. It was believed that by taking the head of an enemy as trophy, you would gain some of his power and soul. Those enemies’s heads were then hanged on the sacred ritual tree at the entrance of every villages. This was a common practice until Christianisation reached them and turn those violent rituals into dust.
The Konyaks hunted human skulls because they believed only these could guarantee the fertility of their fields and people. This belief has not ended but today the skulls have generally been substituted by wooden heads, and the rituals still persist.
Clicked by: @mattia_passarini
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