The World Most Dangerous Rite of Passage; O-KEE-PA Torture Test
Different culture and traditions around the world have their distinctive way to initiate young boys into Manhood. But in all, one rite of passage stands out as the worst and the most dangerous form of manhood initiation and it is not for the weak heart.
Adulthood initiation is an age-grade rites of passage when young boys are welcome into adulthood. This initiation gives the young adult privilege to get married, become part of the decision makers in the clans, own properties, etc.
A rite of passage is a ceremony or ritual of the passage which occurs when an individual leaves one group to enter another. It involves a significant change of status in society
The world’s most dangerous Adulthood initiation or rite of passage is the O-KEE-PA among the Mandan tribe of the Red Indians. Before a young Mandan male can become part of the clan warrior he must undergo the O-kee-pa (torture test). This is the worst and most painful initiation ritual in the world.
So O-Kee-Pa is designed to test the young man’s endurance and courage. First, the young boys are gathered in a house where they stay without food, drinks, and sleep for four days and nights. Then, wearing ornate cloths and with their bodies painted they are led into a ceremonial hut.
The chief priest or medicine man carved slices of flesh from their chest and shoulder with a jagged knife and wooden hooks are thrust into the bleeding flesh behind the muscles.
Then ropes are tied to the wooden hooks and hung on a beam at the ceiling of the hut. The young men are hoisted up from the floor and left hanging on the ropes. To increase the pain and pressure, heavyweights are attached to their legs.
And the second stage of the O-kee-pa is for those who survive the first stage. They are given hatchet to chop off the little fingers on the left hand. After the young men face the final test which is a stamina test.
Also a rope is tied to his wrists and he is made to run in a circle like a horse being broken in until he dropped unconscious from exhaustion. If the young man survives all this, he was able to return to his family in triumph.
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