9 Unusual Cultural Practices Still Carried Out Today Around the World

1. Boys & girls of the Sambian tribe have to drink semen

The Sambian Tribe of New Guinea have a tradition of separating their boys from the girls at the age of 7 for 10 years. During this period, they undergo piercings, nose bleeds and have to drink the semen of the tribes mightiest warriors. Game over.

2. Girls of the Trobriander Tribe engage in sexual acts from age 6

The Trobriander Tribe from Papua, New Guinea embrace sexuality from an astonishingly young age. Boys start engaging in sexual activity from the age of 10-12, while the girls start from 6 years! Isn’t that illegal?

3. In Mangaia, older women have sex with young boys

In Mangaia, an island in the South Pacific Ocean, boys around the age of 13 have sex with older women who teach them the intricacies of the act and how best to please their partners. One way ticket please!

4. The Kreung Tribe builds love huts where teenaged girls can have sex with different men till they find the one

With the Kreung Tribe in Cambodia, the elders build a love-hut for their teenage daughters. Different boys spend the night here day after day, until she finds a suitable partner, who is then with her for life.

5. In certain Nepali tribes, brothers share one woman


Some Nepali tribes in the Himalays practise polyandry. Basically, all the brothers share one woman, so that they don’t have too many children for their limited farmland

On this mountain range, there is very little land, and thus, very little room for many families.As a result, resources are limited, and it makes more sense for a single woman to have multiple husbands, versus the other way around.

So how do these relationships work exactly? 

One word: scheduling. Needs must be met, and every family carefully organizes how their time is spent, which husband tends to which job, and who’s turn it is to lay with their wife. Sort of like a chore wheel, but with baser instincts lumped in as well.


6. The Wodaabe Tribe holds a wife-stealing festival every year

The Wodaabe ethnic group can be found in the northern parts of Nigeria, northeastern Cameroon, the western region of Central Africa Republic and southwestern Chad. It’s a subgroup of the Fulani ethnic group.

In the Wodaabe, children are married in their infancy. However, at the yearly Gerewol Festival, Wodaabe men wear elaborate makeup and costumes and try to covertly steal another’s wife. If they go undetected, their union becomes recognised.

In their customary festivity, members of the community go dancing at night. There is nothing strange with the dance, but one thing is for sure, the whole night is not all about dancing. In the stillness of the night, men are also allowed to steal women from their tribe. It doesn’t matter if the woman is married or not, the man is allowed to keep her unless the woman refuses or her husband catches the man in the process of stealing the woman.

7. In Indonesia, you can have sex outside marriage during Pon celebration

During the celebration of Pon in Indonesia, participants have to spend the night and have intercourse with someone other than their wife or husband. It is said that their wishes of good luck will only come true if they have sex with the same person at all seven celebrations throughout the year.

8. Cutting Off Fingers

The death of a family member in the Dani tribe of Indonesia heralds a vast amount of emotional and, for women, physical pain. Aside from the inevitable emotional grief, women of the Dani tribe physically express that grief by cutting off (by compulsion) a segment of one of their fingers.

Before being amputated, the fingers are tied with a string for thirty minutes to numb them. Once amputated, the new fingertips are burned to create new scar tissue.

This custom, one of the world’s most bizarre cultural practices, is performed as a means to satisfy ancestral ghosts, and is rarely, but still sporadically, practiced in the tribe.


9. Genital “Worship” in  Hawaii

People in Hawaii worship genitals. The genitals were considered holy and were appreciated as being good. They were treated with respect and worship, and ostensibly. they were covered for protection, not shame. Also, it was believed that the genitals possessed mana (spiritual power), and this belief was expressed with clarity in the traditional woodcarvings of the powerful gods, whose genitals were shown to be prominent.

On the “Big Island” of Hawai‘i, in addition, there is a cave with a rock vagina some 20 feet in length. All of these kinds of formations, possessed of great mana, were used to enhance fertility and sexual ability. As can be judged by contemporary offerings (ho ‘okupu) seen at these formations, they still are visited reverently in Hawai‘i.

Genitals were regarded so fondly on the islands that Hawaiians even took to naming their own, and publicly chanting them. Songs were sung, dances were performed in their honor, all to celebrate the spiritual power, also known as mana, Hawaiians believed resided within.

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