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Ititgelov left a testament where he asked to bury him as he was, sitting in lotus pose in the cedar box on traditional cemetery. It was done. There was also a statement, where he asked other monks to exhume him after several years
The official statement was issued about the body – very well preserved, without any signs of decay, whole muscles and inner tissue, soft joints and skin. The interesting thing is that the body was never embalmed or mummified
As part of my episode, I examined the ancient practice of self-mummification by a few Japanese Buddhist monks called sokushinbutsu. This 3000-day ritual called for a starvation diet and exercise to lose all body fat, then a slow self-poisoning with an arsenic rich diet, followed by an entombment and final starvation. The lack of body fat, the dehydration, and the high arsenic content actually did combine to make a reasonably good chance for mummification instead of decomposition, assuming fortuitously dry conditions in the tomb. Approximately 20 monks successfully became mummified in this way.
Originally posted by Sankari
Already discussed here.
He is definitely dead, and the photo clearly shows evidence of decomposition.
Dead Buddhist Monk Is Alive