There’s a saying, Die young and leave behind a pretty corpse. Well, these monks from Japan didn’t need to die young for that. As for the pretty corpse, well, beauty is in the eye of the beholder, but they did leave behind extremely well preserved corpses.
Those who were successful in their endeavor to begin the mummification process while still living were raised to the status of Budha, placed in a temple and worshiped.
The roughly 5.5-year process through which this was done could almost sound like a modern-day diet of fancy, except that their aim was to create as perfectly preserved a body as possible. This was so important to them, that they cut their lives short for the cause. The process was done through 3 stages.