Malaysian man Ismail Mat passed away, and the most extraordinary thing happened at his funeral. A majestic white cat appeared and sat on his grave. The “spirit cat” then refused to move and remained above the buried body.
Family members attended the funeral, where they gathered around the grave to mourn their lost. The women wore headscarves and long dresses, while the men wore short trousers and baggy tops. On each side of the grave there was a plant, and the cat was interested in the middle of the grave.
The cat clawed the ground playfully and rolled around until the funeral guests decided it was time for the cat leave. The mourners tried to move the cat, but their efforts proved to be fruitless as the cat refused to budge.
Among the funeral guests were Mat’s grandson, Soffuan CZ, who is a managing director at SCZ Pomade Langkawi. He lives in Langkawi, Malaysia, and is married to Kiah AnjeRarwkz. The young man uses social media often, and this is how he shared the bizarre cat story.
He recorded the event, and he was so amazed at the madness of the situation that he decided to share it on his Facebook page. Instead of only sharing the moment with friends, he made it public, so the whole world could see.
The minute-long video showed Soffuan’s aunts and cousins as they watched the cat in confusion. Two women tried to move it by pulling its legs. However, the cat was stubborn and stayed on the grave – the reasons have since been debated.
At the start of the video, a woman in black tried to move the cat twice, but each time the cat made itself limp, lying on the ground and refusing to be dragged away. The woman then petted its white fur and stood back – as if to accept defeat. Then another lady tried but she also failed, so the first woman attempted one last time.
In the original post, Soffuan wrote that the cat came out of nowhere and inspected his grandfather’s grave before getting comfortable. “At the funeral, the white cat came and started circling the grave,” he wrote in Malaysian.
He believes that the cat didn’t belong to anyone. “This white cat is actually not a pet cat, but it’s probably a hometown cat near the mosque,” he said. “Got info from the villagers, (they) said the cat was always wandering around the mosque…”
Family members found the situation especially interesting because of how the cat insisted on staying. All the guests had wanted to go home, but they couldn’t because they wanted to make sure that the cat wouldn’t remain on their loved one’s grave.
When the family members eventually left the grave after the cat moved on, he noticed that the white cat appeared there again. The situation sparked many questions because people believed Mat to be a huge cat lover so it was an especially unusual moment – and certainly not the usual behavior of a feline.
Anita Keisey, a cat behavior specialist, told The Telegraph that it was definitely an “unusual” situation. She said, “I never stop being amazed at animal behavior. It’s obviously seen something being buried that it wants to get to.”
She compared the grieving behavior to the way dogs act, highlighting that it’s more common in them than felines. “Cats can grieve the loss of a presence and show it in many ways, but it’s usually dogs we see exhibiting this behavior.”
The unique footage certainly sparked people’s interest and curiosity, so it went viral in no time. In the first 24 hours, it had about seven million views and now, two months later, it has more than 10 million views and almost 15,000 shares.
People online have offered their own reasonings for the cat’s behavior. Many believed that the cat had a connection with the man who had passed and was itself mourning. One person wrote that it was only clawing the ground to “bring him back up.”
Others believe there to be a deeper meaning. Kate Seagull wrote, “Spirit. Cat. Leave it alone. It has its reasons and purposes. White cats have a history since the beginning of time to have special powers. Humans do not have. There is a reason white cat wants to stay. Please Don’t interrupt.”
Then some Facebook users had a more black and white explanation. Sharon Bakar, for example, wrote, “Simple explanation. Cat thinks he owns the graveyard and is looking of a nice place to sh** when he sees newly dug earth. It isn’t rocket science.”
The video had more than 41,000 reactions, which were mainly people liking the post or clicking on the “sad icon.” However, some users were angered by the video, feeling that the mourners could have handled the cat in a gentler way.
Wendy Hall wrote, “I would break the women’s arms who keep picking cat up by its front paws. Looks like cat nip has been sprinkled on grave – only reason cat is behaving like this.” And Carol Boulter questioned, “Why did that women drag the cat by its leg? She had no need to drag it, it was only laying down doing no harm.”
So, like the commenters, you may believe that the cat was grieving, that there was a symbolic meaning or that the cat merely decided to relax there. Regardless which, everyone can agree that it was a unique and unusual event. The deceased cat lover would have probably loved it. Rest in peace, Ismail Mat.