If a myriad of TikToks are to be believed, a person has supposedly aged nearly 200 years over the course of just a few days.
Videos of Buddhist monk Luang Pho Ya have been shared across the site in recent weeks. Videos taken by the monk's granddaughter, who regularly uploads videos of the monk from Thailand, began circulating with captions supposedly asserting his age.
The first labeled him as 109 years old, while others put him at 169 years old – which is quite impressive over the course of just a few Earth days.
Before long, there were several viral videos out there claiming that he was 399 years old, and also a woman. Within a week he had more than doubled the longest known human lifespan, and then some.
The claim that he was knocking around in the 1600s, lived through the rise and decline of several empires, several world wars, and then disappeared into obscurity before popping up on TikTok is, of course, unlikely enough to require extraordinary evidence. Of which there is none.
The oldest living human as confirmed by the Guinness World Book of Records is Kane Tanaka from Fukuoka, Japan. Tanaka is currently 119 years old.
The oldest humans on record are Jeanne Clement, who lived until the age of 122. The oldest man, Jiroemon Kimura, died at 116. Beating this age by several hundred years would be quite the feat.
To complicate this further, Jeanne Clement's claim to the title of oldest human has been disputed by mathematicians and historians alike.
Clement, who claimed to have met Vincent van Gogh was 12 or 13, underwent a series of cognitive tests, the results of which were “comparable to that of persons with the same level of education in their eighties and nineties”.
Neatly, this was the age of Jeanne Clement's daughter would have been, had she not died. Couple this with contradictions in her interviews, changes in her eye color, and a tendency to confuse her husband with her father in interviews, it led some to suggest in a study published on Research Gate that "Jeanne had something to hide".
They argue that the real Jeanne died in 1934 and her daughter took on the role in order to avoid inheritance tax. Whether this is the case is still up for debate, with others pointing out she could recall information – such as the names of her teachers of mathematics – that only the real Jeanne would know.
In the case of Luang Pho Ya, however, things are much more clear-cut. He is 109, and several people on the Internet, for reasons best known to them, added an extra 290 years to her already impressive lifespan.