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Author Topic: Historical human and animal sacrifice  (Read 23502 times)
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« Reply #60: March 29, 2011, 07:38:02 pm »

I may not have mentioned it recently Marc, but I definitely love you. Cheesy

The beliefs of current western societies are not by definition more advanced, better, more 'right', or even inherrently secular.



"There's nothing wrong with you that reincarnation won't cure."
- Jack E. Leonard

Blessed are the cracked, for it is they who let in the light.

Ring the bells that still can ring
Forget your perfect offering
There is a crack, a crack in everything
That's how the light gets in

L Cohen

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« Reply #61: March 29, 2011, 10:16:00 pm »

First, let me say that I have no problem with ritual animal sacrifice even though it isn't required by my gods. So, I'm not trying to set you up for judgment or ridicule. Personally, I find it to be a perfectly valid practice based on the conversations I've had with people who's paths do require it. However, not being part of one of those traditions, I don't feel comfortable repeating what I was told.

What I'm wondering is, would it be possible for you to explain a little about animal sacrifice and why it's so important in your tradition and similar traditions? I think it would go a long way towards people's understanding of the practice.

I know that the practice takes a lot of heat from those outside, so I can understand if you're reluctant.
Just now saw this as I revisited the thread. Animal sacrifice, as I can explain it from my Santeria background, is considered the ultimate and most infrequent of offerings. It should not be carried out unless specifically requested from the orisha's lips, either through possession of another or their preferred divination method and divination requires rechecking. Also, if an animal is already being slaughtered for food thus it's blood is shared as part of the harvest as would any other collected harvest. I better be damn sure the orishas get their mangoes once they ripen as they are now growing in here. Also since Oggun, the orisha of iron, tool-wielding trades, and of war, is physically represented by the specialized sacrificial knife, he makes it pretty clear that he is the one doing the cutting and tasting the blood (not that this takes ownership of the act from us).

I guess the appropriate way to explain the philosophy of this is the ashe, it's transfer and shifting as modeled by Olofi, the creator and only actual deity of Santeria (unless called by one of her other names).  Ashe is the life,, the spirit, the cosmic energy of all existence. Its physical manifestations are breath and blood. A major understanding, I guess is the best word, of Santeria is that everything is given ashe, and it is never stationary. We all eat and are eaten; ashe is constantly moving among us as it should be. To eat, another must be killed, but this an animal, a plant, or whatever; and part of its ashe moves to us. Same system for the orishas, hence the variety of offerings. Only when needed or greatly desired by them do we give them ashe in its most direct forms, by last breath or blood. Eventually this will also be our last breath and blood when our lives are taken. And the ashe they don't take gets shifted and moved to its other destinations, primarily that which ate us (and considering how animistic Santeria is, this is true even for situations like falling off a building or getting struck by lightning as those things count as consuming us. The main spiritual reason why people aren't killed or sacrificed is because the ashe connection we share with each other would make killing each other, well... anti-ashe, if that makes sense. There is no intention of physical or spiritual consumption, unless you lived in a culturally cannibalistic society (which we don't), and the act would be to sever the transition of ashe from that person, not to mention the stagnating of one's own ashe.

All things are killed and consumed including ourselves. In about twenty years, my body will be killed and eaten. That which kills me will take some of my ashe and continue on. When we eat we kill. Vegetarians kill the plants that they eat. Even the rare Buddhist monk who no longer eats food to sustain his body continues to kill the spores he breathes in the air, the bacteria and viral cells that enter his body, and his own body's living cells as they deteriorate or become diseased (although I'm sure there may be some Buddhists who would content these notions, and that's fine too; this is just how I understand it to be).

Ok, that took some nice soul searching there. Hope this was helpful.

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« Reply #62: March 30, 2011, 09:55:05 am »

Ok, that took some nice soul searching there. Hope this was helpful.

Yes it was, thank you.
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« Reply #63: March 30, 2011, 05:50:41 pm »

Thank you, Nick.

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Rani Johnson

« Reply #64: April 18, 2011, 02:35:20 pm »

I personally believe anyone  who kills an animal for the pure purpose of an offering, and not consumption is sick. And while I preach religious freedom, i believe animal rights are more important.
I am horrified. I am for animal rights. And human rights. I would not murder a child or animal in the name of my deity.

I am a KHK. Ask me about it.

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