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Blood Sacrifice

To: alt.magick.tyagi,alt.pagan,alt.satanism
From: ()
Subject: Re: Blood Sacrifice (WasRe: CHLow: Dark/Light Neopaganism (Was Re: Dark roygbiv Light)
Date: 10 Jan 1996 01:36:01 GMT

In article <>,
Kullervo   wrote:
>Kullervo  wrote:
>> (Dean) wrote:

>>>Please show me any. ANY cultural evidence that shows that blood is a
>>>superior gift than a personal item.  
>>I've been following this discussion with great interest.  Now, I don't 
>>for a minute claim to know much about this, but what about South American 
>>culture - the blood sacrifice to the Sun god?

[lots of interesting stuff deleted to save space].

>I hope this is of some interest and I'd be interested to hear your 



I don't claim to be an expert on this stuff either, but I have a little 
info to contribute.

As regards the first poster's request for proof that blood is superior to
personal items:  in the old testament, people are instructed on how to 
prepare kosher meat through bloodletting.  Why?  Because the blood is the
property of god, and belongs to him.  This is a remnant of an older belief;
namely that the blood contains the soul, or essence, of a person; probably
arising from the fact that loss of blood leads to death.  In the bible,
Cain was rejected for providing fruits of the earth rather than a burnt
offering (the sheep that his brother Abel provided); this is also 
illustrates the importance of blood offerings, since it is the blood of
the animal which was consecrated (the body was customarily eaten).
This story, which seems so baffling to modern-day readers, was probably
so self-explanatory a few thousand years back that it was unnecessary
to explain why Abel's offering was more acceptable than Cain's.

In the Iliad, sacrificial animals are offered on a number of 
occasions (in the Odyssey as well) and many lines describe
the pleasure that the gods take in burnt offerings and blood on their
altars.  Personal items were not an acceptable substitute; when the
greeks were grateful to the gods they did not offer swords (which were
worth a lot more than bulls); instead they promised to kill a bull and
burn its fat. 
In the ancient mayan religion, bloodletting from the penis was considered
to be a very profound rite necessary to cement certain occasions; I assume
that the bloodletting tools you describe were used for this, since it was
usually practised as part of a marriage ceremony or upon ascendency to the
throne or even (although I might be wrong about this last) upon swearing 
important oaths.  The tradition stems from mayan creation myths, in which
one of their gods created life by sprinkling the blood from his penis upon
the earth.  

The aztecs did practice ritual human sacrifice, and ate the bodies.  One
archeological anthropologist I knew suggested that this was due to a lack
of other protein sources, based on geographical considerations and the fact
that in the cultures that sacrificed animals, these animals were then 
consumed.  Sacrifice was therefor as much of a celebration event as a 
religious ritual; the *blood* (jews, moslems, and other semites) and 
sometimes the fat (greeks) and certain organs were offered to the gods 
either by burning or by spilling upon the ground; then the flesh was 
consumed in a festive atmosphere.  

The spilling of blood to cement a contract, or the blood-brother rite,
or the baptism of a sword, all emphasized the importance of blood; 
"personal items" were not a substitute in these cases.  Before sailing
for Troy, a human sacrifice was demanded of the troups by the goddess
Artemis; a "personal item" was not an acceptable substitute then, 

To summarize:  there is ample evidence that blood sacrifice was considered
superior to an offer of personal items in an enormous number of pagan
cultures.  I haven't even mentioned Mithras worship or Babylonian rites
or Sumerian tradition or ancient Hindu custom; the list goes on and on. 

Hope you find this interesting.


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