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Thread: Human Sacrifice

  1. #1

    Default Human Sacrifice

    I'm thinking the burnings at the stake, witches and such, and maybe some beheadings, in Europe of years past (and Early America, lets not forget) ought to be considered Christian-based human sacrifice. Am I wrong? Thoughts?
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  2. #2
    Senior Member Flixy's Avatar
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    Wouldn't those be more like punishment (Same as for any other capital offence), rather than sacrifice?
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  3. #3
    I'm not sure what is the functional difference in what you call it.

    That being said most understandings of human sacrifice (or sacrifice in general) is as a way to propitiate a deity rather than a way to get rid of heretics/etc. Functionally the outcome is the same so I'm not sure it matters what you call it.
    "When I meet God, I am going to ask him two questions: Why relativity? And why turbulence? I really believe he will have an answer for the first." - Werner Heisenberg (maybe)

  4. #4
    I Agree with Flixy. Those terminations are not seeking something in return.
    .

  5. #5
    Quote Originally Posted by EyeKhan View Post
    I'm thinking the burnings at the stake, witches and such, and maybe some beheadings, in Europe of years past (and Early America, lets not forget) ought to be considered Christian-based human sacrifice. Am I wrong? Thoughts?
    While you can certainly use burnt-offerings to engage in virtue-signalling, that doesn't mean that any virtue-signalling done with fire is actually a burnt-offering
    Last night as I lay in bed, looking up at the stars, I thought, “Where the hell is my ceiling?"

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by EyeKhan View Post
    I'm thinking the burnings at the stake, witches and such, and maybe some beheadings, in Europe of years past (and Early America, lets not forget) ought to be considered Christian-based human sacrifice. Am I wrong? Thoughts?
    It wouldn't be canonical to Christina doctrine. Also burning at the stake wasn't really that common in America, that's a bit of myth.

  7. #7
    A witch is burnt at the stake because she's in league with Satan, God's arch nemesis. Doesn't it please God to be rid of her - to have his Faithful protected from her, to be able to cast her into Hell for eternity? And it's done in a public forum where everyone gets to watch, and presumably pray and such between cheers and jeers. I don't know, sounds a bit like a sacrifice to God to me.... I don't know a lot about the Inquisition, did they do public executions too - getting rid of people that reject the existence of God?

    Sure, when you look at the true social and political reasons for these acts, dig down into it, the analysis never points to the idea that Western Civilization was doing human sacrifice in its youth, but then that's Western Civilization's own conclusion, so you know, conflict of interest.
    The Rules
    Copper- behave toward others to elicit treatment you would like (the manipulative rule)
    Gold- treat others how you would like them to treat you (the self regard rule)
    Platinum - treat others the way they would like to be treated (the PC rule)

  8. #8
    Western civilisation was doing human sacrifice in its youth - it's pre-Christian youth. Even the Romans, who absolutely loathed the practice, did it when times were desperate.
    Don't hide the lies we can see, don't feed the fire within me
    You strike me down and I'll be rising once again
    Don't doubt the fear that you know, don't miss what history shows
    The warpath will lead us to your end

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by EyeKhan View Post
    A witch is burnt at the stake because she's in league with Satan, God's arch nemesis. Doesn't it please God to be rid of her - to have his Faithful protected from her, to be able to cast her into Hell for eternity? And it's done in a public forum where everyone gets to watch, and presumably pray and such between cheers and jeers. I don't know, sounds a bit like a sacrifice to God to me.... I don't know a lot about the Inquisition, did they do public executions too - getting rid of people that reject the existence of God?

    Sure, when you look at the true social and political reasons for these acts, dig down into it, the analysis never points to the idea that Western Civilization was doing human sacrifice in its youth, but then that's Western Civilization's own conclusion, so you know, conflict of interest.
    Do have any specific examples in mind? I'm pretty sure Joan of Arc was punished, not sacrificed. Sacrifice is giving up something you would rather keep.
    .

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by EyeKhan View Post
    A witch is burnt at the stake because she's in league with Satan, God's arch nemesis. Doesn't it please God to be rid of her - to have his Faithful protected from her, to be able to cast her into Hell for eternity? And it's done in a public forum where everyone gets to watch, and presumably pray and such between cheers and jeers. I don't know, sounds a bit like a sacrifice to God to me.... I don't know a lot about the Inquisition, did they do public executions too - getting rid of people that reject the existence of God?

    Sure, when you look at the true social and political reasons for these acts, dig down into it, the analysis never points to the idea that Western Civilization was doing human sacrifice in its youth, but then that's Western Civilization's own conclusion, so you know, conflict of interest.
    As Wiggin said, you sacrifice either to praise or thank a deity, or to propitate it. There are offerings done for ritual purification but they don't have bearing here either. If you're talking about purifying the person being burned (witch, Jew, sodomite, traitor, etc) then it's not a sacrifice, it's the act of purification itself, in the "cleansing fire." If you're talking about an offering to ritually purify the community, then you CAN'T make a sacrifice of the condemned person because they're unclean, the source of corruption. Making a corrupted offering would be an act of further defilement.

    It wasn't sacrifice. It was penal. And it had a host of rationalizations, ranging from horrible act of deterrence (for/from all the Lewks) of those days, to "modesty."
    Last night as I lay in bed, looking up at the stars, I thought, “Where the hell is my ceiling?"

  11. #11
    Awfully long winded way of saying exactly what I just said in less than 10 words.
    .

  12. #12
    If being too longwinded was an issue you were concerned with, why didn't you just write "no" in response to his post in the first place?
    Last night as I lay in bed, looking up at the stars, I thought, “Where the hell is my ceiling?"

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Being View Post
    Do have any specific examples in mind? I'm pretty sure Joan of Arc was punished, not sacrificed. Sacrifice is giving up something you would rather keep.
    Sacrifice involves the surrender of something someone would rather keep. Human sacrifice in particular has often involved the sacrifice of human beings the people doing the killing didn't mind giving up (eg. prisoners), even though the victims themselves would obv. rather have kept breathing.
    “Humanity's greatest advances are not in its discoveries, but in how those discoveries are applied to reduce inequity.”
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  14. #14
    This thread doesn't have near enough semantic nit-picking.

    The root of 'sacrifice' is 'sacred' and therefore literally means 'to make sacred' (i.e. to give it to a god) the modern usage of 'to give up something of value' comes later.
    Don't hide the lies we can see, don't feed the fire within me
    You strike me down and I'll be rising once again
    Don't doubt the fear that you know, don't miss what history shows
    The warpath will lead us to your end

  15. #15
    Did I hear a request for semantics?

    If we're going to use the original Biblical text (we are talking about Christians, after all), the word 'sacrifice' is actually 'qorban', which does not have the same etymology of sanctification (q.d.sh) but rather of to bring close (q.r.v) - as in, someone who brings a sacrifice is bringing their offering close to God (or, with a more theological twist, that they are bringing themselves closer to God by way of a sacrifice). It is my understanding that the English translation may have come about through choices in Greek or Latin intermediary words, but I'm not an expert on e.g. Septuagint or Latin Vulgate (or the associated languages) to comment intelligently.

    That being said, when the Bible discusses child sacrifice (notably to Molekh/Molokh) it uses a different word root of n.t.n, or to 'give' - i.e. giving one's children to Molekh (and this being frowned upon). I would assume they didn't use the qorban language because they are not seen as valid offerings to a deity, but rather murder of children to a false god.

    We do have other language used to describe (potential) human sacrifice to God rather than a false god:

    1. In the binding of Isaac, the word 'olah' is used (literally, to cause to go up) - this is the same language as an 'olah' burnt offering where the entire offering is burnt after slaughter (and thus ascends in smoke).
    2. In the case of Yiftah, the same word 'olah' is used to describe the potential (and possibly actual?) sacrifice of his daughter.

    It is notable that in none of these cases is the word q.d.sh or a different variant of sanctification/made sacred used to describe Biblical sacrifice.
    "When I meet God, I am going to ask him two questions: Why relativity? And why turbulence? I really believe he will have an answer for the first." - Werner Heisenberg (maybe)

  16. #16
    So was the Aztec practice of cutting out hearts and flaying people alive at the top of their pyramids human sacrifice to their god(s)? I ask because those people were typically prisoners of some sort, often war, and so people the ruling class and public alike didn't care about. I don't believe it was penal - I recall some blurb I read ages ago that Aztecs would sometimes conduct warfare to capture people for the purpose of sacrifice. They had a hungry war god, apparently.
    The Rules
    Copper- behave toward others to elicit treatment you would like (the manipulative rule)
    Gold- treat others how you would like them to treat you (the self regard rule)
    Platinum - treat others the way they would like to be treated (the PC rule)

  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by EyeKhan View Post
    So was the Aztec practice of cutting out hearts and flaying people alive at the top of their pyramids human sacrifice to their god(s)? I ask because those people were typically prisoners of some sort, often war, and so people the ruling class and public alike didn't care about. I don't believe it was penal - I recall some blurb I read ages ago that Aztecs would sometimes conduct warfare to capture people for the purpose of sacrifice. They had a hungry war god, apparently.
    That was all made up so the Spanish wouldn't look so bad annihilating them.

    As far as semantics go, once a term is usurped by society at large you can never go back to using it in its original sense.
    .

  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by Being View Post
    That was all made up so the Spanish wouldn't look so bad annihilating them.

    As far as semantics go, once a term is usurped by society at large you can never go back to using it in its original sense.
    The Rules
    Copper- behave toward others to elicit treatment you would like (the manipulative rule)
    Gold- treat others how you would like them to treat you (the self regard rule)
    Platinum - treat others the way they would like to be treated (the PC rule)

  19. #19
    There's plentiful archaeological evidence for aztec human sacrifice, and there are aztec sources and depictions in statuary etc attesting that it was a thing.
    Last edited by Steely Glint; 10-03-2021 at 09:11 PM.
    Don't hide the lies we can see, don't feed the fire within me
    You strike me down and I'll be rising once again
    Don't doubt the fear that you know, don't miss what history shows
    The warpath will lead us to your end

  20. #20
    Wow, sorry I missed this thread this thread until now!

    I know this isn't really what you asked about, choobs, but I'm gonna link this article anyway, because it talks about "sacrifice" in 21st century terms -- when meritocracy meets democracy, and the psycho-social roots of political Cognitive Dissonance. It seemed semi-related, at least semantically. Sorry if my habit of thread "drift" goes too far. It's still a good article about defining, justifying, and distorting what "sacrifice" means

    https://www.vox.com/the-goods/226736...atthew-stewart

  21. #21
    Quote Originally Posted by Being View Post
    Do have any specific examples in mind? I'm pretty sure Joan of Arc was punished, not sacrificed. Sacrifice is giving up something you would rather keep.
    Like Elon Musk who would rather sacrifice other people on Mars instead of keeping them.
    Freedom - When people learn to embrace criticism about politicians, since politicians are just employees like you and me.

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