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#97106 - 03/02/15 12:26 PM Religious Animal Sacrifice
SIN3 Offline
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Where do you stand on the issue today? Did you hold a different opinion in the past?

Plenty of cultures practice it and people cry out that it's cruelty and an abuse of innocent animals. Some even get quite indignant about it even if they aren't Vegans (belting off "LaVey says we don't harm children and animals!")

See: Recent News Articles

Nepal (as an example) Image Gallery and article has Animal Rights Activists in an uproar.

What say you?

How do you discern Sacrifice?

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#97109 - 03/02/15 01:24 PM Re: Religious Animal Sacrifice [Re: SIN3]
antikarmatomic Offline
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 Originally Posted By: SIN3
Where do you stand on the issue today?


It never really phased me. 'Still doesn't.

Sure, as a pre-adolescent I've killed more than a few innocuous animals just for the hell of it.

*and some not-so-innocuous. Snapping turtles, for example, those are some mean fuckers, and they sure do take a beating - as-in they still manage to hiss at you when you're elbow deep up their assholes clutching at their innards

20-20 hindsight it was more or less just me being a boy. I'm neither proud of it nor ashamed of it.

Was it sacrifice? No, of course not. Those animals would've had to have meant something to me in the first place - a goat I used to cut the grass, a cow I used for milk, or a bull I used to till my fields would be different.

What I mean by that is, in my mind, in order for it to be a sacrifice it should be useful to you in the first place. Otherwise it's just killing an animal - be it out of curiosity, malice, tradition, or some strange type of thinking that doing so gives you powers or good-luck or something.

Since I'm no longer that curious, don't have as much malice as I used, have very few traditions to speak of, and don't subscribe to the notion that doing so would empower me it's basically a "meh".

As for the image gallery and animal rights - some days you're the statue, some days you're the pidgin.



Edited by antikarmatomic (03/02/15 01:57 PM)
Edit Reason: decided to be a smidge more graphic. Don't tell my mom.
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#97112 - 03/02/15 02:18 PM Re: Religious Animal Sacrifice [Re: SIN3]
The Zebu Offline
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I feel content with defining a "sacrifice" as a ritual offering (doing or giving of something) to a spiritual entity in accordance with their desires (known through either tradition or divination) and in consideration of the means of the votary. This can be either have religious and devotional overtones, done as an act of love, respect, and gratitude, and/or be seen as appeasing a vengeful master (or demanding servant). Very often these sacrifices involve animals, since rearing livestock and slaughtering them for food has been a prominent aspect of peoples' lives for millennia.

Is it right or wrong? Who cares? Not necessarily rhetorical here... It is useful to some worldviews, such as classical Hellenic/Roman/Egyptian spirituality and Afro-Hispanic religions, whose rites sometimes require the operator to be elbow-deep in gore. It is not useful to others, such as orthodox Christians (who developed the Mass as a proxy blood sacrifice) and those who follow Vaisnava-dharma, to say nothing of those who are not spiritual at all.

I used to not see the point in animal sacrifice (or sacrifice at all), but over the years I've gotten much deeper into occult headspace and have settled in to a form of black magical praxis of which sacrifice does play a strong role. My own current interpretation is that offering your own blood is much more important (as several grimoires that focus on pact-making imply), and sacrificing animals per se is not an absolute necessity, which is featured mostly for a utilitarian purpose such as to obtain virgin parchment or some sympathetic substance or body part.

Now of course there are some other obscure odds and ends of the mythos that would certainly seem cruel and pointless (involving mutilating/dismembering/skinning live toads, cats, and bats) and would likely make even me uneasy if I tried it myself. But hand-wringing over whether its mere presence in the tradition accords with contemporary legal or 'moral' mores isn't really in my sphere of interest. If anything it filters out the wimps who get too hung up on that sort of thing. Satanism-- and Witchcraft-- is inherently "Other", and that sort of morbid grotesqueness is part and parcel with the essence.

Sometimes that means admitting that you might be reasonably confused with the Glue-Sniffing Cat-Killing Supervillians of society. It's an occupational hazard, and I knew the risks when I signed up.


Edited by The Zebu (03/02/15 02:35 PM)
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#97116 - 03/03/15 01:59 AM Re: Religious Animal Sacrifice [Re: SIN3]
Caladrius Offline
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In pre-Jain & Pre-Buddhism times, there existed a concept and practice - based on the ancient Vedas - once called "Himsa," which roughly meant "~sacrificial offering; to inflict harm." As in the term "sacrificial himsa."

Back in those very ancient days; before even most of the Upanishads were written; the pre-vedanta cultus of the ancient Vedas actually resembled the cultus of ancient Judea, where animals were ritually blood-sacrificed [yajna] to the old Vedic gods.

It was during the period in history when Jainism was born that the ancient vedic practice of Himsa came under fire. When the Jains became influential they rejected the notion of Himsa, believing it to be pointless and a cause of bad karma. They called their opposing doctrine Ahimsa. The Jains were the original people who came up with the idea of "Ahimsa," meaning approximately "no-infliction of harm & also no-sacrifice."

Buddhism historically grew out of Jainism, and so, the early Buddhists adopted the doctrine of Ahimsa. Back then "ahimsa" meant something quite different then what it means today.

Ahimsa back then [~500BC], to the new weltanschauung of Buddhism meant that: (a) Vedic Gods don't exist, (b) sacrificing animals to non-existent gods is useless, & (c) because A & B, therefore killing animals simply causes suffering in the animal for no reason.

At first the Vedic cultus rejected Jainism & Buddhism's idea of Ahimsa. But eventually, these two schools of thought became increasingly influential on the religious market at the time. Meaning that much of the populous became influenced by Jainism and Buddhism's concept of Ahimsa. Plus, since most people were poor, they could not afford an animal to kill to gods; so the doctrine of Ahimsa became increasingly attractive to the common ancient Indian.

Incredibly [or perhaps due to a need to adapt to survive], the Vedic Tradition would eventually adopt the concept of Ahimsa to the point where Ahimsa became a doctrine of central importance. The Vedic Traditions - now with the latter Upanishads and Vedanta - would expand the definition of Ahimsa to not only mean "no-sacrifice" but also to mean "no-violence." And so, ever since then "Hindus" don't sacrifice animals to Brahma, Vishnu, Shiva, and so on... but at one time, it was actually practiced.

When the Buddha was around the scene, he took the Pali dialectal vernacular word "Yan~n~a" - which in Sanskrit is Yajna [sacrificial ritual] - and he redefined it to mean "Alms Giving" to monks, nuns, & the poor.

But anyways. Personally I'm a Traditionalist. And so, I see nothing "wrong" with ritual sacrifice of animals, if and when it is done within the context of traditional human culture and ways of life. I personally believe that each human culture/way is "numinous" in its uniqueness, as a memeplex, and that such cultures and ways of life have a right to maintain and practice their Traditions. Regardless of the weak-stomached sentiments of people who are "outsiders" to their Traditions.

At the same time, I have a weak-stomach and a very open solar plexus, so I find it emotionally horrendous to watch any animal killed, abused, tortured, etc. I would consider myself to be one of the "weak-stomach" sentimental "outsider" to traditions that practice animal sacrifice.




Edited by Caladrius (03/03/15 02:25 AM)

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#97120 - 03/03/15 09:18 AM Re: Religious Animal Sacrifice [Re: Caladrius]
Megatron Offline
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 Originally Posted By: Caladrius
Buddhism historically grew out of Jainism, and so, the early Buddhists adopted the doctrine of Ahimsa. Back then "ahimsa" meant something quite different then what it means today.


Wow. I never thought I would ever encounter such a thing. It'd be like a dream come true: Mahavira vs. Gautama. For the Advaita Championship of the Multiverse.

As you know, Buddha-mind is irrespective of time. Just as it is of all possible dimensionality. Your immediate lineage progresses through what might be called the Hinayana branch-field. Meaning you are true LHP by lineage.

One of the things that trips me out in the recent literature on Dzogchen is the issue of Buddhist/Bon primacy. As everyone knows, that baby was split/settled a long time ago.
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#97124 - 03/03/15 10:29 AM Re: Religious Animal Sacrifice [Re: Caladrius]
SIN3 Offline
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Some cursory research revealed:

 Quote:
In Jaina scriptures a distinction has been made between `Sthula Himsa' and `Sukshma Himsa'. The `Sthula Himsa' entails the destruction of the higher forms of life from dvindriyas, i.e., two-sensed beings upwards and it is forbidden to all Jainas. On the other hand, the `Sukshma Himsa' means taking of life in any form including even the killing of ekendriyas, i.e., one sensed beings and it is obligatory for the Jaina ascetics to abstain from this kind of Himsa. The lay Jaina is also enjoined to avoid as far as possible the killing of ekendriyas, i.e., one-sensed beings and the useless destruction of Sthavara-Jivas, i.e., immobile souls.

It has been stated that Himsa does not depend on acts alone: the vrata or vow will be broken merely by the absence of compassion shown when a man allows himself to be carried away by anger. Hence a distinction has been made between Dravya Himsa, i.e., the actual hurt or injury and Bhava Himsa, i.e., the intention to hurt or injury to the Prana meaning vitality.


The concept of Himsa has been discussed in detail in the Jaina scriptures both from the `Vyavahara Naya', i.e., the practical point of view and from the `Nischaya Naya', i.e., the real point of view.

From the practical point of view the `Tattvartha-sutra' the classic Jaina text, has defined Himsa as follows, that is, Himsa or injury is the hurting of the vitalities by passional vibrations. It means that Himsa or injury is to hurt the Pranas, i.e., the vitalities, through Pramattayoga, i.e., vibration due to the passions which agitate mind, body or speech.

On the same lines, another classic Jaina Text, viz., `Purushartha siddhi-upaya' asserts that passion is the moving cause which leads to Himsa and gives the meaning of Himsa in following terms : that is, any injury whatsoever to the material or conscious vitalities caused through passionate activity of mind, body or speech is assuredly (definitely) Himsa.


Causally, Bad Karma may be the result but it seems to me that it would still have a purpose, and not be rendered useless if the aim is to experience the forbidden Himsa.

The intent appears to be to maintain civility between creatures and self-discipline to keep your beast chained. It assumes that all acts of 'violence' stem from Anger, this isn't the case. Even small children that have harmed living things often do it out of curiosity, examining a thing as it dies and being responsible for its death.

If the real injury is internal, then suffice to say if you're fine with killing things no 'Bad Karma' can be the result. I'd say there's millions of people that are just dandy with killing sentient beings every day. The absolute apathy towards insects for example. Pest-control encompasses a variety of species (common rodents among them).

I was looking for something that could tell me if after these offerings were made to the gods if the meat was just left to rot. I know Hindus do this (which also explains the state of Dehli today). Did they eat it? Were they Vegans? Are modern Buddhists Vegans today?


 Quote:
I have a weak-stomach and a very open solar plexus, so I find it emotionally horrendous to watch any animal killed, abused, tortured, etc. I would consider myself to be one of the "weak-stomach" sentimental "outsider" to traditions that practice animal sacrifice.


Are you a Vegan? I think plenty of people would be hard-pressed to watch animal slaughter for their food but it doesn't stop them from eating meat and enjoying animal byproducts. Even if in ideal they are sentimental about animals being killed, so long as they don't see it, they are usually okay with it.

 Quote:
And so, I see nothing "wrong" with ritual sacrifice of animals, if and when it is done within the context of traditional human culture and ways of life.


Are you referring to humane killing and modern lifestyles that include the slaughter of animals for creature comforts?
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#97126 - 03/03/15 11:30 AM Re: Religious Animal Sacrifice [Re: Megatron]
Caladrius Offline
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 Originally Posted By: Megatron
 Originally Posted By: Caladrius
Buddhism historically grew out of Jainism, and so, the early Buddhists adopted the doctrine of Ahimsa. Back then "ahimsa" meant something quite different then what it means today.


Wow. I never thought I would ever encounter such a thing. It'd be like a dream come true: Mahavira vs. Gautama. For the Advaita Championship of the Multiverse.



Based on my unprofessional and fallible limited knowledge, I believe the Buddha never existed as an actual person.

Interestingly, some of the earliest statues of the Buddha were Greek and loosely based on Apollo. During that period the Buddha looked more like a person from the Warrior Caste. Later on, the Buddha statues took on the look of a mixture of Mahavira and Shiva as buddha [an epithet of Shiva]. Some of the earliest Buddhist monks were also Greek. A related link.

 Originally Posted By: SIN3
Are you a Vegan? I think plenty of people would be hard-pressed to watch animal slaughter for their food but it doesn't stop them from eating meat and enjoying animal byproducts. Even if in ideal they are sentimental about animals being killed, so long as they don't see it, they are usually okay with it.


No, I'm not vegan by any means. I actually dislike vegans. I refuse to be friends with them. I enjoy meat. I just personally - as you pointed out - don't find it entertaining to sit in a slaughterhouse to watch animals being killed. As Howard Bloom said: "...Kill of be killed." As a side note: the Buddha was said to have died from eating poisoned meat.

 Originally Posted By: SIN3
Are you referring to humane killing and modern lifestyles that include the slaughter of animals for creature comforts?


No. I was referring to any and all Traditional human cultures and ways of life [religious] that still exists today which incorporates or involves the slaughter of animals as sacrificial offerings.

Hopefully, any killing of an animal is "humane;" as opposed to being done for the sadistic joy of abuse and torture. In my culture, we have this very ancient indigenous animism in the background of our culture. And so, we believe that animals - as well as plants - have spirits/souls/vin~n~an - like humans do. So when we kill an animal during hunting or for whatever reason, we whisper a quick prayer over the animal saying: "Please forgive me for killing you, but I need your flesh to feed myself and family. May you be reborn human." [If you ask me, I'd rather be anything but a human.]

As far as killing animals in today's time and era for creature comfort: I see nothing wrong with this either. My personal sentiments about this subject is essentially sadism, meaning here the harming of an animal with the intent of deriving sadistic pleasure from its suffering, abuse, and torture.


Edited by Caladrius (03/03/15 11:34 AM)

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#97127 - 03/03/15 11:38 AM Re: Religious Animal Sacrifice [Re: Caladrius]
SIN3 Offline
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 Quote:
Hopefully, any killing of an animal is "humane;" as opposed to being done for the sadistic joy of abuse and torture.


Speaking of cultural trends, the Ethical Meat Farm is the new thing. Mostly because of all the press that the Meat Packing industry receives in its methods of both care and slaughtering of animals.

What is 'humane' is getting more and more ambiguous so it is necessary to provide clarification to consumers that want to eat Ethical Meat (which isn't limited to the U.S. it seems).

I included some photos in the slide-show that plays during the podcast I did with your buddy Tom here and follow up with a friend of mine here.

When people grapple with what is ethical and humane it appears to be the least amount of suffering the animal endures but at least they acknowledge that the animal suffers so they can eat.

When you add Satanist + Animal Sacrifice, the image people imagine is that Satan requires the animal to suffer but they don't seem to know why.
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#97137 - 03/03/15 07:58 PM Re: Religious Animal Sacrifice [Re: SIN3]
CanisMachina42 Offline
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 Quote:
What say you?

How do you discern Sacrifice?


A semantics argument tainted by western values. One thing that holds is sacrifice is more so to the benefit of the living, and less to appease 'the gods'.

Sacrifice conjures images of dismemberment upon an altar and is clouded by preconception of dark purposes. Not to say that doesn't happen. In hoodoo many different animals are used for various reasons, from hexes to good luck satchels. Chickens and bats for their blood, black cats being boiled alive for that 'magic bone' and good luck. It's cultural, and the parts of the animal are rarely wasted. Larger animals are 'sacrificed' and then fed to the entire community in large ceremonies.

The indigenous cultures of central and south America (prior to Catholicism) regularly practiced human and animal sacrifice for every reason one could imagine.

This is what people think when the hear sacrifice - bloody rituals for a reason that rubs them the wrong way. Yet, the honor of being chosen is often left out. Much of it is culture shock - the base of indignation. May the victor dictate taboo. The conquistadors annihilated the savages and demonized their culture. Sometimes the old ways can't be done away with entirely. Which gives us Hoodoo, Conjure and Santeria today.
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#97145 - 03/04/15 02:26 AM Re: Religious Animal Sacrifice [Re: SIN3]
Dimitri Offline
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Waste of perfectly good meat.
Not a fan of animal sacrifice for that reason alone.

Unless the animal sacrifice is being followed by a feast where it is cooked up and prepared for all participants to enjoy.
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#97148 - 03/04/15 08:24 AM Re: Religious Animal Sacrifice [Re: Dimitri]
Megatron Offline
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 Originally Posted By: Dimitri
Waste of perfectly good meat.
Not a fan of animal sacrifice for that reason alone.

Unless the animal sacrifice is being followed by a feast where it is cooked up and prepared for all participants to enjoy.


Wow, you really added a bit of depth to the analysis of this thread topic in your extremely insightful reply. Proving that you can't even comprehend the lateral scenario (i.e. the traditional occurrences) wherein the carcass is divided into portions. The interesting tangent involves the nature of the division.

To the topic proper, the word "sacrifice" literally means "to make holy/consecrated". To all pre-modern cultures*, sacrifice was an integral part of both individual and also communal existence. Such a feature is drawn from diurnal rhythm primarily, and the first derivatives secondarily (e.g. moon phasing).

A world devoid of sacrifice would be a world where nothing was sacred. A bland, droll world. It isn't a choice of whether or not we sacrifice things, but rather a question of just what it is we choose to make holy.

*one could also make a case for the modern as well . . .


Edited by Megatron (03/04/15 08:36 AM)
Edit Reason: Antikarmatomic thinks he has the upper hand. It's a swing game, bro. A swing game.
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#97150 - 03/04/15 08:50 AM Re: Religious Animal Sacrifice [Re: Caladrius]
Megatron Offline
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 Originally Posted By: Caladrius
Based on my unprofessional and fallible limited knowledge, I believe the Buddha never existed as an actual person.


You are absolutely correct in this statement. And that particular truth is irrespective of the historicity of Gautama. Buddhism, as you well know, is not the veneration of saints. It only appears that way to outsiders on purpose. And especially to the "outermost rim" if you will.

The teaching proper (in every school, and at all levels) concerns only the nature of mind/fullness. And to answer the next question, no.
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#97154 - 03/04/15 10:36 AM Re: Religious Animal Sacrifice [Re: CanisMachina42]
SIN3 Offline
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 Originally Posted By: Dogmachine
Yet, the honor of being chosen is often left out. Much of it is culture shock - the base of indignation.


I attended an Introduction to Lucumi yesterday and was given ample opportunity to ask questions about how these animals are chosen, who decides and when the animal is eaten and when its not.

In the Yoruba tradition, the animal is left to nature during purification/cleansing ceremonies. The idea is that this animal absorbs what you're trying to get rid of, so you wouldn't want to eat it because it defeats the purpose. The Santera/Santero performs a reading to determine when and if this ceremony is necessary. Typically a reading of shells or coconut quarters; this form of Divination usually produces a message that will be interpreted in the context of the person's Destiny.

When the ritual is performed, the Santero/Santera is connected to the animal, in that they hold it close, they feel its life and must look it in the eyes upon taking it. They try their best to give it a quick death with the least amount of suffering. This is how they regard a humane killing.

These ceremonies don't always require an animal to purify. It can be done with seeds, fruit, herbs and other things. The Santera/Santero decides when it's necessary;intuitive messages received from their respective Orishas.

All other ceremonies that require an animal sacrifice, the animal is eaten. During the ceremony it is elevated as a symbol of nature's ability to heal and provide nourishment.

 Originally Posted By: Megatron
To the topic proper, the word "sacrifice" literally means "to make holy/consecrated". To all pre-modern cultures*, sacrifice was an integral part of both individual and also communal existence.


Many people interpret sacrifice as something you give up/with-stain from. So therein lies the confusion it seems. If you eat it, people question whether it qualifies as a sacrifice.

Since Santeria is basically diaspora & multiculturalism, I had asked if sacrifice here in the States would be regarded the same by the Yoruba. Essentially, the Yoruba try to balance the positive/negatives of preservation and taking of life. They try to please the powers they commune with. The people see signs in all things. So say they killed an animal and something went wrong, or some anomaly occurred during a ritual, the results might be that someone in their village falls ill and this is confirmation bias that the powers have been displeased. So they take steps to make it right. Sort of like the way you treat your garden. If you neglect it, or over do it - the end result will demonstrate how Nature answers you. So its fundamentally the same, which is why the people in the States find it of utmost importance to follow traditions and trace their lineage back to its point of origin.

There's a lot of Spiritism to the practice but each adherent has their own interpretation of what 'Spirits' actually are. This particular Santera regards them as Natural vs. Supernatural. If your garden only produced a few tomatoes vs. a good hearty harvest, then the Spirits of nature are displeased with you but show signs that things could be improved upon (like water me, fertilize me, take care of me and I'll take care of you).

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#97158 - 03/04/15 11:24 AM Re: Religious Animal Sacrifice [Re: antikarmatomic]
JamesSTL Offline
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 Originally Posted By: antikarmatomic
...in order for it to be a sacrifice it should be useful to you in the first place. Otherwise it's just killing an animal - be it out of curiosity, malice, tradition, or some strange type of thinking that doing so gives you powers or good-luck or something.


I agree with AK. There is nothing "sacrificial" about the arbitrary ritualized slaughter of animals.

As Dimi also touched on, I can see use in the ritual slaughter of an animal followed by a feast. For one thing, it would allow the participants to actively engage in the aspects of eating meat that are conveniently "hidden" from public view. But in this capacity, I think "slaughter" is the right word to use, not "sacrifice".

Personally, my view of Satan is not a deity that needs to be appeased -- more like a "force" which can be abstracted into an archetype. The whole "sacrifice" deal seems historically very "not LHP", as it involves submission to exterior (not-I) factors/deities/whatever.

EDIT: Horrific image of blood sacrifice to SaTaN: LOOK IF YOU DARE!

.


Edited by JamesSTL (03/04/15 11:30 AM)

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#97160 - 03/04/15 12:03 PM Re: Religious Animal Sacrifice [Re: JamesSTL]
SIN3 Offline
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 Quote:
There is nothing "sacrificial" about the arbitrary ritualized slaughter of animals.


I don't know that its arbitrary. These animals aren't being killed at whim, they serve a very specific purpose whether as symbol or carrier.

In the Nepalese example provided the Gadhimai Festival is to end evil and bring prosperity to the region. After the festival the meat & bones are sold in Nepal and Delhi markets.

In the Santerian example, the purpose in these rituals is to have a direct effect on the participants (whether for Healing or Cleansing) and more often than not the animal is prepared for a feast afterwards.

The way these folks treat the animals (if that's one's main concern) is sometimes more ethical than the meat-packing industry's care.

If a person is making "sacrifice" for Satan, the end result is much like that of the Santerians. To effect the person performing sacrifice.

 Quote:
The whole "sacrifice" deal seems historically very "not LHP"


Think Psychodrama with a little more flair and utilitarian purpose. I think it can made to fit in proper context.


Especially if one were an Animal Lover, wanted to eat 'Ethical Meat', or even just improve the quality of life/body by eating something more ceremoniously.

I've yet to speak to any Satanists that claims that Satan needs to be appeased by an animal's suffering.

Many 'Theists' don't see Satan as a being that exists outside of nature. More like the shadows when the light is bent in their favor.
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