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Thread: Why is cannibalism glorified by Christianity?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mikewww View Post
    I agree. I would never say the sacrament of the Holy Communion is unimportant, particularly within some denominations. It could easily be called “a” defining part of Christianity, particularly in original universal/catholic church.
    What I am emphasizing is that Maciamo is wrong to characterize this sacrament as “the” defining part of Christianity, particularly if we are talking across denominations.
    Another dimension of this is the understanding of rituals and sacraments. In that American “free market” of Christianity in the USA, the formal priestly role is not nearly so important as it was/is in the Roman Catholic church. The large number of people reading the Bible has led to more emphasis on the reality of everyday living and the lay people. As mentioned, we are all priests. We are to pray and contemplate Christ often and that includes every meal, not just formal church ritual.
    I think your free market notion stems back to “protesting” organized religion, especially those hierarchical in nature. Mainline Protestant denominations are included as targets of disdain along with Catholic in this. It is my opinion that there is a natural rebellious and independent nature among Americans. This feeds the decline of formal religion dogma, ritual and hierarchy.
    This strongly ties into Christ’s message to Nicodemus that he must be “born again” and the notion of a personal relationship with Christ. The movement of the Holy Spirit dwells in the bodies of all believers, not just the ritualistic officeholders.
    Yes I think you captured the individualist mindset of Americans, "Me and My Bible" theological mindset. Actually, Nicodemus understood "born again" but the meaning in that text is "born from above" and the term or phrase "personal relationship with Christ" is found nowhere in the NT. So by your own which appears to be "Sola Scriptura" lens through which you form your belief system, that terminology is not found in the New Testament. However, as I already noted, from from where I sit, you have accurately captured the core tenants of American Individualist evangelical Christianity in the USA.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mikewww View Post
    I still agree, at least in terms of considering the early church from a Catholic orthodoxy and organizational perspective.
    However, you peaked my interest so I started reviewing the New Testament for this. There is a reference to “breaking bread” but I haven’t been able to find where the earliest church leaders, the Twelve Apostles, conducted a formal communion ritual.
    I would hardly say that Holy Communion was “the” defining part of the earliest Christianity. I think movements of the Holy Spirit from healings to speaking in tongues to miraculous escapes and conversions was much more of a hallmark of the spread of the early church. This is the power of the early church, which is the body of Christ, not the orthodoxy.
    Well depends how one reads the Text. 1 Corinthians 10:16-17 describes a "Tradition" from which Saint Paul received that he handed to the Church at Corinth. When you realize that 1 Corinthians was written before any of the Gospels, this itself is reference to something already handed on "Tradition". Jesus himself took bread, blessed it, and broke it and then gave it to the Disciples with in (i.e., Road to Emmaus story; Cf Luke 24:27-35) is a Liturgical/Ritual act post Resurrection. So when one reads in Acts 2:46 and Acts 20:7 "breaking bread" and 1 Corinthians 10:16-17 to try to wiggle out of interpreting anyway but in relation to Christ action at the Last Supper is not correct. Furthermore, the earliest accounts from Church Tradition (Sacred Scripture and Sacred Tradition, interpreted in the context of the Church's Doctrine) refer to the Eucharist as the central act of Christian worship and it was Liturgical. The Didache, written in late 1st century (earliest Catechism and Church Directive on Church Liturgy, Sacraments) clearly speaks of Confessing ones sins before partaking in the Liturgy, it describes Baptism with Water using the Trinitarian Formula and, clearly talks of the Eucharist prescribing how the Church is to give thanks (eucharist), stating nobody can partake unless Baptized and states in strong language (something moderns have issue with) do not give that which is Holy to dogs. The Didache also states on the Lord's Day (Sunday) gather together, break bread and give thanks after confessing your sins to that your sacrifice may be pure. In addition, with the issue of Abortion being front and center in USA secular politics, the Didache is the first clear Church teaching Abortion being a grave sin. Again, the Didache was written in late 1st century. Saint Ignatius of Antioch in his Letter to the Church of Smyrna (110 AD) speaks of certain Gnostic sects abstaining from the Eucharist since they do not believe in the Incarnation and he writes a valid "eucharist" is only one celebrated by the Bishop or one He appoints.

    The most detailed account of a Liturgy of the Eucharist is found in Saint Justin Marytr's 1st Apology (circa 150 AD) Chapters 65-66 (Administration of Sacraments and Eucharist). It is in its structure and form, no different than a Catholic Liturgy today, or for that matter, an Eastern Orthodox one as well.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Palermo Trapani View Post
    Yes I think you captured the individualist mindset of Americans, "Me and My Bible" theological mindset.
    You could phrase it that way, but another way to describe it as “God’s Word unfiltered”. After all we don’t live on “bread alone but every word that comes from the mouth of God” (Mat 4:4). The printing press and literacy made great impacts that help reform religious organizations, what some call the church.
    In fact, the essence of Jesus’ love is to lay down one’s life for another. This is anything but a selfish perspective and is the calling put forth to Christians, not just of the evangelical types, Yes, individuals are accountable to God as individuals, but this doesn’t diminish the calling for brotherhood as members of the body of Christ, the true church.
    Actually, Nicodemus understood "born again" but the meaning in that text is "born from above"
    It is my understanding that it can mean either “born again” or “born above”. In this case, I think it means both as we can tell from Nicodemues’ response about going into womb and Jesus’ follow up referring to the Spirit and the wind.
    the term or phrase "personal relationship with Christ" is found nowhere in the NT. …. that terminology is not found in the New Testament.
    Neither is the term “Eucharist” found in New Testament that I can see. Nevertheless, that doesn’t mean the term is not applicable in a discussion. It is, just as “personal relationship” is.
    You find we are brothers and sisters with Jesus. To me, this is the greater meaning of the “Word of God Incarnate”. This has nothing to do with cannibalism it has to do with the humanity of Jesus, therefore supporting a relationship as a brother.
    Last edited by Mikewww; 15-05-22 at 17:43.

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    This New Testament provides reasoning for the “personal relationship” theme and brother/sisterhood among believers.
    “In bringing many sons and daughters to glory, it was fitting that God, for whom and through whom everything exists, should make the pioneer of their salvation perfect through what he suffered. Both the one who makes people holy and those who are made holy are of the same family. So Jesus is not ashamed to call them brothers and sisters. He says,
    ‘I will declare your name to my brothers and sisters; in the assembly I will sing your praises.’ “. (Heb 2:10-12)
    “ For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters. ” (Rom 8:29)
    Please read Romans 8 prior to the 8:29. The word “flesh” is used 12 times in the first 13 verses. It is about sin offering, which relates to lamb and the Lamb.This has nothing to do with pork and cannibalism.
    https://www.biblegateway.com/passage...+8&version=NIV
    Last edited by Mikewww; 15-05-22 at 05:11.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Duarte View Post
    How were the cannibalism rituals of the Brazilian Indians?
    Food and spirituality, Brazilian cannibalism was complex.

    Human flesh was much more than a snack for Brazilian cannibals. Cannibalism, in the culture of these peoples, involved ceremonies that evoked the supernatural. “They believed that the individual gains strength by assimilating others, powerful and dangerous, be they enemy warriors or dead relatives”, says historian João Monteiro, from Unicamp.
    From their cultural point of view, I think they can eat human flesh like the other animals. Animal is holy to them and steppe people, however, they consume animal. what about unholy human flesh to them?


    "Animals are everywhere in the Popol Vuh. They leap and lick and crawl and bite and squawk and hoot and screech and howl. They are considered sacred, not as disembodied beings in some faraway place, but in their coexistence with humans, day by day in the forests.":

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    Quote Originally Posted by Maciamo View Post
    When you think about it, one of the most fundamental requirement of any Christians is to eat human flesh and drink human blood, or at least the bread and wine that symbolise it. But the way it is written in the Bible is ambiguous and could be interpreted as the duty of all Christians to eat human flesh.

    Jesus said: "I tell you the truth, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you cannot have eternal life within you."
    Human flesh is said to resemble most pork. When Europeans first arrived in Hawaii, the cannibalistic Hawaiians called them the 'long pigs' as they tasted pretty much the same. Pigs and humans share many similarities beyond the taste of their flesh. They both can have pinkish or black skin. Both species are omnivorous and, while humans can eat pigs, the reverse is also true. It is one of the rare cases of two animal species that can eat one another.

    Eating pork was prohibited in Judaism long before the birth of Jesus. In fact, it was already prohibited in ancient Syria and Phoenicia during the Late Bronze to Early Iron Age. As Jesus was a Jew himself one can wonder why pork was not banned from the Christian diet. Even the Muslims adopted the old Jewish ways in that regard.

    The reason could be that it would cast doubt on the validity of the Christian Eucharist. It may not be obvious to 21st century Westerners because cannibalism is no longer culturally accepted as it was in most tribal or ancient societies. Cannibalism was not only common in Stone Age tribes, but even among metal age cultures. The Aztecs, a Copper Age culture, practiced a form of ritual cannibalism. The Austronesian and Melanesian people, who practiced cannibalism until recently (and still do in parts of Papua New Guinea), were/are Iron Age societies. Pliny the Elder explained that the Celts practiced ritual cannibalism, eating their enemies' flesh as a source of spiritual and physical strength. According to Herodotus, the Scythians regularly drank from cups made from the skulls of their enemies. Some Eastern European, like the aptly named Androphagi, were also man eaters. In fact ritual cannibalism was so widespread in tribal societies that it is hard to believe that the very concept of Eucharist wasn't itself a variant of ritual cannibalism, but in a more purified form more suitable to a monotheistic religion.

    In all cases it seems that the rituals involve the passing of the deceased people's power or energy to the people who consume their flesh. A similar belief is found among many hunter-gathering tribes, in which the hunters will eat their prey's heart to absorb its strength. This tradition was found among many Native American tribes from the Great Plains and among several African tribes. It is likely that most humans had similar practices during the Palaeolithic.

    It has been suggested that one of the reasons why pork was prohibited so early in the Levant was the similarity of swine meat with that of human flesh and the inevitable link with cannibalism. Other reasons were that pigs are scavengers and will eat almost anything, including human corpses - a relatively common sight in ancient times when wars and epidemics frequently left plenty of dead, unburied people to be eaten by scavengers.

    By reviving a form of ritualistic cannibalism ("eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood"), early Christians may have felt it safer to lift the taboo on pork consumption, lest the association with cannibalism put the whole concept of Eucharist in jeopardy. Once again, it may sounds incredible to modern minds, but not if you try to think like Iron Age people, at an age when cannibalism was still common in other nearby societies (e.g. the Galatians in central Anatolia or some Steppe tribes).

    The question I wanted to raise here is: Why is cannibalism so glorified by Christianity? Do Christians hope to obtain their god's power by reproducing a ritual in which they supposedly eat Jesus's body? Is it basically the same thing as our Stone Age hunter hoping to get the power of the freshly killed animal by eating its heart, but orders of magnitude larger, as Christians hope to enter communion with an omnipotent god and obtain eternal life? If so, that shows how little the human mind has evolved in the last 30,000 years or so. People just got more megalomaniac over time as small tribes of hunter-gatherers evolved into cities, kingdoms and empires, and humans asserted their dominance over Nature, believing that they were gods or that god(s) looked like them.
    The most sensible idea is some kind of divine transmutation through Christ.

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    With the idea of eating flesh and drinking blood, or Jesus being the "Bread of Life," Jesus spoke in some kind of parable. Christ was the symbolic ''Bread of Life,'' foreshadowing His own crucifixion, according to religious sources. However, medicinal cannibalism was prevalent in medieval and early modern European culture, influenced by the healing properties of the Eucharist. But as cannibalism became the symbol of ‘otherness’ in the New World, European medicine began to turn away from it.

    Despite these insistent denials, the practice of eating human remains for religious or medicinal purposes was extremely prevalent in medieval and early modern European culture. It was studied by the Swiss physician Paracelsus (1493/4-1541) and other well-respected medical professionals and used not only by the average gentry-man who could afford medical care, but by kings such as Charles II of England and even Pope Innocent VIII. The ideology behind this practice was said to be influenced by the healing properties of the Eucharist. In fact, the general consensus seems to be that medicinal cannibalism was supported by the same ideas that supported the Eucharist: that human flesh contained healing powers, and the most effective way to access those powers was by eating that which contained them. Therefore, it seems rather odd for cannibalism to be the pervasive symbol of ‘otherness’ when the Eucharist was so essential to the European psyche. However, it has been suggested by modern scholars that early medical historians had white-washed corpse medicine, and indeed the literature shows that there is a notable gap in the discussion of medicinal cannibalism practiced outside of Europe. This can be attributed to not only the modern literature, but to a shift in early modern attitudes regarding cannibalism as a whole Indeed, the downfall of corpse medicine coincided with colonial expansion. As cannibalism became increasingly associated with New World savages, European medicine began to turn away from the belief in the spiritual properties of the flesh and the negative reputation that was associated with it.

    https://www.epoch-magazine.com/riehlthebreadoflife
    Давайте вместе снова сделаем мир великий!

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    Receiving Holy Communion is a very special sacrament that is part of the Catholic mass, by receiving Jesus into our body through the Eucharist we affirm our faith in the church. I’m not the best catholic, I don’t go to confession or mass every Sunday but,
    when I see Nancy Pelosi defying the archbishops order to refrain from communion and repent for her strong beliefs of abortion and she insists on going to mass and taking it anyway!
    It’s like some kind of weird fetish with her.
    She should just find another religion and go!
    The way the left twists things . . . this is my body and sacrifice of the unborn.
    like a sacrament to them.

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    Buñuel on Transubstantiation (The Milky Way):

    Meanwhile the police chief discusses religion with an affable priest who matter-of-factly asserts that all people have now been converted to Christianity, even Muslims and Jews. While the priest speaks as if logic were on his side, he becomes irrational when his companion denies transubstantiation, the transformation of bread into the body of Christ. In an act symbolic of religious intolerance, he throws hot coffee in the officer’s face, and the ambulance from the insane asylum from which he has escaped soon carts him away. Citing the Pateliers, Albigeois, and Calvinists as groups who could not adhere to the doctrine of transubstantiation, the priest (recently defrocked, we learn) links Roman Catholic theological orthodoxy with fanaticism and insanity.
    https://dokumen.pub/religion-and-spa...directors.html

    In other words, an absurd theatre for the masses (the Mass) intended to stimulate irrational belief (faith, or swallowing whole) itself becomes material for the Theatre of the Absurd for a cultural avant-garde rolling on the floor laughing.
    "I think Marija's 'kurgan hypothesis' has been magnificently vindicated by recent work." --Lord Colin Renfrew, 4/18/2018.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Maciamo View Post
    By reviving a form of ritualistic cannibalism ("eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood"), early Christians may have felt it safer to lift the taboo on pork consumption, lest the association with cannibalism put the whole concept of Eucharist in jeopardy. Once again, it may sounds incredible to modern minds, but not if you try to think like Iron Age people, at an age when cannibalism was still common in other nearby societies (e.g. the Galatians in central Anatolia or some Steppe tribes).
    Jesus said himself there are no unholy foods, so to claim pork is unholy would go against Christianity. Market economics explain the rest.

    The new testament is, by Jesus' own admission, cryptic. Jesus claims he is intentionally providing false teachings so that people must be guided by their own sense of morality/reason (spirit) to separate truth from fiction.

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    One potential explanation that I've heard is that it references second temple Jewish metaphors on wisdom. Acquiring knowledge and wisdom was compared to eating. Many second temple Jews, including many of the authors of the New Testament, believed that wisdom was an aspect of God that had become an independent being and for some Christian wisdom was incarnated on earth as Jesus. Another aspect that could have influenced it was the fact that Jesus's death on the cross was compared to the pascal lamb sacrifice and in second temple Judaism the pascal sacrifice would be eaten by people, hence the idea of consuming the body of Jesus in the Eucharist.

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