Thursday, June 7, 2012
~~~ LIFE SACRIFICE IN RELIGION? ~~~
First, allow me to make it clear that anyone who is spiritual would consider killing life for a sacrifice to support one's belief system and not for consumption to support life, is the greatest violation against our creation. ~~~ This is my opinion. You may be shocked to hear that there are farms in today's world which breed and raise animals that will eventually be used in a religious rituals that involve animal sacrifices. This week I viewed on the National Geographic channel a program on this topic. The owner of one of theses farms for animal sacrifices was proud to accommodate those religions who perform such rituals. This farmer feels blessed that he raises animals, not for slaughter and human consumption ~~ but for rituals of sacrifice. He actually believes his cause is a noble and spiritual one. He claims that the humane society has sanctioned what he does as the animals are treated "humanely". He makes it sound like this is a Club- Med for the animals. I wish I could find the video or a link to the specific episode. I went to the web site of National Geographic, but found no link to the episode. If anyone knows of how I can do this please advise.
Unfortunately most religions dating back to ancient Greece and Rome and South America etc. ~~ animal and human sacrifices were performed and in many cases still are being performed. Of all the religions, ancient and modern only a very few religions including Buddhism prohibits any type of killing life. That does not mean that there are no individuals in other religions who hold their personal belief about no killing of any life. There are many people who take their personal belief with them as they worship in a structured manner. In North America, that is more common rather then the exception.
Let's examine the Psyche of the people participating in these rituals and what is the cornerstone of their religion.
As to Christianity, references are made in the New Testament such as the parents of Jesus are "sacrificing" two doves. Christ is referred to as a sacrificial lamb of God. Christ's Crucifixion is comparable to human sacrifice as his death serves as an atonement for all of man's sins.
Some villages in Greece also sacrifice animals to Orthodox saints. This ritual is called "Kourbania" and is still practiced in modern Greece.
I did not mean to pick on Christianity as most, if not all religions have animal sacrificial rituals in their past and present.
Can it be that passages from the New and Old testaments at the very least condone animal and maybe even human sacrifices? That the four legged, winged and finned life do not have a spirit and soul? Only If animals could talk. Labeling Jesus as a sacrificial lamb? Rest assured, I understand the symbolism and that in ancient religions it was believed that sacrifices to the Gods were part of life then. The Mayans sacrificed humans as frequently as one lights a candle in today's world of religions. The evolution of our enlightenment surely has advanced way beyond sacrifices of anything that shares the air we breath.
Two religions come to mind, Buddhism which believes that animals are sentient beings, ~~ that maybe they are different in their intellectual ability than humans but no less capable in feeling pain. Then there is Jainism which supports pacifism for all living creatures on the planet. Most Jains are Vegetarians. In Buddhism with their belief in Karma and reincarnation, even an insect is reverend as this maybe one of a past relative.
Some people support their belief in no killing life by becoming veterinarian, not just for health reasons. Buddhism is the poster child for "PETA" Norm Phelps, author and student of Buddhism is quoted to say:
"Buddhism ought to be an animal rights religion, par excellence"
Maybe it is a play on words, but I wish the words of the Apostles were more like "Christ was murdered by ignorant people who simply believed Jesus violated the the laws of the Bible by claiming that he was God ". ~~which was blasphemy to the Jews and this violated the Old Testament. The Jews did not understand the teaching of who they wanted to be their Messiah. Jesus who did not walk around among the Apostles and his followers and claim he would be their sacrificial lamb. He did know what was to become of him and in spite of the adversity he went on teaching, knowing that this could put him to death. That is what made him a holy and spiritual man. ~~ not a sacrificial lamb.
Below is a short video of the Dali Lama speaking about his reverence for all life and talks about killing a mosquito. Can anyone tell me the meaning of this message? It really is quite humorous.
The message I get from this video is that at we all have a right to our space. As I have made a reference to this "space" before in previous posts. This space is usually seven feet in diameter. If an un-welcomed visitor intrudes your space you have the right do what is necessary to protect yourself and your property if a threat is made. Then and only then is it acceptable to cause undesired harm to another life as a last resort. The key word is "INTENT".
Was it you intent to cause harm to the unwanted visitor, ~~ other then to protect your space? Was everything done to avoid confrontation? Either verbally or physically?
If a polar bear was about to attack your space with your children and there was no option but to kill it ~~ This would not be an insult to the animal kingdom, but a right to life.
Notice the Dali Lama offered a way to rid an unwanted mosquito on his arm. As a last resort one flicks the mosquito which could harm the mosquito, if not kill it.
For me ~~ this is another example of a spiritual person as opposed to a religious person.
Being kind to all life on this planet who share life with us. This must be one of the golden rules of Spiritualism.
Amen ~~ Aho!