Why did the ancients like to worship
Sacrifice is a religious activity, which originates from the belief in the harmonious coexistence of heaven and earth. According to the research results of modern anthropology and archaeology, there are two most primitive beliefs of human beings: one is the belief in heaven and earth, and the other is the belief in ancestors. Beliefs in heaven and earth and ancestors originated from the worship of nature and ancestors in the early days of human beings, and various worship and sacrifice activities were generated from this.
In ancient times, both China and foreign countries were very fascinated by sacrifice, and the sacrifice culture formed by this was also very popular. Therefore, Chinese and foreign dynasties have attached great importance to this matter of sacrifice. Because people believe in the existence of gods, and hope to pray to the gods through various sacrificial behaviors, and even some sacrificial culture has been passed down to the contemporary age. When there are sacrifices, there is no shortage of tributes, and there are many kinds of tributes.
In addition, in some places, the act of using human beings as tribute to express devotion to the gods has also occurred, but this is the most cruel sacrificial act.
Today, let’s take a look at what the ancient human sacrifices were like?
Sacrifices with virgins were common around 200 years before Carthage was destroyed by the Romans. The Phoenicians are the ancestors of the Carthaginians, and it is said that this unique sacrificial ceremony for a good harvest existed before they established Carthage. In order to pray to the sky and achieve the wishes of abundant crops and healthy descendants, Carthaginian nobles often used the children of slaves to sacrifice their children instead of their children.
Later, the fires of Rome burned Carthage to defeat, but in the eyes of the Carthaginian authorities, it was considered to be the wrath of Baal. Therefore, Diodorus used the scorched corpses of his own children to pray to Baal to quell his anger and to atone for the Carthaginian nobles.
And just like that, the sacrificial ceremony began.
The altar at that time was not too high, with its sides sloping downwards and shaped like a roof.
The sacrificed human beings were bound on their limbs and placed on the altar to prevent them from resisting and escaping. Then, people lit a fire under the altar, scorching the body of the victim with fiery flames. But this painful struggle seems to people to last as long as possible.
The next day, the flesh on the victim’s corpse was cut off piece by piece, a very cruel and horrifying method. At that time, human sacrifices were regarded as holy things to sacrifice to gods, so they were revered and treated with kindness during their lifetime, and were welcomed by people. In addition, after the sacrifice of adulthood, another “Meriah” can be used as a spouse, but their children will also become “Meriyah”, the future sacrifice.
This kind of sacrificial ceremony using human sacrifices as tribute is usually carried out in a lively atmosphere with gongs and drums. The presiding priest of the sacrificial ceremony wears a mask and dances the dance of the gods. The parents of the children who were sacrificed were to be present, and not a single tear was allowed to be shed during the whole process.
This kind of “crazy” behavior in the eyes of modern people was the glory of the family at the time. Because parents who use their children as sacrifices can enjoy privileges.
Similar things are recorded in the books of the Greek historian Diodorus, mainly based on the conditions described by those who witnessed the sacrifice at the time, and it is very scary to read.
According to relevant records, the Kongde people hold human sacrifice ceremonies every year before sowing and on some important occasions. About ten to twelve days before the official sacrifice to the deity, the victim’s hair is shaved, and ointment, ghee, and turmeric root powder are applied all over the body. What followed was a few days of carnivals. After the carnival is over, the human sacrifice activities begin. Accompanied by music and dancing, the victims were taken to the “Murray Woods” not far from the village.
In this lush and lush jungle that has never been cut down, it is specially used to hold human sacrifice activities. Typically, the victim is tied to a wooden post, anointed again with ointment, ghee and turmeric powder all over his body, and wearing a garland. Afterwards, the crowd began to dance around the sacrifice and pray loudly: “Goddess, we offer this sacrifice to you, and may you grant us a good climate, abundant crops and good health.”
During this period, people will scramble to snatch the accessories on the victims, such as flowers, turmeric root powder, etc. Even the spittle of the victims is highly valued. Because it is believed that the ornaments on the victim’s body have magical powers and can bring good luck to them. Afterwards, the victim was anointed again, and everyone involved in the sacrifice had to dip a little of the ointment from the victim and smear it on their own heads.
Of course, in some places people will carry the victims down the streets and alleys, and when they come to each house, people will pluck the victims’ hair, or ask them to spit on their heads. Usually, in order for the sacrifice to cooperate with the whole sacrificial ceremony, its hand bones and even leg bones are often broken in advance. Of course, the best way is to numb the victim with anesthesia, so that it doesn’t have to be so troublesome.
Although the sacrifice of a living person can not escape death, the method of executing the sacrifice is not the same.
Some would use a soldering iron to slowly burn the victim to death, while some would tie the victim to a wooden stake and cut the flesh piece by piece with a knife, similar to the way of “Ling Chi” execution.
However, the most common method is to hang or squeeze the victim to death. That is, a large tree is split in the middle, and then the priest and his assistants shove the neck or chest of the victim into the crack of the tree and clamp it hard. Afterwards, wait for the priest to slash the victim slightly with an axe, but not fatally. Next, people began to scramble to cut flesh on the victim’s body. The whole process was just cutting the flesh without touching the victim’s head and internal organs.
The sacrificed flesh was taken back to the village by the representatives of the villages. The people in the village were not allowed to eat or drink until the sacrificed meat was delivered to the village. After that, the whole village gathered together, and the priests of the village and the heads of the households waited to receive the sacrificial meat. The sacrificial meat will be divided into two parts, one part will be buried in the soil by the priest, filled by the crowd, and watered with gourd water to show respect to the goddess of the earth.
Another portion of sacrificial meat is divided equally according to the number of people in each household, and the parents of each household wrap it in leaves and bury it in the field with the best harvest. The rest of the sacrificial head, guts and bones were incinerated the next morning along with a whole sheep. The cremated ashes are sprinkled on farmland, slurried on houses and barns, or mixed with new grain to keep insects away.
In South Asia, the main purpose of human sacrifice priests is to worship the goddess of the earth, and pray to the goddess of the earth to bless a year of agricultural prosperity, good weather, good health, and disaster relief.
But it is worth mentioning that the reason why the process of execution of the victims is very cruel and will not kill them with a single blow is mainly to prolong the death time of the victims as much as possible, increase their pain level, and make them cry more. Because, in the eyes of the people at the time, the tears of the victims symbolized the rain, and the more abundant the rain, the better the harvest in the coming year.
In addition, primitive villages in ancient times used this very cruel human sacrifice activity mainly because the birth of any new thing was accompanied by death, and the growth of crops was also the same. In order to reproduce and regenerate, death must occur, so in order for humans and everything else to continue to reproduce, other people or creatures must die.