The idea and practice of sacrifice play a profound role in religion, ethics, and politics. In this brief book, philosopher Moshe Halbertal explores the meaning and implications of sacrifice, developing a theory of sacrifice as an offering and examining the relationship between sacrifice, ritual, violence, and love. On Sacrifice also looks at the place of self-sacrifice within ethical life and at the complex role of sacrifice as both a noble and destructive political ideal. In the religious domain, Halbertal argues, sacrifice is an offering, a gift given in the context of a hierarchical relationship. As such it is vulnerable to rejection, a trauma at the root of both ritual and violence. An offering is also an ambiguous gesture torn between a genuine expression of gratitude and love and an instrument of exchange, a tension that haunts the practice of sacrifice. In the moral and political domains, sacrifice is tied to the idea of self-transcendence, in which an individual sacrifices his or her self-interest for the sake of higher values and commitments. While self-sacrifice has great potential moral value, it can also be used to justify the most brutal acts. Halbertal attempts to unravel the relationship between self-sacrifice and violence, arguing that misguided self-sacrifice is far more problematic than exaggerated self-love. In his exploration of the positive and negative dimensions of self-sacrifice, Halbertal also addresses the role of past sacrifice in obligating future generations and in creating a bond for political associations, and considers the function of the modern state as a sacrificial community.
The Strange World of Human Sacrifice is the first modern collection of studies on one of the most gruesome and intriguing aspects of religion. The volume starts with a brief introduction, which is followed by studies of Aztec human sacrifice and the literary motif of human sacrifice in medieval Irish literature. Turning to ancient Greece, three cases of human sacrifice are analysed: a ritual example, a mythical case, and one in which myth and ritual are interrelated. The early Christians were the victims of accusations of human sacrifice, but in turn imputed the crime to heterodox Christians, just as the Jews imputed the crime to their neighbours. The ancient Egyptians rarely seem to have practised human sacrifice, but buried the pharaoh's servants with him in order to serve him in the afterlife, albeit only for a brief period at the very beginning of pharaonic civilization. In ancient India we can follow the traditions of human sacrifice from the earliest texts up to modern times, where especially in eastern India goddesses, such as Kali, were long worshipped with human victims. In Japanese tales human sacrifice often takes the form of self-sacrifice, and there may well be a line from these early sacrifices to modern kamikaze. The last study throws a surprising light on human sacrifice in China. The volume is concluded with a detailed index
ABOUT THE SACRIFICE: Jennie's Gifts Book 2Jennie's abilities flourish as she continues to connect with the spirit world to deliver messages to her clients. However, as her business blossoms, her ex-husband, Ben, and his mother seem to delight in harassing her regarding her career. So when the call comes that they need her assistance, Jennie feels torn about it. Do they really think she can forget their constant needling and negativity about her gifts and just come to their aid?Can Jennie set aside her feelings and honor her gifts by helping Ben and his mother? Or will being of service to them be too great a sacrifice to bear?ABOUT THE SERIES:With an open and loving heart, Jennie finally accepts her calling... she is a medium. No longer living in denial of her gifts, she is passionate about using them to help her clients find the peace and closure they need as she delivers messages of love and healing from their dearly departed loved ones.Follow along as Jennie embarks on a heartfelt journey of spiritual and self discovery. If she ever hopes to live the life she's dreamed of, she must expand on her gifts, process the pain of the past, and muster the courage to release her insecurities. But will she succeed? Read on to find out...*****NOTE: This book was originally titled: Dancing on Moonbeams: Jennie's Gifts Book 2
"Women and Sacrifice is an original and lucid book that explores the anthropology and developmental psychology of male violence in blood sacrifice and its implications in religion and culture. It is the first comprehensive study of the psychology of gender and religion using the controversial ideas of Heinz Kohut and self-psychology." "Beers not only makes an important contribution to our psychological understanding of sacrifice, he explores how narcissistic anxiety fuels rituals and social structures that subordinate women. He bases his provocative theory on three general premises: sacrifice is traditionally performed only by men; the gender specificity of sacrifice can be traced to gender-specific developments of men and women and is reflected in religions throughout the world; and the male violence of sacrifice is related to other forms of male violence. Beers reviews the theories of symbol-formation of Freud, Jung, Klein, and Winnicott and argues that Kohut's self-psychology is more appropriate for understanding the psychology of symbolic ritual. The psychological claims in the book are presented in the context of social structures, cultural expressions, and individual and group history. Beers includes critiques of such leading theorists of ritual and sacrifice as Durkheim, Levi-Strauss, Douglas, Turner, Geertz, Freud, Jung, and Girard." "In analyzing sacrifice among the Malekulans of Melanesia and the eucharist of the American Episcopal Church, Beers develops the theory that such rituals have a psychological function that diminishes and controls women. He claims that men so fear women that religious ritual excludes women in order that men can gain and retain power over them."--BOOK JACKET.Title Summary field provided by Blackwell North America, Inc. All Rights Reserved
The volume consists of collected papers from Taubes Minerva Center for Religious Anthropology conferences examining (1) the role of sacrifice in religious experience from a comparative perspective and (2) alternatives to sacrifice.
In this concentrated and detailed look at questions surrounding the act of sacrifice, Dennis King Keenan discusses both the role and the meaning of sacrifice in our lives. Building on recent philosophical discussions on the gift and transcendence, Keenan covers new ground with this exploration of the religious, psychological, and ethical issues that sacrifice entails. According to Keenan, sacrifice is paradoxically called to sacrifice itself. But what does this necessary, yet impossible condition mean for living an ethical life? Along the way to an answer, Keenan considers the views of Hegel, Kierkegaard, Nietzsche, Heidegger, Bataille, Lacan, Levinas, Blanchot, Irigaray, Derrida, Kristeva, Nancy, and Zizek. This thoughtful and provocative work affords a sophisticated philosophical treatment of the question of sacrifice.