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This entry was requested to be entered by dA-pagans member asleeplikewolves, she wished to put forward, one of the more controversial topics of sacrifice. Since this is a very eclectic group and there are members from many different paths here, I figured it might be healthy to get a good discussion going about it.

"Sacrifices vs. Offerings

As a public Pagan, I've seen offerings of all kinds freely and happily given. Gathered through a decade of personal study and experience with many public groups, the characteristics of offerings are:

:bulletblack: gifts given to a variety of entities, from land spirits to the Elements, the Fae, or the Ancestors
:bulletblack: usually in the form of food and drink, but can include poetry, music, or crafts
:bulletblack: can also be organic items like flowers, seeds, tobacco, etc.
:bulletblack: the act of giving is a carefree, light-hearted one, usually carried at the close of a ritual

What I very rarely see, or even hear talk of, is the practice of making a sacrifice, which I believe is one of the most important personal acts that any Pagan who believes in and prays to any of the Gods should be carrying out. Again, through personal study and public experiences, the characteristics of sacrifices are:

:bulletblack: given to the Gods in exchange for Their acting on our behalf, answering prayers, offering protection, etc.
:bulletblack: the nature of the sacrifice is specifically chosen based on the personality of the Deity. For example, the Morrígan, a Goddess of battle and corpses, would probably appreciate a sacrifice of rotted meat to represent carrion. However, Artemis, a Goddess of hunting and animals, would more likely appreciate a hide or venison that was gathered from a deer that you personally hunted yourself. There are as many examples are there are Gods in the world, and innovation can be key in choosing the appropriate sacrifice.
:bulletblack: sacrifices are willfully given, but they should be hard to give as well. They should cost money, or be of very high emotional value. If appropriate, your own personal pain should also be a part of them.
:bulletblack: whatever is given as a sacrifice is something that you will never get back.

A few words about blood sacrifice:

:bulletblack: If you are drawing your own blood, be familiar with basic human anatomy. Do not cut across your entire palm with a knife, as seen on TV!
:bulletblack: The safest and most organized method of giving blood sacrifice is to use the same test strips used by diabetics to prick their fingers. You can usually get several drops of blood from that, you don't risk damaging important structures in your hands or other areas of your body, and they heal very quickly without a huge risk of infection.

Since this is a pretty G-rated group usually, I figure that getting into the topic of animal sacrifice might not be as appropriate for everyone, though I will definitely discuss it if there is interest. I wanted to keep this pretty short, but let me know if you want more detail or an example of a ritual, or something like that. Thanks!"

Well, there you have it. I think offerings to deity is something not a lot of people incorporate into their rituals any more. And although I don't believe in killing animals for sacrifice, as I personally am Wiccan, and it would go against the Wiccan Rede, I know there are many people that follow very different paths. As for the blood sacrifice, definitely take heed of that! We don't want pints of blood being lost, be safe!

If anyone has any questions, leave them in the comments, or direct them to asleeplikewolves, and she will most likely reply. And please, no hateful comments, if you don't agree with it, ignore it, or if you feel you absolutely must say something, keep it nice and civil, thank you!

Until next time, Blessed be! )O(
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:iconlyingdyingwonderbody:
lyingdyingwonderbody Featured By Owner Nov 21, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
Sorry, this may be really out of context:
but does anyone know what happened to the user "asleeplikewolves"?
I really liked her work and would like to stay in touch.
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:iconleathurkatt-tftiggy:
Leathurkatt-TFTiggy Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Sorry, I was not trying to "convince you," but to educate you on things and attitudes you may not have had contact with before. There is a big difference between religious "witnessing" or educating, and "proselytizing" or brow-beating someone into accepting your way of thinking. My mother and I are vehemently against that! And saying "Native American" without qualifying that by naming the nation, and even groups within that nation, says nothing because of the variations of belief and practices within that society, even by family. Just as there are as many colcannon recipes as there are families in Ireland, the same is true in Native American Nations, Bands, and families with regard to their beliefs and practices as each family chooses what practices from their heritage traditions they keep and incorporate into modern beliefs or even to Christian beliefs they choose to adopt.

You are right in that a potent bond is established with an animal that you personally kill (in any way). At least for most of us this is true, because we have not become jaded with the taking of a life. It affects us deeply and stays with us for a long time. However, the bond with a wild hunted animal is completely different from the bond we share with animals we hand raised. It is widely considered more appropriate to sacrifice a domestic animal we hand raised, but in rare occurrences of an unblemished animal that is hunted, the most prized cuts of the meat are given in offering to the deities.

I do think you may be taking the word "perfect" as I have used it a little TOO literally though. "Without (visible) blemish or fault" is the usual requirement for a sacrifice, thus why I have stated repeatedly "without blemish, disease, or parasites" as considered "naturally perfect" as opposed to "literally perfect" as (and I agree with you on this point) literal perfection does not exist in anything no matter what it is because everyone has their own idea of what is perfect And no, the rats and mice you describe are not perfect in any way as they are artificially altered against their natural state. There are some who believe in going to more detailed and exacting standards than simply "without blemish, disease, or parasites, but that is not necessarily "required."

We must each learn and determine our own path and belief system. This usually changes through the years as we learn and experience more. That is the purpose of this discussion thread, to learn from each other. To be honest, I have enjoyed this discussion, as I do with many such discussions. In talking about our personal stances on issues, we learn from one another, and are exposed to sources of information new to us, then we can take that knowledge and apply it to change or greater affirm our position on the matter. It is sometimes difficult for people to talk about such things without taking the comments personally. My statements were not directed at any one person, only the practices and belief itself. Reading through all the statements posted so far, we all have much more in common than we have in opposition to one another in practice.

Taking the information I have offered as a personal attack upon your own beliefs is also a bit excessive, as it appears in your responses. What I have stated in my posts are not a matter of personal opinion, but are points of fact as I have researched and educated myself on a large number of beliefs through independent study and research since as early as six years of age and taught by my mother and others since earlier than that. Please understand the difference between factual research and matters of opinion. **smiles**

I am a firm believer in citing my sources. Some of my sources that I can share with you include: The Cheyenne, by John H. Moore (Professor of Anthropology at the University of Florida, who lived with the Northern and Southern Cheyenne in the early 1970's, and was approved to be taught by an elder in the community.), Dog Soldiers, Bear Men, and Buffalo Women, also released as Plains Indians, by Thomas E. Mails, and The Sixth Grandfather: Black Elk's Teachings Given to John G. Neihardt ;and of course the Old Testament in The Bible where it talks about sacrifices (Exodus 29). These should be available on Amazon or Alibris and easily obtainable. I can offer additional sources as well if necessary from other cultures.
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:iconasleeplikewolves:
asleeplikewolves Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2012
It's just extremely presumptuous of you to assume that I haven't been educated, and that I need to be educated by an anonymous person on the internet. You don't know about my academic or religious background. You aren't the first person who has said what you are saying, in the end-all manner in which you are saying it. What you're saying is a matter of opinion: you don't have the relationship I do with my Gods, it's extremely obvious that we do not practice a similar religion at all, nothing I do is informed by any Native American nation's traditions (and I am completely aware that there are different nations; that original statement was supposed to be general and is irrelevant anyway), and nothing I do is informed by Abrahamic traditions.

My belief system has changed over the years, but not because of any person other than myself. I've already said that I appreciated your views, but disagree with them. You've continued to tell me how I've been wrong. I find your patronizing advice telling me to understand the difference between factual research and matters of opinion to be incredibly misguided and immature. You might be factually researching beliefs, but those are still beliefs, nothing more than glorified opinions. I respect yours, yet I disagree with them. Stop trying to change mine. I can't understand why you're so invested in correcting the ways others perform sacrifice.

Some of my own citations:
The Cult of the Sun, Religion and Magic in Ancient Egypt, by Rosalie David. The Egyptian Book of the Dead, Early Irish Myths and Sagas, Witchcraft in Europe, by Kors and Peters, as well a decade of workshops among many different Pagan churches, dealing mostly within Celtic and Egyptian constructs. If you need more, then you can let me know.
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:iconleathurkatt-tftiggy:
Leathurkatt-TFTiggy Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
If your beliefs have nothing to do with Native Americans, then why did you state such as if you know all about it and practice it? If you are not of Native American faith, then why attach yourself to the wolf, a long established Native Tribal Totem? Or are you following Nordic faith and praying to Fenrisúlfr (Fenris)? I have done the research into factual cultural practices established and practiced for thousands of years. Not a single part of anything that I have said has anything to do with opinions, mine or others.

I have noticed from your comments and conversations on this journal as well as on the Weekly Spell Corner III [link] which I posted, you appear to be aggressively opinionated and excessively defensive when such is unnecessary. You balk at and call CatalystSpark and myself "patronizing" yet neither of us are as you describe. He was being very polite to you, yet you attacked him for disagreeing with you? And now you are attacking me as well when all I have done is offer others facts and options regarding sacrifices and offerings (let alone after attacking my original Spell Corner III posting)?

To be bluntly honest, you sound less like an informed practitioner of Pagan Craft and more like a badly misinformed and deliberately argumentative person dabbling in something that should not be taken so casually. The Pagan Craft (Witchcraft) is in fact a religious and cultural practice, and to say that an Atheist could also practice Witchcraft, as well as stating that the "Three Fold Law/Karma/etc" are false and that you don't believe in it so it doesn't affect you at all shows just how ignorant you really are. Atheists do not believe in any form of deity or spiritual figure, while Witchcraft by its very definition follows practices and rituals centered on deities and spiritual beings. Also, the Three Fold Law/Karma are as real as the Law of Gravity, and while you can ignore it and pretend it does not exist all you want, it will still affect you and your life whether you acknowledge it or not.

Also, citing the Egyptian Book of the Dead is the same as saying "Native American" without qualifying which one. I personally have 3 different copies of the Book of the Dead and all three are translated differently by different people. Thus while generally similar as they are all translated from the same text, their interpretation varies greatly between each one. And that's just with the three I have, there are significantly more than that. I have studied Celtic, Norse, Greek-Roman, and ancient Egyptian culture since childhood so I know well those cultural practices, not just Native American and Judeo-Christian cultures.

I think you would greatly benefit from the Lesson of the Great Smoking Mirror. Perhaps you should look within yourself and find why you are so angry, defensive, and argumentative with others, especially with those like myself who have had a lifetime of research and practice in our faith and culture. None of us knows everything, but some are more knowledgeable than others, and as a lifetime practitioner and researcher, duly Ordained as an Eclectic Spiritualist Pagan, I would not offer words that are not of truth.

End of Line...
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:iconasleeplikewolves:
asleeplikewolves Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2012
Okay. My dA name has to do with an ongoing artistic project that I've been working on for quite some time. It has to do with a series of totally fictional characters and an over-all theme that most of my work reflects, a portion of which is viewable on dA. It has nothing to do with totems, Paganism, or anything else of that matter.

For everything else, I'll just go ahead and agree with you. My own research and 10 years of practical experience can clearly not be counted in the face of someone who's been studying such topics since before they were six years old. I'll refrain from participating in the group in the future, as I've clearly been so terrible to everyone here. It's much easier that way.
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:iconleathurkatt-tftiggy:
Leathurkatt-TFTiggy Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
**nods** Very well then, fair enough. Interesting project, I hope it goes well.

I think you are taking this too personally. **shakes head** But, that is your choice. I do hope you consider what I have said and take an honest look at yourself and how you respond to others, as well as some personal soul searching and meditation. Hopefully you can find peace, and understand that I was only trying to share my knowledge and experience and hoping to learn more as you were sharing yours. A discussion about our shared yet widely varied culture and practices as Pagans, not a series of personal attacks. I am truly sorry that it has come to this, but we all must do what we feel is best for ourselves. Blessed Be.
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:iconasleeplikewolves:
asleeplikewolves Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2012
I felt attacked because I never told anyone that their beliefs or practices were wrong, but was told such myself more than once..
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:iconleathurkatt-tftiggy:
Leathurkatt-TFTiggy Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
All I can say is that if a lot of people from a lot of different paths are telling you the same thing, perhaps you should listen to them and discern why rather than lashing out and calling them "patronizing", or worse. **tilts head** Just a thought.
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:iconasleeplikewolves:
asleeplikewolves Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2012
Well, you're the first two...ever. *tilts head*
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(1 Reply)
:iconleathurkatt-tftiggy:
Leathurkatt-TFTiggy Featured By Owner Sep 7, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
As I said in this comment here --> [link] it is the fact that our society is so divorced from our food that people view sacrifices as evil when they are not. I was raised with quite a mixed bag of things: My mother is Southern Baptist and she also raised me with our Cheyenne heritage beliefs, my parents took me to Black Powder Rendezvous and I grew up going to Pow Wows. We had friends who had working animals such as horses, dogs, and cats, as well as food animals like cattle, chickens, and rabbits. I knew very well where my food came from and how it gets from the pasture to the table, every stage of it. As an adult I got into Midieval Recreationism and while at a demonstration event, I was utterly shocked to see a 10 year old girl standing there with a horror stricken look on her face when she was told (by someone in character) that the meat being prepared came from a cow that was no longer able to produce milk. **facepalms** It was then that I realized how blindly segrigated from our food sources we have become as a society, slowly brainwashed into obedient unthinking sheep following what authority figures tell us and forbidding us anything that is not on their "approved list".

Offerings are things we give that are part of daily life, such as a plate of food, a poem or prayer we wrote, incense, stones, and similar items. Sacrifices are things we give that come at a cost to us, such as money or an animal. Offerings and sacrifices are both equally important and both must be carefully prepared and kept sacred for their intended purpose. An animal sacrifice in my mind is where a cherished animal, usually a prized and well cared for food animal, is gently taken, prepared in ritual, quickly and cleanly killed, its blood gathered in a special vessel and placed upon an altar for the ritual, then its meat carved and cooked carefully and with deep prayer for a ritual feast, then its hide is specially tended and tanned for ritual purposes (from use as an altar covering to being made into ritual garb, medicine bundles and shields, and other sacred items), and the bones carved and made into ritual tools and fetish items. Thus unlike a general food animal killed for every day purpose, the sacrificial animal is exceptionally well cared for, protected from injury, illness, and parasites, and kept as clean and well tended as possible for the life of the animal to keep it pure and suitable for the sacrifice. This was done in biblical times as well as long before Christianity came into being, and it is the right and proper way to do it.

Now that is not to say that other animals are not well cared for, only that the intended sacrifice is given extra special care to keep it as clean and pure as possible, literally over and above what we do for our so very important food animals and our beloved companion animals, or even for ourselves. The word sacrifice should not be treated as a dirty word, but treated as it should be, a word for a sacred act that is over and above our daily or weekly offerings.
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:iconasleeplikewolves:
asleeplikewolves Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2012
Offerings are things we give that are part of daily life, such as a plate of food, a poem or prayer we wrote, incense, stones, and similar items. Sacrifices are things we give that come at a cost to us, such as money or an animal. Offerings and sacrifices are both equally important and both must be carefully prepared and kept sacred for their intended purpose. </block>

Yay! I think we're coming from the exact same place. I've actually really been wanting to learn to hunt lately since I'm surrounded by such a strong hunting culture. I agree that if you are raising food, the sacrificial animal is chosen at birth and raised just a little more attentively than the other animals. But I also believe that a wild animal personally hunted is just as acceptable. Of course, I further believe that the method should be a bow and arrows, but that's a personal picky detail... I think if I could learn to hunt eventually, my own relationship with my Gods would be greatly increased in power and closeness.

I also just have a huge problem with eating meat and not hunting it or raising it. I don't have the facilities to raise my own, but it is something I would like to be able to do in the future. I do at least still visit farmer's markets for meat first, and I said somewhere else in these comments that even at my church, the eggs we eat are from chickens raised on the same ground upon which we worship.
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:iconleathurkatt-tftiggy:
Leathurkatt-TFTiggy Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
A hunted animal is not a sufficient sacrifice because even though you went out and hunted it yourself, it is not an absolutely perfect animal you raised with extra care yourself and maintained a personal relationship with during its life. It is only permissible as an offering at best for that very reason. However, bow hunting is the only type of hunting I would do myself, not only reflecting back to my Cheyenne heritage, but also to truly honor the animal, making it a true struggle between yourself and the animal over who will survive the hunt and thus granting you only that which is chosen for you to take by the spirits, a gift of life to be honored. Some Native American tribes go so far as to offer a prayer of thanks to the spirit of the animal they just killed, even offering it a drink of water directly into the animal's mouth in thanks for its flesh given to sustain the hunter and his family.

I like what your church has chosen to do, and I commend them for the time and effort they put into the animals they ultimately use for food or sacrifice. **smiles**
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:iconasleeplikewolves:
asleeplikewolves Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2012
Well, we disagree about the wild animals. There is nothing in the mythology of my Gods that suggests a hunted animal is insufficient.
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:iconleathurkatt-tftiggy:
Leathurkatt-TFTiggy Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
No, a true sacrifice must be without blemish, disease, or parasites, thus a hunted animal is not sufficient as a true sacrifice because you can not confirm or guarantee that the animal is without blemish. Wild deer have serious bone marrow problems (this has been verified by Fish and Game), thus they bear a blemish that makes them unsuitable for true sacrifice. If you are going to sacrifice an animal, it must be perfect and without blemish and take a lot of time, effort, and care on your part to raise and ensure that the animal is pristine and perfect. You can not do such with wild hunted animals. It also must be a sacrifice on your part, not just the animal to be sacrificed. A sacrifice must be of oneself, thus an animal you hand raised and got close to is a personal sacrifice because of the bond you share with the animal. Going out and hunting a wild animal takes no true sacrifice on your part because you have no personal relationship with the wild animal. Thus another reason it is not appropriate or sufficient for a true sacrifice.
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:iconasleeplikewolves:
asleeplikewolves Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2012
Yes, I understood your opinion the first time you explained, but I disagree and find no such obligation in the mythology that informs my religion.

No animal whatsoever exists without blemish. That is not the way of nature. Even a "perfect" calf can become "imperfect" if you don't time perfectly when they switch from milk to grass or from grass to feed. Animals can be born with defects that don't manifest until adulthood. Pristine, perfect animals are a fantasy, and an absurd one at that. The closest that could possibly come to such a definition are mice and rats kept in sterile conditions from the time they were embryos, with no immune systems, no contact with real air or sunlight. That is not a natural animal, but it is as close to a perfect one as can exist. I would never dream of giving such a creature to a God.

Hunting also takes enormous personal sacrifice, especially when using a bow. It might not be the months it takes to raise a calf or a kid to a cow or goat, but it doesn't mean the effort isn't just as true. If anything, to me, it is a more perfect kind of effort because it is the most natural form of sacrificial activity to ever exist. Domestication is not. A bond can be shared with a hunted animal that is just as deep as a raised animal. It might be even more potent because it is not clouded by feelings of affection or other distractions.

You can try, but you will never convince me otherwise on this matter.
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:iconleathurkatt-tftiggy:
Leathurkatt-TFTiggy Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
XD My bad, misposted my reply. Sorry about that --> [link]
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:iconeternalxrequiem:
EternalxRequiem Featured By Owner Sep 7, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I agree with your second paragraph and everything you said about sacrifices. However I take issue with your first. I am not so divorced from my food that I think it's evil. I just have a huge, deep connection with animals that even "back in the day" I would not have been able to kill something even just for food (sacrifice aside) and most likely would have starved. Granted in that period of time women were gatherers generally and men did the hunting/slaughtering. I don't think it is so wrong to be so caring and connected to animal kind that I cannot bare to see animals harmed in any way shape and form. I also don't think I've been brainwashed into thinking sacrifice is evil. It is simply something I cannot do because of my own reasons. When I was younger I was incredibly sick once and I ended up getting amnesia. There were two things I could remember. It wasn't my mom or dad. It wasn't my grandma or grandpa. The two things I could remember from my entire, young life were my two cats. When you're terribly scared of everything and everyone around you because you can't remember anything, but you see these two familiar fluffy animals... you sort of grow up cherishing every animal regardless of whether it is intended to be food or a beloved pet. I am not stupid or blind like the uneducated masses are. I do realize our food is slaughtered daily and they're not even raised on farms where they can freely roam and graze. They aren't treated as we all would wish. That disturbs me too, but alas we do need to eat to survive. I can't just run out and say, "Oh hey! I want to buy a farm. I want to buy my own cattle." We can barely afford to rent the place we're in so I think it's unrealistic to expect everyone to know what the past was like in terms of raising ones own food. I realize this is, in part, the governments fault.

I completely understand sacrifices and everything you're saying here. That doesn't mean I could myself do such a sacrifice. I can see how it works for other people and as long as they are using the entire animal from meat to hide to blood and everything in between and they actually respect the animal then it is fine and I will get over it. I was pointing out in my first response to the topic that there may be people out there who just kill an animal and take what they need just for the sacrifice and leave the rest. The only concern they have is getting what is needed for the ritual. That is what bothers me. On another note, in your comment you linked to you spoke of people who do raise their own food being jailed for slaughtering it. I wasn't aware that even happened. I pretty much thought that everyone had an understanding of this is how our food becomes what we see on our plates. Anyway, I'm not debating sacrifices. I understand it. I think it's fine for those who will use all of the animal and respect it. I just couldn't do it myself. I do, however, not like that everyone is falling under the naive and brainwashed label just because they may not like to see an animal harmed. Just because I can't bare seeing my food slaughtered doesn't mean I couldn't turn my eyes from it and accept the issue and what's going on.

I suddenly feel like I'm in the wrong for taking offerings so seriously. I honestly will feel a bit upset if I don't have a proper offering for my weekly ritual. I realize this is just me and a few others that I know of, but still. I couldn't harm an animal to make a sacrifice. I would probably be better off pricking my own finger and giving a sacrifice of my own blood, but... yea. I lost my train of though. Someone was outside my front window yelling. >< Sorry for rambling and more than likely repeating myself as well as any typos. I'm too tired to go back through and proof read. =\
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:iconleathurkatt-tftiggy:
Leathurkatt-TFTiggy Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Note that I said society in general, not you specifically. It is because of that separation that most people can't deal with the idea let alone the act of killing something for food. Again, note that I said most people, not all, nor you in particular. **smiles**

A proper sacrifice, correctly done, greatly honors the one given, as I stated before. That is the only live sacrifice I would ever condone, and most seem to agree with that. We all choose how we conduct our rituals and honor the divinity we pray to. The unscrupulous murderers you mention, my mother and I have indirectly had to deal with that mess. On Browns Point we had friends who had horses. We'd go visit them every weekend, often going riding. We all heard about the Satanic Cultists who had been stalking the area attacking livestock and even a boy, drugging them and cutting out their penis and leaving them to wake up screaming in pain to bleed to death. One night they went after one of our friend's horses, a gentle old brown appaloosa gelding named Britches. They had him drugged and on the ground, but had thankfully not started cutting on him when they were found and driven off. For three months we'd go over and someone was with the horses (there was 4 of them) with rifle in hand 24/7 to protect them. The cultists were run out of the area and I think some were arrested.

No, not everyone falls under the naive and brainwashed label, but far too many in society do, as I said earlier, including that 10 year old girl I mentioned. And yes, people have gone to jail for killing their own food animals because they are not "licensed and approved butchers". A lot of these people don't even know that to kill an animal, any animal, for any reason, requires special licensing, and to butcher your own animals is considered cruelty. They are only doing what they know to be right by the animals they have, raising and caring for them well, then later giving them a quick death and packing the meat for storage for the family to live on for the coming months. It's something they've done for generations, so they don't see a problem, let alone a need for special licensing. It simply never occurs to them, and when they are found out, they are blindsided by the courts, fined, and even jailed for it. It's sickening...

There is nothing wrong with holding offerings as serious things because frankly they are serious. They are a different level than sacrifices, but they are serious none the less. **hugs** You do what you must for your rituals, offerings, and sacrifices. That is all you can do.

One idea however, would be to actually make a "sacrificial animal, such as a crochet plush bull or other animal, hand made by you and blessed through ritual prayer. Then, when the time comes, sacrifice the plush animal by burning it, not unlike the sacrifice of the Burning Man effigy. It's an alternative to blood sacrifice that lets you put in a lot of time and energy into the sacrifice (not unlike raising a living animal would take) and would be something that would allow you to fulfill that ritual by giving up a sacrifice that costs you something, mainly the time and energy it took to make the plush animal and consecrate it from start to finish. There are patterns and instructions you can get for them, and be sure to make it only from natural fiber yarn and stuffing, such as wool, cotton, or hemp. That way no toxic fumes are released when you burn your sacrifice. Just a thought to consider.
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:iconeternalxrequiem:
EternalxRequiem Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I know it's not me personally that you were speaking of, but I think that there are a lot of Wiccans, pagans and others of Abrahamic religions that feel that way about animals too. It's an intense love and care for animals. I can't believe that people have to have a special license to kill their own animals. That's just silly. I mean this country started off that way. Everyone raised their own food. I would fall into that category of not knowing we'd need such licensing. The real animal cruelty lies with feedlots and all the mistreatment the actual animals who become our food receive. =\

That's just terrible what they'd do to the horses. I had a hard time even reading that. I'm glad they were driven off or arrested. It makes me want to just kghfghks! I have no words. That makes me so angry and sad for the horses and all of the owners who had to deal with such terrible acts.

:hug: Right. This is true. I feel less silly now. :aww:

I will have to try that. It's a great idea. Since my husband and I are going to my grandparents' this weekend to help out I'll see if my grandma has anything I can use. She has tons of crafting stuff.


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:iconleathurkatt-tftiggy:
Leathurkatt-TFTiggy Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
**nods** I know, but laws have been made under the idea of "protecting" animals when all they did was pile excessive regulations and restrictions on people who are taking good care of their animals. The reason for this legislation is because of people who are truly cruel, like the ones attacking livestock like I mentioned earlier.

Also, that incident happened between April and June of 1982 in Washington State, I was 7 years old at the time and both my mother and I remember that nightmare all too well.

**smiles** Always happy to help hon. I am sincerely glad I could offer you an alternative that will give you the sacrificial offering you need without making you unnecessarily uncomfortable. There is always a way to do what we need to do for ourselves and our beliefs, we only need to find the right path to do so.
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:iconeternalxrequiem:
EternalxRequiem Featured By Owner Sep 10, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
That just brings the "some people just have to go and ruin it for the rest of us" though to mind.

That's quite a while ago. I think things like that would always be there to haunt one's memories and it's sad that those sort of things ever had to happen.

:huggle: I am as well and thank you for suggesting it again. Indeed, that is true.
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:iconleathurkatt-tftiggy:
Leathurkatt-TFTiggy Featured By Owner Sep 10, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Pretty much, yeah.

**nods** The whole thing makes me sick that people do things like that.

You're welcome. **hugs** I added further details on options you could use to make it even more personal and a greater level of sacrifice to offer of yourself --> [link] I hope it helps you do what you need for your rituals hon. You should snap photos of them too, and post them explaining what you did and what it's fore, help spread the idea to others who might like to use the idea as well. **smiles**
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:iconeternalxrequiem:
EternalxRequiem Featured By Owner Sep 12, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I'll shall check those out. I'll definitely post pictures once I make something. :D
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(1 Reply)
:iconasleeplikewolves:
asleeplikewolves Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2012
I like the idea of the crocheted sacrificial animal, but left at just that would still be an offering. Unless it cost hundreds of dollars to make, which I doubt it would even if I tried to spend that kind of money. I would have to add blood or actual money sewn inside it, something of greater value than the $30 of supplies, and a few hours of making it.
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:iconleathurkatt-tftiggy:
Leathurkatt-TFTiggy Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Depends on the size of the stuffed animal. It takes more than a few hours to make a crochet stuffed animal big enough to hug, so it's more than just an offering. Even a 6 inch tall bear took my mother a weekend to do. A crochet plush bull that is 20inches from chest to butt would take at least a week, and during the creation of said bull, one would have to spend that entire week in prayer and fasting while they made that plush bull. Thus it becomes a sacrifice because of all that was given up to make it and all that the maker put into it. Plus, most yarns are synthetic and natural yarns made if wool, hemp, or cotton are more expensive as is natural fiber stuffing, since most stuffing is polyester. Thus it would cost more than just $30 and a few hours work to make. You can also add a sizable cutting of your hair to the stuffing, for those with long hair and cutting it short is a sacrifice of oneself. Plus, having to learn how to crochet is an even greater sacrifice of your time and energy. It has to be something you made with your own hands, not something bought, and it is a sacrifice of your time, energy, and prayers to make. Plus, fasting during the entire time makes it an even greater sacrifice of oneself as you are giving up something during its creation. And like a living animal sacrifice, the crochet animal must be absolutely perfect with no blemishes, no mistakes in the stitching at all, no deformations in shape, nothing. Only a perfect animal, the best animal, can be used for a sacrifice. Then, you can take more yarn or thread and embroider special symbols and patterns on the animal (which must also be perfect), like the markings and decorations placed on a live animal sacrifice, which will make the plush's creation take even longer, including making crochet adornments (also perfect) to drape around the plush animal's neck as well, taking even longer. It can also be knitted instead of crochet, or very elaborately embroidered cloth. Ever tried making Irish lace? It takes a week just to do a small 6 inch doily with the thin white cotton thread, imagine how long it would take to make a large sacrificial bull entirely out of hand made Irish lace you stitched yourself? It doesn't require blood or money to make it a true sacrifice, taking time a lot of your time, energy, intensive prayer, and even fasting during its creation makes it a true sacrifice without the blood. **smiles**
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:iconasleeplikewolves:
asleeplikewolves Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2012
Well, we do have some differences, especially in dealing with the animal's "perfection" (nonexistent). But I can appreciate fasting while making an effigy to make it a more exhaustive process. I can tell we obviously come from extremely different traditions, because the more we talk, I'm realizing how different of our ideas of sacrifice are becoming. If yours is Native American, it is completely different than the other Native Americans I know who still practice animal sacrifice.

Also, side detail, I've always found cotton and natural fibers to be significantly cheaper than polyester. It must be a regional thing.
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:iconleathurkatt-tftiggy:
Leathurkatt-TFTiggy Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
A sacrifice must be without blemish, disease, or parasite. Thus it is considered naturally perfect and suitable for sacrifice. A hand made plush animal sacrifice must be without mistakes or malformations, thus considered "perfectly made" and sufficient for sacrifice. And my background regarding sacrifices is not only Cheyenne and other Native American, but a great many cultures, including Celtic, Norse, Egyptian, Greek-Roman, and even Abrahamic beliefs.

As for materials, it's a mixed bag and depends on where you buy them from. Silk is the most expensive, then Linen, then Wool, with Cotton as the cheapest. Plus, specialty Wools such as Merino Wool, Alpaca, and Angora are as expensive if not more so than Silk.

For anything to be a true sacrifice, you must sacrifice of yourself, thus the very nature of a true sacrifice. If it is purchased, the cost must cut so deeply into your budget that you must go without things, such as food, gas, entertainment, or other things, meaning you have to go without something that is important to you. As I said, to be a true sacrifice, you must give significantly of yourself, whether time, resources, skill (making a sacrificial effigy), or even cutting off your own hair and the hair shaved from a familiar. Items or animals that are without blemish of any kind and are considered to be "perfect" as such, and personal effort, time, and cost of yourself are true sacrifices and are honestly the only ones suitable as such.

I have studied Cultural Anthropology (Native American, Celtic, Norse, Greek-Roman, Egyptian, and even Feudal Japanese) since I was in grade school, and my mother has an additional 20+ years of study in Native American (primarily Cheyenne and Cherokee), Celtic, and Judeo-Christian culture and beliefs on top of that. So I well know what I am talking about in this, I grew up with all of this and was taught or studied it over the course of my life.
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:iconeternalxrequiem:
EternalxRequiem Featured By Owner Sep 7, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I was thinking about saying the words "take issue" and I just want to clarify I'm not upset or anything. I just disagree and wanted to give a little insight into that with my story. ♥
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:iconmusicisanaddiction:
MusicIsAnAddiction Featured By Owner Sep 5, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
I personally would rather not harm the animal myself. Yes, I am an omnivore, and I am Wiccan. I just can't bring myself to prepare an animal for sacrifice, like skinning it and separating the hide or meat, ugh I think I would barf lol. I can barely cook a store bought chicken without being grossed out. I do say a prayer or give thanks before every meal, being sure to remember those that worked to get the chicken or whatever to my area, the farmer's hard work, and the chicken's life. I feel more comfortable offering feathers, stones, pictures, stuff like that. :)

I admit, I do feel guilty after killing a bug. Then again, I feel guilty for just accidentally stepping on my familiar's pretty little paws.
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:iconleathurkatt-tftiggy:
Leathurkatt-TFTiggy Featured By Owner Sep 7, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Sadly, you are not the only one. This is the unfortunate consequence of society being divorced from its own food supply rather than being allowed to breed, raise, prepare, butcher, and store their own food animals. It has gotten to the point now that in a lot of areas people who actually own and raise animals for this purpose are accused and convicted of animal cruelty and end up in jail for taking good care of an animal and then killing it for food, forced to pay "licenced butchers" to kill and package their animals and end up with meat that is cut and packaged wrong or worse, contaminated by intestinal or spinal fluids. And gods forbid they offer the animal's blood for a sacrifice while retaining the meat for a ritual feast. >.< Society's laws and demands for compulsive normalcy and political correctness is destroying our way of life and making people into compliant codependant sheep who are no longer capable of independant thought, action, creativity, or invention, let alone incapable of fending for themselves without everything prepackaged and preapproved for us. It sickens me, it really does. I keep hoping that this blind squemishness that has society by the throat can be undone with education and proper exposure to reality, but each must make their own choice in that. I hope you can move yourself beyond the guilt and remorse society has forced upon you since infancy (and yes, it is a form of brainwashing, believe it or not) for eating from food animals that have been bred and raised for that specific purpose for thousands of years. **smiles** Blessed Be.
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:iconasleeplikewolves:
asleeplikewolves Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2012
I still think it's possible to apply for slaughter licenses to use at home. The people who own the land my church uses for worship raise goats and chickens, and they do all their own slaughtering, and they are also very strict law-abiders. They were the ones (and others) who told me about slaughter licenses. Also, I know a few Greek Orthodox Christians who also slaughter their own lambs for Easter feasts. I believe they use the same licenses that they apply for themselves so that they do not use a butcher.
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:iconleathurkatt-tftiggy:
Leathurkatt-TFTiggy Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Oh, I know it's possible, but an awful lot of people don't know about the requirement, let alone how to get one. Thus the problem people have and why they get in trouble for simply living their lives as they have always done. Your Church told you about it and they knew because they have the licenses and went through the process of getting them. Most people have no idea about the licenses being required just to butcher your own animals for private food for your own family or for yourself, thinking that only public butchers who slaughter animals for the public or to sell the meat to the public have to get licenses to run their butcher shop business. So you can see why it's such a huge issue. People simply don't know about it.
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:iconasleeplikewolves:
asleeplikewolves Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2012
This must also be regional. I didn't know about it when I lived up north, but now that I'm in a very agricultural area, most people I've spoken to are totally aware of the different licenses you need to harvest your own livestock. I've had lots of conversations with the beef farmers through my veterinary program.
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:iconleathurkatt-tftiggy:
Leathurkatt-TFTiggy Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
You are also not one of the average population either. You are actually one of the exceptions that actually knows about it, whereas most do not.
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:iconasleeplikewolves:
asleeplikewolves Featured By Owner Sep 5, 2012
So do you feel guilt at eating meat or do you find it natural, and therefore it doesn't conflict with your ethical system?

I admit, when I was a practicing Wiccan, I was constantly wracked by guilt because of my interpretation of the Rede. I read it as, "Harm nothing unless it is to preserve your own life." Since I didn't need meat to survive, I could not eat it. And there were lots of other ways I incorporated my interpretation into daily life. Having left the religion (though I'm still Pagan and practice witchcraft), I have experienced an amazing feeling of freedom, freedom from guilt, from self limitation. Most of my Pagan friends are Wiccan specifically, and they don't have the theological problems that I did. I'm just always curious if there are other Wiccan who face similar issues to myself and how they dealt with them without walking away. Getting out of it was the only option for me, looking back.
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:iconmusicisanaddiction:
MusicIsAnAddiction Featured By Owner Sep 5, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
I think it's almost a little bit of both, you know? I feel sad that the animal had to die for me to enjoy it, but at the same time I feel like it's not wrong because it was not specifically me that killed it, I just ate it. I agree it's difficult when it comes to morality and the Rede.

I think I pretty much interpret it the same way. If a bee was trying to sting me, I would kill it. Would I feel guilty? Probably, but not the point where I would go make an offering or anything, I just didn't have the will to get stung. Not to mention the bee would've died after it stung me anyway! I have read a few scientifice studies stating that meat is an important part of a human's diet since it's a good source of protein and energy, while at the same time it's ironic how too much is fattening. I have definitely faced those issues and sometimes still do. It can be frustrating, just like any other thing in life, you know? It's best to do what's best for you.
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:iconasleeplikewolves:
asleeplikewolves Featured By Owner Sep 5, 2012
Really? I feel like it's not right for me to eat meat unless I'm the one that kills it! How can I enjoy the nourishment that animal provided without being intimately connected to it during its life? That's why, since I don't have the training or facilities to raise my own food animals, I try to only buy meat from local farms, farms I can even visit and see the live animals first. At my Pagan church, even the eggs we eat are from chickens raised right on the land we worship on. I think having that connection to your food source is so important. In the future, I hope to raise my own chickens and goats, and learn the skills required to live off of their meat alone. I'm in veterinary school right now, so I'm constantly learning about animal husbandry. I hope to put those skills to spiritual use, as well as professional.
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:iconmusicisanaddiction:
MusicIsAnAddiction Featured By Owner Sep 5, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Yeah!

You certainly have a pretty good view point on it, I can understand where you're coming from. It makes a lot of sense! I'm not old enough [I'm 13] to really worship in a church, and I enjoy being more of a solitary because I love learning all on my own. I'm only in middle school, so I guess I can't really speak for my future on the Pagan path, I may change into just a witchcraft practioner, I may not. I just have to wait and see! C:
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:iconnorthwind-foxtrot229:
NorthWind-foxtrot229 Featured By Owner Sep 5, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
(I apologize in advance for the long post; I had more to say than I initially thought.)

I think if one does sacrifice an animal, one should also show respect to that animal. It doesn't seem right to me if one takes an animal's life without permission and gives it to a deity without apologizing or thanking it. I think we Pagans do that a lot to plants too; sure, we appreciate that they're good for smudging, incense, potion ingredients, and whatnot, but we're looking at the plant more for how we can use it, and it becomes more of a tool than a life. I guess what I mean is that when we offer or sacrifice even living things to a deity, we tend to focus all of our respect on the deity and forget to honor the offering/sacrifice as well. Try to step back a moment and consider what went into that offering/sacrifice (it helps if you're a biology freak like me) and appreciate it for what it is before giving it away. You can do that for meals too.

I think some of the stigma on animal sacrifice in our society came from the push for animal welfare; sacrifice is (perhaps stereotypically) seen as abuse or cruelty. Animal sacrifice is actually still legal in the United States, but since Paganism is still fighting for its First Amendment rights, people (read: cops) probably won't be okay if they find out you cut chickens' throats. Yes, sacrificial animals are almost always raised in a more humane way and killed more quickly than slaughterhouse animals, but in many cases, someone's first reaction to animal sacrifice will be negative. The word "sacrifice" is kind of a dirty word nowadays.

On a side note about the Rede: That's the question for Wiccans, isn't it? How far do you take the phrase "Harm none"? It's impossible to take it literally because of an economic principle called scarcity: there are limited resources to fill an unlimited demand. Since you ate an apple, someone else will not be able to eat that apple. There is no way to live without harming something, and suicide would not only harm you, but it would also harm the lice, bacteria, and other microscopic organisms that live on and in you. "Harm none" might make one think, "I shouldn't eat animals," but by that logic, one might then think, "I shouldn't eat plants." One isn't just harming that animal or plant, one is also harming some other living thing that might need that animal/plant. I too would like to hear from some Wiccans about this.

Also, do Wiccans feel guilty if they kill a spider or a bug, accidentally or otherwise? Do they use hand sanitizer or disinfecting wipes and consider that they're killing who knows how many millions or more of bacteria, viruses, etc.? Again, "Harm none" cannot be taken literally, I know, but I want to know how far some Wiccans take it.
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:iconleathurkatt-tftiggy:
Leathurkatt-TFTiggy Featured By Owner Sep 7, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
I agree with you. People don't seem to understand what the word "Sacrifice" actually means anymore and they turn it into a huge evil thing when it is not. Literally a 5 second search on Google gave me these two top answers - [link] and this:
sac·ri·fice
noun
1. the offering of animal, plant, or human life or of some material possession to a deity, as in propitiation or homage.
2. the person, animal, or thing so offered.
3. the surrender or destruction of something prized or desirable for the sake of something considered as having a higher or more pressing claim.
4. the thing so surrendered or devoted.
5. a loss incurred in selling something below its value.
6. Also called sacrifice bunt, sacrifice hit . Baseball . a bunt made when there are fewer than two players out, not resulting in a double play, that advances the base runner nearest home without an error being committed if there is an attempt to put the runner out, and that results in either the batter's being put out at first base, reaching first on an error made in the attempt for the put-out, or being safe because of an attempt to put out another runner.
7. to make a sacrifice or offering of.
8. to surrender or give up, or permit injury or disadvantage to, for the sake of something else.
9. to dispose of (goods, property, etc.) regardless of profit.
10. Baseball . to cause the advance of (a base runner) by a sacrifice.
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:iconasleeplikewolves:
asleeplikewolves Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2012
I also think the very original meaning literally meant anything burned on an altar...
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:iconleathurkatt-tftiggy:
Leathurkatt-TFTiggy Featured By Owner Sep 8, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Thus the first four entries in the definition I posted. **smiles**
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:iconasleeplikewolves:
asleeplikewolves Featured By Owner Sep 5, 2012
Some of the things you mentioned here are some of the exact reasons why I stopped practicing Wicca and totally left the religion behind 4 years ago. The ethics are (to me) completely illogical and impossible to follow, much like Biblical ethics. There are too many interpretations that can be made for the system to have meaning. Obviously, if you're a British Traditional Wiccan, this probably is not a problem for you, but I've never met two American Wiccans, of whatever tradition or solitary, that agree on what the Rede means and how it should be applied to daily life. It can cause a lot of disharmony, both in the greater community, and within yourself.

About animal sacrifice, anyone who is seriously practicing it does so because of the respect they hold for that animal. That's why any occasion warranting such an event comes with a huge feast. Commemorating the seriousness of that event, thanking the animal, consuming the animal. If anything, it's more respectful that an animal is killed and eaten in this way than killed to "just serve the purpose" of everyday eating, as =EternalxRequiem said below.

But I do want to clarify about my own views -- I am very passionate about animal welfare, I'm in veterinary school right now, and I've been raised respecting animals my entire life. I don't think it's wrong to eat meat, but I cannot understand how someone could have a problem with an animal being killed for sacrifice, then eaten, but not have a problem with factory farming. You're right, Northwind, sacrifice has become a dirty word, and that's a terrible trend. It used to be such a sacred act of community, nourishment, and respect for the animal and ultimately the Gods. Now it's something that is treated shamefully. It makes me very sad.

(But just to note, animal sacrifice isn't illegal -- one only needs to get the correct slaughter permit. As long as you have a slaughter permit, it doesn't matter legally what your reason for slaughter is. This is why Greek Orthodox Christians can slaughter their own lamb for Easter, why Vodou practitioners can slaughter roosters, etc. As far as I know, this is the case in each state, just with differences in how to get the permit, things like that.)
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:iconnorthwind-foxtrot229:
NorthWind-foxtrot229 Featured By Owner Sep 6, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
As I think I've told you before, I haven't been Pagan for very long. I wasn't raised with religion, so I've had to do a lot of my own thinking and learning, and I still am learning a lot every day. But in my case, once a skeptic, always a skeptic, so I haven't been able to follow any one already-existing tradition. I don't begrudge people who are Wiccan, but I can't be Wiccan because some of those ideas just don't work for me.

I am also a big supporter of animal welfare. I just think it's ridiculous that people will criticize animal sacrifice, but not stop and think about slaughterhouses. I think some people (even me sometimes) are put off when groups like PETA throw the worst images they can find in their faces, but at least those groups are trying to address a problem about which many people are ignorant.
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:iconasleeplikewolves:
asleeplikewolves Featured By Owner Sep 6, 2012
I also wasn't raised religiously at all, so I had a lot of work to do for myself regarding theology when I first "started out" being Pagan. We've probably had some similar experiences already.

The (not) great thing about PETA is they aren't an animal welfare group, they're an animal rights group, and those are totally different things. PETA, HSUS, ALF and other groups are completely against what they call the exploitation of animals in every way. This not only means they are against eating meat and medical/cosmetics testing on animals, but they are also against animals used in entertainment, animals kept as pets, and even the use of service dogs for the blind. They believe that no contact what-so-ever should occur between humans and animals.

Animal welfare groups, on the other hand, such as the ASPCA, devote their efforts to promoting the humane treatment of animals in all situations. They fund building shelter, create education programs, and many other things that benefit both humans and animals. They aren't perfect, but they're getting the job done. If people really want to help animals, they need to be supporting welfare groups, not rights groups.
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:iconnorthwind-foxtrot229:
NorthWind-foxtrot229 Featured By Owner Sep 6, 2012  Hobbyist Writer
Oh, ok. I hadn't thought of that difference. This is why I like talking to you; you help me see things from different perspectives and make sure that what I'm talking about is what I actually mean to say. Anyway, welfare and rights still overlap to an extent, and at least these groups are trying. It's a work in progress, and the first step to fixing a problem is increasing awareness.
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:iconasleeplikewolves:
asleeplikewolves Featured By Owner Sep 6, 2012
Something else about PETA and HSUS, is that since they are 100% against pet-ownership, they euthanize 90%+ of the animals that come into their shelters each year. They think it is better for the animal to be dead than to be "exploited" by humans who would want to make it their pet. And I'm talking about just regular cats and dogs -- not wild animals or exotics.
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:iconeternalxrequiem:
EternalxRequiem Featured By Owner Sep 5, 2012  Hobbyist Digital Artist
I'm Wiccan and omnivorous. I felt odd saying that. Anyway, I'm fine with giving bits of animal meat, hide or any such thing as an offering if you've hunted the animal yourself and intend to use all of it and it coincides with what you plan to do as far as ritual and sacrifice. I'm not okay with just going out to kill an animal with the purpose of just giving it as sacrifice. That's animal abuse to me. I'm not saying anyone does this, although I'm sure there might be some twisted people out there and they may be pagan or not. I eat meat, but it serves a purpose. There are things we get from meat that pill supplements and vitamins just really can't give us as much as scientists try, IMO.

I think there are creative ways out there to give sacrifices that cost us emotional pain or we have something to lose from giving it without harming animals. I'm just a huge animal lover and it bothers me to just harm an animal for sacrifice. About blood sacrifices, I actually do use one of those test strips, but I've never though about using it for such purposes. It could be really appropriate, depending on deity, if one is terrified of needles or having their skin pricked or if they can't bare to do it to themselves.

As far as offerings... I sort of take them just as serious as sacrifices. Probably because I know I could never give some sort of sacrifice like animal meat or blood. Anyway, I give an offering during every meditation/prayer ritual and I do this ritual weekly. Generally flowers for Freya and wine for Odin. I give these as a thanks for being with me in spirit, answering any prayers or giving me any guidance I may have asked for or needed and for anything they've blessed with me. I think once I finally get my garden together then giving flower offerings will be even more sentimental (I'm not sure what word I was looking for here so I went with that. My mind went blank for a moment. XD) for me because I've taken the time to grow them and put in a lot of work and care from the heart.

So, that's my view on that and I will end it there before it gets any longer.


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:iconleathurkatt-tftiggy:
Leathurkatt-TFTiggy Featured By Owner Sep 7, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
I think I pretty much covered my views on the subject here --> [link] if you would like to read it. **smiles**
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:iconasleeplikewolves:
asleeplikewolves Featured By Owner Sep 5, 2012
I think that's awesome that you take offerings just as seriously, but that is rare, at least in my experience in the public Pagan world. Though many people consider sacrifices and offerings to be the same thing. I obviously find them to be slightly different in intention and reason..

I also agree that there are other ways to give sacrifice without it being animals. I've never sacrificed an animal for my own work, but I would not be necessarily opposed IF the situation were serious enough, IF I had a slaughter permit, and IF I knew what I was doing in order to make the procedure as fast and painless as possible. I would never sacrifice an animal without eating that animal later, either. For me, the meal is part of the sacrifice. The gesture becomes meaningless without that act of consuming. Meaningless in both its sacredness and in respect to the animal. (Hopefully that makes sense.)
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