[ by Charles Cameron — thinking of human, animal and symbolic sacrifice — also of “the lamb that was slain” ]
Nepal temple bans mass animal slaughter at festival
In a victory for activists, Nepalese temple authorities have announced they will end a centuries-old Hindu tradition of mass animal slaughter that attracts hundreds of thousands of worshippers.
The festival, held once every five years, sees hordes of devotees from Nepal and India flock to a temple in the Himalayan nation’s southern plains to sacrifice thousands of animals in the hope of appeasing the Hindu goddess of power, Gadhimai.
From Brooklyn to Tel Aviv:
All’s fair when it comes to slaughtering fowl on the streets of Brooklyn, a judge ruled Monday, clearing the way for thousands of chickens to be killed next week in a 2,000-year-old ritual.
Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Debra James ruled that the Orthodox practice of Kaporos, during which chickens are slaughtered before the high holy day of Yom Kippur to atone for sins, can proceed, knocking down a challenge by a Brooklyn animal-rights group.
Sacrifice may be one of the most profound values that we are losing in our rush to reductionism — and by this I wish to imply also that we are not sacrificing it, but simply forgetting it, permitting it to fade..
And yet I would be hard-pressed to define it.