So, I figured as soon as I found this example of the Harm Religion Does, I'd better get it out there, so people could see just how pervasive and endemic in our society it really is! I mean, these guys should have been stopped, but I fear we're a bit late...
The reasons behind these bog body killings remains uncertain but Ned Kelly of the National Museum of Ireland has suggested a very interesting theory (see Archaeology, No. 63, Vol 3, May/June 2010) . He believes that “these men were failed kings or failed candidates for kingship who were killed and placed in bogs that formed important tribal boundaries. Both Clonycavan and Old Croghan men’s nipples were pinched and cut. “Sucking a king’s nipples was a gesture of submission in ancient Ireland,” says Kelly. “Cutting them would have made him incapable of kingship.” The bodies served as offerings to the goddess of the land to whom the king was wed in his inauguration ceremony. According to Kelly, both men’s multiple injuries may reflect the belief that the goddess was not only one of the land and fertility, but also of sovereignty, war, and death. “By using a range of methods to kill the victim, the ancient Irish sacrificed to the goddess in all her forms,”.
Oh, didn't I say? This example is over two thousand years old... isn't it about time the human race grew up and stopped this nonsense? I know, I know, religion these days doesn't do human sacrifice - we make our victims live out the pain and suffering long term, instead of killing them and putting them out of their misery. We are much more sophisticated just how we go about it these days.
In a way, that's even worse.