The Forbidden fruit

The Forbidden fruitPhoto from open sources

The first taboo, as follows from the Bible, was imposed by himself Lord God – do not partake of the fruits of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. Adam and Eve, succumbing to the charms of the snake-seducer, violated him, and in The result was a global catastrophe – a person became mortal, marked by sinfulness from birth, doomed to bodily pain and mental torment. The limit of lawlessness Without a taboo categorical prohibitions entailing severe penalties – whether death, a religious curse, or at least a public curse contempt and squeamishness – the development of human civilization was would be simply impossible. The absence of taboos means permissiveness, in modern jargon – chaos. Therefore religious and other dominant authorities taboo most often impose on the fact that, according to existing concepts, it can threaten the preservation of society. Or at what people, and especially their pastors, are not able to understand … The first to introduce the term “taboo” into widespread use was English navigator James Cook. In 1768, after a visit Pacific island of Tonga, he wrote in his diary: “At the inhabitants of Polynesia there is such a thing as “taboo”, which in translated means “labeled.” Taboo means a ban on some food items on which you can not touch on marital relations with relatives. The main one the object of the taboo is the leader of the tribe, who is supposedly endowed with divine power, because of which ordinary natives are strictly forbidden look in his face. It is believed that one who breaks the taboo will inflict grave insult to some supernatural forces that they will punish the offender with an incurable disease or death. That is a taboo for natives it’s the same as sin for a Christian, or worse – because you have to pay for it immediately, and not in the afterlife life, about which savages have the most vague idea. “Taboo exists not only among primitive tribes, but also in modern civilized society. For example, a modern European will lead terrified one thought of hot catfish, although we are all pleased eat lamb or rabbit meat. Candidates for a taboo in the near the future may be human cloning and euthanasia. Classic the country of numerous taboos is India. Official laws there may declare anything, but at the level of mass consciousness it is still forbidden to marry another castes. And the so-called untouchable castes even touch you can’t – otherwise you will become the same outcast as they are. Indian government today fights taboos “untouchability”, but it’s about as successful so far, as in our country with the development of democracy. But in other way, India is almost the only country that has preserved on for millennia its spiritual and cultural identity. And where are the Greeks or the ancient Romans now? Do not whistle! Everyone has it people, of course, their own notions of prohibitions. For example, in Europe a man whistling in the streets will be considered simply ill-mannered. And in some Muslim countries publicly whistle forbidden – it is believed that by means of a whistle sorcerers send evil enchantment. Whistler can easily be stoned. For modern Europeans madness is also peculiar, albeit not spelled out in laws, taboo. If not even mentally ill forcibly to hospitals, thereby limiting communication between them and the rest of society, they are still bypassed, instinctively believing that madness is contagious. And here are the North American Indians and Australian Aborigines think Madness is OK human condition. In their cultural environment, in contrast, it is believed that communication with a madman endows with sparks of a higher mind. By the way something similar on a large scale existed in Russia – virtually the only Christian country where “blessed” or “holy fools” “were considered the bearers of holiness and higher wisdom. many nations were forbidden to touch the dead. Yes, and herself death was considered a taboo, as people could not get to the bottom of it true reasons, nor defeat her. For example, Maori, indigenous New Zealand residents, the one who touched the deceased should was for a long time to leave his tribe. Moreover, he it was forbidden to take food by hand. And in many African, Indian and the Australian tribes and the peoples of Siberia could not pronounce even the name of the deceased. Truffle is not for everyone sometimes had a very practical meaning, ”writes the professor University of Verona Paolo Ingilleri. – For example, if in Africa it was forbidden to take water from a drinking source, then basically because they tried to save him from drying out. And if some objects or products were declared taboo, then, therefore, the leaders of the tribes wanted to keep them for yourself. Conversely, products that were in abundance or disliked by the leaders, called “noah”, that is neutral. “In the 16th century, a medic from Bologna Balthazar Pisanelli made a ridiculous attempt in the style of African leaders, aiming which was to frighten gourmets from the common people. “From pheasant meat, – he wrote in his treatise – peasants can get sick with chest toad. Only noble gentlemen can eat such food, since their stomach is completely different. The same goes for pineapples and truffles – people who have not developed a habit for them on for generations, they can go out in bloody diarrhea. ” Brave cannibals Today the taboo on cannibalism exists in all over the world, however the cannibals are still not extinct. In Kampuchea there was a terrible incident. Two employees of the crematorium were caught red-handed, when they ate cadaveric meat, washed down with wine. Of cannibals at the police station released – according to the Cambodian Anthropophagy is not considered a crime … eating flesh of their own kind has always been mixed. The Aztecs, like the ancient inhabitants of the Antilles Caribbean, believed man’s meat of the gods. Ritual anthropophagy up to has recently been distributed among the indigenous population New Zealand, Indonesia and parts of Africa and Melanesia Cannibalism is officially recorded only in The cow tribe that live in New Guinea. True, cow they’re eating not just anyone, but only their enemies, whose meat, according to their perceptions, has magical powers. Ate the enemy defeated in battle – and gained his strength. Deadly Sex in all civilizations, most taboos dealt with the sexual sphere, although there were many options. Perhaps the most important ubiquitous the ban is incest, but it is in relatively civilized times sometimes ignored. So, the ancient Egyptian rulers had wont to marry their half-sisters, which, incidentally, by the opinion of scientists, and ultimately led to the physical degeneration of dynasties Pharaohs. Contrary to popular belief, the main reason for the taboo on marriage between relatives was not at all instinctive the sense that they can lead to genetic degeneration of the clan. At animals, including primates, there is no such flair. Historians believe that this ban, which appeared in primitive times, was called first of all, the need to establish contacts and establish friendships with other clans and tribes. Social instinct It works more clearly than genetic: for example, in Israeli kibbutzim who grew up together, albeit alien in blood boys and girls, never marry each other. In European countries pedophilia was never encouraged and considered a sin, although officially she was recognized as a criminal offense only a couple of centuries ago. England became a pioneer, where sexual relations with a person of the opposite sex under the age of 13 were considered a crime worthy of hard labor works, in 1797. (For sodomy brutal punishments foreseen until the 20th century in almost all Christian countries.) However, in ancient Greece and Rome to the cohabitation of mature men with boys were very tolerant. And some tribes of New Guinea still confident that the young man will be able to find a genital function only after intercourse with the “senior comrade”. *** Scientists are convinced that taboos will never completely disappear. They only sometimes become others – depending on what a particular society seems to be a priority for preserving it. And these criteria today change ten times faster than a couple of centuries ago.

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