Why there is still no clear answer to the question about the reason the appearance of stigmata – bleeding wounds that open precisely on those body parts where the crucified Savior had wounds?
Invisible nails – a gift to the elect
Stigmata may look like bloody wounds (“stigmatos” from Greek – signs, wounds, ulcers) on the palms, sometimes on the feet, as if in them hammered nails. Some stigma carriers have wounds on forehead, reminiscent of injections and scratches from a crown of thorns, or bloody stripes on the back, like traces of flagellation. Believed to be the first the stigmatist was the apostle Paul.
A photo from open sources
In Galatians, the apostle says: “I bear the plagues of the Lord Jesus on my body. “True, this can be understood both literally and in figuratively. But the outstanding thinker Francis Assisi stigmata were definitely. Sincerely believing in Christ, he in In 1224 he founded the Franciscan monastic order. And soon after on the day of the Exaltation of the Cross during prayer on Mount Verna visited a vision. It was then that in the places of Christ’s wounds the body Francis began to bleed.
According to Thomas Tselansky, the witness of this miracle and the biographer of St. Francis, “the palms of (his) hands and feet seemed to be pierced in the middle with nails. These tracks were round in shape on the inside side of the palms and an elongated shape on the back, and around them – torn flesh, like tongues of flame, bent outward, as if in the palms were really nailed in. ”
According to another contemporary of St. Francis St. Bonaventure, also observing the saint’s stigmata, invisible nails were so clearly defined that a finger could be inserted into the wound. Few in addition, if you click on an invisible nail on one side of the palm, the wound on her other side instantly reacted, as if in a wound in actually moving a real nail! And it lasted two years of the saint’s life.
Since then, certificates of that on the bodies of Christians (mainly Catholics) and even people signs of Christ’s suffering appear to unbelievers.
Here are some typical examples. Maria Magdalena de Pazzi subsequently declared a saint, stigmata appeared in 1585, after she wholeheartedly embraced the Christian faith. In 1918 year began to bleed stigmata from an Italian priest, Padre Pio, after Christ appeared to him during the celebrations dedicated to the appearance of stigmata in St. Francis When the vision is gone, the brushes, Pio’s feet and chest began to bleed profusely. And the blood oozing constantly, and it ended only with the death of a priest in 1968 year.
The appearance of such wounds is sometimes accompanied absolutely inexplicable things. So, the blood from the wounds on the body of Domenica Lapari (1815-1848) for 11 years lashed up, breaking the law gravity. And St. Veronica Giuliani (1660-1727) claimed that blood from her stigmata oozes not only outward, but and inward, and painted her heart with the imprints on it of a cross, crown of thorns, three nails and the letter X. After the death of Veronica at autopsies of the body were convinced of the veracity of her statement.
Teresa Newmann (1898–1962) from Connersroig (Germany) at age 21 as a result of injuries sustained during a fire, she became blind and turned out to be bedridden. However, in 1925, after the appearance of her St. Teresa of Lisieux removed all her illnesses at a glance. Next year in Great Lent Newman announced that she had a vision of Jesus Christ, after which she suddenly felt excruciating pain and from a wound formed in her side, blood flowed. Since then every on Friday the bleeding resumed, and after a day or two the wound dragged on.
A photo from open sources
Many people believe that stigmata is a gift from God. They even say that the wounds of some stigmatists emanate a wonderful aroma. Known numerous eyewitness accounts of the abilities of the elect stigmatists for levitation and other miracles. For example, Padre Pio could travel thousands of kilometers instantly – from one point planet to another. And the miraculous healing of the afflicted, according to adherents of the priest, allow him to be considered his chosen one Of God.
Faith plus psychokinesis?
The Vatican is very cautious about this phenomenon. Priests and doctors carefully study every case of the appearance of such wounds, weighing all the pros and cons. And time must pass from the day of death stigmatics – sometimes a hundred years – before being proclaimed blessed or holy.
The Catholic Church admits that stigmata can have wonderful, inexplicable nature. However, in most cases, according to the opinion of the church fathers, the reason for their appearance should be sought in the area psychiatry. Here, for example, what happened in 1932 with an American Elizabeth, a patient in a psychiatric hospital she was observing Dr. Albert Lechler. After viewing images of the crucifixion of Christ she felt a slight tingling sensation in her hands and feet. Soon wounds appeared in these places. Do ten-year-old Cloretta Robertson of Auckland (California) stigmata appeared in 1972 after watching film about Christ. And since the girl was irreligious, her story indicates that stigmata are also possible among unbelievers people.
Most stigmatists do not remember when and under what circumstances, wounds appeared on their bodies. Experiments conducted by the Italian doctor Marco Marnelli with the famous bearer of the stigmata of L o Bianco, showed that healed wounds may appear again and again. And every time the stigmata began to appear on her body, Lo Bianco fell into a trance and saw in this state, the rosary and the cross. Mentioned Padre Pio saw in a trance himself on the cross.
Stigmata Padre Pio
A photo from open sources Photos from open sources
At the beginning of the XX century, Professor Charles Richet expressed the assumption that stigmata reflect the effects of fortitude on blood circulation in the body. However, when scientists tried to reproduce them in subjects using hypnosis, the result was just red marks on the skin that have nothing to do with wounds.
While deeply religious people do not need any explanations that are not prone to piety, theorists are sure that this the phenomenon is present and scientifically explainable, and paranormal elements. Parapsychologist Dr. Scott Rodo (J. F. University Kennedy in Orinda, CA) believes that they are the most likelihood may appear in persons contemplative warehouse, predisposed to hysteria, but at the same time possessing a huge psychic power. “Victims of this phenomenon literally target psychokinesis on their own body, resulting in them the wounds open and bleed. ”
What science says
Scientists in the XVIII century noticed that many stigmatists suffered a split personality, characterized by abrupt shifts moods, periodic immersion in trance, hallucinations. Today experts prove that this is a psychosomatic phenomenon, caused by the influence of the mind on the body. English explorer Yen Wilson’s theory of wounds self-hypnosis in a trance state.
Find two ascetics whose stigmata appear the same Thus, it is impossible, however, they all have one common property. Starting out with sv. Francis, all showed wounds on the palms and legs in those places where, according to legend, nails were hammered during the crucifixion Of Christ. But this contradicts the assumption that stigmata could to be sent by God. And that’s why. Romans at the executed on the cross they pierced the forearm in the area of the wrists with nails, and not the brush itself (driving nails in the palm of your hand is generally pointless, under the weight of the body they just burst), this is confirmed by the found remains of the executed on the cross around the 1st century, during the time of Christ.
So why St. Francis and all subsequent stigmatics believed that they pierced palms with nails? Yes, because that is, since the eighth century, artists depicted a crucifix Of Christ. Significant localization and even stigma size art influenced, which is especially evident in the case of Gemma Galgani, who died in Italy in 1903. Gemma’s stigmata exactly reproduce the wounds on her beloved crucifix.
In the fundamental study “Physical manifestations mysticism “English priest Herbert Thurston indicated several reasons why stigmata are a product of auto-suggestion. The size, the shape and location of wounds in stigmatics varies, which indicates the absence of a common source, that is, themselves the wounds of Christ. Comparison of visions that visited various stigmatists and who also have little in common, indicates that they do not reflect the historical fact of the crucifixion, but are due to features of the psyche of the subjects themselves.
In addition, among stigmatists there is a large percentage suffering from hysteria. Thurston interpreted this fact as additional evidence of unsustainable and unusually emotional psyche, which provokes the appearance of stigmata. Not surprisingly, even staunch Catholics consider the appearance of stigmata product of “mystical thinking”, leaning towards that they were created by consciousness during periods of intense meditation.
If stigmata are the result of auto-suggestion, the range controlling the body with consciousness expands even more. Interesting, that such wounds heal at an inexplicable rate. Some individuals exhibit almost infinite body elasticity their ability to imitate the marks of nails with torn edges of wounds, reminiscent of prominences.
Theresa Neumann of Bavaria, who had died in 1962, had such prominences, most naturally imitating through wounds from nails in the palms and feet, only, unlike constantly open wounds of st. Francis, they only opened periodically, and when they stopped bleeding, soft membrane-like tissue.
At Padre Pio, the wounds passed through the hands through, and the wound was on the side was so deep that, while examining it, the doctors were afraid to damage internal organs. St. Veronica Giuliani, abbess the Italian monastery in Citta di Castello, a large wound in the side opened and closed on command!
And yet, so far, both secular and church experts are uniquely explain the phenomenon of stigmatism is not taken.