Articles on Sacrifice

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Voodoo believers walk during the annual Voodoo festival Fete Gede at Cite Soleil Cemetery in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. AP Photo/Dieu Nalio Chery

What is Haitian Voodoo?

Voodoo is often seen as a practice involving magic. In Haiti, Voodoo is a religion born out of the struggle of slaves. And today, it is used as a form of healing and protection.
Alex Trebek pictured in Pasadena, California on May 5, 2019. Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP

The Trebek effect: The benefits of well wishes

Alex Trebek raised an interesting question when he thanked well-wishers for supporting him in his fight against pancreatic cancer: Do prayers and good thoughts really have a medical effect?
Members of the team who were rescued from a flooded cave prepare to be ordained to become Buddhist novices and monks. AP Photo/Sakchai Lalit

Why the rescued Thai soccer team has ordained as Buddhist novice monks

In Theravada Buddhism, ordaining to be a monk and donating the merit thus gained is one of the greatest honors that a person can give to another – in this case to the late Navy SEAL officer.
Thai monks pray during a cleansing ceremony and memorial service for Saman Gunan, the Thai SEAL diver who died while trying to rescue the boys trapped in the cave. AP Photo/Vincent Thian

The rescued Thai boys are considering becoming monks — here’s why

In Theravada Buddhism, ordaining to be a monk and donating the merit thus gained is one of the greatest honors that a person can give to another - in this case to the Navy SEAL officer, who died.
Illustration of ritualised human sacrifice in traditional Hawaiian culture, as documented by the French explorer and artists Jaques Arago in 1819. Arago, Jacques. (1822). Promenade autour du monde: pendant les années 1817, 1818, 1819 et 1820, sur les corvettes du roi l’Uranie et la Physicienne, commandées par M. Freycinet

Why did early human societies practice violent human sacrifice?

Human sacrifice seems horrifying and costly. But there might be a reason so many early human societies practiced it.

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