The Headman Was A Woman Book Reviews Example
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Karei was a thunder god, believed to be a big creature that demonstrates his power though thunder. Karei manifested his power by demanding that people perform frequent sacrifices of blood. He was mainly interested in human blood, rather than that of animals and birds. Thunder was a way through which he cautioned people and inform them that it was time for them to cut themselves and offer a blood sacrifice.
The things that offend karei are sins that involved incest, abuse and ill-treatment of animals, rape, showing disrespect towards others, ill treatment of birds and other animals. The offenses against the gods are similar in a way that they discourage all manner of evil relations and most especially those that involved sexual relationships. karei desired that people live in peace with one another and show some respect for the other creatures that were around them. it also seemed as if karei had great respect for animals and demanded their respect. Animals were more honored that human beings as any sin against them would demand a human blood sacrifice.
Karei punishes his offenders through thunder and lighting. He releases thunder on those who offend him and the thunder automatically mutilates the part of the body that caused the offense. With the sound of thunder, people were to automatically know that his wrath had been poured upon them and that it was time for them to cut of some parts of their body, mix the blood with water and offer it to their god.
Blood sacrifice is one of the most common ways that people ask for forgiveness from karei. The sacrifice may involve killing of human beings especially children and also animals.
Needhan is puzzled by the reaction of people once it starts to thunder and rain. The action that is taken to appease their god is so sudden and happens in a manner that implies they were prepared for it. Nobody wastes time once the rains start, they stop everything that they were doing just to cut themselves and appease their god. Another amazing thing about the practice is that it is mainly done by women. Most of the people that Needhan watched perform the ritual of blood were women.
The penan people were also visited by Needhan and has similar cultural believes as the semang people. The penan are located in Sarawak and Brunei regions. They also had a thunder god, who demanded blood sacrifice from them as well as having high regards for animals.
Needhan had direct experiences with the blood ritual which seemed to displease the people that were around him. He did something that was considered wrong and could invite a curse. Human blood, in any form was not supposed to be burned. Naadhan took a leech from his feet and threw the leech in the fire, and hence burning it. It was considered that the smell of human blood from the leech would attract the attention of tigers that lived in the forest.
Blood sacrifice is a painful cultural practice that is not fit, yet the people are compelled to perform it just to appease their gods. It is believed that once the blood has been sacrificed, their gods, which are in form of spirits, will drink it. As they drink it, their souls will be happy and satisfied that the people have obeyed them and hence soften their hearts.
Karei and gobar both demand blood sacrifices from people. The tow gods use rain and thunder to communicate to the people that they are angry with their conduct and that they need a sacrifice that will atone for their sins.
Children were also included in the business of blood sacrifice especially if they were involved in actions that displeased their gods. They were initiated into the ritual of blood sacrifice and taught the importance of respecting people and the other creatures around them, since they could not cut themselves, their parents would help them make the sacrifice by cutting them up. It was believed that the pain they experienced would instill discipline in then and hence preventing them from any future sin or violation.
Ke’oy is s form of disease that causes fever and depression. This is mostly struck upon women who show disrespect towards others. Some of the common symptoms of the disease include fever, shortness of breath, depression and general body weakness. Ke’oy was a disease mostly associated with women. It was considered that mostly women engaged in actions such as careless talking, backbiting and having a bad attitude towards others. Unless a woman performed a sacrifice that would appease the gods, he would be struck by the illness. The cure of the disease could be done by a specialist who would remove the spell from her. However, the perfect remedy for the disease was for the woman to mend her ways by showing a good attitude and being good to the people around her.
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