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Table of ContentsSystems of Purity

Systems of Purity - 5 / 5 / 2002
impurity incurred during times of crisis
    sickness - personal / familial / plague
    conflict - familial / local / intertribal
    disaster - fire / flood / storm / earthquake / famine
    accident & death
    menstruation & birth
    initiation - ordeals / tests
pollution / contamination
    the state of being contaminated
    vitiate - to reduce the value or impair the quality of [AHD3]
    by action / by blood / by speech / by thought
profanity - marked by contempt or irreverence for what is sacred [AHD3]
    the power of words [especially in an oral culture]
sin - a transgression of a religious or moral law, especially when deliberate [AHD3]
tabu - a restraint or restriction put upon an action [AHD3]
    violations of the community / cultural values
shirking obligation
    assumption of responsibility as sign of adulthood
geas / complusion
    - a release of emotional tension,
        as after an overwhelming experience, that restores or refreshes the spirit [AHD3]
    a purifying or figurative cleansing of the emotions
    especially thru art
instruments of purification
        associated with abundance /  wealth
        olive oil
    smoke / incense
        carries prayers to the upper world
        necessary for life
        spell / exorcism
        prayer / supplication
    owning the transgession
    the act of finding oneness with Diety
restitution - return to or restoration of a previous state or position [AHD3]
reparation - something done or paid to compensate or make amends [AHD3]
reconciliation - a reestablishment of friendship or harmony [AHD3]
sacrifice - the act of offering something to a deity in propitiation or homage [AHD3]
    must have value / cost
scapegoat [see Feast of Fools in Mythology]
    loaded with a community's transgressions & driven into the "wilderness"
    done for another
    usually at death
Religious Worlds: The Comparative Study of Religion - William E. Paden  

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