September 14, 2009


It seems to me impossible what Spaniards did: To explain to old Aztecs that cannibalism was something wrong and forbidden, and that receiving the Communion, i.e. eating and drinking Jesus' flesh and blood was something holy.

Somehow they succeeded. The result was, at some extent, the tequitqui art, like this example of Tonantzintla's church.

Perhaps that stuff that seems impossible today will find it's way out and bring out an incredible offspring. "Es wird nur besser", said somebody recently. Check Tonantzintla.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Less from professional theologians writing as such than in popular discussions and encounters with nonbelievers, one often receives the challenge: “If the Eucharist is understood realistically, then in receiving it you are engaging in cannibalism.” How should this challenge be answered?

There are diverse reasons why people eat human bodies. In some instances, there is a moral or religious motive for consuming a human body (or some part of it)—for example, to share in the person’s virtuous characteristics, or to keep the dead individual from reverting back into the dust from which he or she came. When such cannibalism is considered, one can see that the underlying motive is by no means repulsive; the trouble is that the method is ineffective. One does not gain courage by eating the dead heart of a noble warrior, nor preserve one’s mother from hades by digesting her dead body.

Essentially, the Eucharist is unlike cannibalism because the Eucharist does what it signifies. The sacramentality of the presence of Jesus makes available at all times and places and to all individuals for eating the one, unique, living Body who is the glorified Incarnate Word. The cannibals eat the dead remains of a person; we eat Jesus alive and glorious, and our eating neither divides nor harms him. Rather, he transforms us by, as it were, inverse digestion.