Captain Obvious: Let's Cannibalize

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Khethil
 
Reply Wed 3 Jun, 2009 07:38 am
Good Morning Everyone,

Can anyone come up with a good reason; grounded in coherent ethics, why cannibalization of our dead is ethically wrong? [INDENT]Yes the idea disgusts me; No, I wouldn't unless I absolutely had to. But most cultures are steadfastly against the idea. Yet... on a strictly practical level here, minus any unsupportable 'feelings', I have to wonder: Is it wrong on an ethical level? And as absurd as it may sound: What a great source of food!
[/INDENT]I look forward to hearing anyone's thoughts.

Thanks
 
Caroline
 
Reply Wed 3 Jun, 2009 08:16 am
@Khethil,
I dont think it's anything wrong with it in this situation:-
The movie Survival, where crash victims ate the dead in order to survive, the ones who chose not to eat them died from hunger, (true story).I would as I would prefer to live and I dont think i'd feel guilty as they were already dead and it's a question of survival. Tastes like chicken apparently! They ate people in Russia too during a food shortage.
 
Dave Allen
 
Reply Wed 3 Jun, 2009 08:24 am
@Khethil,
I think cannibalisation of loved ones could be a touching funerary ritual.

In theory.
 
Krumple
 
Reply Wed 3 Jun, 2009 08:36 am
@Khethil,
I'm not exactly sure how I came up with this or why it was inspired but it was a way to sort of bring out what I consider silly with our deceased. I think it is so silly that we drain the body and pump it full of formaldehyde to preserve the body. I couldn't really figure out why you would want your body so preserved. You aren't aware of anything so what does it matter with your condition?

So anyways since I protest the whole embalming concept I would say that after five or ten years they dig up the grave and this is where they get Hostess Twinkies from which are then resold to unsuspecting people as a snack. Basically I'm saying that when your body decomposes it actually transforms into Twinkies. I bet you can't wait to have another twinkle and by the way, it is honestly true. Your body will decompose and become Twinkies, that is unless you opt out for cremation.
 
Khethil
 
Reply Wed 3 Jun, 2009 09:01 am
@Krumple,
Krumple;66354 wrote:
I'm not exactly sure how I came up with this or why it was inspired but it was a way to sort of bring out what I consider silly with our deceased. I think it is so silly that we drain the body and pump it full of formaldehyde to preserve the body. I couldn't really figure out why you would want your body so preserved. You aren't aware of anything so what does it matter with your condition?


I agree WHOLEHEARTEDLY.

Along this line, I think it's important (for no reason other than my own personal sentiments) that we RETURN to the earth what we've taken. In my culture, we pump a body full of toxic chemicals then SHIELD it from the elements; effectively making sure nature is denied that return. I enunciated this feeling more fully in this thread.

I dunno about the twinkie thing, but I hear ya. Still, I wonder about this whole cannibalization thing; even many vegetarians are OK with the idea of meat consumption if the thing killed died by other means. I dunno, maybe it's not an ethical issue, per say, at all.

Thanks
 
Caroline
 
Reply Wed 3 Jun, 2009 10:56 am
@Khethil,
I would struggle to eat a dead loved one even though i was starving, i dont know if that has anything to with ethics or just emotions.
 
Justin
 
Reply Wed 3 Jun, 2009 11:42 am
@Khethil,
Well, technically we wouldn't have to eat each other if we had enough vegetables around us. It's a weird subject though and I've never given it much thought. I do agree with NOT preserving the body. We are a people of flesh and worldly things. No matter how long Christianity or other religions have been around, we still believe that we are body not spirit and we try to preserve. Generally speaking, our entire existence is lived out in the flesh.

So back to the subject, if we had to cut your arm off or my arm off to feed in a situation that needed it, would eating your arm or dead body necessarily be eating you? We're not the flesh of our body that is just a tool and it will be used up and return to it's origin. Would we preserve dead trees? Preserve dead cattle? What's the difference?

I personally wouldn't eat another human because I have enough to eat but if it were a situation that warranted it, so be it. We used to be cannibals anyway but out of preference, I'd rather eat vegetables and fruit.
 
GoshisDead
 
Reply Wed 3 Jun, 2009 11:45 am
@Caroline,
I watched a documentary on Nat Geo the other day that showed some of the human history of cannibalism. 70% of humans have an enzyme chain that protects against Kuru type diseases. Kuru being a disease called the laughing death, documented in Papua New Guinnea, only brought about by the consumption of human flesh. The doctors who found this enzyme are arguing that at some point in human evolution cannibalism must have been widespread for the enzyme to have been so strongly selected.

Aside from that Cannibalism is and was a very effective psychological tool in war time and homeland protection. It is still practiced in the former country of Congo by factions in that civil war who use it as intimidation. In some polynesian languages the word for enemy is (Long Pig), because going to war island to island in outrigger canoes meant carrying very little food, so eating the enemy as you conquered them was not so far fetched. and the historical and pre-historical doumentation goes on with different types of ceremonial and funerary cannibalism etc...

In my opinion, no it is not wrong inherently, it causes no harm to anyone, the dead don't feel pain. I would rather not, however, take the chance that I'm in the 30% without the cannibal protective enzyme. The laughing death doesn't sound very funny.

Cheers,
Russ
 
Caroline
 
Reply Wed 3 Jun, 2009 11:46 am
@Khethil,
I cant decide whether to be scattered off a cliff across an ocean, under a rosebush, (like my relatives), or scattered across the ground, (isnt it eighty percent coffin anyway?)
 
RDRDRD1
 
Reply Mon 8 Jun, 2009 05:49 pm
@Khethil,
Goshis is quite correct. Cannibalism is New Guinea did lead to the outbreak of Kuru which is akin to Creuzfeld Jacob disease and bovine spongiform encephalopathy (Mad Cow) in animals. You get exposed to diseased prion proteins in your dinner and - voila - next thing you know you're falling down all the time too.

Besides, would you want to dine on some wreck of a cow that keeled over from old age in the pasture? Of course not. So if you were to go cannibal, surely you would go for the more tender options. A modest proposal?
 
William
 
Reply Mon 8 Jun, 2009 06:15 pm
@Khethil,
Oh, my God the implications. "Sir, light or dark, veal or prime. HaHa. Grain fed or natrual. That will be $295.00. Thank you.
William
 
Aedes
 
Reply Mon 8 Jun, 2009 07:52 pm
@Khethil,
Khetil,

If you haven't read this article (I've linked it before), you really should.

http://www.nytimes.com/2008/01/13/magazine/13Psychology-t.html

Our ethical constructs are probably nothing more than a rationalization for things we viscerally feel. And when it comes down to it, there is something viscerally appalling about eating the dead. All the rational arguments, like how the cannibals in Papua New Guinea suffered from the disease kuru, are insufficient to explain how revolting the idea is. It's why it's only in the most desperate of circumstances that people do it.

And it also explains why most of us won't eat puppies and kittens -- it's because we anthropomorphize these creatures to the point where it seems wrong to eat them as well.
 
avatar6v7
 
Reply Tue 9 Jun, 2009 04:04 pm
@Aedes,
We don't eat the bodies of the dead because even though the soul, or the mind if you prefer, is gone, the body still once belonged to a human, like ourselves. It may no longer be a human, but it is still the last physical remnant of a person who once had a life, family, freinds and dreams- it seems insulting to devour, or in any way degrade, somthing that is even symbolically human. Is this logical on a purely physical basis? Well neither is love, but it is a hell of a lot more important than a lot of practical stuff.
 
 

 
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