Last updated: March 24, 2019
Topic: BusinessAgriculture
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Bloodletting and human sacrifice to the Mesoamericans was not only a sacrifice, it was a way for Mesoamericans to demonstrate their conviction that bloodletting rituals were essential to the coming of rain and the survival of their agricultural society as well as an honoring to the gods. Mesoamericans believed that the shedding of blood was essential to the worlds survival.

Societies began to support these beliefs and practices because they began evolving with the fact that gods had shed their own blood to water the earth and nourish crops of maize and in return to honor the gods they, themselves, the human beings had to imitate the gods sacrifice. Although Mesoamericans may have had bloodletting rituals other parts of the world began to evolve with their own belief systems such as the Aryans who practiced ritual sacrifices and the Harrapan religions who believed in fertility cults but also there were the Mesopotamians who believed in mummification.

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Mesoamericans believed that the shedding of blood was essential to the worlds survival. Mesoamericans considered the religious acts to be necessary in order for the world to maintain its stability, not fall into an end and then slowly diminish. The sacrificial rituals were in honor of the gods, of the rain, and of the sun and were considered essential in order for prosperity in Mesoamerican agriculture on which they heavily relied on. Mesoamericans believed that by shedding their own blood they would be honoring the gods giving the world they lived in a higher chance of its survival.

If the gods were not honored Mesoamericans believed the world they inhabited in would soon vanish. These practices made sense to Mesoamericans because they believed that their rulers were descendants of the gods and either their blood or the blood of royal captives was the only ultimate and possible sacrifice. Societies began to support these beliefs and practices by beginning to evolve with the fact that gods had shed their own blood to water the earth and nourish crops of maize.

In return to honor the gods Mesoamericans had to imitate the gods sacrifice. The process involved rulers and family members to regularly spill their own blood by opening woods with obsidian knives, stingray spines or sharpened bones from the tongue, lips, cheeks and other body parts. The shedding of blood was very crucial to the rituals because of its association with rain and agriculture. By spilling human blood Mesoamericans hoped to please the gods in order to ensure that life giving waters would bring plenty of harvests to their fields.

Mesoamericans fell into believing that the painful wounds on their bodies demonstrated their conviction that bloodletting rituals were essential to the coming of rain and the survival of their agriculture. Although Mesoamericans may have had bloodletting rituals other parts of the world began to evolve with their own belief systems. There were the Aryans who practiced ritual sacrifices and the Harrapan religions who believed in fertility cults but also there were the Mesopotamians who believed in mummification. Aryans performed ritual sacrifices in the hopes of winning the favors of the gods.

The sacrifices involved the slaughtering of many humans and sometimes even specially prepared animals. The Aryans believed that when a sacrifice was being performed the gods visited the earth and joined the worshipers in ritual eating and drinking. Others such as those who were involved in Harrapan religion believed in fertility. Harappans associated gods and goddesses with creation. They later recognized a mother goddess and a horned fertility god. Egyptians believed that death was not an end but instead a transitioning into a new world of existence.

The Egyptians also believed that only the ruling elites would survive the grave so they only mummified pharaohs and other close relatives. Mummification never became a general practice but many religious cults still believed in immortality. Bloodletting and human sacrifice to the Mesoamericans was not only a sacrifice. It was a way for Mesoamericans to demonstrate that bloodletting rituals were essential to the coming of rain and the survival of their agricultural society as well as an honoring to the gods.

Mesoamericans believed that the shedding of blood was essential to the worlds survival. Societies began to support these beliefs and practices because they began evolving with the fact that gods had shed their own blood to water the earth and nourish crops of maize and in return to honor the gods they, themselves, the human beings had to imitate the gods sacrifice. Mesoamericans may have had bloodletting rituals but other parts of the world began to evolve with their own belief systems earlier in time history, different from those of the Mesoamericans that occurred later in time history.