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   Undertoad  Tuesday Jan 25 12:35 PM

1/25/2005: Saint Anthony's purification ritual



Not much information is available on this annual festival in the village of Vilanova d'Alcolea near Castellon, Spain. The official caption suggests that Saint Anthony is the patron saint of animals and this is the "purification ceremony" section of the festival on his official Day.

I'm not sure how a horse is purified by jumping through fire; a good round of antibiotics and better stall maintenance would be much more effective. And I'm not sure why the patron saint of animals winds up putting his beasts into a big bonfire. Seems like an effective patron saint would score a better contract, such as the Hindus have done for the cows, or the Buddhists for all critters in general.

A round of severe googling turned up very little detail, other than Anthony's appearance at the same time in Sicily. These festivals sound like a great time, I want one:

Ancient tradition has it that the saint, like Prometheus, stole into hell and brought back fire, so naturally the festivities revolve around a bonfire. Each town places different herbs and fruits atop the blaze, creating a unique aroma. Women emerge from their homes bearing sweets and dark fruity loaves of pane nigheddu, while men pass around bottles of wine and aquavit.

Wow! I, personally, am all in favor of this kind of thing. I can taste the pane nigheddu now! I'm not sure about the community bottles, as I just got over a bout of illness, you know, wouldn't want another round of that.



lookout123  Tuesday Jan 25 12:44 PM

c'mon everybody! "horse nuts roasting on an open fire, dipshits making your equine roast"



Elspode  Tuesday Jan 25 01:14 PM

Looks like something akin to driving the animals 'twixt the balefires at Beltane (May Day, to the rest of you non-Pagans).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beltane



magilla  Tuesday Jan 25 01:31 PM

Note that they have the horse's mane all bundled up in flowers. Presumably they did the same for the critter's tail, too. I hope that's to keep it from getting torched.

It makes me feel better about this to see the horse has a live human rider, although he could be the type that participates in the Taming of the Bulls that we saw a few days ago



Trilby  Tuesday Jan 25 01:34 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Elspode
Looks like something akin to driving the animals 'twixt the balefires at Beltane (May Day, to the rest of you non-Pagans).
" 'twixt" being the operative word.


Troubleshooter  Tuesday Jan 25 02:22 PM

Just another party plagarized from the pagans right?



xoxoxoBruce  Tuesday Jan 25 07:40 PM

Quote:
Each town places different herbs and fruits atop the blaze, creating a unique aroma.
I doubt if it would mask burning hair as that's pretty pungent.


wolf  Tuesday Jan 25 09:12 PM

Which Anthony?

Saint Anthony of Padua (this is the "popular" one ... the Lost Things guy)

Saint Anthony of the Desert

(Oh man. there are actually 31 Saint Anthonies ... That's too much typing. Here's a list of patron saints, by name. )

Anthony of Padua and Anthony the Abbott both have associations to animals.



capnhowdy  Tuesday Jan 25 09:51 PM

It'd be cool on video.
Odds are: this guy busts his ass.
Or either he's a damn good rider.
Eat your heart out, Junior Bonner.......



xoxoxoBruce  Wednesday Jan 26 08:20 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by wolf
Which Anthony?

Saint Anthony of Padua (this is the "popular" one ... the Lost Things guy)

Saint Anthony of the Desert

snip
I noticed that both these Anthonys came from rich, powerful families and were chosen by God to do great things.
just like GW Bush.


Elspode  Wednesday Jan 26 01:43 PM

All in favor of riding Bush through flames on horseback, say "aye"!



Senor Oso  Wednesday Jan 26 03:24 PM

I'm pretty sure that these people are taking the words "Chestnuts roasting on an open fire" in an entirely different way than it was meant.



Griff  Wednesday Jan 26 06:20 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Senor Oso
I'm pretty sure that these people are taking the words "Chestnuts roasting on an open fire" in an entirely different way than it was meant.



Aye.


capnhowdy  Wednesday Jan 26 06:43 PM

The PETA people must be on strike, thank goodness.
If you'll notice, the horse isn't being ridden through the blaze.
It's being led (or should I say forced) through it.
The guy "leading" him doesn't really seem to be having a blast either.
The rider kooks as if to be saying: Faster, you sluggish bastard!
[quote] "People do do the strangest things"[quote]



xoxoxoBruce  Wednesday Jan 26 10:28 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by Elspode
All in favor of riding Bush through flames on horseback, say "aye"!
How about a horse on Bushback?


Elspode  Wednesday Jan 26 11:16 PM

He could wear a 10 gallon Stetson...filled with 10 gallons of liquid oxygen, perhaps.



xoxoxoBruce  Thursday Jan 27 04:40 AM

Sure, it's already filled with 10 gallons of air.



Troubleshooter  Thursday Jan 27 10:52 AM

You're mistaking that heavy duty cylinder on his shoulders as a high pressure cylinder instead of the high vacuum cylinder that it is.



MAdMoNKEY  Thursday Jan 27 03:23 PM

I love how people ripped on the Muslims for killing animals and eating them, but no one seems that bent out of shape about a horse being forcibly led through a bonfire.



Happy Monkey  Thursday Jan 27 03:26 PM

It's not gross looking. In fact, it looks sort of cool.



jinx  Thursday Jan 27 03:33 PM

I wonder how they choose the horse, or if it's the same one every year?



garnet  Thursday Jan 27 03:48 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by MAdMoNKEY
I love how people ripped on the Muslims for killing animals and eating them, but no one seems that bent out of shape about a horse being forcibly led through a bonfire.
I agree--I think it's awful. The horse looks terrified, and he obviously wouldn't be doing this of his own free will. If this had taken place in the US somebody would be facing charges.


lookout123  Thursday Jan 27 03:51 PM

that's because we know that muslims are just filty animals, not real people. it wouldn't do to rip on people that are "like us" now would it?

*thick sarcasm*



capnhowdy  Thursday Jan 27 05:44 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by garnet
I agree--I think it's awful. The horse looks terrified, and he obviously wouldn't be doing this of his own free will. If this had taken place in the US somebody would be facing charges.
Obviously the Spaniards don't have de la PETA-ello.........


Griff  Thursday Jan 27 08:51 PM

So you're all saying that's a real/live horse?



xoxoxoBruce  Thursday Jan 27 09:38 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by MAdMoNKEY
I love how people ripped on the Muslims for killing animals and eating them, but no one seems that bent out of shape about a horse being forcibly led through a bonfire.
That's because he/she is not being injured and will have great stories to tell at the stable. Kind of like skydiving or bungee jumping.


MAdMoNKEY  Friday Jan 28 12:10 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by xoxoxoBruce
That's because he/she is not being injured and will have great stories to tell at the stable. Kind of like skydiving or bungee jumping.
I dunno...when I put my hand really close to fire it's not very comfortable. I don't believe horses enjoy walking through big-ass flames.


xoxoxoBruce  Friday Jan 28 04:47 AM

I believe your right, but I don't think the horse was injured and that's the big difference.



garnet  Friday Jan 28 09:28 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by xoxoxoBruce
I believe your right, but I don't think the horse was injured and that's the big difference.
Maybe not, but just terrified as all hell. And wasn't there a good chance that the horse could have been injured?


garnet  Friday Jan 28 09:29 AM

Quote:
Originally Posted by xoxoxoBruce
I believe your right, but I don't think the horse was injured and that's the big difference.
Maybe not, but just terriefied as all hell.


MAdMoNKEY  Friday Jan 28 04:08 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by xoxoxoBruce
I believe your right, but I don't think the horse was injured and that's the big difference.
I'm glad the horse wasn't injured, but it was put into a situation where it could very well have been seriously injured. Also like garnet said I'm sure the horse was pissing-in-its-pants terrified. Now I'm neither a PETA member nor Muslim, I just think people are quick to cast stones at barbaric acts of other cultures but are blind to their own culture's faults (I know I do this all the time). Not to say it's done intentionally, I think it just speaks about human nature.


Elspode  Friday Jan 28 08:55 PM

This *is* a purification ritual, after all. Maybe the horse's next stop is the dog food factory, and this is just to make sure it is kosher or something?



xoxoxoBruce  Friday Jan 28 11:32 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by garnet
And wasn't there a good chance that the horse could have been injured?
Any time it leaves the stall...matter of fact the barn could burn down so it's not safe there either.
As for being traumatized, probably. I would be if a bunch of crazy religious zealots were leading me by the halter through bonfires. But that said, I'd prefer it to having my throat slit.
Keep in mind however the animals that were killed in the other IOtD were not tortured or killed for fun. It was the a religious ritual slaughter of animals for food.
I know you don't agree with killing animals or eating them but they do and their religion dictates how the animals be slaughtered.
That's a far cry from indiscriminately killing any critter available.


Your reply here?

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