Re: Incest taboos

Joseph Askew (
Mon, 8 May 1995 10:31:57 GMT

In article <> (Robert Roosen) writes:

> My understanding of the reason the brother/sister offspring were
>prized comes from what European culture calls the "divine right of
>kings". In other words, these individuals were generally considered to
>be more able to channel the "will of the Gods" than an average person.

That is an interesting interpretation of a cearly defined historical
political concept. More to the point many cultures consider that
doing really gross things and getting away with it confers a type
of aura or charisma that is expressed in magical terms. Ethnically
Han Taiwanese claim that many Aboriginals have magical powers because
they drink their Mother's menstrural blood. Now I don't believe it
does but I can see why they might think that. In the same way for a
King to marry his sister and "get away with it" (ie is not struck
down by Heaven) is a sign of divine charisma. The King can do what
ordinary men cannot and dare not.

> Actually, I would guess that most if not all stone age cultures
>include psychic realities.
> Remember where the Hawaii state motto came from. The British
>took over Hawaii for awhile in the early 1800's. Lord George Paulette
>came out from South America and gave it back. As the British flag was
>being lowered, the Hawaiian king said, "Ua mau, ke ea o ka aina i ka pono".
>That translates several ways. The one I like is, "Once again, the Spirit
>of the Land Speaks the Law".

I would say that the fate of the Hawaiians is living proof of
either the non-existance or uselessness of psychic powers or
realities if you must. In fact I think arguing from the fate
of nearly all Stone age peoples, if they have psychic powers
they don't seem to be doing them much good at all.


PS I can tell my smug self satisfied tone is going to cause
some slightly nasty E-Mail. Am I psychic yet?