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Since the Middle ages in history it is possible to find the occurrence of painful bleeding wounds on the body some of the followers of Christ. These wounds appear on areas of the body where they were with Christ during his crucifixion on the cross (hands, feet, head, upper quadrant). Neither science, nor religion, nor the bearers of such wounds called stigmata, can't answer the question of how and why they are there.
the passion of the Christ
the Word "stigmata" is literally translated from the Greek word for "wound", "sign", a "prick". For the past 800 years there are not many people who has such markings, approximately 406 cases, but are recognized by the Catholic Church only 60. There are even statistical data on this mysterious phenomenon. For example, it is determined that 68% of people bearing the stigmata, is Catholic. Interestingly, most cases occur in the Mediterranean region, but today the geography of stigma expanded, they are common in Koreans, Japanese, Canadians and Argentines. And 90% of carriers of stigmata are women.
Remember the wounds that were inflicted on Christ during the crucifixion: on a four through the hands and feet, the wound on the right side from the spear of the centurion, scratches on his forehead from the crown of thorns, the wounds on my back from the flogging and the trail on the shoulder of the heavy cross which he bore. These wounds are reproduced on the body of bearers of the stigmata. They are called external. There are also internal stigmata, which we cannot observe, as they appear on the internal organs. Thus, in 1691 at the opening of the body of Savelli doctors were surprised to find the crucifix to his heart muscle! Sometimes external stigmata appear as if in mirror reflection, on the contrary. Experts believe that this is because believers perceive Christ's wounds as the sight in front of them.
Externally, the stigmata can be of different types: exit wounds, superficial growths. But they all form similar to the marks of the nails. Occur these injuries are always unexpected. They say that the largest number of cases falls on Good Friday. Before you can see visible stigmata, the person experiences severe pain in the places of their occurrence. This pain is much worse than the pain from ordinary wounds. This gives the experts a reason to assume that the issue here is about the defeat not only of the skin and soft tissues, and nerves. An amazing feature of these wounds is that, despite the bleeding, they can put a weak but pleasant smell!
the Doctors still can't find a method of treatment of wounds and to determine the nature of their occurrence.
When the first stigmata, hard to say, because evidence of them could not reach our days. They may have been the Apostle Paul, how else can one interpret his words: "I bear the marks of Jesus on my body"? But that stigmatica was Francis of Assisi, we can say with great certainty.
Saint. St. Francis Of Assisi. Artist Michael O.
Francis of Assisi who founded the Franciscan order, is still one of the most revered religious figures. He led an ascetic life, and possessed the gift of clairvoyance. In the autumn of 1224, while praying on the feast of the exaltation of the Holy Christ on the mount elverskog he supposedly saw angels, sending bright rays to his body. In those places where the rays touch the skin, there was pain and there were five bloody ulcers. The wounds were located exactly where Christ. It happened two years before his death. And until the last day of the stigmata was bleeding and was causing the monk to terrible tortures.
here's an example from much more recent times. Theresa Newman was born in 1898 and was a very sickly child. She was the bearer of the stigmata five: on the palms, on the sides and on the forehead. Every time Friday comes, she took the path of Christ to Calvary and lost 1.5 litres of blood and up to 3.5 kilos in weight. Sometimes even that a woman was crying tears of blood. However, by Sunday the stigmata disappeared from her body.
But the nuns of Mary villari of the Dominican monastery, who lived in the seventeenth century, was the internal stigmata. She said that while in trance, saw the angel that burned her heart with a spear. After her death during the autopsy of the thorax from the heart burst a column of hot steam. When the doctor took out her heart, I found it a scar, which is characteristic for the spear.
In the twentieth century the most famous Italian monk stigmatica recognized as PIO (Padre Pio) (1887— 1968). He could heal the afflicted, had the gift of foresight and had the ability to instantly travel great distances. In the year after the PIO was 30 years old, on his body the stigmata appeared, causing the monk pain and suffering until death. He had constantly to treat suppurating wounds. Surprisingly, immediately after the death of the person the stigmata disappeared. The Church did not want to admit the Divine origin of these wounds. Only after a thorough medical examination on the basis of which the monk did not find any disease, the Vatican had to concede.
the Italian monk Padre PIO (Padre Pio)
the Gift of God or a mental illness?
the Vatican always carefully examine the cases of the stigmata on the human body, to research the physicians and priests. Sometimes it takes many years until the Church recognizes stigmatica, even after his death. But the stigmata and their wonderful nature priests still not rejected.
There is a hypothesis that the cause of stigmata is the effect on the psyche especially emotional believers Church paintings and sculptures, depicting the bloody scenes of the crucifixion of Christ. The wizard did not skimp on the details, they truly portrayed the suffering Savior, his blood and wounds that I was not able to leave anyone indifferent. In addition, in medieval Europe the Catholic Church was the center of social life. On the background of organ music, combined with the architecture of the fanatically faithful, people would say to them whatever was necessary to feel the suffering of Christ. It is no coincidence the stigmatic told me that before there were wounds on their body, they were in a trance, as if by watching their own crucifixion, and then — a complete failure in memory.
this hypothesis is well illustrated story about Cloretta Robertson from California. In 1972, when she was 10, she read a book about the sufferings of Jesus, and that made a great impression on her. A week after reading the left palm of Koratty appeared bleeding wound, and then another four who disappeared without a trace after 19 days.
the Stigmatic in General often fall into a trance, which allows scientists to suggest a psychosomatic nature of the phenomenon. Because, as a rule, this occurs by the scheme: religious ecstasy — the vision of the stigmata. Therefore, Catholic priests believe that in most of the cases this is a job for a psychiatrist.
as for the Russian Orthodox Church, she does not want to discuss this phenomenon, believing that the stigmata have nothing to do with spirituality that is a manifestation of pride and the machinations of the devil.
Medical science also has its point of view, or rather, two:
the First: the stigmata are of hysterical and neuropathic in nature. It is clear that this is a very rare case. Few patients can cause your healthy skin to bleed, even in trance. However, there are cases when under the influence of hypnosis, some people cried tears of blood, others appeared on the body scars, like from a punch.
Two: stigmata — imitation (Munchausen syndrome). In this case, the patient may use a drug or chemical drugs that prevent blood clotting. He intentionally inflicts self wounds that do not stop bleeding.
Is something that serves as a good argument in favor of the version about the self. Remember the picture of the crucifixion. Artists paint people, nailed to the cross over palm. But was nailed by the wrists, since the palm does not withstand the weight of the body. And the stigmata appear on the palms, which corresponds to the most common, but incorrect point of view.
However, despite all logical arguments, the believers believe stigmatikov God's people. And experts from science and the Church also cannot speak for or against stigmatism. After all, along with the "usual" origin of the stigmata, there are cases that cannot be explained. So while it remains to believe and guessing.
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