RE: ETHICS: Ethics in a void

From: denis bider (
Date: Thu Jan 25 2001 - 18:52:12 MST

> In many cultures (the Masai, ancient Celtic, ancient
> India) cattle theft was regarded as a perfectly
> honorable activity. One who could not keep his cattle
> did not deserve to do so. Rob Roy MacGregor was famous
> for being a great 'riever and retriever' - a cattle
> thief and one who could pursue and retrieve cattle
> stolen from him.

Oh! And yet one more example regarding homicide!

Most of us know this, but didn't remember. People in India thought it proper
to burn all the man's widows - alive - once the man passed away. Word has it
that a wealthy man could leave behind 40 or 50 widows, many of them pretty
young... Imagine the massacre.

I don't know what the widows in question thought about their being burned
alive, though. Does anyone know more about this phenomenon? Specifically,
what was the attitude of the women going to be burned to the fact that they
were going to be burned? Was their cooperation voluntary or was there
significant resistance?

[I'm not joking - it might just be that it was, due to the peculiar social
organization, practically impossible for a woman to sustain herself after
her man died. Hence the burning. But I don't know for sure.]

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