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Titles containing blood: Blood Feast (1963)

Key work of art: Semen & Blood (1990) - Andres Serrano [Google gallery]


Human blood is a liquid tissue; its major function is to transport oxygen necessary to life throughout the body. It also supplies the tissues with other nutrients, removes waste products, and contains various components of the immune system defending the body against infection. Hormones also travel in the blood. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blood [2004]

Mythology and religion
Due to its importance to life, blood is associated with a large number of beliefs. One of the most basic is the use of blood as a symbol for family relationships; to be "related by blood" is to be related by ancestry or descendance, rather than marriage. This bears closely to bloodlines, and sayings such as "blood is thicker than water" and "bad blood", as well as "Blood brother". --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Blood#Mythology_and_religion [Mar 2006]

Six contrasting views on the "body and blood"

There are generally six views of the significance of the body and the blood, arranged here in progressive order from symbolism to literalism:

* Suspension - any of several ideas that the partaking of the bread and wine was not intended to be a perpetual ordinance, and/or that they are not to be taken as a religious rite or ceremony (aka adeipnonism, meaning "no supper" or "no meal"); this is the view of Quakers, the Salvation Army, as well as the "ultra-dispensational" teaching of E. W. Bullinger, Cornelius R. Stam and others

* Symbolism - the belief that the bread and wine are symbolic of the body and blood of Jesus Christ, and that in partaking of the elements the believer commemorates the sacrificial death of Christ (aka Zwinglianism or Zwinglian view after Ulrich Zwingli); this view is held by several Protestant denominations, including most Baptists.

* Spiritual presence - the belief that the body and blood of Jesus Christ are received in a spiritual manner by faith (it is neither taken substantially, nor as a mere symbol); this view is held by a number of Protestant bodies, including Methodists and Presbyterians.

* Consubstantiation - the belief that the body and blood of Jesus Christ are mysteriously and supernaturally united with the bread and wine (but not truly and substantially as in transubstantiation); this view is held by Lutheran churches.

* Pious Silence - the belief that the bread and wine become the real Body and Blood of Christ in a way that is beyond mortal apprehension and comprehension; the specific mechanisms and details of this are not possible to understand nor to explain; this view is held by the Eastern Orthodox and Oriental Orthodox Churches.

* Transubstantiation - the belief that after the consecration of the elements, the body and blood of Jesus Christ are really, truly and substantially in the sacrament of the Eucharist while its "accidents" (noticeable physical traits) do not change; this view is held by the Catholic Church.

It should be noted that the last two views are identical in their belief that the bread and wine literally become the Body and Blood of Christ, but differ on whether or not that change can be understood or explained. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Holy_Communion#Six_contrasting_views_on_the_.22body_and_blood.22 [Aug 2004]

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