Login
Freeman, D. (1968). Thunder, Blood, and the Nicknaming of God's Creatures. Psychoanal Q., 37:353-399.

Welcome to PEP Web!

Viewing the full text of this document requires a subscription to PEP Web.

If you are coming in from a university from a registered IP address or secure referral page you should not need to log in. Contact your university librarian in the event of problems.

If you have a personal subscription on your own account or through a Society or Institute please put your username and password in the box below. Any difficulties should be reported to your group administrator.

Username:
Password:

Can't remember your username and/or password? If you have forgotten your username and/or password please click here and log in to the PaDS database. Once there you need to fill in your email address (this must be the email address that PEP has on record for you) and click "Send." Your username and password will be sent to this email address within a few minutes. If this does not work for you please contact your group organizer.

Athens or federation user? Login here.

Not already a subscriber? Order a subscription today.

(1968). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 37:353-399

Thunder, Blood, and the Nicknaming of God's Creatures

Derek Freeman, Ph.D. Author Information

Paul Schebesta (100p. 87) has described how one night in central Malaya in a forest encampment he awoke during a violent storm to find the Semang, a nomadic Negrito people with whom he was living, terrified and in turmoil. As the thunder crashed overhead a Semang woman agitatedly stabbed at her shin with a piece of bamboo until the blood poured from it. A little of this blood, mixed with rain water, she then sprinkled on the earth; the rest she scattered toward the skies as, in a fearful voice, she pleaded with the storm to have done.

This sacrificial act, in which blood taken from the leg is offered to a thunder-god in expiation of sin, is, as Rodney Needham, a social anthropologist, has recently pointed out in a stimulating paper (89), also found among an entirely distinct nomadic people in Borneo, the Penan. Associated elements include strict taboos against the burning of leeches and the mockery of certain animals, acts which, it is said, bring down the revengeful fury of the thunder-god who in his rage uproots trees and turns the guilty into stone.

Needham's paper is dedicated to the memory of C. G. Jung and in his attempt to account for the symbolic behaviors common to the Semang and the Penan, he makes use of some Jungian concepts which are of a transempirical kind. There are certain objects, claims Needham (he instances stone, blood, fire, water, and tree), which 'make a primordial impress upon the unconscious mind of man as a natural species producing an affective response which is as natural to the organism (to its distinctive brain) as the motor language of bees or the phototropism

—————————————

From the Institute of Advanced Studies, Australian National University, Canberra.

I am indebted to my wife, Monica, for the drawings that illustrate this papers, as for discussions with her during the course of its writing.

- 353 -

[This is a summary or excerpt from the full text of the book or article. The full text of the document is available to subscribers.]

Copyright © 2014, Psychoanalytic Electronic Publishing. Help | About | Download PEP Bibliography | Report a Problem

WARNING! This text is printed for the personal use of the subscriber to PEP Web and is copyright to the Journal in which it originally appeared. It is illegal to copy, distribute or circulate it in any form whatsoever.