I sincerely hope that I will have the time to communicate new thoughts on the whole concept of the externalization of evil soon- this weekend perhaps?- but I have been otherwise occupied of late (with incredibly positive stuff), so I’m re-posting this discussion of the concept of the scape goat in the interim. It is very much connected with the problem- that I keep emphasizing- regarding the projection of our human tendency to lay the culpability for our actions on something outside of ourselves, and therefore another manifestation of our conceptualization of the ‘devil’. Just in case you missed it the first time ’round….
Given my great love of myth and symbol as expressions of what it means to be human, it should hardly come as a surprise that I love language in general and the origins of words and phrases in particular. We take words for granted- use and misuse them without too much thought about where they came from and, sometimes, what they really mean. So many words and phrases that are part of our (relatively) common parlance have origins in the language of myth.
One such term has been hovering on the edge of my consciousness a lot lately- not because it is all that out of the ordinary, but because I heard it spectacularly misused in conversation not long ago- although, to be perfectly fair, both words have the same root and have been used interchangeable historically. Still, the speaker calling herself an ‘escape goat’ very much summoned images of a…
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