There’s been a lot of debate surrounding the transubstantiation of the eucharist, and if Catholics really believe that they’re eating the flesh of Jesus Christ, and literally drinking his blood.
The whole point (at least in some Catholic circles) of transubstantiation is to magically alter the regular piece of bread into Jesus Christ’s flesh, and the drink into His blood. To partake in and consume in order to have the life and spirit of Jesus Christ within us.
Hm… it sounds an awful lot like cannibalism to me. But to be fair, let’s take an in depth look into what actual Catholics and scholars believe is the meaning of this verse:
54 Whoever eats My flesh and drinks My blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day.
55 For My flesh is food indeed, and My blood is drink indeed.
56 He who eats My flesh and drinks My blood abides in Me, and I in him.
57 As the living Father sent Me, and I live because of the Father, so he who feeds on Me will live because of Me.
58 This is the bread which came down from heaven—not as your fathers ate the manna, and are dead. He who eats this bread will live forever.”
“So, what did Jesus mean when he spoke about eating his flesh and drinking his blood? He certainly wasn’t talking about cannibalism!
He was talking about true religion. What Jesus meant is that it’s got to be personal. Jesus was saying that you don’t receive eternal life by understand concepts or by believing the right things, but instead by a personal and intimate relationship with him. Jesus must be to us more important than our very food and drink, and closer to us than the nourishment that courses through our body that helps us to live.”
– What Does It Mean to Eat Christ’s Flesh and To Drink His Blood?
So according to the site above, they believe that the eucharist is meant to be taken symbolically, and ‘of course it’s not literal!’
Another insight into the belief that the transubstantiation is symbolic can be found here, as well as many other researched sites.
But further study and insight into this mysterious tradition does indeed show that many Catholics and practitioners of this ritual truly do believe that they are literally eating the body of Christ and drinking His blood.
And on average, according to several consensus studies, about 1 in 3 Catholics fully believe in the eucharist doctrine that the host transforms into the actual body/flesh and blood of Jesus Christ, while the other 2/3 believe that it is a symbolic, spiritual essence.
Results from the Pew Research Center: Understanding US Catholics’ belief in the Eucharist
There are even scientific studies declaring some rather unusual characteristics of these consecrated hosts that have undergone a transubstantiation process:
The video above shows several scientists/doctors/researchers who have studied the host’s transformation, and even hypothesizes the tools that would be necessary to replicate such a miracle:
– Odoardo Linoli
– Fredrick Zugibe
– Franco Serafini
– Jason DeGregorio
– Eduardo Sanchez Lazo
And as you can see, the full belief and trust in this miracle is alive and well by not only the creator of the video, but also many of the viewers who have left their own comments. And again, I am not bashing anyone for their beliefs. This is an attempt for me to truly understand these miracles and what may be happening. While I am a believer of Christ, I am also somewhat of a skeptic, especially when it comes to a process that involves the literal consumption of someone’s flesh and blood.
Some of the interesting similarities between the wafers discussed in the video are:
– They were revealed to be AB blood type
– The material derived seemed to have come from the left ventricle of the heart – while it was still alive
– The heart suffered massive trauma
(I don’t know about you… but this literally makes my own heart hurt and I can’t even imagine the circumstances that were involved in order to duplicate this kind of organic tissue result…)
While it may seem that these miracles are indeed mysterious and of a divine nature (or a terribly horrific one), I have to bring up a theory that some of the “host” wafers are not merely flour and water, like most people believe. I won’t get into the gritty details, but I will mention the possibilities that can arise between a religion that may be inclined to convince the public that miracles exist, with the combination of science and the capabilities of the technological age that are quite advanced at creating fabulous “signs and wonders” that the layman may not have even dreamed possible.
(And the insane amount of effort and length that these deceivers would go to, to convince the public in order to maintain their status as the religious world leader…)
This is a very cautious warning for us believers, to be very discerning when it comes to anything deemed “miraculous”. I have to remind everyone that a favorite practice of satan (who is called a liar, the father of lies, and the deceiver – and who also disguises himself as an angel of light) is to invert everything good and holy into one of corruption and wickedness.
What better way to do this than to lead the followers astray by taking Jesus Christ’s spiritual/metaphorical words, and twisting them into the belief that one must literally consume His flesh and drink His blood? Which by today’s measure, could be deemed as a cannibalistic, ritualistic custom. After all, if we read outside of the Bible and take a peek into the Book of Enoch, it states that one of the reasons why the great flood happened at all is because the nephilim (offspring of the fallen angels) gave in to the consumption of human flesh and all sorts of wicked tendencies.
4. the giants turned against them and devoured mankind.
5. And they began to sin against birds, and beasts, and reptiles, and fish, and to devour one another's flesh, and drink the blood.
6. Then the earth laid accusation against the lawless ones.
On August 18, 1996, a woman parishioner allegedly found a consecrated host on a candle holder and brought it to Fr. Alejandro Pezet. After a few days of leaving the host in the tabernacle to dissolve, found that it had been transformed into a bloody tissue that was much larger than the original host. It was then photographed and sent for scientific study by none other than our current Pope Francis (Jorge Bergoglio).
Just as an added bonus, here are some questionable quotes from Pope Francis himself:
“Pope John Paul II was a saint, I am the devil.”
“having a personal relationship with Jesus is dangerous and very harmful.”
“Joking” or not, these are pretty serious statements coming from the head of the Roman Catholic Church…
Here’s another extremely controversial quote, from Pope Francis:
“‘Yes, I carry the cross to show that I am a Christian.’ ” And “It’s fine,” but “not just as a badge, as if it were a team, the badge of a team’; but [rather], said Francis, “as the memory of the man who made himself sin, who made himself the devil, the serpent, for us; he debased himself up to the point of totally annihilating himself.”
There are also some extremely disturbing and, quite frankly, terrifying, implications of the Vatican installing satan as the new head of the church and the shady practices they engage in… so take that for what it’s worth…
Follow that up with this additional perspective from Pope Francis, and it starts to paint an incredibly sordid and depraved picture…
I have to admit, one of the reasons why it’s so hard for me to accept the Catholic teachings that the bread and wine literally become Jesus Christ in the flesh and blood, is because it sets a dangerous precedent on consuming the body and blood of the innocent, to maintain a “saving grace” to wipe away one’s own sins. While Jesus Christ Himself should be the ONLY one to turn to, there are certain religious sects that take His word to heart, even further, by following the same verse of John 6:53, but with a slightly different meaning that changes everything:
We see that “Son of Man” is capitalized, which presumes that it is a title given to Jesus Christ. However, if one were to take this verse literally and dissect its meaning, well, most of us would not consider Jesus Christ to be the “Son of Man”. Don’t we all consider Him the Son of God? So who is the Son of Man? Why would Jesus Christ be referring to Himself in this way? After all, if the biblical story of Jesus’s birth is any indication, He was not even born from a man but from a virgin woman and the holy spirit in the “Immaculate conception.” Of course, “man” is usually the term used to include all of humanity (mankind), so this could easily be explained away. And since Jesus is not one to boast about His heritage coming from God, He states also that He came from man.
But, as many confused or simply immoral groups will pursue, one can misconstrue any verse and twist its meaning to suit their own agenda. So now this “Son of Man” title can literally refer to ANYONE. “Unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man (any human being) and drink His (in some translations, “His” is not capitalized) blood, you have no life in you.”
And while people may laugh and scoff at the idea, the history of vampirism is a very real ideology, and there are some that truly believe that in order to have a long and healthy life, one must consume another being’s flesh and drink their blood.
Even if ‘vampires’ in the traditional sense don’t really exist, there are still many people that believe that consuming other human being’s flesh/blood will give them a longer lifespan and/or give them mystical powers. There are also pagans/witches/warlocks… even misguided souls that have reverted to using ‘blood magic’ to help them with their woes or any other number of transgressions or desires:
While the author of the above article tries to present this practice in a benign way, even setting “rules” as to how one should use blood in their magic, they cannot speak for everyone that they will adhere to this. If we know anything about the human nature and the addictive quality that power (even an allusion of power) gives to anyone, once they get a taste for it, the measures taken goes to extremes and therefore steps outside of the boundaries that was once set upon them.
Although imho, this occultic practice should not even be attempted since it is quite possibly opening doors that should never be opened. It invites spirits/demons in and may be one of the reasons why people claim to be cursed/haunted/possessed, etc.
In closing, while I do agree that the wordings of the verses lean heavily into a physical consumption of the body and blood of Christ, I am also of the belief that translations and interpretations get confused, especially when trying to ascribe meaning and words to an ancient language. (And that’s if the translations are not skewed on purpose…)
After doing all of this research and myself being a believer of Christ, I have come to this understanding:
The ingestion of the bread/wafer that indicates Jesus’s flesh is a symbolic gesture for that person saying, “I come to you, Jesus Christ.” while the drinking of the “wine” is akin to saying, “I believe in you, Jesus Christ.” Not that Jesus was literally referring to Himself as a physical manifestation that people must eat and drink.
It is my belief that Jesus was indeed speaking in metaphorical terms and talking from a spiritual standpoint. He knew that the hard-hearted, the unbelievers, the stubborn materialistic inclinations of some people would not understand His sayings no matter how He worded it. And that some people may be misled by this teaching. So He spoke with this type of parable to the people that could glean meaning and understanding that Jesus Christ is asking His followers to pursue a spiritual path – instead of the physical.
Of course, I have to admit, for Jesus to describe people’s manner of following Him in this way, does leave it open to different perceptions/interpretations. After all, if one were to read His verses in the literal sense, there is no other way to differentiate His meaning other than an actual consuming of His flesh and drinking of His blood. And it’s fascinating that even other Catholics cannot come to a resounding definitive answer as to the purpose of the eucharist/transubstantiation.
But perhaps to clarify, and put this whole situation to rest, Jesus also says this to his disciples after his very controversial, parabolic teaching:
Again, why Jesus Christ decided to tell His allegory in such a perplexing way, is perhaps the bigger mystery.
Was He testing His followers and other believers/non-believers alike? To see who would still follow Him and understand this spiritual/conscious teachings?
(And on the flip-side, to see who would take His words literal and continue seeking the physical fulfillment of a worldly life with material sustenance – instead of The Word and Life of the Spirit…)
Bottom line, God knows the motives of our heart. If we come to Him with a sincere and genuine faith and pure intentions, God knows this; and whether we believe in the literal transubstantiation of the eucharist or not, it should not be the key determinant in what kind of person you are or what kind of life you’re living.
After all, one can participate in the mass, yet not be a believer at all…
Personal disclaimer: These are my understandings and beliefs only. In no way am I claiming to know the absolute Truth. This is just what resonates with me and what I have come to realize during my quest to seek Jesus Christ and information I have gathered from the Bible and other sources.
Fact checking is extremely important. I want to reiterate not to take everything at face value; no matter what you read, where you read it from, or who you hear it from. And to be clear, do not rely on “fact checking” websites to give you accurate information either. These are just as likely, (if not even more likely…), to feed false information and false debunking accounts to manipulate the reader. Please take everything into consideration before adhering to a certain narrative – and always keep your mind open to other possibilities.
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