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  • 1.
    Kaliff, Anders
    et al.
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Arts, Department of Archaeology and Ancient History, Archaeology.
    Østigård, Terje
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Arts, Department of Archaeology and Ancient History.
    Cremation, Corpses and Cannibalism: Comparative Cosmologies and Centuries of Cosmic Consumption2017Book (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Death matters and the matters of death are initially, and to a large extent, the decaying flesh of the corpse. Cremation as a ritual practice is the fastest and most optimal way of dissolving the corpse’s flesh, either by annihilation or purification, or a combination. Still, cremation was not the final rite, and the archaeological record testifies that the dead represented a means to other ends – the flesh, and not the least the bones – have been incorporated in a wide range of other ritual contexts. While human sacrifices and cannibalism as ritual phenomena are much discussed in anthropology, archaeology has an advantage, since the actual bone material leaves traces of ritual practices that are unseen and unheard of in the contemporary world. As such, this book fleshes out a broader and more coherent understanding of prehistoric religions and funeral practices in Scandinavia by focusing on cremation, corpses and cannibalism.

  • 2.
    Østigård, Terje
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Arts, Department of Archaeology and Ancient History. Nord Africa Inst, Uppsala, Sweden..
    Holy water: the works of water in defining and understanding holiness2017In: Wine Economics and Policy, ISSN 1934-5070, E-ISSN 2049-1948, Vol. 4, no 3, article id UNSP e1205Article in journal (Refereed)
    Abstract [en]

    Holy water has a central role in shaping the understanding and beliefs of holiness in general, but how does holy water work, and what defines holy water? By analyzing holy water in three different religious traditions-Christianity in Northern Europe, Ethiopian Orthodox Christianity, and Hinduism-the aim is to discuss the metaphysical essence of water in human understanding and ideas of holiness embodied in water. On the one hand, holy water represents purity and has to be protected from defilement, but on the other hand, many holy rivers are severely polluted. This seeming paradox will be analyzed by focusing on actual beliefs and uses of holy water in ritual and religious practices. Holy water transmits purity and holiness, but it also transfers, transports, and transforms impurities. In the process of obtaining spiritual purity, devotees may pollute the holy because holy water is believed to have a divine agency. By comparing ritual practices and beliefs in three distinct religious traditions in Europe, Africa, and Asia, it is possible to enhance the understanding of the ways holiness and holy water are perceived to work in cultural-specific religious worldviews based on essential capacities of water cross-culturally. This directs the attention to the structuring mechanisms at work because water is conceptualized and used as holy in remarkably similar ways in many religions.

  • 3.
    Østigård, Terje
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Arts, Department of Archaeology and Ancient History.
    Nilens livgivende vann: Ritualer og religioner fra kildene til den egyptiske sivilisasjonen2018Book (Other academic)
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  • 4.
    Østigård, Terje
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Arts, Department of Archaeology and Ancient History. Nord Africa Inst, Uppsala, Sweden..
    Water from stone: archaeology and conservation at Florida's springs2018In: Antiquity, ISSN 0003-598X, E-ISSN 1745-1744, Vol. 92, no 362, p. 549-551Article, book review (Other academic)
  • 5.
    Østigård, Terje
    et al.
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Arts, Department of Archaeology and Ancient History.
    Kaliff, Anders
    Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Arts, Department of Archaeology and Ancient History, Archaeology.
    Likbrud og dødsbryllup: Sjelen, sykdommer ogoldnordiske gravskikker2020Book (Other academic)
    Abstract [no]

    Døden og gravmaterial har definert arkeologifaget som disiplin siden tidenes morgen, men selv i den antikvariske samtiden ble etnologi og folklore i liten grad brukt som kilde til kunnskap om forhistorien og oldnordiske gravskikker. De fleste gravstudier har derfor ikke analysert dødens essens: sjelens substans. Gjennom en religionsvitenskapelig forståelse av etnologi og folklore presenteres en ny arkeologisk analyse av Nordens forhistoriske gravmaterial og døden som fenomen. En studie av sjelens substans må bokstavelig talt trenge inn i hjernen, beinmargen, blodet og skjelettet, som er menneskets åndelige essens, og inn i kvinnens livmor hvor sjelen skapes og fødes. Sjelene til forfedrene kroppsligjorde seg som alver, vetter og andre åndelige vesener. Den sjelelige essens i fysisk substans var også kosmologisk kraft, som kunne brukes og misbrukes, og derfor er dette også en berettelse om sykdom og trolldom. Medisinsk kannibalisme og bruk av de døde og døden var et effektivt beskyttelsesmiddel og den sterkeste medisin i tradisjonell legekunst. I den forhistoriske medisinhistorien var sykdom direkte og personlige angrep av ulike forfedre, som levde misfornøyde i en hinsidig tilværelse i ny kroppslig form. Sjelene kunne ta utallige former som ulike vetter, noen gode og andre onde, men en ting var sikkert: De ville komme tilbake til de levende, og de var farlige for de gjenlevende. Slekten definerte de døde og de døde definerte slekten. Dødsbryllup forente derfor ikke bare de levende og døde, men også fremtidige familier og slekter av forfedre, og sentralt i denne kosmologien var de store årtidsfestivaler, som kulminerte med den tradisjonelle julefeiringen.

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