In all of this, my hypothesis has concerned mimesis: Because humans imitate one another, they have had to find a means of dealing with contagious similarity, which could lead to the pure and simple disappearance of their society. What I call (after Freud) the "founding murder"- the immolation of a sacrificial victim who is both guilty of disorder and able to restore order- is constantly reenacted in die rituals at the origin of our institutions. Since the dawn of humanity, millions of innocent victims have been killed in this way to enable their fellow humans to live together or at least not to destroy one another.
On War and Apocalypse René Girard First Things; Aug/Sep 2009; 195; Docstoc pg. 17 Reproduced with permission
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