WTF Did I Just Read?

Kondraty Selivanov was an 18th century Russian peasant, with enough charisma to amass a large following, successfully finding the Skoptsy in the Tsarist Russia around 1771. The Skoptsy is a sect of Christianity that believed that castration would bring them into the Kingdom of Heaven. But, there’s a catch: They needed to castrate 144,000 people in order to bring about the end of the world, the last judgement, and the resurrection.

The Skoptsy believed that not only did Jesus die on the cross, but that he was also castrated. This movement derives from the Gospel of Matthew 19:12 that reads “There are castrates who were castrated by others and there are castrates who castrated themselves for the Kingdom of God.” In fact, Skoptsy means The Castrated!

The Seals

The castration was done by both men and women, in a ritual ceremony called “the seal”. Men and women would remove parts of their sexual organs as a way of sealing their faith in God. They believed that this was the way to live in true imitation of Jesus Christ.

For men there were two seals that could be done: the lesser seal and the great seal. In the lesser seal, only the scrotums and testes would be removed, while the great seal removed everything including the penis. The removal process happened in one swift motion, as the operator seize the parts to be removed with one hand and struck them off with the other hand. Instruments used in the castration were pieces of glass, razors, and knives, and a red-hot iron rod or poker for cauterizing the wound, thus naming it the fiery baptism.
For women, their breasts were cut off and their external genitalia was mutilated.

Brief History:

Selivanov lived during Catherine the Great, who thought of the Skoptsy as “simpletons who believed in irrational nonsense.” However, she thought of herself as enlightened, and sent several of the Skoptsy people, including Selivanov, to colonize in Siberia.

During the 2 decades that he was exiled in Siberia he Claimed that he was the Messiah and also Catherine’s later husband, Peter III. This claim won him an audience with the new Tsar, Pavel I, after Catherine’s death. Pavel I was curious to meet the man who claimed to be his father, however, the meeting was cut short when Selivanov tried to urge the Tsar to get castrated, he was then send to a mad house.

Luck came to Selivanov in 1801, when Pavel’s son, Alexander, took the throne. He found himself to be a welcomed guest at the mansions in the capital, and even Alexei Elyansky, a Royal Chamberlain, believed in the Skoptsy cause. Elyansky had prepared and given to Alexander a detailed proposal to convert all of Russia in 1804.

Alexander refused the Elyansky plans to have the army and state institutions be guided by a “holy eunuch” and to be advised by Selivanov. Elyansky was then sent to a monastery. However, in 1820, Alexander became aware that members of the military had undergone the castration, and just how persuasive Selivanov is. Alexander expelled Selivanov, and confined him to a monastery outside of Moscow where he died in 1832 at the age of 112.

The Skoptsy had regarded their 20-year period in the capital as their “golden-age. However, after the death of their leader, they had to come up with excuses for their missing genitals after self-castration was made illegal in 1816. Those found guilty of having self-castrated were sent once again to Siberia under the orders of the Tsar to help settle the frontier.

The Stalinist Regime

It was Karl Marx who predicted the end of the existing order, and believed that it was not the castrated who would inherit the Earth, but the proletariat. Vladimir Lenin, a successful Marx’s interpreters, seized power in 1917, and dispatched agents to accelerate the world revolution.

Originally, the Skoptsy were in agreement with the new regime, believing that Bolsheviks meant about religious tolerance. However, they found themselves having to lie in order to protect their mission of 144,00 castration.

It was the Stalinist regime that eventually marked the Skoptsy for extinction, using anti-religious propaganda. After a century, they were successfully wiped out by a rival sect.

Did you enjoy this issue?


Nothing new in any of this. “Heaven’s Gate” Eight of the male members of the group, including Applewhite, voluntarily underwent castration as an extreme means of maintaining the ascetic lifestyle.[87] The group initially attempted castration by having one of the members, a former nurse, perform the castration, but this initial attempt was very unsuccessful, almost resulted in the patient’s death, and caused at least one member to leave Heaven’s Gate. Every castration that followed this initial one was done in a hospital.

This was very entertaining. Would the Skoptsy qualify for the Darwin Awards? At least they helped to improve the evolution of mankind by removing their genes - which seem to be very vulnerable for dumb religious fanatism- from the genetic pool of future generations. Compated to the Skoptsy, todays purity culture looks like a healthy and liberal attitude…


Yeah, I’ve heard of the practice, but didn’t know all those details. Thanks

The mad monk Grigori Rasputin (confidante of the Romanoff royal family) believed that in order to be able to truly repent a person must first commit some industrial strength sins, especially of a sexual nature. He was apparently quite a rake.

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the stupid and the gullible never cease to leave me with a gaping jaw of WTF

Does it strike you at all odd how many believers seem to be described describe by that sobriquet?

Some Darwin award winners from 2020. ( I have never heard of that sinkhole and have no idea where it might be.)

I guess one doesn’t have to be ignorant, gullible or stupid to be a believer, but those things certainly seem to be advantageous. :innocent:

Hmmm, I hope the people castrated have to be part of their movement, and not just anyone who’s been castrated, otherwise Trans people like myself will bring about destruction on the planet. Whoopsie

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well most certainly not all people indoctrinated into religious ideology are gullible or stupid, but definitely ignorant to how the natural world works. makes it easier to maintain the belief if one chooses to remain ignorant or not. for some, the though of losing faith is scary, thats why tolerance and welcoming by our community is so important, even is Atheist gatherings seem a bit churchy, it helps fill that gap of community structure that so many theist cherish, and once they leave their fairth, that is something no longer available to them, which is why for me, the AR community is so important.

Gee, I seem to have Segued into another topic, how did I manage that?

Don’t worry, It’s common here. You’ll be amazed where we can end up. Especially common when the poster is some dropkick apologist who hasn’t mastered abstract thought, let alone critical thinking. People get annoyed or just bored with the same tedious drivel.

Just so. That could happen with Atheist Foundation of Australia. They even had conferences in Canberra with all kinds of guest speakers. Plus T shirts and key rings.


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What an Asshole! Hijacked your own thread before I could do it. Snnnneeeeeeeky Bastard!

Meh, I care little. To busy with other Atheist Republic work

If you want to see something that’s occupying serious fruit loop territory, check out Lanz von Liebenfels. Who was a defrocked Cistercian monk who launched into some truly bizarre realms of fantasy with his magnum opus, a frankly wacky excursion into Biblical exegesis which claimed, among other things, that the Jews were “beast-men” who buggered Jesus before the Crucifixion.

Yes, you read that correctly. His warped little tome bore the wonderfully Pythonesque title of Theozoology, or the Account of the Sodomite Apelings and the Divine Electron. No, I kid you not. You can, if you wish to read some completely moon pie gibberish, download this freaky piece of scribbling and experience the weapons grade tard for yourself.

This would be a source of the purest comedy of the absurd, but for one hideous detail … Liebenfels’ outpourings were influential in the formation of Hitler’s view of the Jews, and led in turn to the historical horrors of the Holocaust.

Yes, Liebenfels was a far right racist who mixed the rind peelings of Madame Blavatsky’s “Theosophy” with his own unique mediaeval bestiary, and a heavy leavening of his own brand of fulminating anti-Semitism.

You can learn more about this individual and his twisted influence on history here.

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Hell, we don’t have to go that deep down the rabbit hole. I loved the post but we could also have go to the beginnings of Christianity and the ever beloved first protestant, Martin (Mad Man) Luther for an example of Christian bogotry and hatred.

Erik Erikson, American developmental psychologist and psychoanalyst known for his theory on psychological development of human beings. He coined the phrase identity crisis. for example, emphasized that Martin Luther was not only neurotic, but psychotic as well. This accusation implies that one of our great heroes of the faith is one whose sanity is seriously questioned.

*Luther falsely predicted his own death 6 times.
*The real-life Luther was a man passionately convicted of his own rightness, so convinced that he thought anyone who disagreed with him was either ignorant, stupid, or evil.
*He was knocked from his horse by lightening and that spurred him to become a monk.
*He would go into the confessional and recite the previous day’s sins not for five minutes, but for two hours, three hours, sometimes even four hours—reciting in detail every sin he could remember. (Compulsive Whack-job.) This is a neurotic preoccupation with guilt.
*Luther’s break from the Catholic Church, helped to unleash a massive popular (and bloody) uprising called the German Peasants’ War.

  • Luther’s Admonition to Peace was published in early 1525. His admonition to peace having failed, Luther’s new position can fairly be characterized as an admonition to massacre. In May of 1525, he published a work originally titled Against the Rioting Peasants , the title of which was quickly changed to Against the Murderous, Thieving Hordes of Peasants , in which he called on everyone to kill the peasants, en masse:
    *Luther started off supporting the Jews and speaking out against Catholic prejudices; however, The Jews didn’t en masse convert to Lutheranism. So Luther turned against them, becoming increasingly antagonistic towards the Jews throughout his life.
  • One of the last works Luther ever wrote was his 1543 book On the Jews and Their Lies , published just three years before his dead. The book is chock full of the standard anti-Semitic conspiracy theories…’

Luther offered a seven-fold solution to his Jewish problem:

  1. Set fire to the Synagogs
  2. Destroy their homes
  3. Take away their writings.
  4. Kill any Rabbi that teaches.
  5. Kill Jews if you see them on the highways. (No safe conduct.)
  6. Steal all their wealth from them.
  7. No Jew should have a position higher than a Christian, Make them toil in labor with axes, spades, brooms, etc…
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