As a former catholic when I was younger I was always interested in reading about people bearing the stigmata.  Im sure most if not all of you have heard about Padre Pio, probably the most well known stigmatic in history.  Now as an atheist I am wanting to know of any serious articles or books that have been written debunking stigmata.  My whole take on it is people that are self mutilating themselves and passing it off as the wounds of christ from the crucifixion.  But I dont believe that Jesus ever existed so there wasnt a crucifixion.  Anyone can put holes in their hands and say "Im so close to christ that I share his wounds and suffering". I say bullshit!

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Here's the thing: stigmata wounds are in the wrong place! One person will have them on the palms of their hands and another will have them on their wrists. What's up with that?

I remember hearing once that nailing someone up to the cross throughthe palms of their hands is useless, the nails will pull through to the edge of the palm from your weight (which would surely be agonizing), so going through the wrist and in between the two bones of the lower arm would be the "right" way to portray it.  Crucifixions did indeed happen in the Roman empire (such as to Spartacus' rebels) so I imagine they knew how to do it.

Don't know how accurate that is.

 

I love hearing stigmata stories because theyre just so wacky. Tears of blood and olive oil seeping out of pictures and statues. Old cultural village stuff. ... Bizarre

I read that the area of the body that people never seem to get stigmata on is the spear wound that was apparently used to finally kill Jesus. In the torso somewhere. The reason nobody does that one is because it doesnt specify in the bible which side the wound was on.

lol 

Doesn't stop half of them from putting their "wounds" in the wrong place (the palms).

Think about the feet! If the feet are also nailed and suddenly the hands are free, then you fall forward with your feet still nailed to the cross. Ironically, Jesus is often depicted with his feet nailed to the cross but he has a little support under the feet.

I don't remember where, but I think I heard a historian say that generally crucifixion involved tying people to the cross, not nailing them. The nailing thing may have been one of those things added on to the story as time went by to maximize the suffering Jesus supposedly went through.

Couple of decades ago the corpse of a mummy from around the turn of the first millennium was found...he had curved nails driven through his heel bones. There was some debate over whether scratches on his bones were indicative of his hands having been nailed as well. I believe the Romans may have tied his arms up. Pretty gruesome.

It's very accurate - the nail went through the arm between the ulna and the radius, where there is the greatest degree of support:

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