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the custom of the Hindus, who do not take daughters of
their near relations. The author of this work saw one
of the learned men of this sect, who read to him a book of
modern composition upon their customs, and therein was
stated that it is permitted to mix with every woman except
one's daughter. This man began to abuse the work, saying
that the text was contrary to the old customs of this class,
and that no such thing is to be found in the ancient books,
and declared it at last to be a mistake of the copyist. They
say that the woman exists for the sake of being desired ;
she may be a mother or a daughter. In their opinion, there
is no enjoyment higher than that of love; the Hindus call
it kdmada */ and say that, when a woman and a man are in
close conversation, whoever disturbs them is worthy of God's
malediction, because they both therein share a state of hap-
piness. The Agama favors both sexes equally, and makes
no distinction between women; they may belong to whom-
soever; men and women compose equally humankind, and
whatever they bring forth makes part of it. This sect hold
women in great esteem, and call them s' aktis (powers) ;
and to ill treat a s' akti, that is, a woman, is held a crime.
The high and low value the Lulls (public girls) very high,
and call them deva kanya, ** daughters of the gods."

Among them it is a meritorious act to sacrifice a man,
which they call naramedha ; then the gdmedha, or sacrifice
of a cow; further, the asvamSda, and, finally, any other
animal. When they perform a sacrificial ceremony, which
they call K&la-dek {kaladeya), they unite the blood of as
many animals as possible in a large vase, and place there-
in the man whom they bring over to their creed, and they
drink with him from that blood. Whenever the worship
of a god, or of the wife of a god is performed, the cere-
mony is called ishtafn, and the master of the ceremony
ishta. The creed of this sect is, that any god or wife of

*Givinp what is wished; granting one's desire.


a god may be worshiped in two ways : the one is called
bhadram , which consists in abstaining from shedding
blood, and in being pure ; the other, termed vakam, which
admits spilling blood, commerce with women, and neglect
of purity ; but they think this second preferable, and say
that each deity, male or female, has a form under which
he or she is to be represented ; but that the worship of a
female divinity aflFords a greater recompense. When they
have an intimate connection with their own or another's
wife, they behold in her the image of the goddess, and
think to personate the god, her husband, and at this time
they sing a prescribed song, which to entune at the very
moment of the closest junction, they believe to be most
recommendable. There is a deity whose praise they sing
with unwashed hands ; and another whom they worship
with the mark of their caste drawn with dirt on their fore-
head. Some of these goddesses are by them called " queens,*'
and others " servants '* ; and the worshiper of a woman is
also termed ** servant.*^

The author of this work saw a man who, singing the
customary song, sat upon a corpse which he kept unburied
until it came to a state of dissolution, and then ate the
flesh of it ; this act they hold extremely meritorious. They
say that the desires of this and of the other world attain
their accomplishment by means of the worship of a god or
of a goddess. The followers of this sect send their barren
wives, in order that they may become pregnant, to the
performers of such acts, and these men use the women be-
fore the eyes of their husbands : whoever does not send his
wife to his master, renders in their opinion the purity of
his faith very doubtful.

Among the great idols of the country of Kaling is
Gang-Durgd. They say Ramachandra dec, one of their
great R^jas, descendant of the celebrated family of Kas'
yapa, ruled in Orissa. This Raja, having called a gold-
smith, gave him the mass of gold which he demanded for
making an image of Durga. The goldsmith, having car-
ried the gold home, intended to form the goddess of cop-
per and to purloin the gold, thinking that, as to break into
pieces an idol is not permitted among the Hindus, he could


keep the gold without fear of discovery. With this project
he went to sleep. When he awoke he saw that one-half
of the gold remained on the spot, and that the other half
was formed into the image of Durga ; having carried this
with the remaining gold to Ramachandra d6o, and told the
story, the R4ja gave him the residue of gold, and carried the
idol, in his house and in his travels, constantly with him.
They say that, after the death of Kas' yapa the Great,
Makan-d^o assembled under his sceptre the nations of this
country, and that Vichnunath deo Sukra conquered the
town Sri Kakul from the Rdja Nanda. Ramachandra d6o
moved his army toward Sri Kakul, and took the fort;
Vichnu-nAth, being informed of it, marched against him ;
Ramachandra deo, unable to resist his force, fled; Ganga
Durga was by her guardians thrown away in a village,
from whence she fell into the hands of a Brahman, who
flung her into the barn of a villager. This man, having
taken her up, carried her to his house. The goddess ap-
peared to him in a dream, and said: "Offer me in sacrifice
thy eldest son, and I will make thee Raja. ^ After a cer-
tain time, the villager told this secret to Vichnu-n&th d6o,
who, having taken the idol from him, gave him a horse
ornamented with gold, and a magnificent dress, and carried
the goddess to Nar^nya p6r, his residence. As she de-
manded from him also the sacrifice of a man, V'^ichnu-nath
d^o killed every year one of the thieves and like sorts of
men before her altar. After the death of Vichnu-ndth d6o,
his sons did the same. When Vikramajet deo, who de-
scended from Vichna-nath d6o, was killed, and the country
disturbed by insurrections, then Dasventrau, who was one
of the grandchildren of Vichnu-n4th d^o, having taken up
Durga, fled from fear of the army, commanded by Jalil ul
Khader Tulajl Khan Beg, to M4rktil. Bhfipati, the Rdja
of Mdrkul, being also afraid of the attack of the famous
general, sent him the goddess Durga, on Monday, the ninth
day of the month Rabish ul avel, of the year 1062 of the
Hegira (September, 1651, A. D.). The idol was of gold,
in the form of a female, with limbs very well proportioned,
four arms, in two of her right hands carrying a three-
pointed pike, which the Hindus call T'risi/ia, and with


which the goddess was striking Mahisha Asura, a demon
under the form of a buffalo ; he was beneath her right foot ;
in another hand she had a white ball, and in the fourth,
the chakra, or discus, which is a circular weapon peculiar
to the Hindus; under her left foot was a lion, and beneath
him a throne. When they weighed the image, they found
it equal to four panchiri, measure of the Dekhan. Even
now, they sacrifice in every village of the Kohistan of Nanda-
p^ir, and country adjacent, a man of good family.

Another idol, called Mdvelt, is in the town of Bister.
The belief of the people there is that, when an hostile
army comes to attack them, the divinity, under the form of
a woman selling vegetables, goes into the camp of the
enemy, and whoever eats what she offers, dies ; and during
the night she appears like one of the public girls, and who-
ever finds her charming, and calls her, meets with death.
They relate many strange and wonderful things about her.
When in the year of the Hegira 1069, A. D. 1658-59, the
famous general Tavalji Khan Beg besieged and took the
fort Kot Bahar, which is stronger than the fort of Bister,
there died so many men and beasts of various maladies and
the particular effects of climate, that their number exceeds
all computation ; and this the inhabitants of the fort of
Bister attributed to the power of the goddess.

Sri Kanta, a Kachmirian, is conversant with many sci-
ences of the Hindus ; he knows the sdstras, that is, the
sastras of the Pandits, namely, the Smriti sastra, or "the
written law *^ ; the Kavisdstra, " poetics ^* ; the Tarka-
sdstra, "logic and dialectics**; the Vdidyd vidyd, "the
medical science'*; the Jy6tisha, "astronomy**; and the
Pdtanjala, that is, the restraining of the breath ; he knows
besides very well the Vedanta, or metaphysics, etc. In
the year 1049 of the Hegira (1639 A. D.) the author of
this book saw him in Kachmir ; he is one of the saints
of the Hindus. Sri Kant was invested by the inhabitant of
heaven, N6r-ed-din Mahommed Jehangir P4dshah, with the
dignity of a judge of the Hindus, in order that they may
be tranquillized, and in every concern have nothing to de-
mand from the Muselmans : as it has been established in
the code of Akbar, that the tribes of mankind, high and


low, with the existing diversity of creeds and difference of
customs, which are all under the trust of a beneficent lord,
ought to dwell in the shade of protection of a just king,
and persevere in the performance of their worship and the
exigencies of their devotion, so that, by the authority de-
rived from the chiefs, the sons of the age may not stretch
the hand of oppression over the condition of the people.

The belief of the Hindus is as follows : all the tirths,
that is ** places of pilgrimage,** which are in the world are
in imitation of the fixed model Haratirth^ which is in
Kachmir ; for, after having visited the holy place of Kach-
mir, there is no desire to see that of any other coun-
try ; and they call it the great place of pilgrimage, likewise
fraydga^ which is celebrated at Mahdb^d ; there are Shah
abad ed-din pCir, and Gangavara, LS,rasun, and Kisallhazra.
There are many miraculous things in Kachmir ; one of them
is Sandebdr, and they relate : In ancient times, a holy
Brahman dwelt in a cavern of the mountain, where he de-
voted himself to the worship of the Almighty God. Once
every year, he went to the Ganges to bathe. After having
passed several years in that way, Gang4 said to the Brah-
man : ** Thou measurest always such a length of road, on
which thou dost set aside the worship of God : my con-
vention with thee is this: that, when the sun reaches the
constellation of the Bull, I will three times a-day come to
thy resting-place.** From this time, when the great lumi-
nary throws his effulgence toward, the constellation of the
Bull, the water of the river springs up boiling from the
basin of the fountain, which is near the place of his de-
votion. Sundeberari, in the cavern of the mountain, be-
came celebrated : it is a square basin, and has on its eastern
wall an open cavity, from which, as well as from several
other vents and holes in the sides of the basin, the water
springs up. However steadfastly one may look, the bot-
tom cannot be discovered. And in the middle of the
eastern side, there are seven holes, which the people of
Kachmir call Saptarshi, *' the seven Rishis ** ; on the north-
ern side is an issue, which they call dama bhavdni; when
the world-illuminating sun begins to enter the constellation
of the Bull, the water appears there in the following man-


Tier : it springs up first from the large cavity, then from the
Saptarshi: so the Hindus call seven rakshasas, and give their
name to the constellation of the Great Bear. Further, the
water comes up from the dama b/iavdni, that is, "the man-
sion of Bliavdni^ the wife of Mahadeo.*^ When the cavity
is filled, then the water, passing over the borders, runs out;
the Sanyasis and other Hindus, who had come from dis-
tant places, throw themselves into it, and the people who
find no room, carry water from it. Afterward the ebul-
lition declines in such a manner, that there remains not
the least trace of the water. In this month the water
boils up three times a-day, namely, in the morning, at
mid-day, and in the afternoon, at the hour of prayer.
After the lapse of this month, no more water is seen until
the sun enters again into the sign of the Bull.


The historians of the times know Sandeberari among
the wonders described by the ancient learned men of
Kachmir. The ignorant among the Muselmans of Kachmir
say that Sandeberari is the well of Abu AH, and believe
it to be the work of Shaikh Arrdis; the truth is, that
Hajet ul hak never came to Kachmir : as it is evident
from the concurring testimony of history.

The illustrious Shaikh Abu Ali Hussain

The son of Abdullah Sina (God bless his grave!) — The
father of Abu AH was a native of the environs of Balkh,
and his mother was Sitara. Abu All was born in the year
333 of the Hegira (944 A. D.). When he had attained
his eighteenth year, he was conversant with all the liberal
sciences. They relate that Nuh, the son of Manzur
S^m&ni,* in a grave malady, when the doctors knew no
remedy, was restored to health by the salutary power of the

*The name of this celebrated personage is Abu All Husat'n Ben
Abdallah, Ben Sina, Al Shaikh Al ra' is ; he is commonly called Ibn
Sina; the Jews name him Arabisans Aben Sina and the Christians


songs of Abu Ali. When the S4m§,nlan were in distress,
he directed himself toward Khorasan, the king of which
country, Ali, the son of Mamun ^Massar, received Abu Ali
with perfect favor. When Abu Ali was accused before the
Sultan Mahmud Sabaktegin, of being opposed to the religion
and creed of the ancient wise men, and when the Sultan
showed a disposition to apprehend him, the Shaikh was
alarmed and fled to Abyuverd ; the satellites of the Sultan
followed him with pictures and descriptions of his person,
which were well drawn, and sent by the Sultan to all parts
of the kingdom, in order that the magistrates and head men
of office by means of this picture might bring the fugitive
before the Sultan. The Shaikh, informed of it, fled toward
Jorjan (Georgia). By means of the remedies of the Shaikh,
many sick w^ere cured. Shamsen ul mall Kabfis, the son of
Vashamger, had a nephew on his sister's side on a sick-bed.
All the remedies applied by the physicians proved useless ;
by order of Kabus, they brought the Shaikh to the pillow of
the sick ; but in spite of all his cares and observations, the
learned physician could not discover the cause of his illness.
The Shaikh said to himself : ** This young man may be in
love, and from exceeding pudicity keep his secret unclosed.'*
On that account he ordered the names of all the places and
towns to be written, and one after another to be read be-
fore the patient, while the Shaikh held his finger upon the
pulse of the young man. When they pronounced the name
of the abode of the beloved, the motion of the pulse of the
enamored was perceptible ; the Shaikh ordered also the
names of all the private houses to be read ; at that of
the object of his desires, the pulse of the desirous became
disturbed ; moreover they began to read the names of the
inhabitants of the houses ; when they arrived at that of his
idol, the pulse of the adorer again beat higher. Mazheri
of Kashmir says: —


Online LibraryCharles Reed PeersUniversal classics library (Volume 6) → online text (page 24 of 37)