« הקודםהמשך »
“ The wife of Siva is also known here under the name of SATTI; but in Sanskrit, Sakti.
66 « The festival of Saca was held for five days every year ; during which time, servants commanded their masters, and wore a kind of royal garment, called Zogani.'*
66 The festival of the wife of Síva continues nine days, or rather nights, and is called Nava Ráttiri, i.e. nine nights : three of these, however, are for SARASVATIt, and the other six for Sakti. On this occasion, those who have not been accustomed to eat flesh, or drink intoxicating liquors, do so freely. All restraints are now thrown off; and scenes of the most sickening kind wind up the ceremonies. No young female of respectable character will dare to show herself in public. Servants assume the airs and practices of their masters; school-boys, dressed in gay apparel f, go from house to house, to dance and sing songs in honour of Sakti: gambling, fighting of cocks and of rams, with other rude and ludicrous performances, fill up this indecent festival.
“ “SALAMBO, a goddess; the same as AstARTE ; eternally roaming up and down a mountain.'s
“ Is it not rather striking, that the wife of Siva is also known by the name of SILAMBÚ; and that this name also signifies a mountain. Another of her names is PĀrvati, meaning she who was born in a mountain. She is called daughter of the mountain ; and sometimes the mountain nymph, who captivated Siva from a course of ascetic austerities.
“ • The Babylonians and Assyrians worshipped what by the Greeks and Romans was termed øandòs, or Priapus. The priaps were three hundred fathoms, or three hundred cubits, high; and by whom the priaps were erected, there is much fable.' || “ • The Egyptians, most probably, meant the sun and
Some suppose Osiris to signify the efficient cause of
* Universal History.
+ The wife of BRAHMA.
things; and Isıs, matter. Osiris was represented in a human form, in a posture not very decent, signifying his generative and nutritive faculty. His living image was the bull. The image of Isis, usually in the form of a woman, with cow's horns on her head.'* Calmet also says: • ASTARTE was the same as the Isis of Egypt; and again quoting JEROME, who in several places translated the name AstARTE by PRIAPUS.'
“ In reference to the indecent object alluded to as being worshipped by the Assyrians, it is well known that the Hindoos do the same thing. The lingam (Priapus) in the Hindoo temple of Sedambarem is supposed to have sprung from the earth of itself; and its foundation is believed to be in the lower world.t
“ As it respects Osiris, it is more than probable that he, in his posture, generative and nutritive faculties,' was the same as the Siva of the Hindoos. The bull was sacred to the former, and also to the latter. Isis being represented with cow's horns, finds a parallel in Síva or his wife, with the crescent moon fixed on the head.
“ In conclusion, whether we look at the corresponding traits of character in Moloch and Kali; in BảAL-PEOR and the Chiun of Amos; at the mutual assumption of either sex by Siva and his partner; at the term Mother being applied to the latter, and also to the Succoth-BENOTH (ASTARTE or Mylitta) of the Assyrian, Phænician, Jewish, and other nations; at the cow's horns (so called) of Assyria, and the crescent of India ; at the young virgins who made a sacrifice of chastity to the SUCCOTH-BENOTH of antiquity, and to the
* Univrsal History.
+ BUCKINGHAM says, in his Travels is csopotamia, vol. i. p. 406., of some antiques he saw taken from the ruins of Babylon! — “ The larger antiques comprehended a figure in brass, embracing a large LINGAM between its knees, precisely in the style of the Hindu representation of that emblem." He mentions also, in another place, “ The Indian figure of a man, with a painted bonnet, and beard, embracing the LINGAN."
May not the circumstances mentioned in Gen. ix. 23 have been the origin of this worship?
consort of the Oriental Siva; at the use made of the regular female votaries of both systems; at their mutual assumption, on certain occasions, of the male attire ; at the lion, as belonging to the goddess of Assyria, and also to her of India ; to the festival of Shach or Sáca, and that of Sattı or SAKTI in reference to the lascivious way in which it was conducted, and the peculiar garments worn on that occasion ; at the term SALAMBO being the name of the one goddess, and also of the other; at its true meaning, in reference to a mountain where they mutually dwelt; at the BÁAL-PEOR of Assyria, and the Israelites; and the Osiris of Egypt, the Daraos of the Greeks, the Priapus of the Romans, and the LINGAM of the Hindoos (worshipped now in the temples * of the East); we see some of the most striking coincidences, which never could have been the result of any thing but the identity of their origin."
Looking, therefore, at the primitive locality of the present human family; at the five books of Moses ! at the book of Joshua! of Judges ! of Ruth! and the Psalms ! and Isaiah ! and Jeremiah ! and Ezekiel ! and Daniel ! and Jonah! and the minor prophets; viewing the remarkable identity of the two leading deities (male or female) of the Assyrians, the Egyptians, the Jews, the Hindoos, the Greeks, and Romans; we may surely expect to meet with many vivid illustrations of the sacred volume in the languages, customs, and superstitions of the East.
On me subjects I have written with considerable plainness; but, for prudential reasons, have been obliged to conceal the worst.' Would that the whole could be safely disclosed ! then would the people of these realms arise from their lethargy, and cry for the spiritual and mental emancipation of
In the Universal History, it is said of a temple in Egypt : Near the temple was a lake, in the midst of which stood a stone altar; and every day, many people swam to the altar in the midst of the lake, to perform their devotions." This is a correct description of vast numbers of Hindoo temples, and of the way in which men go to the stone altar in the middle of the tank, to perform their devotions.
the Oriental slave. The time has gone by for the flippant philosophers of France and England to talk about the “ virtuous Hindoo and his venerable system of ethics ;" we have looked into the vile arcana, and dragged (so far as we dare) the monster to the light. Great Britain has acted nobly to the West; she has laid a train for the destruction of slavery and vice in her own and other states! her story will find a place in the literature of every nation ; her fame will have an echo in every age and clime; but let her now look at the East ! and say, has she not there the most glorious field for her benevolent, her spiritual ! achievements ?
As to the origin of the various resemblances found in this volume, I am free to confess I do not think they have been derived from the written word of our Scriptures, but from oral communications; and that they have been moulded into their present shape by the political and theological notions of the people by whom they were received.
It has been my object as much as possible to avoid controversy; hence I have left the reader to compare this with other commentaries; and doubt not, in general, he will be led to right conclusions.
Some of the articles are, perhaps, too brief, but no Student will be long without ascertaining the meaning.
In very many instances I preserve the Tamul idiom, but in general have distinguished it by inverted commas; there are, however, some sentences without that distinction, which may lead the reader to suppose they are my own composition, when they are nothing more than the literal rendering of an Eastern phrase. I am conscious that my English is not always so pure and national as it ought to be; but my numerous years of absence and foreign associations must be my apology.
Should Providence again take me to those distant regions, I shall, at all convenient opportunities, pursue the same course, and doubt not to make many additional discoveries to instruct and interest my own mind.
If it be laudable in a great nation to expend thousands in the exploring of unknown regions, in tracing out the course or source of a river, or the limits of a sea; how much more so to illustrate that book which refers to the regions beyond,
to that bourn whence no traveller returns ! It is true that all those doctrines which relate to our present and future happiness are sufficiently comprehensive; but is the intelligent, the immortal mind of man to be satisfied with that, when the rest is within his grasp ? Man has ransacked and delved into the crumbling remains of antiquity: he has sailed through rivers and seas “unknown to song;" he has become “the inhabitant of every clime;" his ambitious soul has ventured all for the breath of fame : and is this fair, this glorious field, so worthy of all his loftier powers, to remain comparatively unexplored ? Happy shall I be, if in accordance with the wishes of the society to which I have the honour to belong, to be employed in this sublime pursuit ; and happy shall I be to render up my breath in illustrating that volume which has been my solace and delight in sorrow's darkest hour.
Now “Unto him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in his own blood, and hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father; to him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen."