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worship it in public daily. The god soon appeared to him in dreams, and revealed a number of secret things; so that by degrees Gopēé-nat’hŭ of Ởgrŭ-dwêēpă became very famous. One night a stranger came to the temple at a very late hour, when no one was awake to give him refreshment. The god himself, however, in the form of Ghoshủ-t'hakoorů, took an ornament from his ancle, and purchased some food for the stranger at an adjoining shop. In the morning there was a great noise in the town about this ornament, when the shopkeeper and the stranger declared these facts, so creditable to the benevolence of the god; and from this circumstance the fame of Gopēë-nathủ spread still wider. After the death of Ghoshủ-t'hakoorů, the god appeared to his successor, and directed him to perform the funeral rites; in the celebration of which it was contrived that the god himself should present the offering to the manes : for when the kooshủ grass, the rice, and the water were put into the hands of the image, the god (a little more water than usual being poured into his hand) poured out the offering; when the crowd set up a great shout, declaring that the god himself had presented the offering to the manes. At present, it is said, this god brings in not less than 25,000 roopees annually to his owner.
At the above-mentioned festival, it is supposed that 100,000 people assemble each day at Ŭgrŭ-dwēēpů; among whom are great multitudes of lewd women, who accompany the religious mendicants. Filthy songs about Krishnŭ and his mistresses are sung by the crowd, and all manner of indecent diversions practised. Different casts eat together here.
After the death of Ghoshủ-t'hakoorů, the image fell into the hands of the raja, or lord of the soil; who sent
bramhŭns to perform the ceremonies before the image, and receive the offerings. Raja Núvú-krishnŭ, of Calcutta, once seized this image for a debt of three lacks of roopees, due to him from the owner, raja Krishnŭ-chủndru-rayů. The latter afterwards regained the image by a suit at law; but not till Núvŭ-krishnŭ had made another Gopēē-nat’hủ exactly like it.
All this has arisen out of a stone given by two mendicants to one of their companions !—Who can avoid feeling a mingled sensation of disgust and pity, while he beholds such multitudes, the abject slaves of a superstition so degrading?
The image of this god has no legs, and only stumps of arms": the head and eyes are very large. At the festivals the bramhŭns adorn him with silver or golden hands.
Krishnŭ, in some period of Hindoo history, was aceidentally killed by Úngúdŭ, a hunter; who left the body to rot under the tree where it fell. Some pious person, however, collected the bones of Krishnŭ, and placed them in a box; where they remained till Indrŭ-dhoomnă, a king, who was performing religious austerities to obtain some favour of Vishnoo, was directed by the latter to form the image of Jugủnnat'hủ, and put into its belly these bones of Krishnŭ, by which means he should obtain the fruit of his religious austerities. Indrė-dhoomnŭ enquired who should make this image; and was commanded to pray to Vishwŭ-kurmă". He did so, and obtained his request; but Vishwŭ-kúrmŭ at the same time declared, that if any one disturbed him while preparing the image, he would leave it in an unfinished state. He then began, and in one night built a temple upon the blue mountain in Orissa, and proceeded to prepare the image in the temple: but the impatient king, after waiting fifteen days, went to the spot; on which Vishwŭ-kúrmŭ desisted from the work, and left the god without hands or feet. The king was very much disconcerted; but on praying to Brúmha, he promised to make the image famous in its present shape.
4 The lord of the world, from jógút, the world, and nathủ, lord.
* The Athenians placed statues at their doors to drive away thieves, which they called Hermæ, from Mereury. These images had neither hands nor feet, and hence Mercury was called Cyllenius, and by contraction Cyllius, from Kullos, viz. without bands or feet.
Indrů-dhoomnŭ now invited all the gods to be present at the setting up of this image: Brúmha himself acted as high priest, and gave eyes and a soul to the god, which completely established the fame of Júgunnat’hủ. This image is said to lie in a pool near the present temple, at Júgủnnathủ-kshétrŭ in Orissa, commonly known among the English by the name of Júgunnathủ's pagoda. The particulars of this place will be found in the account of the Hindoo holy places, the resort of pilgrims.
Júgunnat’hŭ has many temples in Bengal, built by rich men as works of merit, and endowed either with lands, villages, or money. The worship of this god is performed in these temples every morning and evening; at which times people come to see the god, or prostrate themselves
- The architect of the gods.
before him. During the intervals of worship, and after the god has partaken of the offerings, he is laid down to sleep, when the temple is shut up till the next hour of worship.
Bramhŭns may make offerings of boiled rice to this or to any other god, but shõõdrŭs cannot: they are permitted to offer only dried rice'. The food which is offered to Júgủnnathŭ is either eaten by the bramhŭns and their families at the temples, or by passengers and others, who purchase it of those shopkeepers that have bought it of the bramhŭns; a little is given to the poor.
There are two annual festivals in Bengal in honour of this god; the Snanŭ-yatra, and the Rŭt'hủ-yatra.
At the Snanŭ-yatra, in the month Jyoisht’hủ, this lord of the world, wrapped in a cloth, is carried out and placed in a seat on a large terrace built in an open place near the temple. Here the bramhŭns, surrounded by an immense concourse of spectators, bathe the god by pouring water on his head, during the reading of incantations. The people at the close of the ceremony make obeisance, some by lifting their hands to their foreheads, and others by prostration, and then depart, assured by the shastrós that they shall be subject to no more births, but be admitted to heaven after the death of this body. The bramhŭns then wipe this creator of the world, and carry him back to the temple; after which the ceremonies of worship are performed before him with great shew. This snanŭ, however, is not confined to Júgủnnat’hủ; but at this time all the different images of Vishnoo, throughout the country, are bathed. It is the custom of the Hindoos to feed their children with rice for the first time when they are six, seven, or nine months old. On this day, before the ceremony of feeding the child, they bathe it, repeating incantations. Krishnŭ partook of his first rice at the full moon in Jyoist’hủ; in commemoration of which, this sn nŭ-yatra is performed annúally by the worshippers of any separate form of Vishnoo.
• The images of the gods in all the Hindoo temples, at certain hours, are laid down to sleep ; at least, all those that are small enough to be laid down and lifted up again.
u The bramhŭns do not eat the boiled rice of the shõõdrůs. Sweetmeats, fruit, the water of the Ganges, &c. are things received from shöödrůs. Yet there are a few bramhŭns who refuse even sweetmeats and water from the hands of shõõdrůs.
About seventeen days after the snanů-yatra, on the second of the increase of the moon in Asharhú, the Ru'thủ or car festival is held. Before the god is taken out of the temple to be placed on the car, the usual ceremonies of worship are performed. The car belonging to the image near Serampore is in the form of a tapering tower, between thirty and forty cubits high. It has sixteen wheels, two horses, and one coachman, all of wood. Júgúnnat'hủ, his brother Búlú-ramů, and their sister Soobhūdra, are drawn up by ropes tied round the neck, and seated on benches in an elevated part of the carriage; when a servant on each side waves a tail of the cow of Tartary, called a chamŭrŭ*. The crowd draw the carriage by means of a hawser; their shouts, as the carriage proceeds, may be heard at the distance of a mile. Being arrived at the appointed spot, the bramhŭns take out the images, and carry them to the temple of some other god, or to a place prepared for them, where they remain eight days. At Serampore, Júgủn
* The chamúrů is a necessary appendage to royalty among the Hindoos. VOL. I.