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This is the god of the waters. His image is painted white; he sits on a sea-animal called mŭkŭrů, with a roper in his right hand.
Vŭroonů's name is repeated daily in the worship of the bramhŭns; but his image is never made for worship, nor has he any public festival or temple in Bengal. He is worshipped however as one of the guardian deities of the earth; and also by those who farm the lakes in Bengal, before they go out a fishing: and in times of drought people repeat his name to obtain rains,
A story of this god is contained in the Púdmŭ pooranŭ to this purport:-Ravủnŭ was once carrying an ủnadee-lingủ from Himaluyŭ to Lủnka"; in order that he might accomplish all his ambitious schemes against the gods : for it was the property of this stone, also called kamů -lingů, to grant the worshipper all his desires, whatever they might be. Shivů, however, when permitting Ravínů to remove this his image to Lủnka, made him promise, that wherever he suffered it to touch the ground, there it should remain,
* This weapon is called pashủ, and has this property, that whomsoever it catches, it binds so fast that he can never get loose. All the gods, glants, rakshtisus, &c. learn the use of this weapon.
& At the time of a drought, it is common for bramhŭns to sit in crowds by the sides of the Ganges, or any other river, and address their prayers to this god. A bramhŭn once informed me, that he remembered when Krishnů-Chủndrů, the raja of Nůvů-dwčepů, gave presents to vast multitudes of bramhúns thus employed; and that, in the midst of their prayers, Véroonů sent a plentiful supply of rain.
b Ceylon. i Kamů means desire.
When the gods saw that Ravůnŭ was carrying this stone to Lŭnka, all the heavens were in a state of agitation: for the gods knew, that if Ravănă could be permitted to accomplish his wishes, neither Indrė nor any other god would continue on his throne. Council after council was held, and applications made to different gods in vain. It was at last resolved that Vŭroonŭ should enter the belly of Ravůnŭ, who would thereby be compelled to set the stone down, while discharging his urinek. Vŭroonŭ accordingly entered the belly of Ravủnŭ, as he was carrying the lingŭ on his head; and the latter soon began to feel the effects of his visit. His belly swelled prodigiously:-he proceeded however on his journey, till at last he could wait no longer. At this moment Indrŭ, in the form of an old bramhŭn, meeting him, Ravŭnŭ, after asking who he was, and where he was going, entreated him to hold the lingŭ for a short time, promising to bestow on him the greatest favours; to which the bramhŭn consented, agreeing to hold the stone an hour, but no longer. Ravănŭ told him he would not detain him half that time; and squatted on his hams to rid himself of Vŭroonů. After he had thus sat for four hours, the bramhŭn, complaining he could hold the stone no longer, threw it down—when the lower part sunk into the world of the hydras, and the top is said to be visible to this day at Voidyú-nat’hů, a place in the zillah of Beerbhoom, where the river Khúrsoo is believed to have arisen from the urine of this enemy of the gods'. Ravănă, when he
* Ravúnů could not hold the lingủ while in this act, as a person hereby becomes unclean until he has bathed. This is the strict rule of the shastrú: at present, however, should a person, in the midst of his worship, he compelled to discharge urine, le does not bathe, but only changes his clothies.
| The Hindoos do not drink the water of this river, but bathe in and drink the water of a pool there, which they have called Nůvu-gúnga, viz. the Nex Ginga.
arose, and saw what had taken place, went home full of rage and disappointment: some accounts add, that he went and fought with the gods in the most furious manner.
The heaven of this god, called Vŭroonŭ-loků, is 800 miles in circumference, and was formed by Vishwókúrma, the divine architect. In the centre is a grand canal of pure water. Vŭroonŭ, and his queen Varoonēē, sit on a throne of diamonds; and around them the court, among whom are Súmoodrů, Gŭnga, and other river gods and goddesses "; the twelve Adityús, and other deities; the hydras; Oiravětů; the doityŭs; the danŭvŭs, &c. The pleasures of this heaven consist in the gratification of the senses, as in the heavens of Indrŭ and others. There does not seem to be a vestige of any thing here, but what would exactly meet the wishes of a libertine.
A scene in the heaven of Vŭroonů :--Nimee, a king, invited Vủshisht'hů to preside as priest over the ceremonies at a sacrifice he was about to perform. Vủshishthủ, being engaged at that time as priest to perform a sacrifice for some other king, from whom he expected very large presents, excused himself for the present; when Nimee, after using entreaty in vain, employed another sage as priest. Vŭshisth’hủ, having concluded the sacrifice in which he was engaged, proceeded to the palace of Nimee; but hearing that the king had employed another priest, was filled with rage, and pronounced a curse on the king, by which he was reduced to ashes. Before the curse took effect, however, the king cursed Vủshisht’hủ, and reduced his body also to ashes. The soul of Vủshisht’hŭ ascended to Brúmha, to enquire how he was to procure a body again.
Among these deities are included gods of wells, pools, lakes, basins, whirlpools, &c.
Brůmha said, 'Go to the gods Vŭroonŭ and Sõõryė.' He went, and obtained his body in the following manner : Sõõryŭ, captivated with the sight of Oorvŭshēē, a courtezan, as she was dancing in Indru's heaven, invited her to his house. As she was going, Vŭroonŭ met her, and became enamoured of her also. (Here the story becomes too filthy to be written.-] From the inflamed passions of these two gods, Úgustyŭ, an eminent ascetic, was born, and Vushisht'hů, one of the most exalted of the Hindoo sairits, obtained a new body. The priests who had been employed by Nimee, fearing they should lose all employment hereafter if they suffered the king thus to perish, at the close of the sacrifice formed from the ashes a young man, to whom they gave the name of Júnúků; who became the father of Séēta, the wife of Ramú.
The meaning of the name Vúroonŭ is, he who surrounds, -This god is also called Prúchéta, or the wise. -Pashéē, he who holds a rope.--Yadŭsang-pètee, the lord of the watery tribes.-Oppútee, the lord of waters,
This god is called the holy king, who judges the dead. His image is that of a green man, with red garments; inflamed eyes; having a crown on his head, and a flower stuck in his hair"; sitting on a buffaloe, with a club in his right
" It is very common to see a flower, which has been presented to an image, stuck in the bunch of hair which the Hindoos tie behind the head, This is done under the idea that the flower has some virtue in it. Several shastrès prescribe this practice, and promise rewards to the person who places in his hair flowers which have been presented to his guardian deity, or to any other god. VOL, I,
· hand. His dreadful teeth, grim aspect, and terrific shape, fill the inhabitants of the three worlds with terror.
An annual festival is held in honour of Yumŭ on the second day of the moon's increase in the month Kartikį, when an image of clay is made, and worshipped with the usual ceremonies for one day, and then thrown into the river. No bloody sacrifices are offered to this god.
Yumŭ is also worshipped at the commencement of other festivals, as one of the ten guardian deities of the earth. He presides in the South,
Every day the Hindoos offer water to Yémů, in the ceremony called tŭrpůně, as well as annually on the 14th of the month ogrŭhayúnŭ, when they repeat several of his
At the time of other festivals the Hindoos sometimes make an image of the mother of Yŭmŭ', and worship it. At other times children in play make this image, and pretend to worship it.
On the first of the month Kartiků, a curious ceremony takes place in every part of Bengal :—the unmarried girls of
ach house engage a near relation to dig a small pit near the front of the house, at the four corners of which they sow rice, or barley, or wheat, and plant some stalks of the plantain or other tree : they also plant other branches in the midst of the pit. The place being thus prepared, every morning for a month these girls, after putting an clean ap
. A very old woman, who is at the same time a great scold, is called by the Hindoos the mother of Yúmi,