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not our heroes in thy wrath; we wait upon thee perpetu. aliy with offerings.1
In this hymn (verse 1) Rudra is described as “having braided hair ;' and in the ‘Yajur-veda' and the 'Atharvaveda’ other attributes of Siva are ascribed to him, such as the epithet nîla-griva, or blue-necked. In the 'Rig-veda' Siva occurs frequently as an epithet, and means auspicious. It was used as a euphemistic epithet to appease Kudra, the lord of tempests; and finally, the epithet developed into a distinct god.
The parentage of Siva is further indicated in the legends that his glance destroyed the head of the youthful deity Ganesa, who now wears the elephant head, with which it was replaced; and that the gods persuaded him to keep his eyes perpetually winking (like sheet-lightning), lest his concentrated look (the thunderbolt) should reduce the universe to ashes. With the latter legend the gaze of the cvil eye in India might naturally be associated, though in the majority of countries this was rather associated with the malign influences ascribed to certain planets, especially Saturn; the charms against the evil eye being marked over with zodiacal signs. The very myth of Siva's eye survives in the Russian demon Magarko ( Winker ') and the Servian Vii, whose glance is said to have power to reduce men, and even cities, to ashes.
The terrible Rudra is represented in a vast number of beliefs, some of them perhaps survivals; in the rough sea and east-wind demon Oegir of the northern world, and Typhon in the south; and in Luther's faith that 'devils do house in the dense black clouds, and send storms, hail, thunder and lightning, and poison the air with their infernal stench,' a doctrine which Burton, the Anatomist of Melan.
1 •Rig Veda,' i. 114.
choly, too, maintained against the meteorologists of his time.
Among the ancient Aryans lightning seems to have been the supreme type of divine destructiveness. Rudra's dart, Siva's eye, reappear with the Singhalese prince of demons Wessamonny, described as wielding a golden sword, which, when he is angry, flies out of his hand, to which it spontaneously returns, after cutting off a thousand heads.? A wonderful spear was borne by Odin, and was possibly the original Excalibur. The four-faced Sviatevit of Russia, whose mantle has fallen to St. George, whose statue was found at Zbrucz in 1851, bore a horn of wine (rain) and a sword (lightning).
In Greece similar swords were wielded by Zeus, and also by the god of war. Through Zeus and Ares, the original wielders of the lightning-Indra and Siva-became types of many gods and semi-divine heroes. The evil eye of Siva glared from the forehead of the Cyclopes, forgers of thunderbolts; and the saving disc of Indra flashed in the swords and arrows of famous dragon-slayers-Perseus, Pegasus, Hercules, and St. George. The same sword defended the Tree of Life in Eden, and was borne in the hand of Death on the Pale Horse (a white horse was sacrificed to. Sviatevit in Russia within christian times). And, finally, we have the wonderful sword which obeys the command "Heads off!' delighting all nurseries by the service it does to the King of the Golden Mountain.
'I beheld Satan as lightning falling out of heaven. To the Greeks this falling of rebellious deities out of heaven accounted, as we have seen explained, for their lameness. But a universal phenomenon can alone account for the many demons with crooked or crippled legs (like ‘Diable
'Jour. Ceylon R. A. Soc.,' 1865-66. VOL. I.
CROOKED LEGS OF DEMONS.
Boiteux '1 all around the world. The Namaquas of South Africa have a 'deity' whose occupation it is to cause pain and death; his name is Tsui'knap, that is 'wounded knee.'? Livingstone says of the Bakwains, another people of South Africa, 'It is curious that in all their pretended dreams or visions of their god he has always a crooked leg, like the Egyptian Thau.'3 In Mainas, South America, they believe in a treacherous demon, Uchuella-chaqui,, or Lame-foot, who in dark forests puts on a friendly shape to lure Indians to destruction; but the huntsmen say they can never be deceived if they examine this demon's foot-track, because of the unequal size of the two feet.* The native Australians believed in a demon named Biam; he is black and deformed in his lower extremities; they attributed to him many of their songs and dances, but also a sort of small-pox to which they were liable. We have no evidence that these superstitions migrated from a common centre; and there can be little doubt that many of these crooked legs are traceable to the crooked lightning: At the same time this is by no means inconsistent with what has been already said of the fall of Titans and angels from heaven as often accounting for their lameness · in popular myths. But in such details it is hard to reach certainty, since so many of the facts bear a suspicious resemblance to each other. A wild boar with 'distorted legs' attacked St. Godric, and the temptation is strong to generalise on the story, but the legs probably mean only to certify that it was the devil.
Dr. Schliemann has unearthed among his other treasures the remarkable fact that a temple of Helios (the sun) once stood near the site of the present Church of
Elias, at Mycenæ, which has from time immemorial been the place to which people repair to pray for rain. When the storm-breeding Sun was succeeded by the Prophet whose prayer evoked the cloud, even the name of the latter did not need to be changed. The discovery is the more interesting because it has always been a part of the christian folklore of that region that, when a storm with lightning occurs, it is ‘Elias in his chariot of fire.' A similar phrase is used in some part of every Aryan country, with variation of the name: it is Woden, or King Waldemar, or the Grand Veneur, or sometimes God, who is said to be going forth in his chariot.
These storm-demons in their chariots have their forerunner in Vata or Vayu, the subject of one of the most beautiful Vedic hymns. “I celebrate the glory of Vata's chariot; its noise comes rending and resounding. Touching the sky he moves onward, making all things ruddy ; and he comes propelling the dust of the earth.
*Soul of the gods, source of the universe, this deity moves as he lists. His sounds have been heard, but his form is not seen; this Vata let us worship with an oblation.'2
This last verse, as Mr. Muir has pointed out, bears a startling resemblance to the passage in John, “The Wind bloweth where it listeth, and thou canst not tell whence it cometh or whither it goeth; so is every one that is born of the Wind.'3
But an equally striking development of the Vedic idea is represented in the Siamese legend of Buddha, and in this case the Vedic Wind-god Vayu reappears by name for the Angels of Tempests, or Loka Phayu. The first
• So confirming the conjecture of Wachsmuth, in ‘Das alte Griechenland im neucn,' p. 23. Elias might also easily be associated with the name Æolus. 2 • Rig Veda,' x. (Muir).
3 John iii. 8.
ANGELS OF COMMOTION.
portent which preceded the descent of Buddha from the Tushita heavens was 'when the Angels of the Tempest, clothed in red garments, and with streaming hair, travel among the abodes of mankind crying, 'Attend all ye who are near to death; repent and be not heedless! The end of the world approaches, but one hundred thousand years more and it will be destroyed. Exert yourselves, then, exert yourselves to acquire merit. Above all things be charitable; abstain from doing evil; meditate with love to all beings, and listen to the teachings of holiness. For we are all in the mouth of the king of death. Strive then earnestly for meritorious fruits, and seek that which is good.'1
Not less remarkable is the Targum of Jonathan Ben Uzziel to i Kings xix., where around Elias on the mountain gather 'a host of angels of the wind, cleaving the mountain and breaking the rocks before the Lord ;' and after these, “angels of commotion,' and next ‘of fire,' and, finally, 'voices singing in silence' preceded the descent of Jehovah. It can hardly be wondered that a prophet of whom this story was told, and that of the storm evoked from a small cloud, should be caught up into that chariot of the Vedic Vayu which has rolled on through all the ages of mythology
Mythologic streams seem to keep their channels almost as steadfastly as rivers, but as even these change at last or blend, so do the old traditions. Thus we find that while Thor and Odin remain as separate in survivals as Vayu and Parjanya in India, in Russia Elias has inherited not the mantle of the wind-god or storm-breeding sun, but of the Slavonic Thunderer Perun. There is little doubt that this is Parjanya, described in the ‘Rig-Veda'as 'the thunderer, the showerer, the bountiful,'? who 'strikes down
1 • The Wheel of the Law,' by Henry Alabaster, Trübner & Co.
2 Rig. Veda,' v. 83 (Wilson).