17 April 2011

Asuras

Asuras are lovable people living in India and that too in abundance. Here is an interesting story of Asuras, now most popularly known as Mulnivasis (SCs, STs and OBCs) of India. I am thankful to Mr. Sandeep (from Jaipur) who has contributed a link from Times of India news paper. The story is like this:

“Seven-year-old Anand hates lions. "It's a nasty animal," he says, playing with a bunch of plastic animals a camel, a horse, a cow... and a headless lion. "I wrenched its head the moment I laid my hands on it," says the child, eyes blazing in anger. "I am an Asur. I can't stand lions. This animal killed the buffalo during the war between Mahishasur and Durga. This is why we hate it and don't want to see its face."

Anand Asur's anger is the same that generations of the Asur tribe have felt. This community some 8,000-strong believes it is the bloodline of Mahishasur, the Asura king who conquered heaven and earth and drove the Devas out of Swargalok until vanquished by Goddess Durga. The rest of the world may celebrate this myth as the triumph of good over evil, but for the Asurs it is the darkest period in their collective consciousness.

While the rest of the country is preparing to celebrate, Anand Asur, his family and about 8,000 others like them in scattered communities in North Bengal and the Chota Nagpur region are preparing for mourning.

All these people bear the surname Asur and do not worship any god. They firmly believe that all gods and goddesses "illegally joined hands" to kill Mahishasur.

With anger and anguish that has not diluted in generations, these people will lock themselves in from dawn to dusk for the five days of Durga Puja. The elders stay away from every sliver of daylight. Windows are barred and pasted over to keep away the sun. Everything that needs to be done in the day is done after sunset.”

This story reminds me of Onam festival, celebrated in remembrance of King Bali (grandson of Prahlada) in Kerala where a Puli Kali (lion dance) procession has been introduced. Clearly it reminds of killer of great king Hiranyakashipu, father of Prahlada. (Mahatma Jyotirao Phule is referred here). Mulnivasis of India do counter such mythical stories as they know that such exaggerated stories were told by Aryans, another tribe. The entire world knows that tribal stories are merely exaggerations and exalted imaginations. 

Thanks Sandeep for sharing this wonderful link.

Other links from this blog






MEGHnet

12 comments:

  1. No use of such myths in modern enlightened world. Even a school boy may laugh at it.

    ReplyDelete
  2. I could not laugh it away Gottra ji because in modern times ‘Times of India’ has given coverage to this story. I could see the anger of the Anand Asur. I can see the courage with which these tribals are using ‘Asur’ as surname. If a mythical story hurts their subconscious mind does it not qualify for some remedy and healing? I am not talking about a schoolboy; can you laugh at the darkest period of their history which has settled in their collective consciousness? They mourn death of Mahisha, their ancestor, in the true spirit of their tribal tradition of veneration of the dead. Can a school boy heal their wounds? They require mature handling by people like you.
    By the by, do you celebrate durga pooja like ‘rest of India’?

    ReplyDelete
  3. @ Rattan Gottra ji

    Such a naive statement to make !
    By making this single statement you have completely ridiculed atleast 3 books of Babasaheb Dr. Ambedkar .

    I wonder if 8000 people there are doing some sort of drama there of being asurs , using surname asur , are they paid for doing this drama from last many years(unknown) as they use to mourn their during durga puja .

    Yes school boy will laugh on this because they are not known to that culture , they believe whay they are taught and they are taught Ramayana and Mahabharata in which Asurs are demons and Dev are gods . But the day when these Asur kids if get the education will believe exactly opposite .

    ReplyDelete
  4. Lord Bhairava
    ===============

    Bhairava (Sanskrit: भैरव, "Terrible" or "Frightful" ,[1]), sometimes known as Bhairo or Bhairon or Bhairadya, is the fierce manifestation of Shiva associated with annihilation.[2] He is one of the most important deities of Rajasthan and Nepal, sacred to Hindus and Buddhists alike.

    He is depicted ornamented with a range of twisted serpents, which serve as earrings, bracelets, anklets, and sacred thread (yajnopavita). He wears a tiger skin and a ritual apron composed of human bones.[3] Bhairava has a dog (Shvan) as his divine vahana (vehicle).

    Bhairava himself has eight manifestations: Kala Bhairava, Asitanga Bhairava, Samhara Bhairava, Ruru Bhairava, Krodha Bhairava, Kapala Bhairava, Rudra Bhirava and Unmatta Bhairava. Kala Bhairava is conceptualized as the Guru of the planetary deity Saturn. Bhairava is known as Vairavar in Tamil where he is often presented as a Grama Devata or folk deity who safeguards the devotee on all eight directions (ettu tikku). Known in Sinhalese as Bahirawa, he protects treasures. Lord Bhairava is the main deity worshipped by the cannibalistic Aghora sect.

    Legends

    The origin of Bhairava can be traced to the conversation between Lord Brahma and Lord Vishnu recounted in "Shiv Maha-Puran" where Lord Vishnu asks Lord Brahma who is the supreme creator of the Universe. Arrogantly, Brahma tells Vishnu to worship him because he (Brahma) is the supreme creator. This angered Shiva who in reality is the creator of all. Shiva then incarnated in the form of Bhairava to punish Brahma. Bhairava beheaded one of Brahma's five heads and since then Brahma has only four heads. When depicted as Kala Bhairava, Bhairava is shown carrying the decapitated head of Brahma. Cutting off Brahma's fifth head made him guilty of having slain Brahma, and as a result, he was forced to carry around the head for years and roam as Bhikshatana, a mendicant until he had been absolved of the sin.

    In another version, when Brahma sees the cosmic confusion while creation of universe and ponders how to settle it. He created Saraswati from his imagination ('Manasaputri'). She issued as Shatarupa. She presented him with the wealth of knowledge and wisdom. But Brahma was infatuated with her beauty and pursued her. He sprouted a fifth head to gaze at her continuously. The horrified goddess took multiple forms to escape his eye, but Brahma continued to take a complementary form and chase her. This unlawful lust caused an imbalance in the universe and Lord Shiva took the form of Bhairava to put an end to such incest. He confronted Brahma and cut off his fifth head which brought him to his senses. He then performed a yagna to purify himself, reciting mantras with his four heads for salvation.

    In the form of the frightful Bhairava, Shiva is said to be guarding each of these Shaktipeeths. Each Shaktipeeth temple is accompanied by a temple dedicated to Bhairava.

    Link of the above article :- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bhairava

    Link of a superb pic ... hahahahha

    http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_7iOMAz94kc8/TOq0VEnJkGI/AAAAAAAAADo/qrhxlHCW-3k/s1600/bhairav.jpg

    ReplyDelete
  5. When depicted as Kala Bhairava, Bhairava is shown carrying the decapitated head of Brahma. Link of a superb pic ... hahahahha

    http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_7iOMAz94kc8/TOq0VEnJkGI/AAAAAAAAADo/qrhxlHCW-3k/s1600/bhairav.jpg

    ReplyDelete
  6. @ Sandeep. I had seen this pic before without knowing what it was. It is interesting.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Mr Sandeep has sent another comment via Email :

    " I want to point at an interesting fact that Meghvanshis of the Rajasthan and some nearby states worship Lord Bhairva , Bhairva is the fierce manifestation of Shiva who beheaded one of the five heads of Brahma and after which Brahma is left with only four heads.And infact more interesting fact is that Brahmins and other manuwadi castes don't worship Lord Bhairva and if some worship then they are exceptions or may be they worship out of ignorance as some of the Manuwadis worship even Lord Buddha who was responsible for the almost complete extinct of the Brahmanism from the Indian Subcontinent for hundreds of years."

    ReplyDelete
  8. I agree with Mr. Sandeep. In Gujarat, particularly Kutch District, Bhairav is being worshipped as a God of low castes. Bhairov is generally remembered as savior, who possess all the powers and is competent to fight evils. Meghwar community of Kutch has high regards for Bhairvas. The Raksha kavach of Meghwars during ancient time was 8 Bhairavs and 64 Jognis (Devis). If the name of 8 Bhairav and 64 Jognis is uttered in Pooja, it means a High rated Pooja with a guarantee that no evil or harm will cause us.

    Our Barmati Panth discourses reveals that Shree Matangdev (our First Guru) had beheaded a cruel King Aspat Vaghela during 9th century in Kutch province. It is said, head of Aspat Vaghela fell to a far away place and is not found but his body (excluding head) is buried at a place called Trai Jaar, near Anjar Taluka of Kutch District, which is now a graveyard. We Maheshwari Meghwars use this place as our Graveyard. I have visited that place 2/3 times. In the premises, temple of Lord Ludang (Son of Shree Matangdev) is situated. In our discourses, Lord Ludangdev is believed to be an incarnation of Lord Ganesha. In the premises of Ludangdev temple, pillar of Bhairav and 64 Jognis is found. It is said that Matangdev himself has erected the pillar 8 Bhairav and 64 Jognis with the words that “these 8 bhairavs and 64 jognis will take care of the premises and the demon (Aspat Vaghela) will not cause any harm as far as these pillars are here”.

    From the above, it is ample clear that 8 Bhairvas and 64 Jognis were the foremost saviours of Meghvanshis. Their name resembles utmost force and power to save Meghvanshis from evil attacks. We still worship 8 Bhairvas in special poojas.

    Whenever, I will visit this place again, I shall definitely take photos of this sacred pillar of 8 Bhairvas and 64 Jognis and the photo of tomb of demon king (Aspat Vaghela), so that you all can see the pictures. Whenever our people go to this place, they worship Bhairvas and 64 Jognis alongwith Lord Ludangdev.

    ReplyDelete
  9. GL Bhagat

    to Bharat Bhushan
    subject ref . to kala

    Important mainly because of the people in the conversation.

    hide details 5:43 PM (28 minutes ago)

    One thing is clear. the goddess worship had been from ancient or pre-indus valley. people loved caityas i.e. ancestors and goddess. for your record if future:

    Supreme Soul and Gods; Even in Rig-Veda X.109.4, the eternal deities called her (Juju - “this is flawless)”. Adityas used this word. They were non-Aryans. (This appears as self creating god referred above). The fierce force holds the highest position. Seven seers are stated to have gained direct vision of the truth by means of tapas. These seers were found moving naked and all called Vata–ra-sana i.e. son of wind. These people could fly in air and their food was air. Taittiriya aryanka has termed these Vatarasana as Sramana and Urdva-manthins. They lived on higher plane and secured friendship with gods of higher plane. Some times they are called Kesins because of their long hair. They continued with yellow earth colour cloth. Buddhists continue with this dress. ( National laws and outcastes; by me)



    Durga you are reffering: Juju - “this is flawless)”.

    Non-aryans- Adityas used this word

    Self creating god : God you are ref as durga

    Sever seers – non-aryans sages

    Qualities------------hard working- labour oriented class; Vatarasana as Sramana and Urdva-manthins (Sramana means labour or hard work i.e. labourer in spiritual life and Urdva-manthins is who controled of passion)

    Kesins –Siva is one of the kesin

    Oldest colour ; yellow earth colour cloth- now buddhists

    ReplyDelete
  10. @ Naveen

    Yes bro , same is in the rajasthan , we do go to our particular shrine of bhairav twice in a year during navratras . Every clan of Meghs in Rajasthan and I think in other states too is assigned a particular bhairav located at a particular location and whole family visit that particularly located bhairav twice in a year . Goats are sacrificed there but now this trend is gradually diminishing , even in our family last time we sacrifice goat 30 years back .
    Wiki Location of our Bhairav - Benad Ke Bhairav - http://wikimapia.org/#lat=27.0060001&lon=75.7250905&z=18&l=0&m=b&search=benad

    ReplyDelete
  11. @ Sandeep

    Thanks for sharing information.

    ReplyDelete
  12. Dear Bhusanji. fine informative post on Bhairavas and worship of Ancestors and goddess is ancient before Indus valley civilization. Taittiaria Upanishads... Meena pathak has done PhD on taitariya upnishad....good informative... from.....Nitin....

    ReplyDelete