Book: India in Primitive Christianity
Author: Arthur Lillie

India in Primitive Christianity By Arthur Lillie

Format: Global Grey free PDF, epub, Kindle ebook
Pages (PDF): 270
Publication Date: 1909

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Fully illustrated. The connection between Christianity and Buddhism is unmistakable, both in terms of the traditional narratives of the respective founders, and in their attributed sayings. Arthur Lillie here examines possible historical linkages between the two religions from a critical, rationalist, viewpoint. For some reason, there is what appears to be a missing gap of several paragraphs somewhere in the later pages; a numbered list of astrological signs starts with the number 3. This is how the text was and I have no explanation for this. Chapters include: S'iva; Baal; Buddha; "The Wisdom Of The Other Bank"; King Asoka; The Mahâyâna; Avalokitishwara; The Cave Temple And Its Mysteries; Architecture; The Essenes; The Essene Jesus; More Coincidences; Rites; Paulinism; Transubstantiation; and more.

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As the Indian god S’iva has much to do with our present inquiry, first of all we must try to get a better knowledge of him. Professor Horace Hayman Wilson tells us that Saiva literature has been very little presented to the Hindus. The legends are not in Sanskrit.

From the earliest times the thunderstorm has been used to image God's voice and God's anger. We see Thor with his "hammer" knock down the enormous cloud-giant, Hrungner. In the First Book of Samuel, Yahve "thunders with a great thunder" and defeats the Philistine enemies of the chosen race. In Hesiod the "vaulted sky, the Mount Olympus, flashed with the terrible bolts" of Zeus in the Titan warfare. This symbolism naturally suggests itself when we look up to the "vaulted sky"; but in the Rig Veda it takes a different turn. Indra the Thunderer vanquishes his enemy Vritra, but often he seeks him in a "Cavern," a bottomless pit.

"He (Indra) has burst in the doors of that cavern where Vritra detained the waters shut up in his power. Indra has torn to pieces Suchna (Drought viewed as God) with his horns of menace."

"By him has been opened the bosom of that vault, yea, that vault without boundaries. Armed with the thunderbolt, Indra, the greatest of the Angiras, has forced the stable of the Celestial Cows."

That the chief god inimical to the Aryans was S’iva there can be no doubt. His special symbol is the Mahâdeo, and Dr. Muir has unearthed two passages of the Rig Veda that blurt out this truth brutally.

"May the glorious Indra triumph over hostile beings. Let not those whose god is the S’is’na approach our sacred ceremony."

"Desiring to bestow strength on the struggle that warrior (Indra) has besieged inaccessible places at the time when irresistibly slaying those whose god is the S’is’na he by his force conquered the riches of the City with a hundred gates."

The S’is’na is the Mahâdeo, sex worship in puris naturalibus.

Another symbol under which S’iva is attacked is that of a serpent. He is "Ahi," of the Rig Veda. Serpents even in modern times kill about 24,000 people every year in India. It is most probable that S’iva and Durgâ as two snakes were the earliest of Indian gods. Every year Durgâ figures as a snake at the Nâgapanchami Festival, and is prayed to to preserve her votaries against snake bites.

"He (Indra) has struck Ahi, who was hiding in the body of a mountain. He has struck him with that resounding weapon forged by Twashtri (the Vulcan of the Vedas), and the waters like cows ran towards their stable He has struck the first born of the Ahis."

But Ahi or Vritra has a wicked wife, "Nirriti the insurmountable." This is plainly S’iva's wife, Durgâ (the Tower of Strength).

"May Nirriti whose force is so formidable never come near to smite us, Nirriti the insurmountable. May she perish with the thirst that she herself instils."

A French Orientalist thinks that she was a personification of the terrible Indian fever. This is, of course, the basis of the tree worship in an Indian jungle.

But another name, a very important one, was rendered prominent by that active Orientalist, Colonel Tod, namely Bal. When he was staying in Saurashtra he noticed this name in many temples. There was Balpur (the City of Bala), Balnath (the Lord Bal), and the plateau of the Sahyadri mountains was called Mahâbaleshwar (the Great Ishwara, Bala or S’iva).

Colonel Tod believed that this God, Bala, was the Baal of the Phenicians, and through them the Bal, Sit, or Typhon, the earliest god of Memphis and lower Egypt. In Babylon he was Bel with his wife Ashtoreth. The names Bala and Bali are philologically the same, being based on the word Balishwara. In the Râmâyana Sîva is termed Bali, and in the Rig Veda he is named Bala.

"God who wieldest the Thunderbolt, thou hast burst in the cavern where Bala kept the celestial cows."

"The Maruts support Indra when that God armed with the lightning and strengthened by our offerings, smites the soldiers of Bala, as Trita dispersed the guards."