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spear. 92. A diamond ornament. 93. Another diamond garden. 94. A part of a princely wardrobe. 95, is a part of a head-dress, which falls down and covers a part of the nape of the neck. 96, is " the inestimable jewel, the type of mental illumination of the Hindus, which shone refillgent to illumine the earth from the sacred breast of Narayana."
The representations of the foot of Buddha, although, in substance, generally agreeing, vary, as I have before observed, in the positions of the symbols, &c., very materially. The representation given in fig. 4, plate 30, of this work is taken, by the permission of the trustees of the British Museum, from the carving in the hall of that establishment: but, as it will be obvious, from what I have before stated, that any description of one, as respects all the symbols and most of their positions in it, may not apply to another, the reader must exercise his best judgment in the application.
Buddha of Nepaul and Thibet.—Sacrificial Utensils.—The Jainas.—The Shikhs. — Choitunya.
The Sauds.—Nir Narrain.—The Datyas.—Jalandara.—The Pandus.—Meru.—Osiris, Isis and Orus.
BUDDHA OF NEPAL.
Th E religion of Nepal is considered to be that of Buddha, but in external worship it approaches nearer to the Brahminical. The Nepalese acknowledge, unlike the Buddhas of Ava and Ceylon, a Creator, and like the Jainas, worship the deities of the Hindu Pantheon; but consider them as very inferior to their own Buddhas, as the Jainas do to their Tirthankaras.
Adi Buddha is considered by the Nepalese as the supreme Being or the Creator of the world. He created by Dhyan (inward or spiritual contemplation) five divine Buddhas—Vairochanar Akshobhya, Ratna, Sambhava, Amitabha, and Amogha Siddha: each of whom produced from himself, in the same manner, his Bodhi-sitwa or son; SamantBadra; Vajra Pani; Ratna Pani; Padma Pani; and Viswa Pani.
Four of these Bodhi-sitwas were ingrossed in worship, and nothing more is known of them (says Mr. Hodgson, from whose sketch of Buddhism in Nepal I have taken this abstract), than their names; but Padma Pani, by the command of Adi Buddha, created Brahma, Vishnu, and Siva, to perform the operations which have been assigned to them in Hindu mythology. Brahma, in his turn, created for the devas (gods) heaven: for the daityas (demons) patala or hell: and the four other kinds of beings (aeriel spirits and mortals it may be presumed) he placed between these two regions and the earth.
Vishnu and Siva appear to have been introduced into the system rather to exalt the power of Adi Buddha than for any practical purpose whatever. The mystic syllable O'M (or A,U,M) is equally reverenced by the Buddhas of Nepal, as by the Brahmans. A, they say, is theVija Mantra of the male Buddha, the symbol of generative power: U, of the female Dharma, the type of productive power: and M, of Sanga, the union of the essences of both. These form the Buddhist triad.
The Buddhas of Nepal acknowledge to have adopted the favourite Brahminical deities. Nature is symbolized by the Yoni, and personified as a female divinity, called Adi Prajni and Adi Dharma.
The Dhyani Buddhas are quiescent and inactive, as are also their several sactis. Besides the divine Buddhas, are seven human or earth-born Buddhas, Vipasya, Sikhi, Viswa Bhu, Karkutchand, Kanakamuni, Kasyapa and Sakya Sinha, who have obtained Nivani. The idea of the Ethiopic origin of Buddha, in consequence of his curled locks, about which so much has been written, is distinctly disclaimed. The Nepalese consider that fashion to be merely a point of beauty.
Adi Buddha was never seen nor ever made a descent upon earth. He is merely light, and is perfectly quiescent, as are the Dhyani Buddhas: but the seven mortal Buddhas, who taught the doctrines of Buddhism, ascended in consequence of their virtue and piety to heaven, and obtained Nivani or union with him; which is the expected final reward of good actions. Like other followers of Buddha the Nepalese believe that man is destined to numerous births, according to his merits or demerits, till he be perfectly virtuous, to enable him to obtain Nivani. On being asked if they will answer in the world to come to Adi Buddha, and what rewards and punishments they expect for good or bad actions, they reply, "How can the wicked arrive at Buddha? bad men will go to the infernal regions: the good ascend to heaven. Those who commit both good and evil actions will have numerous births, the account of which is kept by Yama."
The Buddha is an adept in the wisdom of Buddhism, which it is his duty to teach to others: the Bodhisitwas are willing learners of it till they obtain sufficient knowledge to become a Buddha, an omniscient being.
The abode of Adi Buddha is the higher Bhuvana or heavenly mansion: below this are thirteen others called Bodhi Satwi Bhuvanas; to which the faithful followers of Buddha are translated after death: below these are eighteen others belonging to Brahma, for the abode of his worshippers hereafter: below these again are nine others, six for the followers of Vishnu, and three for those of Siva or Mahadeo. Still lower are Bhuvanas for Indra, Surya, Yama, Chandra, Agni, and various others of the Hindu deities.
The opinion of the Nepalese respecting the origin of mankind is no bad counterpart of the flying inhabitants of another world in "Peter Wilkins." Our first parents they imagine inhabited Abha'swara, one of the Bhuvanas of Brahma, and occasionally visited the earth. These paradisiacal beings, although of different sexes, knew it not, till coming once to the earth Adi Buddha created in them a desire to eat; and they did eat of almonds, which deprived them of the power of flying back to Abha'swara. They then ate of other fruits and associated together, and grew wiser; and then human kind very naturally increased. It does not appear how beings of other kinds became also inhabitants of the earth. They say that there have been and will be four yogas; in the first of which men lived for 80,000 years; in the second 10,000; in the third 1,000; and that the fourth is divided into four periods, in the first of which men will live 100 years; in the second fifty; in the third twenty-five, and in the fourth, towards the close of the kali yug, only seven years, when they will be no higher than the thumb.
Matte (the body), which is subject to changes, perishes: but spirit (the soul), which is unchangeable, perisheth not. Animal existence, subject to transmigration, is pravrilti. Spiritual bliss, eternal rest, or an union with the deity, is called nirvritti.
The Bandyas are the followers of the Buddha doctrines, and as such are brethren in faith, and equal. They were formerly divided into five classes, differing from each other only in certain practices. Two of these, the Bhikshu (or monastic order), and the Vijra Archarya or secular priests, now remain. The Bhikshus are principally found among the Bhoteas, a race subject to Nepal on the borders of Thibet, or exercising the inferior ministry in Nepal; the superior ministry being in the hands of theVaijra Acharya. The vihars, or conventual residences of the priests, with which Nepal is covered, are no longer monastic seclusions, but (according to Mr. Hodgson) "resound with- the hum of industry and the pleasant voices of women and children." These convents have each a superior, and are open both for the admittance and departure of all. Women have their separate vihars and superiors.
The sacerdotal professions, as well as all other avocations and pursuits, whether civil or religious, in Nepal, have become, by usage, hereditary.
It will by this, as well as by other parts of Mr. Hodgson's sketch, appear that the Nepalese do now, in practice at least, acknowledge to a certain extent the distinctions of caste, although the doctrines of their religion, as Buddhas, reject them. It is, therefore, somewhat difficult to comprehend what is actually the religion of the Newars or Nepalese. Avowedly they are followers of the Buddhist faith—practically they are worshippers of the Brahminical deities: but with some variations they appear more allied to the Jaina sect than to either.
According to information obtained by Mr. Hodgson the religion of the Lamas closely approximates to that of the Nepalese; except that they extend their belief considerably farther respecting the avatars of Buddha; as they imagine that their Lamas are living incarnations of that deity.
I shall close this account of Buddha with a description of Captain Turner's interview with the Teeshoo Lama, or living
BUDDHA OF THIBET.
This deity is supposed never to die; or rather, as soon as he is dead, to be again regenerated in the form of an infant. It need scarcely be stated that this regeneration is an act of priestly arrangement: it is, however, conscientiously believed by the millions of worshippers of the Teeshoo Lama. In 1783, Mr. Turner, the author of the Embassy to Thibet, was sent, by the British government of India, to congratulate the infant Lama after the death of the old Lama, upon his resuscitation. The account of this interview, in which the holy young gentleman of eighteen months old behaved with becoming dignity and decorum, is both interesting and singular. Mr.