« FöregåendeFortsätt »
stitution of his image or picture, accompanied by one or more females, and in the contemplation of his history and behaviour, such as his perpetration of murder upon a female of the name of Pootna; his compelling great number of married and unmarried women to stand before him denuded ; his debauching them and several others, to the mortal affliction of their husbands and relations; his annoying them, by violating the laws of cleanliness and other facts of the same nature. The grossness of his worship does not find a limit here. His devotees very often personify (in the same manner as European actors upon stages do) him and his female companions, dancing with indecent gestures, and singing songs relative to his love and debaucheries. It is impossible to explain in language fit to meet the public eye, the mode in which Muhadeva, or the destroying attribute, is worshipped by the generality of the Hindoos: suffice it to say, that it is altogether congenial with the indecent nature of the image, under whose form he is most commonly adored.
The stories respecting him, which are read by his devotees in the Tuntras, are of a nature that, if told of any man, would be offensive to the ears of the most abandoned of either sex. In the worship of Kali, human sacrifices, the use of wine, criminal intercourse, and licentious songs, are included : the first of these practices has become generally extinct; but it is believed that there are parts of the country where human victims are still offered.
Debauchery, however, universally forms the principal part of the worship of her followers. Nigam and other Tantras may satisfy every reader of the horrible tenets of the worshippers of the two latter deities. The modes of worship of almost all the inferior deities are pretty much the same. Having so far explained the nature of worship adopted by Hindoos in general, for the propitiation of their allegorical attributes, in direct opposition to the mode of pure divine worship inculcated by the Védas, I cannot but entertain a strong hope that the learned gentleman, who ranks even monotheistical songs among carnal pleasures, and consequently rejects their admittance in worship, will no longer stand forward as an advocate for the worship of separate and independent attributes and incarnations.
12thly. The learned gentleman says, “that the Saviour,” meaning Christ, “ should be considered a “personification of the mercy and kindness of God (I “mean actual not allegorical personification)." From the little knowledge I had acquired of the tenets of Christians and those of anti-Christians, I thought there were only three prevailing opinions respecting the nature of Christ; viz. that he was considered by some as the expounder of the laws of God, and the mediator between God and man; by many to be one of the three mysterious persons of the Godhead; whilst others, such as the Jews, say that he was a mere man. But to consider Christ as a personification of the mercy of God is, if I mistake not, a new doctrine in Christianity, the discussion of which, however, has no connexion with the present subject. I however must observe that this opinion which the learned gentleman has formed of Christ being a personification of the mercy of God, is similar to that entertained by Mus
sulmans, for a period of upwards of a thousand years, respecting Mohummud, whom they call mercy of God upon
all his creatures. The learned gentleman in the conclusion of his observations has left, as he says, the doctrines of pure allegory to me.
It would have been more consistent with justice had he left pure allegory also to the Véds, which declare, “appellations “ and figures of all kinds are innovations,” and which have allegorically represented God in the figure of the universe : “ Fire is his head, the sun and the moon are “ his two eyes,” &c.; and which have also represented all human internal qualities by different earthly objects ; and also to Vyas, who has strictly followed the Véds in these figurative representations, and to Sankaracharjya, who also adopted the mode of allegory, in his Bhashya of the Védánt and of the Upanishadas.
THE MONOTHEISTICAL SYSTEM
IN REPLY TO
AN APOLOGY FOR THE PRESENT STATE