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The EARLY HINDUS. i-age The ancestors of the Aryan race—Their primitive home in Central Asia —They migrate to Europe, Persia, and India—Settle on the banks of the Indus, whence the term Hindu–They gradually extend themselves through the country and cultivate it; also develop commerce and the arts—Had for long ages no written records—At length their sages commit to writing their stores of intellectual wealth— Their veneration of, and passion for, the study of Sanscrit—That language now hardly ‘dead’—It lives and breathes in its lingual descendants—The Aryan settlers had no caste—No restrictions as regards food; they rejoiced in beef-They were a fair-complexioned race, quite distinct from the aboriginal races—The Hindus in their . features akin to ourselves—The aborigines of a Turanian type—The Dravidians of Southern India far in advance of the aborigines of the hills—These latter figure as monkeys, the former as giants, in early Hindu mythology—Suttee unknown among early Hindus–Polygamy discountenanced — No infant marriages—Re-marriage of widows legal—Seclusion of women a thing of later times—Women esteemed and trusted then as not now . - - - - ... I


Social distinctions grew up by degrees among the Aryan settlers—The groundwork of these, the various professions of civilised life—The Sages elbow their way to the front rank—Out of these the Brahmanical order naturally sprung—The strong religious instincts of the people foster the development of a sacerdotal order—Had no priestly class to begin with, but at length obtained sixteen different

hence the class so defined derived it from their functions—The

Roshatriyas, a military class, called into being by the necessity of

warfare with the wild aborigines—The Vaisyas, “settlers,' culti-

vators and merchants of the community—When caste notions

develop, the Brahmans gratify these two needful classes with a

sacred thread and the title dwij, “twice-born –But a servile class

needed—This constructed out of the aboriginal races, and called

Sudra—Fourfold social distinctions common to various branches of

the Aryan family—Slavery among the Greeks somewhat akin to

Hindu caste, yet not like it a religious institution—Mythological

account of its origin: the Brahman from the mouth of Brahmā, the

Kshatriyas from his arm, the Vaisyas from his thigh, the Sudra

from his feet—Hence the Brahman a god to all below him—Must

be worshipped as a divinity—Must be free from taxation and capital

punishment whatever his crime—Must be amply supported—His

word infallible—The rules for the maintenance of caste so minute

and numerous that they became impracticable, and resulted in a

vast multiplication of castes—Of the four original castes the Brah-

mans alone maintain their ground, and these have been subdivided

—Dire effects of caste on the nation: the heart indurated, sympathy

and fellow-feeling destroyed, moral sense darkened, social and

political progress barred—Caste an external and gross thing, not

affected in any degree by mental convictions or religious belief—

Depends on outward action alone—Belief in Christianity leaves

caste intact, baptism destroys it—Its approaching dissolution . . 16

Deep spiritual yearnings of the early Hindus—Ever feeling after God,
yet wandering further from Him—The Rig-Veda compiled about
1200 B.C.—Its contents much more ancient—The other three Vedas
—Growing veneration for them—Divinity and eternity ascribed to
them—Monotheism, Polytheism, and Pantheism commingle in them
—The Aryans once monotheists, then nature-worshippers—Lumi-
nous objects first reverenced—Old Vedic deities—Their multiplica-
tion—Devout addresses to Varuna—The supersession of older
deities by Indra, Vayu, and Agni-Opposing demons—Hymns to
Indra and Agni-Singular notion of a Trinity in Unity—The post-
Vedic Triad—The pre-Vedic Hindus had no notion of transmigration
—Believed in a threefold state of bliss after death—Yama the god
of death—Impressive funeral rites—Their notion of a spiritual body


for the departed spirit—One of the earliest hymns of the Rig-Veda
monotheistic—Remarkable enquiry into the origin of the Universe
—How Polytheism and Pantheism could coexist among the Hindus
— The earliest pantheistic ring in the Rig-Veda — Pantheistic
reasonings of modern pundits, how refuted—The institution of
sacrifice among the early Hindus—Its spontaneous origin incredible
—The Indian Aryans ever practised it and ever held its dirine
origin—Human sacrifices prevailed—The story of Harischandra—
How animal sacrifices came to supplant human—Six noteworthy
aspects of the institution among the early Hindus . . . . 40



Chronological difficulty in the religious history of India—Various
systems of religion and philosophy arose and had their germs in the
Vedas—Later developments of a more sensuous character—Social
and religious deterioration—The Hindu Triad: Brahmā, Vishnu,
Siva–The principle involved: creation, preservation, destruction—-
The doctrine of emanation—All will ultimately be merged into
Brahmā, the one simple, all-embracing Entity—The worship of
Brahmā well-nigh extinct—The ten incarnations of Vishnu-Three
relate to the Flood—In these three Vishnu appears in animal form
—In the fourth he is half man and half animal—From the fifth and
onward his incarnate form is human—The story of Rama and Sita
—Vishnu's eighth incarnation the most popular—Krishna's character
—Though unutterably vile, an object of intense devotion to the
masses—The obliquity of their moral vision—A more respectable
minority allegorise his worst features—Educated natives give up
Krishna as a hopeless case—Design of the ninth incarnation, to steal
a march upon the Buddhists—The tenth still future—Remarkable
predictions relating to it—Six schools of philosophy in three pairs
—All the schools go on the principle ex nihilo nihil fit, and hold the
doctrine of transmigration—This doctrine not in the Rig-Veda–
Grecian and Roman philosophy how like and how unlike Hindu
philosophy—The Sankhya school materialistic—The Vedantists
held, with two different aspects, a self-existent Entity—The Nyaya
philosophers taught the existence of the Supreme Soul, yet not as
Creator—All held the pre-existence of human souls, why?—The
soul at death passes into a spiritual body—Conscious existence
involves continued action, continued action creates merit or demerit,
these necessitate continued transmigrations—Hence release from

Buddhism the offspring of rationalistic speculation and a revolt against

_Brahmanical tyranny—Gautama's birth–IIis early ascetic turn—

His temporary dissipation—At twenty-nine his renunciation of the

world—His six years' fruitless search after light and truth—His

solitary musings, his temptations—Finds the way of emancipation

—His terrible creed of three articles—His rapture how accounted

for—His unselfishness and humility—He borrowed much from

Hinduism—His repudiation of caste the great point of divergence—

His moral code for all—More stringent rules for priests—Still more

rigid observances for religious devotees—Hindu absorption and

Buddhist nirvana—Buddhism pursues the most laudable means to

gain its sad end—Its world-wide benevolence—Buddha's self-sacrifice

and missionary toils for forty-five years—His success—His touching

death scene—The Buddhist scriptures, how compiled—Religious

dissensions—Asoka made Buddhism the State religion—Scheme of

foreign missions—Marvellous success in China, Thibet, Burmah, and

Ceylon–Yet whilst the branches spread the parent stem decayed—

Causes of this decay: revival of Brahmanical zeal and subtlety;

the Puranas; Krishna's influence with the masses; Kumarila-Bhatta

and Sankaracharya, two Hindu literary champions; above all, the

atheism of Buddha's creed fatal to its success in India—Hindus can

never be atheists—Actual persecution helped to give the death-

blow to Buddhism—The Jains, their two sections, their probable

absorption into the Hindu community . . - . 118



Hinduism encounters a new and more formidable rival—Mohammedan-

_ism an outcome of the age, the effect of prevenient mental throes—
Analogy between the origin of Buddhism and Mohammedanism—

The Joktanian and Ishmaelite Arabs—The latter gain ascendency
—Their early creed, sources of light: Abraham, Job, Moses, Jethro
—Monotheism gave place to nature-worship—Grosser idolatry
followed—The Kaaba, the 360 idols, the black stone—Ideas and
practices retained by Mohammed—The influence of Jews and
Christians in awakening religious enquiry—Conference of earnest
seekers; their resolve—Touching story of Zaid–Mohammed's
chequered history—His marriage with Khadija—The cave in
Mount Hara—The angelic visits—Mohammed epileptic, believed
himself possessed—Khadija and Waraka remove this impression—
Proclaims his divine mission—At first only thought of Arabia—
His lenient attitude to Jews and Christians—His view of Christ—
Becomes intolerant with growing power—The feature of accommoda-
tion in his revelations—His matrimonial relations his weakest point
—The compilation of the Koran—225 texts incorrigible—Theory of
abrogation—Historical and scientific blunders—The sources whence
Mohammed derived his theology—The divine attribute of holiness
wanting, no sense of sin as per se a great moral evil—The ethics of
Buddha in advance of those of Mohammed—Moslem devotion
simply mechanical—The sensual joys of Paradise—Islam and Chris-
tianity owe their propagation to totally different principles—The
failure of Mohammed's early mission in Mecca—His flight to
Medina—Converts the tribe of Beni-Sahm—His first resort to force
—Plunders the Meccan caravans—With an army of 10,000 takes
Mecca—At the point of the sword the faith established in Arabia
—His mandate to foreign potentates—His death scene—Felt when
dying his work was unfinished—His prediction of seventy-three
sects—Only the Sunnis, Shiahs, Sufis, and Wahabees have figured
in India—The Sunnis orthodox—The Shiahs protestant dissenters—
Sufism had its origin in Persia—Is a reflection of Hindu Vedantism
—The spiritual aspirations of Sufis—Abdul Wahab, founder of the
Wahabees—Begins as a religious reformer—Raises the standard of
revolt against the Turkish government—The final overthrow of the
Wahabees in 1818–The Trident and the Crescent first encounter
each other A.D. 705–Heroic resistance of the Hindus—Their reli-
gious constancy—Mahmud of Ghuzni, A.D. 1001, establishes the
Moslem rule in India—Moslem intolerance—The Jezzia—Conquest

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