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HIS NAME ENEASTERN WORDS
HIS CONNECTION WITH THE LOTUS BY ITS
PADMA is the Indian name for the lotus', or water lily, the solitary flower of which floating, on a vast expanse of water in its unexpanded state, presented the idea of the diluvian mount appearing above the surface of the deluge; and therefore in the Hindoo representations of those Avatars, which plainly preserve traditions of that event, the lotus is always to be observed above the waters of the ocean. Hence the island in the Ægean, where St. John resided, was denominated Patmos, and hence the temple called Padma Mandira2 took its name, being built on the banks of the Cumudvati, or Euphrates, in Mesopotamia, which was anciently called Padan Aram, and was probably insulated by communications between the Tigris and
1 Nymphæa Lotus, Linn. 2 Wilford, in Asiat. Res. iii. 124.
Euphrates, before the deluge; for those rivers being two of the four that watered Eden, by common consent, the two others must join them to complete the circuit, if it be true, as some suppose, that they flowed round rather than through the garden; and if this be so, it would give additional strength to the veneration for islands, and might be the reason why Mesopotamia was chosen by the builders of Babel, which perhaps was the true Padma Mandira. That it was a temple built, like most other very ancient temples, in commemoration of the deluge, and in some sort of imita tion of the diluvian mount, may be inferred from the addition of the word Mandira'; the very appropriate designation of the mountain, by which the ocean was figuratively said to have been churned, and signifying the water-piercing peak, as well as the residence of the gods. Besides the Indian Mandara, there was another in the centre of that district, in Egypt, called Meroe, which, according to Suidas, means an island in the ocean. It was surrounded by low hills, as the germ is by the expanded petals of the lotus; and Bruce says, it was once the residence of the Shepherd, or Palli, kings. Now the ancestors of the Palli2, or Bhills, are described as particularly attached to the worship of Mahadeva, under the symbol of the Linga3,
1 From 'Man,' water, and 'Dara,' to pierce.- Wilford, As. Res.iii. 74. An insulated conical mountain. Heber's Journal, i. 283. The other etymology is Man, divine, and Dar, to inhabit, of which more I will be said on another occasion.
2 Phallus from Palli, Bhils from Baal.
3 As. Res. iii. 60.
which, however it might be perverted afterwards to a baser meaning, was originally nothing more than this same Mandara. The Bheels of India were the original inhabitants of Rajpootana, that is, the country of the Rajah Pout, or Buddha : these Bheels, then, were "the Danavas, or children of Danu, who came into Egypt from the west of India under Beli, who lived at the time when the Padma Mandira was erected."1 In order to ascertain who Danu was, it is of importance to observe that a deity of that name was worshipped in the Malayan archipelago, and that his name is associated with a mountain and a lake. The inhabitants of Pulo Nias worship Batu Ba Danaw.2 Batu is the name of a hill, like the rock in Ceylon, which is called Prabat. The history of this name is explained by a passage in Kampfer. Wistnu," says he," is styled by the Siamites 'Prahpuditnau,’ i. e. the saint of high descent; Sammana Khutama,' the man without passions; Prah,' the saint, or Budha, or Phutha, in one syllable, according to their guttural pronunciation like that of the Hottentots:" so that when Ezekiel says, "They of Persia, and of Lud, and of Phut, were in thine army"," there can be little doubt, that the lat ter term was applied to the Indian worshippers of Buddha. The Prahbat has been retained by
1 Wilford, As. Res. iii. 124.
2 Sir Stamford Raffles, Memoirs, 448.
3 In the Asiat. Res. the interpretation given is the venerable foot, i. e. of Sommonacodom, a king of Ceylon, and idol of the Siamese. i. 170.
4 Hist. of Japan, p. 33.
5 Ezekiel, xxvii. 10.
the Brahmins, with little alteration, in their Meru Paravada', which the Burmans call Mienmo, or the Mount of Vision, and imagine it surrounded by seven chains of hills, like so many belts, between which flow seven rivers called Sida, which in the dialect of Arracan is applied to the sea.2 Here then we have additional evidence, that Sita was a diluvian goddess; and is further confirmed by a mythological tradition, that when Rama bent the bow of Siva, the condition of obtaining Sita in marriage, the earth sank, and the waters of the seven seas were united into one1: now that bow of Siva was named Dhanu, derived perhaps from Deona, which is synonymous to Argha, in the same way as arcus is from arca", on account of the curvature of its shape. But Danith, in fact, signifies a ship; and if any reliance could be placed on similarity of sound, it is remarkable that in English there is the same sort of relation between Bow and Boat, and the same connection of both with Po or Bho, Bat or Pout. When the grandson of Noah came to be confounded with the Patriarch in succeeding ages, his votaries sometimes bestowed his own titles upon rivers, which they had learned to consider sacred emblems of the deluge; hence the river of Piedmont was called not only the Po, and the Padus, but Eridanus",
1 Hence the Himalayan mountains were called Parvetoi.
2 As. Res. vi. 176.
3 Or Shivû, as Ward writes it.
4 Ward's Hindoo Mythology, 99.
5 So arch from ark.
6 Heri, in Sanscrit, is Lord, one of the names of Siva.
the Lord of the Bow, or Boat; and there were two or three other rivers known by the same appellation. Pausanias says, that Eridanus runs through the country of the Galatæ, or Celts, who inhabit the extremities of Europe, and border on a vast ocean not navigable in its remoter parts, and there the sisters of Phaeton bewail his fall.' This is probably the Rhone, since altered into Rhodanus. There was also an Athenian river of that name2, and one that fell into the Baltic, probably the Vistula, or, as Pomponius Mela writes it, Visula3, flowing through Po-land and Pomerania. Dantzic, or Danus Vicus, was anciently Gedanum, and one of its streams is still the Rodaunus1 and therefore D'Anville rightly places there the Electrides Insulæ, of which Strabo denied the existence, because he looked for them in the wrong place, at the mouth of the Po in the Adriatic. The Veneti had settlements at the embouchure of both rivers; and it may not be amiss to show, in another instance, how much of diluvian supersti
1 Pausaniæ Attica, l.i. 10.: Ἐπὶ θαλάσσῃ πολλῇ, καὶ ἐς τὰ πέρατα οὐ πλωίμῳ παρέχεται δὲ ἄμπωτιν καὶ ῥαχίαν καὶ θηρία οὐδὲν ἐοικότα τοῖς ἐν θαλάσσῃ τῇ λοιπῇ.
* Ηριδανῷ τῷ Κελτικῷ κατὰ τὰ αὐτὰ ὄνομα ἔχων. 3 It is unnecessary to point out the resemblance between Visula and the Vesulus Mons, from which the Italian Po springs.
4 Moreri in voce Dantzic.
5 Οὐδὲ γὰρ τούτων οὐδέν ἐστιν ἐν τοῖς τόποις. 1. v. 215. He was equally puzzled by the name Eridanus. Τὸν μηδαμοῦ γῆς ὄντα, πλησίον δὲ τοῦ Πάδου λεγόμενον. Ibid.
6 Οὐένεται γένος ἄλλο πάνυ παλαιὸν. Polybius Hist. l. ii. 105. Τοῖς ἔθεσι καὶ τῷ κόσμῳ βραχὺ διαφέροντες Κελτῶν, γλώττῃ δ ̓ ἀλλοίᾳ χρώμενοι.