Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Migration of Aryan Gods from India to Europe – Triglav, a case in point.


The folk tradition of Serbia contains references that resemble Vedic Gods. Their chief God was known as Triglav, literally meaning ‘three heads’. A blogpost on Old European culture has chronicled the old records of the three-headed Triglav in pre-Christian era of Serbia from which we are able to derive Indic connection to the Slavic paganism. When Christianity made inroads in that part of the globe, all the old forms of worship including that of Triglav were destroyed. Whatever little emerging from the archaeological discoveries in recent times stands the chance of being used for Aryan Invasion but the folk songs highlighted in that blogpost establish a reverse movement from India. However caution needs to be applied in studying when this movement has happened as there are hints of a more recent movement in the songs while the pagan features found in those regions seem to have sprung up from a very old tradition –which are however Vedic in essence. An examination of them is being done in this article.

One of the Serbian folk songs sounds like the Svasti vachan of the Vedic tradition. It is reproduced here before delving into the Serbian version.

Swasthir maanushebhyah :
Oordhwam jigaathu bheshajam/
Sham no asthu dwi-padhe:
Sham chathush padhe
OM Shanti Shanti Shanti:

Translation:-

Let there be goodness to human beings.
Let the plants which are like medicine to us, grow up well.
Let the bipeds and quadrupeds be well.
Let there be our goodwill to them.
Let there be peace at all three levels of
Bhu (earth or physical ),
Bhuvah (intermediary or vital)
and svah (heaven or mental levels of) all these beings.


The Serbian version prays for the well being of the quadrupeds and human beings in a similar way by invoking the three Gods symbolized by Triglav – the three Gods resembling the Trimurti of the Vedic pantheon.

The Ser...May our cattle be healthy
All the cows and all the sheep
All the kids and all the lambs
All the great big horses
Which carry our heroes
Dear solders of the god Triglav
god Triglav the holy trinity
Vishnji god, the creator
Strong Živa the destrojer
and Branjanj the protector...

The names of the Gods Vishnji, Živa and Branjanj in the last three lines sound similar to Vishnu, Shiva and Brahma, with a slight variation in the works associated with them.


Image of Triglav from that blogspot


Trimurti (combination of Brahma,Vishnu and Shiva) from India

From the version given by three different biographers ( Ebbo, Herbord and monk from Priflinger) who lived between 8th and 12th century CE, it is known that Triglav with three heads was characterised as ruling the three worlds, heaven, earth and underworld. This resembles the three levels of Bhu, Bhuvah and Svah. The three Gods enshrined in Triglav are unmistakably the Trimurtis of the Vedic culture.

Other folk songs of Serbia give us some clues on the time period of a connection with India.
In the song titled, “The saints are dividing the treasure”  Ognjena Marija (Fiery Mary) sister of St Petar, St Nicolas, St John, St Ilia and St Pantelija tells her brothers why she is crying:

...And kind Mary (Holy Mary) replies:
O my brother, Thunder god Ilija
how can i not cry
when i am coming from country of India
from India the accursed country.
In India there is complete lawlessness:
young are not respecting the old,
children are not respecting parents,
they have black cheeks before the god of truth,
a godfather is betraying godson,
brother is fighting brother,
brother in law is sleeping with sister in law,
and brother does not call his sister a sister...

In this verse the thunder God Ilija is the same as Indra and it is the only God other than the Trimurti that find mention in the folk songs revealed in the blogspot.

The name India appears as “Inđije” in this song. The song clearly establishes origins in India and leaving India under distress in a war like condition.

The name India is of recent origin. If the composers of this song had come from India at some time in the past, it is least probable that they identified the country as India if it was before the Common Era. The song describes all round lawlessness – something unthinkable anytime in the pre-Islamic India. We can therefore confidently place the time of origin of these singers in India towards the end of the first millennium of the Common Era. Support for this conjecture comes from another folk song of Serbia.

This song is a ‘Christmas time ceremonial prayer song found in the collection of Vuk Stef. Karadžić. It gives important clues on the time period of this song. It is in the form of a dialogue with a dove which flew to India! The singer asks the Dove where he was flying. The Dove says ‘to India, our country’!

...gray Živa, mighty gray,
mighty gray dove!
where did you travel?
and gray Živa, mighty gray dove, answers:
"I traveled all the way
To India our country.
I flew over Hindustan
And over Tatarstan
Black Hindus and Tatarus.
I flew to our Master
Our mighty God Triglav
And I watched what he was doing
What he was doing and ordering.”

The names Hindušana (Hindustan), Tartariju (Tatars) and Hinduš (Hindus) in this song can only be of recent origin
U Inđiju našu zemlju.
Prolećela Hindušana
I tu Globu Tartariju
Crni Hinduš i Tartaru.

The Dove describes an India that is different from what the crying Mary described to her brothers. To a question on what Triglav was doing in India, the Dove replies that He is doing good, making gold and silver cups. The implied message is that Triglav continues to be in India and not in Serbia! The Dove suggests that they can alternatively pray to the younger God Svarožić (Dabog, the baby Sun) who can give them all goodness and most importantly no fear of ‘Hindustan’, ‘Tataria’ and ‘Manchuria’ as Dabog has no fear of these three.

Young God Svarožić (Winter solstice sun, baby sun, Dabog, the Giving god)
To give us everything good
Most of all long life.
Long life good health
And wealth that God Dabog carries with him.
Young god Svarožić (Dabog) sings in all the land
He is not afraid of Hindustan
Neither is he afraid of black Tataria
Nor the immense wasteland
A bloody black Globa
black Globa Tataria (I don't know what Globa means, but it could be Gobi desert),
And that nasty Manchuria.

Caustic references to Globa Tataria and Manchuria clearly reveal the issues troubling the composers of these songs. The composers who once lived in India had to shift to Serbia fearing threat to their life in a situation of total lawlessness all around. The major threat had come from Tatars and Manchurians. From the presently available records, we can say that the murderous raids of Genghis Khan in North - North West parts of olden India – in what is now Pakistan and Afghanistan – had been referenced in these songs. The people who had faced grave threat to life in these parts of olden India had fled to Serbia and beyond. Their travails have been retained in ballads. The use of names such as India and Hindustan and ‘ji’ in Vishnji can only be from this time period of Mongol raids.
This also gives rise to a view that the idea of Triglav was taken by them from India and that Triglav was not present in Slavic pantheon before. But there are references to the contrary.

The earliest reference to Triglav comes in the works of Ebbo (c. 775 – 851) which is much earlier to Mongol raids. Ebbo had personally seen the worship of Triglav in Serbia as a three headed deity ruling the three worlds (heaven, earth and under sorld). According to him Triglav was the highest Slavic God and there was a temple for him in the city of Volin on the slopes of three hills. This must be Wolin of Poland known for a temple of Triglav described by another chronicler, Adam of Bremen (11th century CE). Interestingly the archaeological find of Triglav of Wolin is four-headed and not three headed! 

Statue of Triglav in Wolin, Poland from https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Triglav_(mythology)

Another four-faced Triglav was discovered in Ukraine in 1848 and this was dated at 11th to 12th century CE.  From the description of the researcher Dynda we get a detailed picture of the pillar of Triglav of this find. The pillar of Triglav is divided into three parts with the bottom most one having figures holding the pillar above. The topmost one has four heads facing four directions. They are covered with a common cap. The pillar is said to represent the axis connecting the three worlds, earth, heaven and under world.

The four headed Triglav also has a parallel in Vedic culture – in the form of Brahma. Brahma the creator God is originally four faced – indicating creation on all four sides. But iconographic depiction of him can show only three faces and he is shown with three faces only in many places in India.


Four faced Brahma with the 4th face hidden from sight.

The four faced deity can be mistaken for a three faced one, if, and only if the interpretation had not been native to the place where it is found. The inter-change between three faced and four faced image for Triglav exactly reveals a secondary evolution of Thought on Triglav which is not native to Slavic tradition. This means the pillar (in the nature of Dhvajā or standard), the concept of axis associated with the pillar, the three worlds under the rule of Triglav and the three works of creation, protection and destruction are not at all the original concepts of Slavic theology but a borrowed or an imported one.

The idea of Trimurti and the four faced Brahma are different but to find them fused with each other and as inter-changeable goes to prove that these distinct ideas degenerated with time. But this again can be interpreted as being original to Slavia and travelled to India later (with Aryan Invasion). Here are the reasons why it cannot be so.

The foremost reason is the identification of a mountain with Triglav.

Ebbo talks about the three hills of Triglav. There does exist a mountain by the same name Triglav in Slovenia (in pre 1991 Yugoslavia) – the highest in Slovenia and in Julina Alps. It has three peaks but considered as one – a Triglav giving three heads.



There stood a temple of Triglav on this peak giving rise to the notion that Triglav was indeed three headed deity, and not a four headed one. A four headed Triglav could have come up with dis-connect with original ideas.

Both the peak and the deity of Triglav were associated with each other. The peak gained both a mythical and a sacred origin, as known from the folk tradition quoted by Dynda that “in the beginning the great Triglav mountain arose from the sea” (i.e. the peak of the Julian Alps)”.  The simple fact is that this mountain is away from the sea and had least chance of having risen from the sea.



Though Dynda quotes references from Witzel and others for a mythical concept of Primordial Mountain arising from the sea, he nevertheless brings out the version from A.Pleterski that there was no such tradition in Slovenia, though such a notion is found in the local folklore. This further firms up the idea that the concept of Triglav was not autochthonous to Slavic culture.

The peak of Triglav has a parallel with a similar peak of Shiva, the Trinity God in Mount Kailash. A comparison of these two peaks shows amazing similarity.


The highest peak of Triglav looks similar to Mt Kailash.

Mount Triglav

The slopes of Triglav are similar to the slopes of Mt Kailash.

Mt Kailash can be aptly termed as having risen from the churning of the Primordial Ocean that caused the rise of Himalayan ranges. In real terms, only Kailash was associated with a water body – the Manasa Lake while Triglav was not – even though it was deemed so by tradition.

Triglav was housed on top of the mount of Triglav, like how Lord Shiva is identified with the mount of Kailash.  In some sects of Vedic culture, Shiva himself is the Trimurti.

Interestingly enough, the temples of Triglav had a sacred tree and a well in pre- Christian era. They all have been destroyed. Tree and well or a water body are inseparable features of any temple in Vedic culture. From Ebbo’s chronicles it is known that priests of Triglav temple managed to hide the images of Triglav under the sacred tree to escape destruction by Christianisation. Worship of Triglav was continued for some time in the form of veneration of the tree where local people offered coins to the deity. All these features have an explanation in India, in Vedic culture and not in Europe.

The presence of Triglav in Serbia even before the migrants from India had taken asylum there  could be traced back to the times of celts. A three headed deity was also found in Irish mythology sporting a spear and described as a young warrior. Called as Lugh, this deity had an important place in celtic culture.

Celtic God Lugh

In the name of Lugh a festival called Lughnasadh was held in celtic regions where Serbia is also located. In olden days grand sport events were conducted at Lughnasadh dedicated to Lugh.

Lúghnasadh was the occasion of major assemblies where legal matters were settled, political problems were discussed, craftsmen, artists and entertainers got a chance to show off their talents, and sporting events brought scattered communities together.” (Details here) .

This has a parallel to the Matsya festival celebrated at Pushkar in Matsya desa – perhaps the oldest sports event on record. This festival finds mention in Mahabharata (Virata parva- chapter 13) as a grand event that was held in honour of the Four-faced Brahma! It must be mentioned here that while no one exactly knows whether Lugh of Lughnasadh (the sport event comparable with Matsya festival) was four faced, from the images of Triglav with three faces and four faces at times, it can be reliably told that a four faced Brahma transformed into three faced Lugh for the reason the original Thought behind Lugh-concept did not evolve there.

The celtic Lugh has better candidature to have evolved into Triglav of Serbia, well before the entry of migrants from olden India in the wake of Mongol raids. The migrants with the knowledge of Trimurti had accepted Triglav as same as Trimurti but were yearning for blessings from Trimurti of India. Trimurti had continued to bless the people of India with gold and silver cups (from Serbian folk songs) neglecting the migrants who had left India. It is here a compromise figure is brought in the form of Younger God Dabog (in the folk song).

Other information on Triglav further strengthens the view of migration of theology from India to Europe long ago. For example, Triglav was wielding spear and sword. He was depicted with the heads of goats in some chronicles. Spear and goat are associated with Skanda, the son of Shiva. A fused presence of all these with the concept of Trimurti of three Vedic Gods can only happen with migration of ideas from India to Europe. The other way traffic is not possible as the concepts have clear-cut explanation only in Vedic culture. 

Aryan Invasion theorists have a huge task of explaining the flight of theological ideas to Europe from India before establishing movement of people on the reverse!

References:

“The Three-Headed One at the Crossroad: A Comparative Study of the Slavic God Triglav” by  Jiří Dynda  https://web.archive.org/web/20170707213317/http:/sms.zrc-sazu.si/pdf/17/03_sms17_Dynda.pdf

“Origin of Olympic Games traced to Matsya festival at Pushkar” by Jayasree Saranathan. http://jayasreesaranathan.blogspot.com/2016/08/origin-of-olympic-games-traced-to.html

“Triglav , Trojan, Trinity, Trimurti, Agni” by Serbian Irish

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