Page images

Missionary Observer.

PREACHING IN AND AROUND / which holiness in life is demanded

of its professors. When our heathen RUSSELL CONDAH.

congregations ponder over what they

hear, and are ready to test the truth We have paid our long anticipated of our teachings, we see a spirit of visit to Russell Condah, and fulfilled inquiry awaking that brightens our the promise which we gave to our hopes for the future. brethren assembled in last year's In another village we visited, reConference, viz., to do all that lay sides a middle aged man, who, in in our power for this new station addition to a considerable knowledge during the coming rainy season. of the Scriptures evinces a decided Our stay was necessarily limited to attachment to the truths they inone month, and the uncertainty of culcate. Being the Pradhan, or the weather in the month of August head of the village, his affection for still further curtailed our oppor our native brethren, whom he often tunities of preaching to the people. visits, and his new religious sympaNotwithstanding, however, circum- thies expose him to considerable stances were somewhat adverse we annoyance from those under his were able repeatedly to visit the authority. As he requested us to adjacent villages in the mornings come to his village and preach, we and in the evenings to preach in went, but unfortunately that mornthe bazaar. Our native brethren ing he was unavoidably absent. He gave us a hearty welcome as fellow- told the villagers we had promised labourers, and were much encour. to come, and they evidently preaged with the prospect of having pared themselves for us, by reour co-operation for a few weeks, solving to exhibit a quiet indifferand even the heathen were anxious ence to us and our message. I to see us again, and had frequently passed a weaver who was lazily asked them when the sabibs were working, and invited him to come expected. The name of the first and hear what the Lord had done for village we visited was “Baungsa him, but he was silent and gave Nundi,” and although the entrance me no answer. On reaching the was knee deep in mud and looked | middle of the village we saw a far from inviting, the people re- number of people sitting in front of ceived us gladly. Several of the their houses, apparently ready to go villagers had left their homes and to their work in the fields, but gone to the rice fields before our native-like, their resolution to move arrival, consequently our listeners in that direction was inadequate. were not very numerous. The few, One man who sat with his “katti," or however, who remained, manifested rative billhook in his hand, strove to a readiness to listen and an anxiety make himself particularly impractito understand, which were very en cable, and rather skilfully parried couraging to the preacher. Re- any remark directed to himself. marks were made by several, which The solemn subjects of death and evinced a high appreciation of the judgment were advanced, to which purity of the religion of Jesus, and he coolly replied, “Such matters an inclination to despise the impu- may concern sahibs and natives who rities taught in their own shasters. eat their (the sahib's) rice, but with None of the distinguishing char- them I have nothing in common. acteristics of christianity arrest the While I am labouring to procure attention of the thoughtful among food to eat and cloths to wear, the heathen more than its absolute why should you come, and by preachholiness, and the pertinacity withing about death and the future,

[ocr errors]

trouble my mind and lead me to I left of the river running to the attempt to secure that which is far east of Russell Condah, we found beyond my reach. The responsibility our native brethren had taken time of my present existence, that is by the forelock and were busily enprocuring food for supporting life, gaged in preaching when we arrived. is my own, and I freely accept it, Among the crowd of listeners was but what lies beyond this world a young man the son of the Poora. rests with Krushna. This is all I heet, or village priest, of Bellamootah. know, and all I care to know about He is one of several intelligent religion.” These words and their young brahmins in that district who questionable philosophy furnished evince noinclination whatever to walk our native brother Tama with an in the footsteps of their idolatrous excellent text, and his address which forefathers. While we were preachteemed with attractive illustrations, ing this young man showed no for fertility in which he is remark- backwardness in acknowledging his able, rivetted the attention of his disbelief in the absurdities of hindoo. opponent and those sitting near him, ism. His sincerity was not to be and although the former repeatedly questioned, and the readiness with said to the latter “I am going, I which he anticipated remarks re. am going ; he remained until we lating to the “true incarnation,' took our departure, and appeared showed his familiarity with the much pleased with what he had leading incidents in the life of heard. When leaving the village Christ. Indolence ofttimes leads a our friend shouted after us—“ You hindoo to give a cold meaningless may look out, our Pradhan will assent to what he hears, to relieve join you by and by, his heart is himself of the exertion necessary in with you already."

upholding opposition; but, when, Duáh Chi, another village we with an earnestness which proves went to rather disappointed us. The his words to be the outgrowth of people were not so ready to flock his belief, he upholds our views around us when we appeared, nor and opposes those of his idolatrous did those who came listen to us brethren, we cannot fail to regard with the same eagerness that had it as indicative of his sterling love characterized them in our previous for the truth. visit. Unmistakable signs of The last village visited was Bhigi brahminical influence were apparent. Puta. As it is near to the Mission A young man we had often seen bungalow, and we had been to those when itinerating in the neighbour. more distant first, the people were hood was absent. On inquiring afraid we were going to leave where he was, a brahmin pointing Russell Condah without preaching to his house, which was burnt to to them. " When will the sahibs the ground, said, his wife had been come and preach to us” they in. bewitched, and that in consequence quired of one of our native brethren. he had left the village, and was We will promise to hear them if residing with a relative. The house they will come ?” Such an invitation had been burnt after their departure, was not to be slighted, and accordto drive out the evil spirit with ingly we went. After being listened which it was supposed to be haunted. to very attentively for a considerable Our informant did not fail to throw time, we were about to leave,whenour the onus of the calamity upon the attention was arrested by some one influence which our books had excited singing in a building in the middle over the mind of the youth. With this of the village. On going we found exception, we found brahminical an old man sitting on his heels authority far below par in Goom. singing various stanzas from

shaster he was holding in his hands. The morning we visited Nuá “Well old gentleman what have you Ghwi, a

large village on the go there?” we asked. “Only a




Preaching in and around Russell Condah.




shaster, sahib." Then sing a verse. sit down, have wished them to ex. This was done. Now for an ex- plain several difficulties they (the planation. After a little hesitation shopkeepers) have met with while

gare the interpretation of reading our books. When entering one as follows, “Only touch a Roosi the bazaar we often found and your sins will disappear, and native brother Tama sitting in a your happiness be secured.” These shop eagerly discussing with its * Rossias,” or hindoo sages are sup- owner the relative merits of hindoo. posed to dwell on the summits of ism and christianity. While an abmountains, and are said to be im- sence of a fondness for caviling is mortal. The ignorant among the characteristic of those composing heathen manifest great fear of, and our bazaar congregations at Russell respect for them. A brahmin who Condah, they could by no means be was present gave his hearty approval denominated"

a dead sea. Many of this doctrine, and as an additional intelligent questions were asked, evidence of their immortality, af- and so long as the answers failed to firmed that no tiger would or could enlighten the inquirer, again and eat a Roosi. “ I have myself,” he again would the preacher be interrosaid, “ seen a tiger come suddenly gated. We never returned from our upon a Roosi, and away it ran evening labour there with any other into the jungles to hide, terribly feeling than one of gratitude to our alarmed. He was reminded of a Divine Master for the favour he had line in the brahminical code, for- given us in the eyes of the heathen, bidding a brahmin to lie; which and for the gladness with which the remark led to a long and warm common people listened to His discussion between one of our native Gospel. preachers and our poitered friend, The recent baptism of Ram in which, the latter being defeated, Chundra will always be pleasingly allowed his wrath to break from re- associated with our late visit to straint, and gave us a liberal share Russeil Condah. He is the first of curses, charging us with being offering to the Lord in this imdevourers of the riches of others. portant part of Goomsoor, and the When leaving, I told him our re- pledge of yet more liberal gifts to ligion taught us to return good for the church of Christ upon earth. evil, blessing for cursing, and urging For sometime we looked forward to him to forsake his wicked practices, this event with deepening interest. and wishing him everlasting happi- Of his sincerity we have long since ness through faith in Jesus, we dismissed all doubt, and while inreturned to our homes. While not dications of the increase of Divine an advocate for indiscriminate at- | light in his soul, and of his steady tacks upon either brahmins or their progress in christian experience religion, I have often seen a well- were apparent, have been supported exposure of an ignorant, desirous that precipitancy should in arrogant brahmin surrounded by his no way characterize his reception superstitious admirers, materially into the church. From first to last damage his long - established re- the work in his heart has been of the ligious prestige, and for the time Lord; and what He was gradually being at least turn the common accomplishing by the agency of his sense of the people against him. Holy Spirit we dare not seek to

The reception we met with in the hasten, lest our impatience should bazaar was full of hope for the mar the whole. When we stood by future. The shopkeepers near our his side on the morning of his bappreaching stand, not only often leave tism and looked upon the people business to listen to the preacher, assembled, and knew that such but have very frequently called to scenes were witnessed by eyes purer our native brethren when they have than our own, from the fulness of been passing, and asking them to our hearts did we thank that Holy



Saviour who had given us the privi- | calicoes ? The life of Seeb cannot lege of bearing the honoured name be described to an English audience, of missionaries.

but we should like to whisper into Long though I may live and the ears of the members of this labour in Orissa, and in whatever firm a few of the dark deeds he


may be permitted to committed during his supposed participate, the day when Ram residence upon earth. We presume Chundra confessed his attachment that D- and Co. are not aware that to the Saviour in the presence of his crimes innumerable were heaped numerous villagers, will be a golden upon the head of this god, that he day in my missionary recollections. was doomed to dwell amid the Years of toil, and prayers and tears ashes of the funereal fires, and that are all forgotten on such hallowed Bysadabe, the first of Hindoo sages, occasions as these. May Goomsoor's affirmed that “it were better to be beautiful valley, yield many such devoured by a tiger than take refuge fruits of the Holy Spirit.

in the temple of such a god!”. J. 0. GOADBY. We have stamped on this Man

chester calico as well as on the

very conspicuous label, Seeb, acIDOLATROUS LABELS UPON cording to the heathen idea, riding

on a bull almost in a state of MANCHESTER CALICOES IN

nudity. From his trident a streamer INDIA.

is flying with the following inscrip.

tion in Sanscrit: " The religion of Some years ago the people of England the ascetic that is victorious;" which were shocked at the daring impiety really means the religion of Seeb of that wretched trader in Birming is victorious. ham, who sent out to this country Manchester men eager for gain a large quantity of gods and god may thus pauder to the superdesses. It seemed almost incredible stitions prejudices of the people, that the nation, which had sent forth but will the end be accomplished ? so many of her sons and daughters By such degrading acts will they in the great missionary enterprize, ingratiate themselves into the good should contain even one so deeply wishes of the heathen ? fallen as to engage in such an ini. The Hindoos do not_believe in quitous traffic. This morning a proselytism and the Englishman, native cloth dealer called at our who becomes Hindooized for the house, and on his opening his bundle, sake of popularity is generally the my attention was drawn to rather least respected. Bad as the people a strange looking figure on a pea are in this land, for the most part green label attached to a piece of they do honor to the man that leads Manchester calico. I had seen a an upright life; and it is an indis. good many labels attached to goods putable fact that the men who have sent to this country, but not one ruled in righteousness have been like this. After a moments exami- the most popular governors in India. nation I was startled to find that

W. BAILEY. the figure was intended for Seeb, the third person in the Hindoo Trinity, the most disgusting of all

Τ' Η Ε JUGGERNATH the Hindoo deities. One wonders FESTIVAL, 1862. whether the firm of D- and Co., who have made their name so conspicu- Tuis year the Juggernath festival ous by having it printed in English, fell unday, June 29th, and Bengallee, Arabic, and Sanscrit,

numerously attended know anything of the strange char- than for several years past. For acter they have not only printed on four years in succession I have their labels, but stamped on their I visited this annual festival, but the

Not so.




The Juggernath Festival, 1862.




present festival was the largest I reminded of the sahib who paid have seen. As usual a large pro- homage to Juggernath. portion of the pilgrims-sixty or The moral and spiritual blindness seventy per cent. — were Bengali of the people is truly amazing, and women, not a few of whom were anything, with shape or without, widows. The latter are easily dis- they will worship as a god. Take tinguisbedasthey wear no ornaments, an illustration of the above remark. these being entirely and for ever cast Several years ago, when a ship was aside on the death of their husband. wrecked at Pooree, the figure head, Of up country pilgrims there ap- Britannia, was recovered and set up peared to be more than the average by an officer on some masonary on number. We met with men from the beach. The figure, it must Benares and Delhi, Oude and the be confessed, has beautiful Punjaub, so that these had travelled appearance, as, with composed from five to fifteen hunderd miles. features, and outstretched hand, it Hindee was the language which the stands erect "ruling the waves.” majority of them spoke, so But sad to relate the poor benighted fortunately we could not understand pilgrims in passing along the beach much of each other. They knew, actually worship this as divine, and however, that we were “padries,' I saw droves of them, when coming and that our religion was dia- up to the figure, first raise their eyes metrically opposed to idol worship. and hands towards it, and then bow On several occasions they en down their heads to the masonry deavoured to say a word in favour on which it stands. By the residents of the gods, and assigned various it is called the “matra ranee,” or reasons to prove that they were great queen. true and proper objects of worship. Mr. Buckley was not able to join One man såid Juggernath was true us till afterwards; but for a week because he had come 800 kos or 1,600 | prior to the festival, in company miles to worship him. I reminded with Mr. Taylor, who had spent him, however, that according to this the hot season at Pooree, and the kind of argument he must be false, native brethren, I had the opporbecause whereas he had come only tunity morning and evening of 1,600 miles, I had come 16,000, and witnessing for Christ. that to tell him Juggernath was In consequence of a very heavy false and Jesus the only Saviour. fall of rain we were unable to visit The people admitted that the distance the town on the Sabbath, the day of argument was certainly in my favour. | the festival. Wet or fine, however, Another up country pilgrim, to prove out must come the idols on the day that the gods were true, asserted appointed, and out they did come, that a commissioner sahib in the to the great risk of having their Punjaub offered the gods 5,000 rps. faces disfigured and their features to quiet the mutiny. We expressed washed away. The rain commenced our disbelief in this statement, and on Saturday, and continued with said that even if it were true it did scarcely any

intermission till not prove the gods divine any more Monday, when part of the “ great than an act of forgery, recently road” was under water. The uncommitted by an English attorney favourable weather, in connection in Calcutta, proved forgery to be with hard and insufficient food, right. Instances like the above told fearfully upon the pilgrims, show how the conduct of oficials is , and cholera, deadly cholera, was watched and misconstrued by the the result. The dead and dying lay natives. The conduct of a col-together in the streets, and extra lector at Pooree, many, many, men had to be employed to carry years ago, is exerting an influence the dead to the dogs, the jackalls, in favour of idolatry even to this and the vultures ; and the sick to the day, and at every festival we are hospital. Many cases prove fatal

« PreviousContinue »