Monday, 29 April 2013

Folktales - Souls of Any Culture

^    The grandmas and grandpas are spending summer evenings alone,
      waiting anxiously to narrate folktales to their little ones.
^    So, why don't you guys give break to your smartphones and tabs,
     and spend sometime with your grandparents.

^    Until the old man pulls a tale out a hat, enjoy a folktale about 'Rih

^    Rih Lake, in Chin State Burma, is about 3 km from the Indian border
     in Mizoram. This heart shaped lake is close to hearts of the Mizo

^    The Chin believe that the ‘other world’ is divided into two, and all
      spirits go to a place called ‘Mitthi khua’ (village of deaths) then some
      move on to ‘Pialral’(heaven); but to reach their eternal abodes, they
      have to pass through the Rih lake. According to the legend, after
      crossing the lake the spirits reach a hill, where they look back at their
      village and weep for days longing for the world left behind. The hill is
      said to be full of flowers called ‘Hawilo par’, which the spirits pluck
      and wear them in their ears and hair. This makes them forget their
      desire to return to their loved ones and they proceed further.

^    The ‘Mitthi khua’ is where the common people settle, living just like
      they did in their past lives. But beyond it exists ‘Pialral', where only
      the men and their families who earn the title ‘Thangchuah’ through
      their piousness and having sacrificed animals and given community
      feast could enter the heaven, much to the envy of the people who
      have to settle in the ‘Mitthi khua’ where there is only hardship.

^    In the pre-Christian era, the Chins and all cognate groups believed
      this place to be passage of souls to their eternal abode. And during 
      the period of British colonization, soldiers were ordered to dig the  
      ditch to dry the entire lake, but on half way of their attempt, all the 
      diggers were killed by some kind of unknown plague, believed to
      have been unleashed by the spirits.

*    For second tale,
      (watch out this space for second tale about this lake)............
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