Page:Folk-lore - A Quarterly Review. Volume 26, 1915.djvu/158

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148 Myths of Origin and

Beloe it has already been stated that the first ancestress of the people of Fialarang came out of Mt. Lekaan, and they also practise interment.'**' Thus an origin from the ground is accompanied by a return to the ground.

When the dead are interred it is believed that the ghost goes into the underground land of the dead. The Batak of Similoengoen inter their dead, and the land of the dead is situated in the bowels of the earth : it is a land exactly like this and is situated directly underneath the place which the Batak inhabit. The dead go there to join their ancestors, and in turn are joined by their descendants."*^ In south-west Timor, where the dead are interred, earth- quakes are supposed to be due to the efforts of the dead imprisoned beneath to break out from their underground land.^- The practice of cremation is a late importation among the Karen. Formerly all the dead were interred and the ghost was supposed to go to the underground land of the dead.*^ Before interment "four bamboo splints are taken, and one is thrown towards the west, saying,

  • That is the east.' Another is thrown towards the east,

saying, ' That is the west' A third is thrown towards the top of the tree, saying, ' That is the foot of the tree,' and a fourth is thrown downwards, saying, 'That is the top of the tree.' The source of the stream is then pointed to, saying, ' That is the mouth of the stream,' and the mouth of the stream is then pointed to, saying, ' That is the head of the stream.' This is done because in Hades everything is upside down in relation to the things of this world." ^*

■'^'Gryzen, op. til., pp. 26, 65 et seq.

  • ^J. A. Kroesen, " Nola omtrent de Bataklandern," Tijd. taal land- envolk.,

xli., 1899, pp. 274, 284.

■•- Salomon Muller, Reizen en onderzoekingen in den Indischen archipel, 1857, ii., p. 261 ; J. S. G. Graamberg, " Eene maand in de binnenland van Timor," Verh. Bat. Gen., xxxvi., 1872, p. 213; Bastian, Indonesien, ii., p. 36.

^"^ Burma Gazetteer, 1879, ii., p. 231.

^Rev. F. Mason, "The Karens, "yi7//r. Roy. Asiatic Soc. Bengal, 1866, ii., pp. 27-8.