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treasure to them even when he is dead. And those of his children who are already grown up know him thoroughly, his gentleness, and his bravery.” “Black people do not worship all Amatongo indifferently, that is, all the dead of their tribe. Speaking generally, the head of each house is worshipped by the children of that house ; for they do not know the ancients who are dead, nor their laud-giving names, nor their names. But their father whom they knew is the head by whom they begin and end in their prayer, for they know him best, and his love for his children; they remember his kindness to them whilst he was living ; they compare his treatment of them whilst he was living, support themselves by it, and say, 'He will still treat us in the same way now he is dead. We do not know why he should regard others besides us; he will regard us only.'"1 We shall see in another place how the Zulu follows up the doctrine of divine ancestors till he reaches a first ancestor of man and creator of the world, the primeval Unkulunkulu. In West Africa, manes-worship displays in contrast its two special types. On the one hand, we see the North Guinea negroes transferring the souls of the dead, according to their lives, to the rank of good and evil spirits, and if evil worshipping them the more zealously as fear is to their minds a stronger impulse than love. On the other hand, in Southern Guinea, we see the deep respect paid to the aged during life, passing into worship when death has raised them to yet higher influence. There the living bring to the images of the dead food and drink, and even a small portion of their profits gained in trade; they look especially to dead relatives for help in the trials of life, and “it is no uncommon thing to see large groups of men and women, in times of peril or distress, assembled along the brow of some commanding eminence, or along the skirts of some dense
1 Callaway, 'Religious System of Amazulu,' part ii. ; see also Arbousset and Daumas, p. 469 ; Casalis, Basutos,' pp. 248-54 ; Waitz, ‘Anthropologie,' vol. ii. pp. 411, 419; Magyar, ‘Reisen in Süd-Afrika,' pp. 21, 335 (Congo); Cavazzi, 'Congo,' lib. i.
forest, calling in the most piteous and touching tones upon the spirits of their ancestors.” 1
In Asia, manes-worship comes to the surface in all directions. The rude Veddas of Ceylon believe in the guardianship of the spirits of the dead; these, they say, are ever watchful, coming to them in sickness, visiting them in dreams, giving them flesh when hunting;” and in every calamity and want they call for aid on the “kindred spirits,” and especially the shades of departed children, the “infant spirits.' Among non-Hindu tribes of India, whose religions more or less represent præ-Brahmanic and præ-Buddhistic conditions, wide and deep traces appear of an ancient and surviving cultus of ancestors. Among Turanian tribes spread over the northern regions of the Old World, a similar state of things may be instanced from the Mongols, worshipping as good deities the princely souls of Genghis Khan's family, at whose head stands the divine Genghis himself. Nor have nations of the higher Asiatic culture generally rejected the time-honoured rite. In Japan the “ Way of the Kami," better known to foreigners as the Sin-tu religion, is one of the officially recognized faiths, and in it there is still kept up in hut and palace the religion of the rude old mountain-tribes of the land, who worshipped their divine ancestors, the Kami, and prayed to them for help and blessing. To the time of these ancient Kami, say the modern Japanese, the rude stone implements belong which are found in the ground in Japan as elsewhere : to modern ethnologists, however, these bear witness not of divine but savage parentage. In Siam the lower orders scruple to
* J. L. Wilson, W. Afr. pr. 217, 388–93. See Waitz, vol. ii. pp. 181, 194. • Bailey in "Tr. Eth. Soc.' vol. ii.
Compare Taylor, ‘New Zealand,' p. 153.
3 Buchanan, 'Mysore,' in Pinkerton, vol. viii. pp. 671-7. See Macpherson, • India,' p. 95 (Khonds); Hunter, 'Rural Bengal,' p. 183 (Santals).
* Castrén, 'Finn. Myth.' p. 122 ; Bastian, “Psychologie,' p. 90. See Palgrave, “ Arabia,' vol. i. p. 373.
Siebold, ‘Nippon,' vol. i. p. 3, vol. ii. p. 51 ; Kempfer, ‘Japan,' in Pinkerton, vol. vii. pp. 672, 680, 723, 755.
worship the great gods, lest through ignorance they should blunder in the complex ritual; they prefer to pray to the
theparak,” a lower class of deities among whom the souls of great men take their places at death. In China, as every one knows, ancestor-worship is the dominant religion of the land, and interesting problems are opened out to the Western mind by the spectacle of a great people who for thousands of years have been thus seeking the living among the dead. Nowhere is the connexion between parental authority and conservatism more graphically shown. The worship of ancestors, begun during their life, is not interrupted but intensified when death makes them deities. The Chinese, prostrate bodily and mentally before the memorial tablets that contain the souls of his ancestors, little thinks that he is all the while proving to mankind how vast a power unlimited filial obedience, prohibiting change from ancestral institutions, may exert in stopping the advance of civilization. The thought of the souls of the dead as sharing the happiness and glory of their descendants is one which widely pervades the world, but most such ideas would seem vague and weak to the Chinese, who will try hard for honours in his competitive examination with the special motive of glorifying his dead ancestors, and whose titles of rank will raise his deceased father and grandfather a grade above himself, as though, with us, Zachary Macaulay and Copleythe painter should now have viscounts' coronets officially placed on their tombstones. As so often happens, what is jest to one people is sober sense to another. There are 300 millions of Chinese who would hardly see a joke in Charles Lamb reviling the stupid age that would not read him, and declaring that he would write for antiquity. Had he been a Chinese himself, he might have written his book in all seriousness for the benefit of his great-great-grandfather. Among the Chinese, manes-worship is no rite of mere affection. The living want the help of the ancestral spirits, who reward virtue and punish vice : “ The exalted
i Bastian, 'Oestl. Asien.' vol. iii. p. 250.
ancestor will bring thee, O Prince, much good!"_"Ancestors and fathers will abandon you and give you up, and come not to help, and ye will die.” If no help comes in time of need, the Chinese will reproach his ancestor, or even come to doubt his existence. Thus in a Chinese ode the sufferers in a dreadful drought cry, “ Heu-tsi cannot or will not help ..
Our ancestors have surely perished. Father, mother, ancestors, how could you calmly bear this!” Nor does manes-worship stop short with direct family ties; it is naturally developed to produce, by deification of the heroic dead, a series of superior gods to whom worship is given by the public at large. Thus, according to legend, the War-god or Military Sage was once in human life a distinguished soldier, the Mechanics’ god was a skilful workman and inventor of tools, the Swine-god was a hogbreeder who lost his pigs and died of sorrow, and the Gamblers' god, a desperate gamester who lost his all and died of want, is represented by a hideous image called a "devil gambling for cash,” and in this shape receives the prayers and offerings of confirmed gamblers, his votaries. The spirits of San-kea Ta-te, and Chang-yuen-sze go to partake of the offerings set out in their temples, returning flushed and florid from their meal; and the spirit of Confucius is present in the temple, where twice a year the Emperor does sacrifice to him.
The Hindu unites in some degree with the Chinese as to ancestor-worship, and especially as to the necessity of having a son by blood or adoption, who shall offer the proper sacrifices to him after death. “May there be born in our lineage, the manes are supposed to say, a man to offer to us, on the thirteenth day of the moon, rice boiled in milk, honey and ghee.” Offerings made to the divine manes, the “pitris (patres, fathers) as they are called, preceded and followed by offerings to the greater deities, give to the worshipper merit
· Plath, 'Religion der alten Chineseu,' part i. p. 65, part ii. p. 89; Doo. little, ‘Chinese,' vol. i. pp. vi. viii. ; vol. ii. p. 373 ; 'Journ. Ind. Archip.' New Ser. vol. ii. p. 363 ; Legge, ‘Confucius,' p. 92.
and happiness. In classic Europe, apotheosis lies part within the limits of myth, where it was applied to fabled ancestors, and part within the limits of actual history, as where Julius and Augustus shared its honours with the vile Domitian and Commodus. The most special representatives of ancestor-worship in Europe were perhaps the ancient Romans, whose word “ manes" has become the recognized name for ancestral deities in modern civilized language; they embodied them as images, set them up as household patrons, gratified them with offerings and solemn homage, and counting them as or among the infernal gods, inscribed on tombs D. M., “Diis Manibus." The occurrence of this D. M. in Christian epitaphs is an often-noticed case of religious survival.
Although full ancestor-worship is not practised in modern Christendom, there remains even now within its limits a well-marked worship of the dead. A crowd of saints, who were once men and women, now form an order of inferior deities, active in the affairs of men and receiving from them reverence and prayer, thus coming strictly under the definition of manes. This Christian cultus of the dead, belonging in principle to the older manes-worship, was adapted to answer another purpose in the course of religious transition in Europe. The local gods, the patron gods of particular ranks and crafts, the gods from whom men sought special help in special needs, were too near and dear to the inmost heart of præ-Christian Europe to be done away with without substitutes. It proved easier to replace them by saints who could undertake their particular professions, and even succeed them in their sacred dwellings. The system of spiritual division of labour was in time worked out with wonderful minuteness in the vast array of professional saints, among whom the most familiar to modern English ears. are St. Cecilia, patroness of musicians; St. Luke, patron
1 Manu, book iii.
2 Details in Pauly, “Real-Encyclop.'s. v. 'inferi;' Smith's ‘Dic. of Gr. and Rom. Biog, and Myth. ;' Meiners, Hartung, etc.