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Chronicling the history of the “Hindoo” in America, primarily through archival newspaper clips. Instagram: @HindooHistory.

5 May, 15 tweets

Salt Lake Herald, 1906

“Absurd Religious Practices in India”

#HindooHistory #Benares #Varanasi

“It seems hard to believe that in this civilized day there should exist anywhere, such preposterous absurdity as are practiced in India in the name of religion”

“Although England has ruled here for more than a century, and the Protestant missionary societies have spent upwards of a hundred million gold dollars in trying to make converts to Christianity, the mass of people still adhere to the ridiculous practices of the ancients”

“We find them worshipping snakes and monkeys and held in awe by the false pretenses of charlatans and sorcerers”

“Although the message of the Nazarene has gone afar, it has affected India so little that the dead are still burned on the banks of the sacred river or left in towers for the vultures to devour”

“Fiction Writers Outdone”

“The four marvelous books which the Brahmins wrote were inscribed on pages of gold and the most versatile fiction writer of modern times could not produce more fanciful nor elaborate tales...”

“Old Religious Shell Game”

“There is no trick to which Brahmin priests will not resort in order to excite the fervor of the worshippers, and thus enrich themselves by the offerings of the ignorant”

“Although the oracle is out of date in most countries where pagan priests impose upon the people, it is still worked in India with great success”

“Sometimes the idol itself addresses the awe-struck crowd of people, who listen with their hearts in their mouth as the image of stone finds voice and threatens them with dreadful punishments if their flow of offerings is not increased”

“Crazy Acts of Votaries”

“The belief that generosity and physical ordeals are the means of winning the favor of the gods is so general, that many worshipers give themselves over to disgusting and ridiculous acts of fanaticism”

“The forms of this religious frenzy takes are innumerable...

“A Glimpse of Barbarism”

“The scene of one of the Pujas is a glimpse of ancient barbarism. Around the image are prostrate supplicants, the women praying for male children and the men asking the favor of the destruction of their enemies”

“Such idolatrous scenes as this leave an unpleasant impression on the mind of the spectator. The bleating goats struggling in the hands of their gory executioners, the uncanny sounds of paganism...”

“And the shining faces of the half-crazed fanatics swarming around their gaudy idol, makes one wonder if the real reason for India’s misery and degradation is not the disobedience of the divine command: “thou shalt have none other gods but me”

Left caption: “ A Hindoo Temple”

Right caption: “A Religious Hindoo Fanatic”

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