Saturday, 23 May 2015

A LAKE AND A RIVER IN QUEBEC, CANADA - THE SANSKRIT CONNECT TO THEIR NAMES

"Maranon is the native name of the River Amazon - Madawaska,  that of St. John's - it runs through the finely named Tanaskwata lake before it loses itself into the Atlantic. Kamoursaka is the ancient native name of the country and river between Quebec and St. John's: & thereabout is the town formerly called Michilimackinack. Trivial alteration in the vowel sounds of these names will convert them into Sanskrit looking and Sanskrit sounding and Sanskrit meaning words...."  - once again a remark taken from Edward Moor's book 'Oriental Fragments' published in 1854.

Here is a look at the name 'Madawaska' through the Sanskrit lens. 'Mada' (मदा) means both 'river' and 'honey' or 'something that intoxicates', 'vaska' (वस्क) is 'motion', 'Madawaska' is therefore 'flowing water' or 'honey-river' or 'intoxicated river'. 'Intoxicated river' is the most apt for twice a day the river 'reverses' and flows backwards - the movement forced by the world's highest tides from the Bay of Fundy!


The 'Madavaska' also called St. John's River in
Quebec reverses its direction of flow during high tides.
Madavaska is Sanskrit for 'intoxicated waters'.

The Madawaska River flows from lake Tamiscouta. 'Tamaskwata' as Edward Moor had spelt it, or 'Temiscouta' as it is spelt today is an interesting name. One may link the name to either 'tapaskvata' or 'tamaskvata' - 'tapas' (तपस) in the Vedic tradition has to do with 'purification of the soul through asceticism' or refers to something arduous or difficult to achieve - it is said that the extremely long lake was a difficult barrier for those trying to cross it. A nearby parish is called Saint-Louis-du-Ha! Ha! Legend has it that 'Ha Ha' refers to the unexpected obstacles for those travelling across. 

As for the word 'tamas', Tamasa was the river on the banks of which Sri Rama, his brother Lakshmana and Sita along with many other Ayodhyaites  spent the first night of the 14-year forest exile. The suffix 'kwata' or 'couta' may either be derived from 'kavan' (कवन) 'water' or 'kuvam' (कुवम) sun'.


Temiscouta Lake  may derive its
name from the Sanskrit 'Tapas' or 'Tamas'.

'Kamoursaka' or 'Kamourska' is probably related to the Sanskrit word 'Kumar' (कुमार) which has to with a 'young person' or a 'price' and is even the name of the 'God of War' of the Vedic tradition.

Kumourska is the stretch of land between
Quebec and St. John's
.

Tuesday, 12 May 2015

THE ANCIENT CAVES OF GODDESS KALI AT MT. PARNASSUS, GREECE

Mount Parnassus is a mountain in the Pindus Range in central Greece that towers above Delphi, north of the Gulf of Corinth. In her book, 'Caves and Jungles of Hindustan', Helena Petrova Blavatsky - (1831-1891) traced the origins of the name 'Parnassus' to the Old Persian (Avestan) name of Hindu Kush which was 'Paropanisus'. Blavatsky was of the opinion that Paropanisus was a distortion of Old Persian or Avestan 'Paru' which means 'mountain'. But the Avestan 'paru' itself has Sanskrit origins, where 'paru' (परु) means 'mountain'.

Edward Moor traces the names of many of the towns and villages of the Parnassus to Shiva and his consort Parvati in her Kalic avatar. Shiva himself is known also as Mahakala, where 'kala' denotes 'black' and 'death' and 'time'. He says that the name of the town Makala in Greece originates from 'Mahakala'.

Another town at the foot of the Parnassus is the Calamata which lies on a river by the same name,often spelled as 'Kalamata'. 

In popular texts it is said that 'Kalamata' is a distortion of the 'Kalamai', Greek for 'reed'. Moor however states something more profound. He says, "The river Calamata reminds us that the Nile, and other rivers, have a like meaning of blackness or blueness. Kali is a river famed in Hindu epics. Nila means blue ; so does Krishna, or black. The poetical river Jumna, as we call it, is, with Hindus, Yamuna, the blue daughter of the Ocean...Kali-nadi, is a Sanskrit compound name of more than one river in India; best translated by Black-river, or Black-water and the name of more than one in Britain. A Sanskrit scholar would find farther Kalic coincidences in the final mata of the just-noticed Stygian (dark) river....".

Then there is the town of Kallithea on the Parnassus. About Kalithea, Edward-Daniel Clarke says in his book
'Travels in various countries of Europe, Asia and Africa. 3. ed, Volumes 2-3', "After having surmounted the first precipices, we found a large crater with a village in it called Kallidia or Callithea.... The sides of the crater rising in ridges .. are the most elevated points of the Parnassus. We climbed the highest of them ... but with great difficulty, as the sides were a glacier covered ith hard and slippery ice...". Again what Moor states is rather convincing. He says, "Callidia on Mount Parnassus" — a suitable abode for Kali or Kalidevi — or Durga, another of her names, meaning difficult of access, or of ascent, in reference to a mountain...".

Edward Moor was of the view that just as in the Himalayas, the peaks of the Parnassus mountains were dedicated to Lord Shiva and the caves and crevices to Parvati often in her avatar as Kali. In his words, "As the Goddess - more emphatically than any other Hindu deity of the Yoni - all natural clefts, and fissures, and caves, and hollows, and concavities, and profundities — are fancied typicals of her — as are wells, tanks, etc. Of such things this is the symbol, 0 or O, pyramids, obelisks, cones — especially conical and furcated (forked) hills are SivA-ic...". Moor is referring to the symbol of the 'linga' - or the 'shivalinga'.


Perama Cave at Ionnina, Greece
Moor argued that Ionnina gets its name from
'Yoni' the symbol of Parvati. Perama may be a distortion of 'Parma'.

Blatvasky states, "It is not in vain that enthusiasts like Pococke, the author of India in Greece, tried to prove ... that all Greece with her gods, as well as Egypt, came wholesale from India.....".


It is no surprise then that names such as Kallithea, Chandrinos, Goura, Kalamata, Trikala, Kamaria, Tripiti, Kalliani, Kalavrita, Patras etc.exist on the ancient map of Greece.
1. Edward Daniel Clarke Travelouge