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10. Caste subdivisions.
the grave for the sustenance of the soul. Salt is put on the body and a ball of wheat-flour is laid on the breast of the corpse and then deposited on the top of the grave.
The Jogis worship Siva, and their principal festival is the Shivrātri, when they stay awake all night and sing songs in honour of Gorakhnāth, the founder of their order. On the Nāg-Panchmi day they venerate the cobra and they take about snakes and exhibit them.
A large proportion of the Jogis have now developed into a caste, and these marry and have families. They are divided into subcastes according to the different professions they have adopted. Thus the Barwa or Gārpagāri Jogis ward off hailstorms from the standing crops; the Manihāri are pedlars and travel about to bazārs selling various small articles ; the Rītha Bikanāth prepare and sell soap-nut for washing clothes ; the Patbina make hempen thread and gunny - bags for carrying grain on bullocks; and the Ladaimār hunt jackals and sell and eat their flesh. These Jogis rank as a low Hindu caste of the menial group. No good Hindu caste will take food or water from them, while they will accept cooked food from members of any caste of respectable position, as Kurmis, Kunbis or Mālis.
A person belonging to any such caste can also be admitted into the Jogi community. Their social customs resemble those of the cultivating castes of the locality. They permit widowmarriage and divorce and employ Brāhmans for their ceremonies, with the exception of the Kanphatas, who have priests of their own order.
Begging is the traditional occupation of the Jogis, but they have now adopted many others. The Kanphatas beg and sell a woollen string amulet (ganda), which is put round the necks of children to protect them from the evil eye. They beg only from Hindus and use the cry ‘Alakh,' 'The invisible one.'1 The Nandia Jogis lead about with them a deformed ox, an animal with five legs or some other malformation. He is decorated with ochre-coloured rags and cowrie shells. They call him Nandi or the bull on which Mahādeo rides, and receive gifts of grain from pious Hindus, half of which they put into their wallet and give the other
1 Crooke's Tribes and Castes, art. Kanphata.
OTHER OCCUPATIONS-SWINDLING PRACTICES 253 half to the animal. They usually carry on a more profitable business than other classes of beggars. The ox is trained to give a blessing to the benevolent by shaking its head and raising its leg when its master receives a gift. Some of the Jogis of this class carry about with them a brush of peacock's feathers which they wave over the heads of children afflicted with the evil eye or of sick persons, muttering texts. This performance is known as jhārna (sweeping), and is the commonest method of casting out evil spirits.
Many Jogis have also adopted secular occupations, as 12. Other has already been seen. Of these the principal are the occupaManihāri Jogis or pedlars, who retail small hand-mirrors, spangles, dyeing-powders, coral beads and imitation jewellery, pens, pencils, and other small articles of stationery. They also bring pearls and coral from Bombay and sell them in the villages. The Gārpagāris, who protect the crops from hailstorms, have now become a distinct caste and are the subject of a separate article. Others make a living by juggling and conjuring, and in Saugor some Jogis perform the three-card trick in the village markets, employing a confederate who advises customers to pick out the wrong card. They also play the English game of Sandown, which is known as 'Animur, from the practice of calling out ' Any more' as a warning to backers to place their money on the board before beginning to turn the fish.
These people also deal in ornaments of base metal and 13. Swindpractise other swindles. One of their tricks is to drop a
practices. ring or ornament of counterfeit gold on the road. Then they watch until a stranger picks it up and one of them goes up to him and says, “I saw you pick up that gold ring, it belongs to so-and-so, but if you will make it worth my while I will say nothing about it.” The finder is thus often deluded into giving him some hush-money and the Jogis decamp with this, having incurred no risk in connection with the spurious metal. They also pretend to be able to convert silver and other metals into gold. They ingratiate themselves with the women, sometimes of a number of households in one village or town, giving at first small quantities of gold in exchange for silver, and binding them to
1 Crooke's Tribes and Castes, art. Jogi.
secrecy. Then each is told to give them all the ornaments which she desires to be converted on the same night, and having collected as much as possible from their dupes the Jogis make off before morning. A very favourite device some years back was to personate some missing member of a family who had gone on a pilgrimage. Up to within a comparatively recent period a large proportion of the pilgrims who set out annually from all over India to visit the famous shrines at Benāres, Jagannāth and other places perished by the way from privation or disease, or were robbed and murdered, and never heard of again by their families. Many households in every town and village were thus in the position of having an absent member of whose fate they were uncertain. Taking advantage of this, and having obtained all the information he could pick up among the neighbours, the Jogi would suddenly appear in the character of the returned wanderer, and was often successful in keeping up the imposture for years.
The Jogi is a familiar figure in the life of the people verbs about Jogis.
and there are various sayings about him : 2 Jogi Jogi laren, khopron ka dām, or “When Jogis fight skulls are smashed,' that is, the skulls which some of them use as begging-cups, not their own skulls, and with the implication that they have nothing else to break; Jogi jugat jani nahin, kapre range, to kya hua, 'If the Jogi does not know his magic, what is the use of his dyeing his clothes ?' Jogi ka larka khelega, to sānp se, or, ‘If a snake-charmer's son plays, he plays with a snake.'
1 Sleeman, Report on the Badhaks, pp. 332, 333.
2 These proverbs are taken from
Temple and Fallon's Hindustāni Proverbs.
LIST OF PARAGRAPHS
1. The village priest and astro
loger. 2. The apparent path of the sun.
The ecliptic or zodiac. 3. Inclination of the ecliptic to
the equator. 4. The orbits of the moon and
planets. 5. The signs of the zodiac. 6. The Sankrānts. 7. The nakshatras or constella
tions of the moon's path. 8. The revolution of the moon.
9. The days of the week.
Joshi, Jyotishi, Bhadri, Parsai.—The caste of village 1. The priests and astrologers. They numbered about 6000 village
priest and persons in 1911, being distributed over all Districts.
The astrologer. Joshis are nearly all Brāhmans, but have now developed into a separate caste and marry among themselves. Their social customs resemble those of Brāhmans, and need not be described in detail. The Joshi officiates at weddings in the village, selects auspicious names for children according to the nakshatra or constellation of the moon under which they were born, and points out the auspicious time or mahürat for all such ceremonies and for the commencement of agricultural operations. He is also sometimes in charge of the village temples. He is supported by the contributions from the villagers, and often has a plot of land rent-free from the proprietor. The social position of the Joshis is not very good, and, though Brāhmans, they are sidered to rank somewhat below the cultivating castes,
the Kurmis and Kunbis, by whose patronage they are supported.
The Bhadris are a class of Joshis who wander about and live by begging, telling fortunes and giving omens. They avert the evil influences of the planet Saturn and accept the gifts offered to this end, which are always black, as black blankets, charcoal, tilli or sesamum oil, the urad pulse, and iron. People born on Saturday or being otherwise connected with the planet are especially subject to his malign influence. The Joshi ascertains who these unfortunate persons are from their horoscopes, and neutralises the evil influence of the planet by the acceptance of the gifts already mentioned, while he sometimes also receives a buffalo or a cow.
He computes by astrological calculations the depth at which water will be found when a cultivator wishes to dig a well. He also practises palmistry, classifying the whorls of the fingers into two patterns, called the Shank or conch-shell and Chakra or discus of Vishnu. The Shank is considered to be unfortunate and the Chakra fortunate. The lines on the balls of the toes and on the forehead are similarly classified. When anything has been lost or stolen the Joshi can tell from the daily nakshatra or mansion of the moon in which the loss or theft occurred whether the property has gone to the north, south, east or west, and within what interval it is likely to be found. The people have not nowadays much faith in his prophetic powers, and they say, “If clouds come on Friday, and the sky is black on Saturday, then the Joshi foretells that it will rain on Sunday." The Joshi's calculations are all based on the răshis or signs of the zodiac through which the sun passes during the year, and the nakshatras or those which mark the monthly revolutions of the moon.
These are given in all Hindu almanacs, and most Joshis simply work from the almanac, being quite ignorant of astronomy. Since the measurement of the sun's apparent path on the ecliptic, and the moon's orbit mapped out by the constellations are of some interest, and govern the arrangement of the Hindu calendar, it has been thought desirable to give some account of them. And in order to make this ini Bombay Gazetteer, vol. xxi. p. 184.
2 Phaseolus radiatus.