the Week of Proper 3 / Ordinary 8
Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature
are the hermits of the Banians, a sect in East India. There are three distinct classes of them: (1) the Van-aphrastas, (2) the San-jasiis, and (3) the Avadoutas. The Vean-aphrastas live in forests, many of them married and having children, feeding on the herbs and fruits that grow wild; but they scruple to pluck up the root of anything, considering it a sinful act, as they believe the soul to be contained in the root supposing everything to possess a spiritual life; and, of course, believing also the transmigration of souls. The San-jasiis affect greater abstinence, oppose matrimony, betel, and all pleasures whatsoever. They have but one daily meal, served only on earthen-ware, and live on alms. Their garments they dye with red earth, and always carry a long bamboo cane in their hands. ‘ his class is a regular nomad tribe; they do not even stay two nights in the same place. They are taught in their sacred writings to look forward with desire to the separation of the soul from the body. Lust, anger, avarice, pride, revenge, and the love of this world they consider their most formidable enemies, and pray to their gods to deliver them from one and all of these sins. The last-named class, the Avadoutas, forsake their families, both their wives and their offspring, and anything that would make one of them dependent on the other for production. Thus they deny themselves even the use of those things which the other two classes of Jaguis are wont to enjoy. They are habilitated only with a small piece of linen cloth to cover their sex. Their food they procure from strangers, to whose houses they go when hungry, and eat anything that is offered them. These devotees especially frequent the banks of the sacred Hindu rivers and the neighborhood of great temples, both for religious motives and in order to obtain most readily alms and food, particularly milk and fruits. They have one Oriental custom, viz. rubbing their body with ashes, no doubt to free themselves from the stain of sin. See Dissert. on the Religion, etc., of the Banians, apud Relig. Cer. vol. 3; Craufurd, Sketches of the Hindoos, 1, 235 sq.; Broughton, Biblioth. Hist. Sac. 1, 499. (J. H.W.)
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McClintock, John. Strong, James. Entry for 'Jaguis'. Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature. https://www.studylight.org/​encyclopedias/​eng/​tce/​j/jaguis.html. Harper & Brothers. New York. 1870.