Arakanese Folk Tales: The Four Astrologers And The Travelling Cattle-Purchaser - Thar Le Zwa သာလီစြ - Arakan Monitor

Thar Le Zwa သာလီစြ - Arakan Monitor

Thar Le Zwa: Arakan Monitor


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Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Arakanese Folk Tales: The Four Astrologers And The Travelling Cattle-Purchaser

A long time ago, there was a couple of husband and  wife. Although this couple had been living together for twenty  years, watt strangely mattered was that they had no child.
The husband was so simple whereas his wife was a  sharp woman. She had complete control over her husband  and she had all to herself. Later she had an adulterer on the
quiet. During the absence of   husband, she always met with  her adulterer.

One of the beginning days of the rainy season, the wife  fooled the husband by making him travel on a day-and-night  journey to another village in order to purchase cattle so that  she could enjoy being together with her secret adulterer during his absence.

The simple husband sincerely went out to another village without any doubt. After having travelled to a village after another in search of the suitable kind of cattle, at arrived in a
village in the late evening.

At the time, on the lake-boundary at the entrance way to the village, there were four men resting in the shadow of the banyan-tree, who were soon going to have their baths. They were not common people but four astrologer of wizardry; one was a man of thinking and the fourth, a man of observing.

When the traveler came clue to the lake, the man of sight saw him and greeted him,
"Hello, my brother, you are travelling to purchase cattle, aren't you?"

Then, the simple traveler was greatly surprised and felt how that man had foreknown abut his work.

Again the man of observing Oso called to him, "You've brought on hundred coins with you, haven't you?'

This time the cattle-purchaser became more astonished as he had actually brought the right number of coins with.

Then, he thought that they wouldn't be ordinary people, yet they would probably be great astrologers of wisdom.

"Please foretell me what will happen to me, my elders," politely requested the cattle-purchaser.

Therefore, with a pity to the simple man, the four astrologer agreed to foretell his fortune.

"Your wife has deceitfully sent you away on this day-and-night travel. In fact, your wife is going to stay together with her adulterer right tonight" they declared all the true whatever they could about him.

On hearing their speech, the traveler got a bit shy and also became furious. So, he once more asked them for help what to do about it. He gave away his one hundred coins to them. The four astrologers also made a neat plan for him.

First, they made a stretcher which would be carried by four people and they told him to sit crossing his legs on it. And he was smeared from head to foot with the clay from the lake. They went to the monastery and begged a monk for a piece of old robe of the monks. After that it was wrapped round the cattle-purchaser. Now, if in haste, he looked like a non-living stone statue.

"Tell us where your house is. Let's go together. There, you'll find what your wife is doing, but you must be silent. No talking. No move and sit still. Do only when we alarm you," the four men pre-told him in detail.

And then the four astrologers, carrying the stretcher, arrived at the cattle-purchaser's house about 8 o'clock at night One the men requested the housewife, "Excuse me, Madam, we've come to this village to round for collection offerings for a religious case. But the sun has gone down, so let us stay for a night, please." The wife at first he slitate. At last, thanks to the continuous requests of the man, she accepted to let them stay.

She didn't remember her actual husband, who was pretending as the stone-statue. In fact, she wrong considered him to be a statue of the Buddha. The four astrologers were also supposed to be simple old pagoda trustees. To make it worse, she let the statue be placed near where the Buddha images lied in the living-room.

She arranged a downstairs room for the four astrologers. When the night continued, it was over twelve o'clock that the four men were pretending to be sound asleep and also to snore a bit noisily.

At that time, the adulterer tin the village came to her. The housewife quietly came down from the house to meet him under the mango-tree. While they were talking neck and neck about how much they loved each other and how greatly they trusted one another, they each got doubtful to each other. Then, the housewife said, "I'll swear it &fore the Buddha, come on!" And she called to her adulterer to come upstairs. They both, with the same agreement, swore to love each other in from of the living-statue which the astrologers had taken.

The wife deeply said, "Lord Buddha, I will live together with my young darling for ever. I’m going to divorce my old one soon. Unless these word were true, Lord Buddha yourself, chasten and beat me at once!"

While she was worshiping the Buddha after swearing, the astrologer, who peeping at them, shouted, "Beat her! Beat her hurt!" At the same time, the actual husband, who had been pretending as a statue, swiftly grasped the bundle of the hair of his wife bending her head down during her worship. And then he began slapping her cheeks, both the left and the right, non-stop with his big palm. The cowardly adulterer, too, at once had to run away out of his wits.

It is said that common saying, "The Buddha does the beating in Rakhine," has appeared, generally based on this traditional story.

Translated by
Nyein Zaw

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