Notes on Doctrine

1 - Nar Sanskr. nara means man or male, in religious context obviously in the sense of lord, master. It may be generally noted that such terms appear in the gnans in the form in which they are used in modern Indian languages, in which, especially in common speech, they may undergo considerable phonetical changes, e.g., Sanskr. Prahlad, the name of a mythical king, may become Pelaj. I have deliberately retained the original forms, even in the cases of the terms, such as Ved= Veda, in which the later form has become already familiar to the general European reader. For the sake of simplification I refer the reader, unfamiliar with Hindu mythological names, to the most accessible and popular work, the "Classical Dictionary of Hindu Mythology, etc." by J, Dowson (fourth edition, 1903), here abbreviated as "D."

2 - The term Guru which is already familiar to the general reader in Europe, here appears in various forms as gur , gor, gur-ji, guru-ji, sat-gur, sat-gor, sat-gor-ji, meaning religious guide and teacher.

3 - Cf. the introduction to my translation of the Fasl dar bayan-i shinakht -i- Imam ("On the Recognition of the Imam", "Ismaili Society's" series, no, 4, .Bombay, 1947).

4 - In this respect Satpanth strikingly resembles early Islam before it developed the class of professional theologians. In Satpanth, however, I am informed that owing to the unfavorable conditions, such class never came into existence. The bawas or members of the Pir's families, otherwise called Sayyids, were expected to possess necessary learning, but by no means always actually did. Anyhow, they probably never made any attempt at systematization and proper formulation of the dogma and principles of the doctrine.

5 - In my paper on the sect of Imam shah, often referred to here, I very frequently had to mention the kakas , whose part always appeared to the Sayyid party as harmful and noxious. Although they must remain celibates and are under various restrictions in life, they are not priests in the ordinary sense of the ward, but rather representatives of the interests of the converted community intended to serve as intermediaries between it and the Sayyids, and restrain the latters' encroachment on the rights of the congregation. They most probably are the relic of the remote past when Ismaili missionaries could not deal directly with the community, but had to appoint their representatives through whom they communicated with the people. In the course of time the kakas by force of circumstances became the centers of Hindu reaction against the Islamizing tendencies of the Sayyids, which were carried sufficiently far to make the latter to dissociate themselves from Satpanth and Ismailism and claim to be either Ithna-'asharis, or Sunnis, while, at the same time, retaining most paradoxically, their position as spiritual heads of the community.

6 - See above, p. 19.

7 - These were obviously introduced for the same purpose as the certificates issued to the pilgrims to Mekka on the completion of their hajj.

8 - It is interesting to note that certain terms connected with the in Satpanth are not of Sanskrit origin, and are not found in Hinduistic literature. One of these is ghat which is explained as an equivalent of jama'at , i.e. Ar. jama'at , community and is used in the sense of the congregation and its meetings for prayer. Another is paval which means consecrated water Pat is a low table on which the vessel holding consecrated water is placed. The combination of ghat-pat thus is used to denote the religious gathering of the faithful at which consecrated water is distributed.

9 - Such extraordinary occasions may be some general calamity, epidemic, and so forth, or on the contrary some auspicious event.

10 - The fact that raisins, and no other fruit, are used for crushing in the water is quite significant by itself. It obviously indicates that at a certain time in the past wine was originally used for the purpose, but later on was substituted in this way under the pressure of Muslim idea and taboos. Wine itself in various religions was most probably in sacraments a substitute for the blood of the sacrificed animals, banned with the advance of civilization. The use of wine, an exotic product in India, in Tantric rites deserves a special note, I could not find , however, what is really meant by "wine", the real grape wine, or generally an alcoholic drink.

11 - The worshippers of Shakti, as is well-known, are divided into many sub-sects which are grouped either under the "Right hand" or "Left-hand" divisions. The differences between these, I was told, are in fact trivial. Amongst the "Left-hand" sub sects (Vamachara) those which keep their ceremonies and even beliefs secret are numerous. There is a work specially devoted to the Worship of Shakti, namely "Shakti and Shakta" by J. Woodroffe (Madras and London, 1920) but it is utterly disappointing. The author, obviously an over-enthusiastic theosophist, expends all his energy on efforts to persuade the reader how nice, sweet, wise, correct and attractive the ideas of the Shakti worship are, forgetting to draw the line between what he learns from the literature of the sect and from reliable observation. He even forgets to add an index. This may be in true theosophic style, but is deplorable from the student's view-point.

12 - The Shakti-worshippers refer to the tradition that Vishnu said, "I am contained in sperm"

13 - is usually called the "High Name" which is explained by the all-Muslim Ism - i Azam It is often referred to in the gnans ;but apparently it is never plainly stated what it really is.

14 - 'This is called Kankan . The ceremony, corresponding with the bay'at in other branches of Ismailism, is called kangva.