Myth behind evolution of Santals

This blog post is the continuation of the previous post. Do read the previous post for a recap.

Marang Buru’s dream was fulfilled. Some days later the female swan laid two eggs. Surprisingly the hatchlings turned out to be human babies. Surprised at this, the swans ask Marang Buru as to how could they rear human babies. Marang Buru advised the swans to feed the babies with cotton soaked in juice of the food the swans used to eat. As the babies grew the swans became more concerned about space. A per Marang Buru’s suggestion the swans set out to find a place in the west. They found a place by the name ‘Hihili Pipili’. They took the babies to the place. The humans found ample food and space to live there. The two humans grew up to be known as Pilchu Halam and Pilchu Budhi.

Yes the very Pilchu Halam and Pilchu Budhi we know about. Marang Buru himself would occasionally come down in human form to look after the two. The intention to form a human society required the only two present human beings to mate. But the two human beings present were siblings. How could they mate? For that reason, Marang Buru made alcohol which we term as ‘handia’ in Santali language  and tricked Pilchu Halam and Pilchu Budhi into consuming it, stating that it is an edible food. Handia made the two high, making them forget their relationship and mate.

The following day when Marang Buru visited them, the two felt too ashamed to get out of their home and prompted that they had been tricked into doing something wrong. Marang Buru consoled them saying that they had not done anything wrong and that their mating was necessary to form human society. That incident brought them the pride of becoming parents. They became parents to seven boys and seven girls. Considering the fact that their children would commit the same mistake as them, they decided to keep that boys and girls separated. Pilchu Budhi led the girls to gather leaves and fire woods where as Pilchu Halam led the boys to gathering fruits and hunting.

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One day the young boys and girls went out unattended. The girls were merry making under the shade of a tree. The boys were just returning from hunting. The ‘Bir’ or the forest was filled with the alluring tune of the song sung by the young girls. The boys were attracted towards the song. They were wooed by the charm of the girls thus forgetting their own selves. They indulged themselves in the merry making with the girls. In the process the boys and girls established themselves as partners or couples. The elder boy with elder girls, the youngest boy with the youngest girl and so on. Pilchu Halam and Pilchu Budhi realized that it was the Marang Buru’s will. Accordingly, the elderly couple assigned different castes to different couple. The elder son was assigned the surname ‘Hansda’, the second son in order was assigned the surname ‘Murmu’. In this order the surnames assigned were ‘Kisku’, ‘Hembram’, ‘Marndi’, ‘Soren’ and ‘Tudu’.

Since then, Pilchu Halam and Pilchu Budhi alerted everyone else to take precaution to not commit the mistake in times to come. But every advice went in vain. To punish the sins of the humans Marang Buru rained fire. At that time Pilchu Halam and Pilchu Budhi had taken shelter in a cave in the ‘Harta Bir’ or forest. There Pilchu Halam and Pilchu Budhi had another set of children. And thus more castes with surnames as ‘Baskey’, ‘Besra’, ‘Pauria’, ‘Chone’ and ‘Bedeya’ were formed. And in this way the Santali tribe increased in numbers.

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P.S.- The rest part of the story continues in the next blog post.

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