Dominik Wujastyk dom at uclblr.iisc.ernet.in
Wed Mar 29 07:35:38 UTC 1995

I love the idea of possessed women entwining themselves in the aerial
roots of the Nyagrodha.

I only recently discovered the reason for the name "Banyan".  The
Nyagrodha has been considered a holy tree for millennia, and it's great
arching shady leaf cover provides a cathedral-like space which is used
for various social activities.  Because of the tree's holiness, it was
traditional that a promise made under its shade was unbreakable.  So it
became a standard place for merchants to meet and make deals.

In colonial times, great gatherings of merchants, or banias, were seen
under the tree, so the tree was nicknamed the "merchant" or "bania"
tree, which evolved into "Banyan".



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