Sakadwipa (RE: Rising of the sea and other Migration myths)

Paul Kekai Manansala kekai at JPS.NET
Fri Jan 28 17:42:39 UTC 2000

Yaroslav Vassilkov wrote:

>Though the MahAbhArata really places the ZAkadvIpa continent to the
>east of Meru (XII.14.23),

Yes, in Roy's notes to his translation, he says this refers to SE Asia
and the Pacific.

>In this case the ZAkadvIpa as
> the place of their origin is to be connected rather with the historical
> SakasthAna, i.e. modern Seistan in Eastern Iran.

There is a person on Usenet who goes by the name of Gandasa who has
claimed that there was a place called Sakasthan. Is that really the
case?  Where is this SakasthAna mentioned?

> Research done by
> several generations of scholars has revealed the gradual spread of the
> ZAkadvIpa Brahmans over the Indian subcontinent and eventually their
> penetration even into Eastern India. The well-known Indian ethnologist P.L.Vidyarthi
> in his brilliant monograph on the city of GayA in Bihar expressed his opinion of
> Iranian (Magian) origin of the local ZAkadvIpi Brahmans.

You might want to consult the Sakadwipa Brahmans own traditional work on
the subject:  Magavyakti by Krishnadasa Misra.

If you track this down please photocopy it for me and I will gladly
reimburse you for your trouble.

I will have to contact my three Sakadwipi colleagues as to why they
believe in an eastern origin (i.e., family or gotra tradition, etc.).
All are advanced in age and learned in traditional Sakadwipi lore such
as astrology.

One interesting problem with a NW origin is why are there no Sakadwipis
left in the N or NW?  All seem centered in the Bihar, Bengal, N. Orissa
and E. UP region (until recent times). I have never heard of any
tradition with the group itself that shows any knowledge of coming from
the west.

An interesting note on the unique social system of Sakadwipis.
Marriage is allowed within the gotra, but not within  social units
known as "pur".

Paul Kekai Manansala

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