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Books - The History and Natural History of Ephedra as SOMA
Written by S. Mahdihassan   


Knowledge of Soma was transmitted by the Chinese ascetics to the Aryan ascetics and from them to the nomadic Aryan tribes in general. Now the early Aryan was a hunter, using spear, bow and arrows. Such activity subjected him to recurring exhaustion. As he approached his middle age he began to fear that physical debility and incapacity to partake in hunting, would lead to his being killed. Such a danger forced him to over-exert himself and present himself as physically strong. Nevertheless age was gradually creeping upon I him, urging him as individual to seek drugs that could put strength into weak limbs. Whatever his age, he had to exert himself as one in robust health. He therefore welcomed ephedra juice which was an energizer-cum-euphoriant as explained before (1977). This made him fatigue-proof. He now drank it three times a day which, in effect, means he practically lived upon it. He started the day with a draught of Soma juice, then he drank it again at noon, and finally at the end of the day now to overcome exhaustion and to forget the worries of the day. The Vedic Aryan took Soma thrice a day but the Iranian his Haoma twice. With both of them it was a regular domestic drink, not unlike tea with us. Thus the user and the drink are directly related like demand and supply. We are now required to show that the Vedic Aryans were mainly pastoral people while Rigveda was being composed. Agrawala (1953; 479) observes that, "in Vedic literature there is no reference to Jana-pada institution or city, whereas Jans, clan, Genos (Latin) finds repeated mention." Correspondingly, Saggs (1962; 207) writes clearly that, "the Persians were still pastoral nomads only two centuries before Cyrus". Cyrus was born in 599 B.C. so that the Aryans of Iran remained nomads as late as 800 B.C. Rigveda is full of terms which speak of the Vedic Aryans having been pastoral people. In fact they remained as such until the period of Satapata Brahmana. Here Max Willer (1891; 101) informs us that, according to Rigveda, "Brahmana wears a skin of black antelope, Ameya, Kshatriya of a deer, Rauravia and Vaisya of a goat, Aga." Such a dress would require the girdle to fix the skins to the body. Then "the girdle of the Brahmana could be of Munja grass (Saccharum munja), of Kshatriya of bowstring, of a Vaisya of sheep's wool." It is obvious that such customs. can only characterize nomads. The period assignable to Satapata Brahmana could be about 1000 B.C. which thus compares with 800 B.C. when the Iranians were also nomads.

Our valuable member S. Mahdihassan has been with us since Sunday, 24 March 2013.

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