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Saiʹvas (2 syl.)


Worshippers of Siva, one of the three great Indian sects; they are at present divided into—

(1) Dandins or staff-bearers, the Hindu mendicants; so called because they carry a danda or small staff, with a piece of red cloth fixed on it. In this piece of cloth the Brahmanical cord is enshrined.

(2) Yogins. Followers of Yoga, who practise the most difficult austerities.

(3) Lingavats, who wear the Linga emblem on some part of their dress.

(4) Paramahanas, ascetics who go naked, and never express any want or wish.

(5) Aghorins, who eat and drink whatever is given them, even ordure and carrion.

(6) Urdhabaʹhus, who extend one or both arms over their head till they become rigidly fixed in this position.

(7) Akasʹmukhins, who hold up their faces to the sky till the muscles of the neck become contracted.

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Entry taken from Dictionary of Phrase and Fable, edited by the Rev. E. Cobham Brewer, LL.D. and revised in 1895.

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