Mythos 65 – Land of Seven Rivers

 

In each of the lands the Aryans entered, something sinful was happening by the moral code of the Aryans. In Vaekereta the Pairika Knathaiti are believed to be idolaters, which the Avesta prohibits. In Urvā they found a prideful people. In Khnenta they found people committing the unnatural sin for which there is no atonement, which Zend scholars have interpreted as a reference to pedophilia. If the Aryans were still migrating around the northern Steppes, it is possible that the Khnenta were the ancestors of the Khanty people of western Siberia, who are another Finno-Uralic people believed to have been in the region for thousands of years.

In Harahvaiti the ancient Aryans found people burying their dead, which was considered unnatural in many ancient Indo-European religions, where either cremation or exposure were considered natural ways to dispose of a body. In some ancient Indo-European beliefs, burial was considered desecration of the ground, whereas cremation was seen as a releasing of the soul from a rotting body. When exposed, bodies were placed in a tree or other high places were animals could consume them, allowing the life energy of the deceased to pass into the animals. In Haētumant the Aryans found witchcraft, which is clearly a reference to a different religion than the one they were practicing. In Ragha they found utter-unbelievers, which appears to be an archaic reference to Atheism. When they arrived in Chakhra they found people cooking corpses. The Avesta does not specify if these were human or animal corpses, and the verse could be seen as either a reference to cannibalism or carnivorism, however many ancient source state that the ancient Aryans were vegetarians. If the Aryans did in fact survive for thousands of years in the Vara eating hydroponically grown plants, then it does seem likely they would have lost the enzymes for digesting animals, and it could have taken several generations to require them once they left the Vara. In the following two nations the Aryans encountered health problems, either due to environmental issues, or a change in diet:

The fourteenth of the good lands and countries which I, Ahura Mazda, created, was the four-cornered Varena, for which was born Thraetaona, who smote Azi Dahaka. Thereupon came Angra Mainyu, who is all death, and he counter-created abnormal issues in women, and barbarian oppression.

The fifteenth of the good lands and countries which I, Ahura Mazda, created, was the Seven Rivers. Thereupon came Angra Mainyu, who is all death, and he counter-created abnormal issues in women, and excessive heat.- Avesta (1)Avesta, Fargard 1.17-18, Translated by James Darmesteter 1898

Seven Rivers region of Kazakhstan

Seven Rivers region of Kazakhstan

In Varəna we find a reference to Azi Dahaka, also known in Persian as King Zohak, the first Aryan to eat meat after being tricked by a cook. If the other Aryans also began eating meat at the time, it could explain the issues with the female health as their hormones would be undergoing a significant change. The barbarians of the Varena, who are generally identified with the Anarian tribes of the Caspian Sea littoral, seem to have driven the Aryans into the hot land of the Seven Rivers, which has been considered to have been the Punjab region of Pakistan and northern Indian for thousands of years among the Hindus and Zoroastrians. This however should have left a Dravidian trace on the Avestan language which is missing, indicating that the land of the Seven Rivers must have been elsewhere. While the Punjab has never been known as the land of Seven Rivers, but rather Five Rivers (Panj-ab),(2)“Punjab” (1998) Encyclopedia of Sikhism there is an ancient land of Seven Rivers in Eastern Kazakhstan and Western China. The land of Seven Rivers is the historic Kazakh name of the Yedisu (Жетысу) region, also transliterated as Zhetysu and historically known as Semirechye in English, named after the seven rivers flowing into Lake Balkhash.(3)Hugh Chisholm, editor (1911) “Semiryechensk” Encyclopædia Britannica, 11th Edition This region is well documented as being inhabited by East-Iranian tribes well into the historic era, and therefore seems a far more plausible Land of Seven Rivers, than the Punjab.

References   [ + ]

1. Avesta, Fargard 1.17-18, Translated by James Darmesteter 1898
2. “Punjab” (1998) Encyclopedia of Sikhism
3. Hugh Chisholm, editor (1911) “Semiryechensk” Encyclopædia Britannica, 11th Edition