In Order To Catch The Snake Without Killing It,
It Must Be Cast Into A Lethargy, Or, If You Prefer The Term, Charmed.
Who Is There Among The Foreigners Who Is Able To Do This?
amongst the Hindus, you will not find a single individual in all
India who possesses this ancient secret, unless he be a disciple
of the Shivaite Brahmans.
Only Brahmans of this sect possess a
monopoly of the secret, and not all even of them, only those, in
short, who belong to the pseudo-Patanjali school, who are usually
called Bhuta ascetics. Now there exist, scattered over the whole
of India, only about half-a-dozen of their pagoda schools, and
the inmates would rather part with their very lives than with
"We have paid only two rupees for a secret which proved as strong
in the colonel's hands as in the hands of the buni. Is it then
so difficult to procure a store of these stones?" Our friend laughed.
"In a few days," said he, "the talisman will lose all its healing
powers in your inexperienced hands. This is the reason why he let
it go at such a low price, which he is, probably, at this moment
sacrificing before the altar of his deity. I guarantee you a week's
activity for your purchase, but after that time it will only be fit
to be thrown out of the window."
We soon learned how true were these words. On the following day
we came across a little girl, bitten by a green scorpion.
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