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Mythical Lands of Russia, Part 1
November 30, 2014 17:00


World legends mention some mythical realms of magicians and gods, the lands with infinite riches and the source of eternal youth. The mankind is rushed off its feet while searching for traces of them. Scientists assume that some of them should be looked for in Russia. 

 
Swetha Dweepa  
 
“In the Milky Sea, to the North of Meru, there is the big island of Swetha Dweepa, the White Island, aka the Island of Light. It is the land of partaking bliss. It is inhabited by courageous people, who are nowhere near any evil, who are indifferent to fame and disgrace, have marvelous looks and replete with juice of life. There is not a single cruel, hard-hearted, and lawless person here…”
 
This paradise from the Old Indian epos of Mahabharata was looked all around the world for. Some Indianists, for example the colonel Willford, identified Swetha Dweepa with Great Britain. Why not? The island is overseas, to the North of India, were the authors of Mahabharata were settled. Helena Blavatskaya, the famous Russian founder of the mystical Theosophical Society, wrote about Swetha Dweepa in her Secret Doctrine; she placed it into the area of modern Gobi Desert. Some researchers, on the contrary, assumed the White Island to be the same as Arktida, the hypothetical northern polar continent, which once existed in the Arctic, but was flooded as a result of cataclysms that allegedly occurred 18 to 100 thousand years ago (according to the hypothesis by the German zoographer Heger). The supporters of Arktida theory quite often connect the legend Swetha Dweepa with Hyperborea, which was also somewhere in the far north, according to antique authors. However, the North is a loose concept. Some linguists have found cognation of the Ural toponyms and Indian names. Thus, on the basis of research by A. G. Vinogradov and S. V. Zharnikova, the legendary Swetha Dweepa turned to be in the Urals, in the White Sea, i.e. river basins of Northern Dvina and Pechora, in-between Volga and Oka.
 
 
 
Hara Berezaiti 
 
There are the so-called wandering toponyms associated with various places by various sources. One of them is the ridge of Hara Berezaiti with the sacred Mount Hukairya described in Zoroastrian scripts of Avesta. It is the archetypal World Mountain that the Sun chariot of God Mitra rises from behind in the morning. Seven stars of the Big Dipper and the Pole Star standing in the centre of the Universe sparkle over it. It is in its golden hills that all the world rivers have their origin in. All the rivers flow down to the earth from the mighty pure spring Ardvi Sura Anahita that is connected to the heavenly Vourukasha Ocean. The fast-horse Sun eternally turns over High Hara mountains. The day and night here last for half a year each. Only the courageous men of spirit can get through these mountains and enter the blissful land washed by waters of the heavenly ocean. 
 
Some researchers compare it to the above mentioned legendary Mount Meru, which is located near Swetha Dweepa that is allegedly harboured in the Urals. At the same time, according to the Italian researcher Giraldo Gnoli, initially it was Pamir and Hindu Kush that were considered to be Hara Berezaiti, and later these beliefs were carried over to the Elbrus. The ocean in this analogy was obviously the Black Sea. By the way, it does not contradict the ideas of the mythological land in the north, as described by antique authors. Lots of Roman authors gave the same description to the Black Sea Coast that we can apply to the North Sea today, such as severe frosts with everything glaciated, and people wearing thick wool skins.
 
 
 
 
 
 



Author: Vera Ivanova

Tags: Russian Fairy Tales     

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