Sunday, January 26, 2014

Zunbil, Zhun, Surya, Zabul


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"in Sanskrit, alternatively, you may write "s instead of z"…(Zun/Sun…..Shang Shung-Zan Zun?)… Initial s in Sanskrit is changed in the Avesta into h…..haoma/soma….

…."In 624 AD, a Moslem invasion weakened the Kingdom of Shambhala."……..(The Blue Annals …George Roerich: 753) ……In 653-4 AD, an army of around 6,000 Arabs were led by General Abdur Rahman bin Samara arrived at the shrine of Zun in Zamindawar."

"….the god Zun or Zhun whose shrine lay in Zamindawar before the arrival of Islam, set on a sacred mountain….Zamindawar had become a famous pilgrimage center devoted to Zun…..In China the god's temple was known as the temple of Su-na…..may also be related to the sun-god Aditya at Multan…..the cult of Zun was primarily Hindu, not Buddhist or Zoroastrian….However it appears to originally have been brought southward by Indo European Hephthalites, displacing an earlier god on the same sacred site….parallels have been noted with the pre-Buddhist Bonpo monarchy of Tibet, next to Zoroastrian influence in its ritual.(Bosworth, Sistan, page 35)…..Tucci concluded from Chinese sources that Zun/Sun was a northern mountain form of Shiva or an adaptation of Shiva to a local god…Whatever the origin of Zun, it was certainly superimposed on a mountain and on a pre-existing mountain god while merging with Shaiva doctrines of worship….Gandhara and the neighboring countries in fact represent a prominent background to calssical Shaivism… ….

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"Zunbil, also written as Zhunbil, was a dynasty south of the Hindu Kush in southern Afghanistan. They ruled from the early 7th century until the Islamic conquest of Afghanistan in 870 AD. ….The Zunbils worshipped a deity named Zun (Zoon) from which they derived their name. Their territory included between what is now the city of Zaranj in southwestern Afghanistan and Kabulistan in the northeast, with Zamindawar and Ghazni serving as their capitals. Although the rulers of the Zunbil dynasty were worshippers of the sun, many inhabitants practiced Buddhism and other ancient religions before the Islamization of the region. The title Zunbil can be traced back to the Middle-Persian original Zūn-dātbar, 'Zun the Justice-giver'. The geographical name Zamindawar would also reflect this, from Middle Persian 'Zamin-i dātbar' (Land of the Justice-giver)."…..Bosworth, Clifford Edmund. 2002. The Encyclopaedia of Islam. Leiden: Brill. Zamindawar. p.439.

"According to Anthony McNicoll, "the Zunbils ruled in the Kandahar area for nearly 250 years until the late 9th century AD".Their main capital Zamindawar was located in the present-day Helmand Province of Afghanistan. The shrine of Zoon (sun god) was located about three miles south of Musa Qala in Helmand, which may still be traced today. Some believe that the Sunagir temple mentioned by the famous Chinese traveller Xuanzang in 640 AD pertains to this exact house of worship……In 653-4 AD, an army of around 6,000 Arabs were led by General Abdur Rahman bin Samara and they arrived to the shrine of Zoon in Zamindawar. It is reported that General Abdur Rahman "broke of a hand of the idol and plucked out the rubies which were its eyes…."….

"Andre Wink Professor of History at University of Madison, Wisconsin writes: “…Qandahar [modern Kandahar]…. was the religious center of the kingdom where the cult of the Shaivite god Zun was performed on a hilltop…” “…the god Zun or Zhun ... shrine lay in Zamindawar before the arrival of Islam, set on a sacred mountain, and still existing in the later ninth century …. [The region was]… famous as a pilgrimage center devoted to Zun. In China the god's temple became known as the temple of Su-na. …[T]he worship of Zun might be related to that of the old shrine of the sun-god Aditya at Multan. In any case, the cult of Zun was primarily Hindu, not Buddhist or Zoroastrian. “[A] connection of Gandhara with the polymorphic male god Shiva and the Durga Devi is now well-established. The pre-eminent character of Zun or Sun was that of a mountain god. And a connection with mountains also predominates in the composite religious configuration of Shiva, the lord of the mountain, the cosmic pivot and the ruler of time… Gandhara and the neighboring countries in fact represent a prominent background to classical Shaivism.”……(source: How 'Gandhara' became 'Kandahar' - By Rajiv Malhotra and The Making of the Indo-Islamic World. Volume I – Early Medieval India and the Expansion of Islam 7th-11th Centuries - By Andre Wink. Oxford University Press, New Delhi 1999. p.112 -193).

"Zhang Zhung, Shang Shung, or Tibetan Pinyin Xang Xung, was an ancient culture and kingdom of western and northwestern Tibet, which pre-dates the culture of Tibetan Buddhism in Tibet. Zhang Zhung culture is associated with the Bon religion, which in turn, has influenced the philosophies and practices of Tibetan Buddhism. The Zhang Zhung are mentioned frequently in ancient Tibetan texts as the original rulers of central and western Tibet. Only in the last two decades have archaeologists been given access to do archaeological work in the areas once ruled by the Zhang Zhung…..Shenlha Okar literally means "wisdom deity of white light;" ….....The colour of his body is like the essence of crystal...his ornaments, attire, and palace are adorned by crystal light..." ….. for the host of Rigden Drakpo, all these, after all the host of the Lalos has been conquered, Shiva, etc. and their retinues, attaining rigden-hood, on the mountain Kailasha, going to the god-built city Kaalaapa……KAILAS region: Khyunglung Naljor (Silver Palace of the Garuda Valley), the ruins of the ancient Shang Shung capital are located at the base of Mt Kailas in the Sutleg Valley. Strong ancient Irano-Persian influences. Siva (Shiva, Shiwa) as the main deity of Kailas. The 360 Werma Deities dwell in Mt Kailas. w/ Shenlha Okar."

"Sun god.....Sham -ash, Ash-Sham.......rises from the mountains with rays out of his shoulders. He enters and exits the underworld through a set of gates in Mt. Mashu guarded by scorpion-people. ….Ash-Sham in Syriac means "goodness"…The ancient Solar Temple at Balkh, also known as 'Sams-i-Bala', (Sams:Sun….Bala:Elevated)…..

" It is reported that the Hephthalites were fervent followers of medieval Hinduism, and that they worshipped Hindu gods known as Shiva and Vishnu as well as a sun god of their own.."….Chinese Travelers in Afghanistan". Abdul Hai Habibi. 1969.

"The Temple of Zoor or Zoon (Zun/Sun) in Zamindawar…………..The temple of Zoor or Zoon is a remnant of the pre-Islamic period and represented the sun worshipping faith which was destroyed after the conquest of Islam during the 7th century. …..the actual location of the temple was not known until recently….. In historical books the name has been changed and written as dawoon and zooz. …In Al Kamel, published in 1869 (vol. 3, p. 129) dawar and zoor have been erroneously written as Balad-al-dawoon and Jabel-al-zoor. In hand written manuscripts it has also been written as Jebel-al-rooz, al-roor, and al-rood…. the area laying in the western part of the Helmand river, which is adjacent to the southern Ghor mountains, is called Zamindawar and it contains extensive archeological sites. The agricultural lands in this area are irrigated by the rivers flowing through the land and it is inhabited by the Pashto speaking Ghalzai tribes. The present administrative center of this area is Musa Qala. Two to three miles to the south of Musa Qala there are two locations by the names of Deh Zoor Awlia and Deh Zoor Sufla (the large and small Deh Zoor). The ancient and dilapidated ruins found at this location have been named Kafir Qala by the people of the area…..Musa Qala ('Fortress of Moses') sits at 32.4433°N 64.7444°E and at 1043 m altitude in the valley of Musa Qala River in the central western part of the district. Its population has been reported in the British press to be both 2,000 and is in a desolate area."….From this appellation and location we can say with confidence that the correct form of the two words is dawar and zoor and through archeological digging this old temple can be excavated.…..Afghanistan After Islam…by Abdul Hai Habibi….. (Kabul 1966, pages 11-15)

" For all practical purposes Greek polytheism was entirely dead by the time Islam came onto the scene. Indeed, even Arabian polytheism, though still vigorous when Muhammad began his prophetic career, died out within three decades of the proclamation of Islam. Pious Muslims might be offended by the icons in Christian churches, but the temples of the Greek gods were gone these three centuries or more, their statues broken up and their stones stolen to build churches. The other forms of polytheism with which Islam came into contact -- Zoroastrianism (the most important), Buddhism, Hinduism, and gnostic religions like Manichaeism and Harranian Sabianism -- could rightly be understood as forms of monotheism (or dualism). Only the occasional idol temple in some out-of-the-way place -- the shrine of the god Zun or Zur in Zamindawar in Afghanistan, for example -- might illustrate pure idol worship, but such institutions were soon destroyed and posed little intellectual challenge. Thus, by the time highly intellectual forms of Islam came into being in the eighth and ninth centuries, there was no real idol-worshipping paganism to oppose. Despite the uncompromising monotheism of Islam, polytheism aroused little emotion for the generations of Muslims born after the passing of the Prophet's companions."…..Explaining Away the Greek Gods in Islam by John Tuthill Walbridge…..From: Journal of the History of Ideas …..Volume 59, Number 3, July 1998

"Zunbil, also written as Zhunbil, was a dynasty south of the Hindu Kush in southern Afghanistan. They ruled from the early 7th century until the Islamic conquest of Afghanistan in 870 AD. The Zunbils are believed to be an offspring of the southern-Hephthalite rulers of Zabulistan and culturally connected to Greater India. The dynasty was related to the Kabul Shahis of the northeast in Kabul. "It follows from Huei-ch'ao's report that Barhatakin had two sons: one who ruled from after him in Kapisa-Gandhara and another who became king of Zabul"….. Andre Wink, Al-Hind, the Making of the Indo-Islamic World, Vol.1, (Brill, 1996), 115;""The Zunbils of the early Islamic period and the Kabulshahs were almost certainly epigoni of the southern-Hephthalite rulers of Zabul."

"In the relics of the sun worshippers we also find the great temple of Khair Khana, which lies 12 km north of Kabul. Archeologists consider this to be the temple of Surya, the sun god, where the marble statue of Surya was excavated. Two companions of the sun god are also seen beside the god. All three are in a chariot which is being drawn by two horses and the driver of the chariot is seen wearing a felt Nuristani hat with a long whip in his hand.……the word zoon or zoor is not an Arabic term as the author of Arabic Language clarifies that the word ak-zoon with the addition of za is the zoon of Farsi language. Before him Muwhoob bin Ahmad Jawaleqi (1014-1145) has written al-zoor and al-zoon meaning an idol.xiii Thus zoon is an Arabic form of soon which has been recorded as sunagir by Huen Tsang. It is the sun god whose upper torso is presented with flames radiating from its head and has been depicted in some of the Hepthalite coins. These were local people who were against the Buddhist religion and worshipped the sun. Dr. Jonker has found the names of some families of Dawar and Zabulistan on some of these coins.xiv From this we see the relationship between sun worshipping and Dawar. The word gerad and sunagir of Huen Tsang is the ghar of Pashto which has roots in the names of places of this land such as Ghor, Gharistan, Spinghar and others."….

History of civilizations of Central Asia…… Boris Abramovich Litvinovskiĭ

Al-Hind: Early medieval India and the expansion of Islam, 7th-11th centuries By André Wink……..Published by BRILL, 2002


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