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Sanamahism
Sanamahism
or Sanamahi Laining refers to the traditional Meitei beliefs and religion found in the northeastern Indian states near Myanmar. He is enumerous powerful and his source of power is the combination of all the stars in the Milky Way. Lord Sun worships him for more power and he delivers all with ease.The term is derived from Sanamahi, one of the important Meitei deities. According to Bertil Lintner, Sanamahism
Sanamahism
is an "animistic, ancestor worshipping, shaman-led tradition".[2] Sanamahism
Sanamahism
is practiced by the Meitei, Zeliangrong and other communities who inhabit Manipur, Assam, Tripura, Myanmar
Myanmar
and Bangladesh, with small migrant populations in the United Kingdom, United States, and Canada.

Contents

1 Revival 2 Form of worship

2.1 Deities 2.2 Offerings

3 References 4 Bibliography

Revival[edit] According to 2011 census, about eight percent of Manipur
Manipur
belong to religions stated as 'other'. Religion
Religion
in Manipur
Manipur
is thought to have passed through three stages.[3] Form of worship[edit] In assimilate features such as the worship of forces of nature like fire, water, mountain, ancestor worship (Apokpa), Lamlai (Outdoor Dwelling Gods and Goddesses), Yumlai (House dwelling Gods and Goddesses), Ningthoulai (King God) and Umanglai (Forest Dwelling God). Religion
Religion
of antiquity – in its pure native form, it is as all as the history of Meitei people
Meitei people
from the time immemorial. Deities[edit] There is reference to the worship of Sanamahi by Ningthou (King) Kangba in the Hayi age. Manipur
Manipur
is a polytheistic land with Atiya Sidaba as the supreme god. Atiya Sidaba, Apaanba and Asheeba are the three manifestations or incarnations of God
God
as the creator, the preserver and the annihilator of this universe respectively. Panthoibi is the Mother of the Universe and Nongpok Ningthou is her mate.[4] Besides those, three hundred and sixty-four deities with their consorts are the most important deities worshipped by the Meiteis. The Plain Kabui are observed in worship of Sanamahi and Ima Leimarel.[5] Sanamahi (also known as Asheeba) has a creator brother (like him) named Paakhangba (Konjin Tukthapa).[6] Some of the important gods and goddesses worshiped by the Meiteis are:[citation needed]

Shidaba Mapu (Immortal Owner) Lainingthou Sanamahi (Supreme God
God
of the Household Gods and Goddesses) Ebudhou Paakhangba (Younger Brother of Lainingthou Sanamahi and the Ruler of the outside world) Ima Leimarel Sidabi Apokpa (Prime Ancestor God
God
and Goddess, different according to different surnames) Ebendhou Emoinu (Goddess of prosperity, wealth and kitchen) Ema Panthoibi (goddess of valor and battle) Yumjao Lairembi (Household Goddess) Ema Phouoibi (Goddess of Bounty) Ebudhou Marjing ( God
God
of sports and also the protector of North-East Direction) Ebudhou Thangjing ( God
God
of power and also the protector of South-West Direction) Ebudhou Wangbrel ( God
God
of rain, death and also the protector of South-East Direction)(Kumar 2004, 92) Ebudhou Koubru ( God
God
of strength and also the protector of North-West Direction)

They also worshipped the Umanglais (forest dwelling gods and goddesses). Umanglais are the protectors, preservers of their corresponding areas/localities which includes houses, fields, welfare of the people, etc. In short, the Umanglais are the guardians of the outer world of the people and also these gods and goddesses are associated with each and every doings of the people in day-to-day life. Hence, They are considerrd to be very powerful. Some of the Umanglais are:[citation needed]

Arong Ningthou Ema Eereima Oinam Lekai Lainingthou Nongshaaba Lainingthou Puthiba Lainingthou Awaangba Lainingthou Marjing Lainingthou Khoiriphaaba Ema Khunthok-haanbi Ema Haoreima Sampubi Ema Eereima Ekop Ningthou Thoubal Ningthou Ema Kondong Lairembi Nongpok Ningthou Langol Ningthou Ema Langol Lairembi Ebudhou Naothingkhong Paakhangba Ebudhou Khamlaangba Ebudhou Oknarel Ebudhou Thangnarel Ebudhou Yangoiningthou

The title "Lainingthou" refers to the incarnation from Lainingthou Sanamahi and the title "Ebudhou" refers to the incarnation from Ebudhou Paakhangba. Offerings[edit] Meiteis offer praying to the household gods and goddesses twice a day, once at dawn and once at dusk. They offer incense sticks/burner and candles/meiraa along with flowers and water. Devout Meiteis offer food at sacred spots daily to the goddess of kitchen and prosperity, Ebendhou Emoinu.[7] References[edit]

^ 2001 Census ^ Bertil Lintner (2015). Great Game East: India, China, and the Struggle for Asia's Most Volatile Frontier. Yale University Press. p. 113. ISBN 978-0-300-19567-5.  ^ P. 199 Social Movements in North-East India
India
By Mahendra Narain Karna ^ P. 4290 Encyclopaedia of Indian Literature By various ^ People of India
India
By Kumar Suresh Singh, S. B. Roy, Asok K. Ghosh ^ P. 82 A History of Manipuri Literature By Ch Manihar Singh ^ P. 62 Feminism in a traditional society by Manjusri Chaki-Sircar

Bibliography[edit]

Kshetrimayum, Otojit (2014), Ritual, Politics and Power in North East India: Contextualising the Lai Haraoba of Manipur, Ruby Press & Co., ISBN 978-93-82395-50-8  Hodson, T.C. (2015), The Meitheis, Ruby Press & Co., ISBN 978-93-82395-56-0  Singh, Dr. Saikhom Gopal (2015), The Meeteis of Manipur: A Study in Human Geography, Ruby Press & Co., ISBN 978-93-82395-21-8  Singh, Dr. Saikhom Gopal (2015), Population Geography of Manipur, Ruby Press & Co., ISBN 978-93-82395-25-6 

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