Friday, March 6, 2015

Lucky Animals In A Swedish Farm (吉祥动物)

Forward concerning lucky animals in cultural perspectives

It is interesting to talk about lucky or holy animals in various cultures. The Indian treated cobras as holy snakes and they would not harm them, but snakes are delicacies amongst Vietnamese and Chinese! So, snake wine is supposed to be good for curing rheumatism for Chinese and Vietnamese.

Many folks in South-east Asia think some albino animals as holy animals or ‘keramat’ in Malay. In the past, many Chinese farmers would refrain from killing snakes in their farms as they thought snakes are emanation of local spirits known as a ‘datuk’ or rå in Swedish terms.

In fact, many people especially the Chinese believe that animal of large size: tortoise, soft-shell tortoise, monitor lizards, pythons, tigers, snakes, fish etc. are animals of intelligence. Once these animals are caught, it is best to let them go or they shall seek their revenge later. This is particularly true when a pregnant lady is around. If this taboo is not observed, then the baby would receive some kind of handicaps similar to the animal being harmed.

Below information is compiled by Mr. Bjerstedt and it is interesting to find similarities with the SEA culture. -Liew

-Compiled by Mr. Bjerstedt

Title: The Lot Snake
Notetaker: Levi Johansson
Messenger: Torpare Esaias Ödberg
Year: 1917
Parish/Town: Grundsunda

The Lot Snake is an auspicious spirit. It is black in colour and doesn't bite. There are probably those snakes on all farm lots.

It was said that a little girl sat alone inside the cottage on the floor while drinking milk from a cup and eating bread. When the mother looked through the window, she saw The Lot Snake also eating from the girl's cup. She stroked the snake along the back and said “Eat bread too, long kitten!” However it only drank milk. This is supposed to have happen in Gideå.

[The Lot Snake is called “Tomtorm” in Swedish. The word tomt, that means lot, it is also the origin of the word tomte.-Mr. Bjerstedt]

Title: The Lot Snake
Notetaker: Levi Johansson
Messenger: Isak Pettersson
Year: 1915
Parish/Town: Stigsjö

The elders have under no circumstance allow a snake that has been found on the farm be killed. It could have been The Lot Snake. They believed, that every farm should have one, and that it's a “joy to the farm”, a lucky animal. The true Lot Snake is likely blue in colour.

Title: Lot Frogs
Notetaker: Levi Johansson
Messenger: Anders Arnström
Year: 1917
Parish/Town: Arnäs

Lot Frogs are very big frogs, that dwells in proximity to farms and they are auspicious and therefore they ought to not be killed.

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