Thursday, May 19, 2005

fakiri legend - 4

Count your blessings

I hear that a new kind of fakir is emerging in Punjab: the foul-mouthed fakir.

These fakirs are treated like any other sufi murshid, or a holy man. The curious thing is that the only blessing they give their devotees is abuse!!

Yes, I said, abuse. The maa-ki, behen-ki kind of abuse.

The devotees calmly accept this abuse as 'prasad', or a blessing. There's a system at work here, whereby swear-words get entangled with numerology, so that the grateful, abused devotee will count furiously on his fingers, attaching a number to the abuse, and try to guess at predictions or divine omens from this number.

There have even been reports wherein, a certain fakir called out 'Saala Behenchod!' by way of blessing.
The confused devotee said, "Baba, I have two sisters... which one was this abuse directed at?"

(And I totally swear that I am not making this up.)


Anonymous said...

Hi Annie:

Greetings from Kathmandu!

This is going to be a general comment. Just thought I’d let you know that I found your ‘blog’ through an Internet search a couple of weeks ago. Have been reading your 2005 stories with great interest.

But so sorry about your awful experience with the Kathmandu cops in August 2003. As a journalist, you seem to have encountered similar other incidents; hope they have been enriching as an experience, albeit being unpleasant.

Well, may I just say you are a great writer? Keep writing and all the best!

Hikmat (

P.S. Was in Delhi for a few days in February (and travelled to Dehradun with Shatabdi); I wish I had known about you then!

Annie Zaidi said...

greetings too
all experiences are just that - experiences. Enrichment... remains to be seen.
Thanks for the compliments, though I suspect your spam-arrival percentage just shot up a few dozen times. :)

Morquendi said...

See, I know what Saala means, and I know what Behenchod means, but I can't for the life of me figure out what they mean together...I mean literally, of course I get the idea, but what does it mean literally?

By the way, I love Indian swear words and curses :) I use them on auto drivers all the time here and they have no clue what I'm saying...

Anonymous said...

Thanks, Annie. There's so much stuff on the Internet on/about you. Will look forward to reading your poetry, as well as the stories I haven't been able to read.

You are a terrific writer, really.

Must share a secret with you. You and I have a common friend - Prateebha (she doesn't know I have told you this!).

Good luck again!

chaudes said...

I have posted some of
my photos here

chaudes said...

I have posted some of
my photos here

Amrit said...

Punjab definitely has its share of freaky fakirs. Once my grandmother and bua took me too a fakir to rid me of the evil spirit that wouldn't allow me to walk. Guess what was the prasad! He dropped a few drops of onion juice in your eyes. I wailed like hell after that :-).


1conoclast said...

Is there a way of reporting/boycotting a Blogger?
I recommend we do that to "chaudes" since he is seriously violating the sanctity of blogs.

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