Saturday, January 14

Khavis (खवीस) - The messenger of death - An age old myth

India has a multitude of reasons to be famous for, but that's not what we are talking about. One of the many reasons though, is the way spirituality and supernatural activities have been embedded within the centuries-old culture. Every different state of India has their own perspective towards such illusions (if at all they are so); going ahead, every state has their own set of ghosts & legends. Of the many supernatural castes & religions, we shall now look at a particularly interesting specimen - the खवीस (Khavis). There have been many Indian Ghost Stories circling around this myth.

A Khavis is technically speaking - a ghost of a strong person who had apparently passed away leaving unfinished business (or dreams). Great great grandfathers go ahead telling us how a Khavis was often a reincarnation of a dead Pathaan person, especially owing to their enormous physical strength.
Old men sitting idle across the villages (particularly those located within the South & West regions of the country) will tell you lots of stories (swearing their grandfathers long lost in time) of their encounters with this muscular apparition.

A Khavis is said to be a call for one's death or severe consequence. They say, if one is destined to his after-life, he will start seeing a khavis a couple of days before his 'D' day. Many villagers claim of knowing 'someone' who saw a khavis and kicked the bucket a couple of days later.

When asked how a Khavis presented itself, a very interesting person told me a true-to-life incident that happened with his grandfather's brother, when he (the brother) was about seven years. The kid was walking through the bustling market and he saw a tall dark man standing across the road, watching him sternly. The kid took it pretty casually till he looked into the eyes of this stranger - they were fiery red. All of a sudden, the kid felt uneasy and scared at the same time. He gathered up courage enough to run back home & tell his father of what he saw. His father being an unorthodox person simply took it as another mind-play and asked the kid to forget it. The mother however sensed something unusual and spoke so with her neighbors. All of them felt it necessary to consult the village priest, who conducted a small ritual wherein the child was showered with Vermillion (kum kum), turmeric (haldi) and some other items while the priest challenged the kid's resident evil. Well, my friend did not remember what exactly happened throughout the ritual, but days after, his grandfather lost his brother in a rather unnatural accident. He was playing in the verandah (porch) when all of a sudden, he stood still, uttering a loud shriek. Within moments, he had rolled back his eyes & with a jerk, he was done through. The family could only watch in horror as the 8 year old breathed his last in the most mysterious manner.

Some may call such associations mere co-incidences or even exaggerations, but go to a village in India and you will find dozens of men who are willing to take you throughout such accident zones they have known all their life.

They say, a khavis appears only when you have reached your last steps of this life. The wise say you can see a khavis (and he can see you too) right in the daylight, in the busy streets. However, no one else can see or even sense him. It is only those who are called upon by destiny who can experience such a horrifying end. 

1 comment:

  1. thanks a lot! i was frantically searching for this photograph on the net after spotting it incidentally in some blog many months back, and now i see it here! :)