The Nagas

Hill Peoples of Northeast India

Project Introduction The Naga Database

typescript 'Journey to Nagaland', by Mildred Archer. An account of six months spent in the Naga Hills in 1947

caption: visit to Lungkhung
caption: tour in Chang country
caption: spirit stone
medium: diaries
location: Lungkhung
date: 19.10.1947
person: Archer/ Mildred
date: 9.7.1947-4.12.1947
text: Just by the camp is a menhir with a Christian inscription. We were told that it used to be a spirit-stone standing in the forest to which villagers made offerings in time of sickness. No one could touch it or he would fall ill. But in 1942, the Christians confident in their new-found faith, went and touched the stone to annoy the 'ancients' and laughed at their 'god.' When the 'ancients' brought a case against the Christians, the S.D.O. gave an odd decision. He said that if the Christians could touch the stone and drag it to the village without anyone falling ill or dying, then he would not fine them. The Christians did this and to celebrate their triumph carved an inscription on it.
text: This truculent gesture is in sad contrast to the wise policy of the older missionaries. When Saint Augustine was proselytising in England and was perturbed by the pagan sacrifices, Pope Gregory told him to let the English continue their sacrifices but in the name of Christ. Between this conciliatory attitude of the Catholic and the brutal defiance of the Baptist lies a great gulf.