TODAY -

Three-headed men ( Makok ahum )

Manganleibi Loktongbam *



Once upon a time, there lived a wise old man who had three sons. When the three sons of the old man grew up, they led their lives in different directions.

They never thought of the rituals that their forefathers had been doing for the past many years. At the old man's deathbed, he narrated a story to the three children, which had been told by his father that "My dear children never forget your origin". "Echasha nakhoi na punsi chupa ningsingadabadi, nakhoigi hourakpham kouba yade".

He continued, "In this world, if you want to live happily, never forget three things in life". The three sons were curious and enquired about their father's words "Epa Ebungo ( Dear Father), Please tell us the things to be remembered ", the old man said there is nothing called permanence in life but there is three medicine that would help up in building a better person.

He further continued and said that "Listen carefully, dear children, the three medicines of life are "Hingol Keithel Kahanlu, Nga Makok chao" (Literal meaning: - "Let your garden become the market, Eat the head of fish"), "Samu mayana chekpal khao" (Literal meaning: - Fence the border by the teeth of Cow"), "Mani na lutumda thamaga chak chao" (Literal meaning: - "Keep the jewels on top of your head before you eat the rice").

The old man also said that if they did not understand the sayings then they could ask "Makok Ahum" (Three head).

Following the old man's sayings the first son without taking advice from the three-headed man guessed the meaning of the first saying "Hingol Keithel Kahanlu, Nga Makok chao".

He cleaned up his garden and build up a market, where he invited people to buy and sell the necessary goods of life.

The second son, according to the saying "Nga Makok chao" kept on eating the head of big fish. But the last son who was quite different from others thought of meeting the three-headed man. He went to far off places in search of the three-headed man.

One day, while he was walking near the river bank, on the opposite side of it he saw the three-headed man. In reality, he was a normal old man who sat under the sun, placing his knees upwards "khu sougatpa".

The last son assumed it is the three-headed man. The last son came towards the old man and enquired the sayings that his father told on his death bed.

Hearing that, the three-headed man laughed loudly and said: "Hey Son, I am not the three-headed man, but I am an old man Ebungo, eihakti makok ahum nate, eihak ti ahal oiraba misak amani.

The three-headed man again said, "But I can tell you the meaning of the sayings that your father narrated to you, son".

The old man continued saying that "Hingol Keithel Kahanlu, Nga Makok chao" means "To harvest the vegetables and plants carefully in the garden and to eat plenty of Ngaheis (typical fish)", "Samu mayana chekpal khao" means "To fence the border neatly, so that no enemy comes to attack you", "Mani na lutumda thamaga chak chao" means "Eat the rice when the sun rises".

Finally, the old man said, "And I am the three-headed man, who is nothing but an old man Makok ahum adudi atei kanasu nate, ahan eibuni".

Reference:
Ibopisak Luwang, Abujam. Personal Interview. 6 January 2017.


* Manganleibi Loktongbam wrote this article for e-pao.net
The writer can be contacted at manganleibiloktongbam(AT)gmail(DOT)com
This article was webcasted on December 08, 2017.



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