Of spirits, head hunters and the royals in Khezakeno, Nagaland
While the village of Khezakeno which lies in Nagaland has some wonders to behold, the lanes of the tribal settlement also has a number of stories that make up the legend of the land.
Lower down in the central area of the village are three stone slabs placed on the side, tribals from Khezakeno say that these stone slabs were places by their ancestors hundreds of years ago. The story behind it is that villagers remained hungry for three days and people only drank local alcohol. They dragged these stones from the forest and placed them at random spots all over the village. This was done as an act of penance to make the sprits happy and in return bless their family. These stone slabs can be seen at various locations in the village and are roughly around four feet in length. Around these stone slabs are smaller stone places and the villagers’ claim that if anyone tries to shift these small stones it would result in their immediate demise and their families would be cursed for ever as they have disturbed the souls of their ancestor’s.
There is also the house of the former king nearby. The story of the house says that the king passed away many years ago without leaving a heir and ever since the queen’s demise the house has been locked and villager’s claim that till date there are human skulls in the house as a mark of pride among these head hunter tribes. No one has ever dared to enter the house and confirm the same because they claim that if anyone enters the house their body will itch for the next three years.
About a few meters from the king’s house is a rectangular wall constructed by the villagers which houses a long stone slab which is around 7.5 feet high and also has a bed of stones. The bed of stones was a miracle place and villagers claim that anything that was offered to the spirits was doubled. This place does not look like much but it is here at this very spot where the three sons of the ruler had a heated argument and the youngest son burnt down the place. The argument was over who could give their offerings to the spirit gods when a great famine had struck the region.
After the fight, the three decided to take the people who were under them and go their separate ways and this gave rise to the first three tribes. The eldest son remained back with the ruler and formed the Chakhesang tribe, the second son took his people and moved to Kohima district forming the Angami tribe and the youngest took his people to Zunheboto district and formed the Sumi tribe. The Chakhesang, Angami and Sumi are the core tribes and the remaining tribes were all formed later on from these three tribes.
The path leading to the paddy fields has five stone slabs placed adjacent to each other and villagers claim that this used to be a single living rock which used to grow each year towards the heavens and when the three brothers split the Naga tribe into three the spirit gods got angry and killed the living rock and split it into five stones.
The entire village hums with the sound of stories at every nook and corner, taking to the locals about it can help discover the incredible aspects of the legends of Khezakeno.
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