Indian Hindu creates 'mirror' Bible for pope

A Hindu youth from north-eastern India has written a Bible in inverse, or “mirror language”, which is to be presented to Pope Benedict XVI as a Christmas gift, a cleric said on Sunday.

Uttam Das (29) handed over his unique creation to Assam state’s Archbishop Thomas Menamparampil with a request that it be presented to the pope.

“I am amazed and bewildered to see this Bible copied in a different style.
I don’t know how it is going to benefit, but then he has done something unique,” the archbishop said.

The cleric is likely to carry the Bible, for which a reader needs the help of a mirror, sometime in January to the Vatican and present it to the pope.

“It is something really bizarre, but one must appreciate the skill of the man who tried this phenomenal exercise of writing the Bible in an inverse script,” said Allan Brooks, a Roman Catholic Church leader in the Assam capital, Guwahati.

Das claims his feat marks the first time anyone has written the Bible in what he calls “mirror language”.

“I started writing the Bible inversely soon after the new pope took over in April this year. I devoted 10 to 12 hours daily and finished the task this month,” Das said.

He said he is not seeking any undue attention.

“I simply want this Bible to be kept in the library in the Vatican. I am not for any prize or money and I don’t know why I chose to copy the Bible,” he said.

The scripture has been put on display at the archbishop’s house in Guwahati, where scores of curious devotees used Christmas Day to view it.

Das began his strange hobby of writing inversely when he was a child.

“I don’t know how it all happened. Initially I required a mirror in front of me to practise this art, but now I have mastered this special writing skill without any help,” he said.

Das, who comes from Silapathar village, 495km east of Guwahati, has several “mirror-language” books to his credit.

He can write inversely in English, Assamese, Bengali and Hindi with the same speed as someone writing the regular way.

Das now plans to copy the Hindu holy book, the Gita, and the Muslim scripture, the Qur’an, in his unusual style.—AFP

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