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Ute Indian Red Cap, seated, was a member of the White River Band of Utes. He was one of the men who led the Utes from Utah to South Dakota in 1906. This photograph was taken in 1907, when he was one of the most important Ute leaders. Courtesy Utah Historical Society

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Satī sat down on the ground and faced north. Dressed in saffron garments, she sanctified herself with water and closed her eyes to absorb herself in the process of mystic yoga. When Satī annihilated her body in anger, there was a tumultuous roar all over the universe. Why had Satī, the wife of the most respectable demigod, Lord Śiva, quit her body in such a manner?

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