The Domain of Constant Excess: Plural Worship at the Munnesvaram Temples in Sri Lanka
Berghahn Books, Dec 1, 2002 - Social Science - 254 pages
The Sri Lankan ethnic conflict that has occurred largely between Sinhala Buddhists and Tamil Hindus is marked by a degree of religious tolerance that sees both communities worshiping together. This study describes one important site of such worship, the ancient Hindu temple complex of Munnesvaram. Standing adjacent to one of Sri Lanka's historical western ports, the fortunes of the Munnesvaram temples have waxed and waned through the years of turbulence, violence and social change that have been the country's lot since the advent of European colonialism in the Indian Ocean. Bastin recounts the story of these temples and analyses how the Hindu temple is reproduced as a center of worship amidst conflict and competition.
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Many worshippers attend the bathing and the almsgiving that follows. I attended my first festival in 1985 having already studied a number of Tamil temple festivals from the Eastern Province. The procession and bathing seemed to me to be ...
It has been the case, then, that during the time of my association with Munnesvaram the temples have prospered, with large numbers of Sinhalese, some Catholic but most Buddhist, attending to make their special requests to the goddesses.
Sinhala Buddhists from Munnesvaram village and from some of the nearby villages attended and supported Pusparamaya, but apart from the classrooms on school days, Pusparamaya was fairly quiet. So too was the Aiyanayake temple, ...
Every time I attended I estimated the size of the crowd and attempted to discern its ethnic composition. Sinhalese and Tamils are, however, barely distinguishable from one another by appearance. Tamil women tend to wear saris with a ...
On an average non-festival day, around one hundred and fifty people would attend the Munnesvaram temple for activities ranging from breaking a coconut at the side entrance and not entering the temple to participating in one of the ...
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Chapter 3 Myths and Marginality
Chapter 4 Ritual Practices and Religious Identity
Chapter 5 The Saivite Temple as a Monumental Architecture
Puja and Arccanai
Chapter 7 The Presence of Sakti
Chapter 8 Guardians Games and the Formation of Power
Chapter 9 The World Inside Out
Chapter 10 The Domain of Excess
Divine Kings and Regal Gods Temples in Society and History
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The Domain of Constant Excess: Plural Worship at the Munnesvaram Temples in ...
No preview available - 2002