The Domain of Constant Excess: Plural Worship at the Munnesvaram Temples in Sri Lanka
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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... complex. Unlike the Jesuits, for whom the activities at Munnesvaram were the work of the Devil, those who would see the contemporary temple in such terms would more likely blame it on the goddess Kali, for her devotees regularly fall ...
... complex South Asian society and its techniques and expressions of social and cultural articulation. My focus is the temple complex of Munnesvaram, a predominantly Hindu cluster of five temples near the north-west coastal town of Chilaw ...
... complex. I stress this apparent sense, however, for while at one moment the fluidity of social and religious categories appears to be asserted by a unity of purpose in temple worship at Munnesvaram, in the next moment the temples ...
... complex of Kataragama; the most important temple complex of its kind in all Sri Lanka and one that bears comparison with Munnesvaram in several respects that will be explored in the course of this work. However, where authors like ...
... of the body of worshippers and I examine the nature of the physical location of the Munnesvaram complex in the religious topography of the island. The social composition of worship raises – 6– The Domain of Constant Excess.
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