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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... 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, during the period from the mid-1980s to the mid ...
... expression of contradiction and embedded social relations, but is central to the reproduction of religious power in the forceful aesthetic of ritual. I am interested in what is 'dramatic' or critical about Munnesvaram as an aspect of ...
... expressions of the goddess. In this regard the bo tree and its shrines mirror the Munnesvaram complex as a whole, for at Munnesvaram, the Kali temple (which includes a bo tree with, I am told, a resident white cobra) is the site of ...
... expressions of a broader process affecting the Munnesvaram temples as a whole: a process shaping religious practice and ritual aesthetics that become instrumental themselves in furthering the process of change.10 Haskam or Marvellous ...
... expression of divinity and not simply its representational signification. In the broad approach I take to the aesthetic of Munnesvaram as both form and practice, I include as central to my argument the place of Munnesvaram in Sri Lankan ...
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