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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Both middle-class Tamils and Sinhalese have been significant throughout the twentieth century in separate religious revitalisation movements and associated ethnic politics. Both groups have been highly influential in the Munnesvaram ...
... complementarity of sacred/profane, cosmos/chaos or pure/impure, although such dyads certainly hint at aspects of the sacred (in Greek 'hieros'). More accurate is the interrelation and movement between interiorising and exteriorising ...
The movement into Sri Lanka has been a steady stream punctuated by waves of immigration by often distinct social groups such as sections of the Karava fishing caste who predominate in Chilaw town. Many Chilaw Karava migrated in the late ...
Their movement is facilitated by the meritorious assistance they give to humans who make offerings to them (Obeyesekere 1984: 61–70). Kali, it appears, has yet to graduate even to the first stage and so remains a ghoulish outsider.
However, from the medieval period, when the Sinhalese aristocracy became enmeshed with trader families such as the Alagakkonnara, the movement of groups through the caste structure appears to have become more common.
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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