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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... 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 trance and sorcery standing adjacent to ...
... regard Turner's study is exemplary. Its 'inside story' is not simply a journalistic scoop about what really happened, rather it is a powerful insight into the nature of the surface appearance of crisis as an irruption in the social ...
... regard, Aiyanayake is closer to Ayyappan (or Sasta) – the form of the god in Kerala – than to Aiyanar in Tamil Nadu. Unlike the latter, Aiyanayake is not presented with offerings of terracotta horses (Dumont 1959, 1986a: 448).13 Instead ...
... regard they share characteristics with the Sea Street merchants. Many of them have impoverished urban backgrounds, and like some of the political leaders they supported in the 1980s, they were associated with organised crime and ...
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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