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The Domain of Constant Excess : Plural Worship at the Munnesvaram Temples in Sri Lanka - Rohan Bastin

The Domain of Constant Excess

Plural Worship at the Munnesvaram Temples in Sri Lanka

Hardcover Published: 30th December 2002
ISBN: 9781571812520
Number Of Pages: 254

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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.

..".a successfully ambitious effort, richly informative and insightful in its coverage of the site's religious life and most sophisticated in its use and advancing of theoretical perspectives...Profound insights...abound in this complex and rewarding piece of scholarship..a must read for scholars of south Asian religions." -The Australian Journal of Anthropology

List of Figures and Tablep. x
List of Photographsp. xi
Acknowledgementsp. xii
Guide to Pronunciationp. xiv
Glossaryp. xv
Worship, Difference and Marvellous Potentialityp. 1
Haskam or Marvellous Potentialityp. 5
The Polysemy of the Hindu Sacred in the Conditions of Violencep. 8
Plan of the Bookp. 11
Fluidity and Ambiguity in the History of Munnesvaramp. 15
The Temples and Their Deitiesp. 19
The Social Composition of Worshipp. 26
Temple Ownershipp. 34
Myths and Marginalityp. 43
Rama Mythp. 45
The Myth of the Diseased Kingp. 47
Heritage or History?p. 51
Kali's Mythp. 53
Ritual Practices and Religious Identityp. 59
Pilgrimage and a Comparison Between Munnesvaram and Kataragamap. 60
Worship and Ethnicityp. 64
Sacrificep. 65
Sorceryp. 67
Trancep. 69
Maniyanp. 70
Sorcery and Protection at the Munnesvaram Templep. 73
Sinhala Buddhism and Its Radical Temporalityp. 76
Popular Religion as a Practice of Resistancep. 81
The Saivite Temple as a Monumental Architecturep. 89
Potency as Simultaneous Origin and Effectp. 90
Monumental Architecturep. 92
Essentials: Temples in War and Deathp. 93
Munnesvaram Temple Designp. 95
Binding the Manifestation of Divine Playp. 101
The Mixing of Cosmological Conceptsp. 103
Cosmos, Body and Symbolic Levelsp. 108
Conclusionp. 110
'The Look and the Thing Seen': Puja and Arccanaip. 117
Daily Ritesp. 117
Puja as Offeringp. 123
Sinhala Buddhist Statuaryp. 127
The Logic of Deity Offerings in Sinhala Buddhismp. 129
The Presence of Saktip. 133
The Goddess and Her 'Mountain'p. 134
The Identity of Ambal and Kalip. 141
Guardians, Games and the Formation of Powerp. 145
The Village Guardianp. 147
Myths of the Guardian Deitiesp. 150
The Maradankulam Aiyanar Festivalp. 152
The Theme of Inviolability in the Formation of the Regional Polityp. 157
The World Inside Outp. 163
Jokes at the Boundaryp. 164
The Flag-Hoisting--Originationp. 165
The 'Trust' Meetingp. 170
Processions and the Spiral Upwardp. 171
Morning and Night Processionsp. 173
Chariots--The Temple Turns on Itselfp. 175
The Domain of Excessp. 183
The Cool Fire of Reabsorptionp. 186
The Danger of Cosmic Excessp. 189
The Hunting Festival or The Mango Shoot?p. 190
Tirtham--The Crossing Pointp. 192
Bhadrakali Temple Festivalp. 195
Divine Kings and Regal Gods: Temples in Society and Historyp. 201
Orientalism and Postcolonialismp. 207
Referencesp. 213
Indexp. 227
Table of Contents provided by Syndetics. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9781571812520
ISBN-10: 1571812520
Series: Berghahn Ser.
Audience: Professional
Format: Hardcover
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 254
Published: 30th December 2002
Publisher: BERGHAHN BOOKS INC
Country of Publication: US
Dimensions (cm): 22.86 x 15.24  x 1.6
Weight (kg): 0.51