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Branfoot, Crispin (2022) 'Tirthas, temples and the architecture of Hindu pilgrimage.' In: Prabha Ray, Himanshu, Kulshreshtha, Salila and Suvrathan, Uthara, (eds.), The Routledge Handbook of Hindu Temples: Materiality, Social History and Practice. New Delhi: Routledge, pp. 197-217.

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Pilgrimage is a popular ritual practice shared by many of the religions of South Asia. Many Hindus consider the power of deities to be greater at specific places and it is to these locations that many Hindus journey to on pilgrimage. This chapter will address the significance of pilgrimage to the study of the Hindu temple in both historical and contemporary perspective by addressing the following themes and issues: (i) landscapes of devotion: to where do Hindus travel and why?, (ii) making space for the sacred: how does topography and architecture shape, magnify and orchestrate the experience of pilgrims?, (iii) fruitful sites: how do myths, images and rituals inform the pilgrims’ encounter with the sacred at their destination? and (iv) renovation and renewal: how can the continual process of architectural renovation and renewal inform the interpretation of the changing place of pilgrimage destinations in the social, religious and political landscape? The sites and sacred landscapes explored range across 2,000 years of South Asian cultural history – from the Himalayas and Assam, Bengal and Braj, Rajasthan and Orissa (Odisha), and to the Tamil south – in order to reveal the dynamic role of pilgrimage to an understanding of the Hindu temple.

Item Type: Book Chapters
Keywords: temple Hindu pilgrimage art painting India architecture sacred landscape
SOAS Departments & Centres: Departments and Subunits > School of Arts > Department of the History of Art & Archaeology
ISBN: 9780367563158
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
Date Deposited: 28 Oct 2022 14:05
Related URLs: https://www.rou ... k/9780367563158 (Publisher URL)

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