Connected Places: Region, Pilgrimage, and Geographical by A. Feldhaus

By A. Feldhaus

This ebook examines the phrases and activities of people that dwell in areas within the nation of Maharashtra in Western India to demonstrate the concept areas should not simply created by means of people, yet given that means via non secular practices. by way of exploring the folks dwelling within the zone of Maharashtra, Feldhaus attracts a few very fascinating conclusions approximately how humans differentiate one quarter from others, and the way we use tales, rituals, and ceremonies to recreate their significance. Feldhaus discovers that spiritual meanings hooked up to areas don't inevitably have a political teleology. in keeping with Feldhaus, 'There is additionally an opportunity, even now, that spiritual imagery can increase the lives of people and small groups with out engendering bloodshed and hatred'.

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Additional info for Connected Places: Region, Pilgrimage, and Geographical Imagination in India (Religion/Culture/Critique)

Example text

This book makes it abundantly clear that the Narmada parikrama—and, by extension, the practice of circumambulating other rivers as well—is a ritual way of paying honor not just to the river as a whole in the abstract, but to the river as consisting of all the different places along it. The pilgrim connects these places by walking from one of them to another, just as the river connects them by flowing past them all. Again, as with the concept of mahCnadI, and as with stories, images, and lists that bring together a series of places along the banks of a single river, the region defined by the ritual of circumambulating a river is extremely long and thin.

The fact that religious-geographical ideas and pilgrimage practices can contribute to the viability of a political entity does not mean that they suffice to bring about a separatist movement aiming to create such an independent or autonomous entity. Most of the ideas, rituals, and regions studied in this book enrich the lives of the people who hold, practice, or live in them, but they enrich these people’s lives in mostly nonpolitical ways. This page intentionally left blank Chapter 1 Rivers and Regional Consciousness In the course of their forest exile, the Pagtava brothers, the heroes of the MahCbhCrata epic, decided to perform a sacrifice at a place called Pagtecvar that is now located on the Karha river.

47 Instead, they would answer in terms of the Krsga river, or in terms of the confluence, saying that they had come to bathe their god there. The various groups who had come to bathe their gods did so individually, separately, not cooperatively or jointly. And yet they all did it next to one another, on the same day. They bathed their gods on the same beach as one another, or on the beach across the river from one another, or—at Karat, Safgam Mahuli, Kovecvar, and the other places where the festival is held—on different beaches along the same river as one another.

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