Sacred Complex of the Sabarimala Ayyappa Temple (Indira Gandhi National Centre for the Arts)
P R G Mathur
  • ISBN : 9789388789073
  • year : 2019
  • language : English
  • binding : Hardbound
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The book deals with the study of the sacred complex associated with Sabarimala Ayyappa Temple, especially since it draws millions of pilgrims from all over India and abroad. Lord Ayyappa is worshipped in a unique manner at the Sabarimala temple in Kerala, deep in the forests of the Sahya mountain ranges in the Western Ghats. It also presents a descriptive analysis of the ecology and environment; the legends and myths of the birth of Lord Ayyappa; the architectural design of the temple; ritual functionaries; daily worship; seasonal and annual festivals plus the Mandalam-Makara Vilakku festivals; pilgrimage and the history and administration of the temple; continuity and change. This book has drawn the attention of common man eager to know about the deity, but also the scholars of Indian civilization. The mythology associated with Ayyappa and even the form in which he is depicted is unprecedented. Ayyappa was hunting deity, but was incorporated into Sanskritic tradition. The cult is an amalgamation of diverse faiths like tribal, Brahmanic, Buddhist, Savism and Tantric traditions. It even incorporates obeisance to a Muslim saint. The author has also highlighted the environmental impact of commercial promotion of the shrine, which the state will have to address in the larger interest of the people and ecology.