God's Gateway

God's Gateway : Identity and Meaning in a Hindu Pilgrimage Place

3.5 (2 ratings by Goodreads)
By (author) 

Free delivery worldwide

Available. Dispatched from the UK in 3 business days
When will my order arrive?

Not expected to be delivered to the United States by Christmas Not expected to be delivered to the United States by Christmas

Description

A celebrated Hindu pilgrimage site, Hardwar lies on the river Ganges at the edge of the Himalayas. Its identity as a holy place is inextricably tied to the mythology and reality of the Ganges, and traditional sources overwhelmingly stress this connection. Virtually nothing has been written about Hardwar's history and development, although the historical record reveals striking changes of the past few centuries. These changes have usually reflected worldly forces such as shifting trade routes, improved transportation, or political instability. Yet such mundane influences have been ignored in the city's sacred narrative, which presents a fixed, unchanging identity. The city's complex identity, says Lochtefeld, lies in the tension between these differing narratives. In this fieldwork-based study, Lochtefeld analyzes modern Hardwar as a Hindu pilgrimage center. He looks first at various groups of local residents - businessmen, hereditary priests, and ascetics - and assesses their differing roles in managing Hardwar as a holy place. He then examines the pilgrims and the factors that bring them to Hardwar. None of these groups is as pious as popularly depicted, but their interactions in upholding their own interest create and maintain Hardwar's religious environment. In conclusion, he addresses the wider context of Indian pilgrimage and the forces shaping it in the present day. He finds that many modern Hindus, like many modern Christians, feel some dissonance between traditional religious symbols and their 21st-century world, and that they are reinterpreting their traditional symbols to make them meaningful for their time.show more

Product details

  • Hardback | 328 pages
  • 160.02 x 238.76 x 33.02mm | 612.35g
  • Oxford University Press Inc
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • 0195386140
  • 9780195386141
  • 1,362,392

About James Lochtefeld

Professor of Religion, Director of Asian Studies, Carthage Collegeshow more

Review quote

a scholarly achievement of profound and lasting worth ... the authors balanced approach skillfully integrates numerous theoretical and methodological trajectories * Luke Whitmore, Journal of Hindu Studies *show more

Rating details

2 ratings
3.5 out of 5 stars
5 0% (0)
4 50% (1)
3 50% (1)
2 0% (0)
1 0% (0)
Book ratings by Goodreads
Goodreads is the world's largest site for readers with over 50 million reviews. We're featuring millions of their reader ratings on our book pages to help you find your new favourite book. Close X