Hindu Tradition of Pilgrimage: Sacred Space & System
  • Author : Rana P. B. Singh with a foreword by Robert H. Stoddard
  • Publisher : Dev Publishers & Distributors
  • Edition: First
  • Year: 2013
  • 22 x 15 cm, xiv + 400 pages, 675 gm
  • ISBN : 9789381406250
  • Binding : Hardcover
  • Territory : World
  • INR 1275
  • About the Book


    This book, consisting of ten essays, and annotated list of important 108 pilgrimage places, deals with deeper awareness and understanding of the complexities and subtleties of pilgrimage in the contexts of the mythology, history, system, structure and functioning of Hindu pilgrimages and Sacred Space in India, and illustrated with case studies of Shaktipithas, Chitrakut, Varanasi, Gaya, Vindhyachal, Mathura, Kumbha Mela, while emphasising the textual traditions, historical outline, contemporary pilgrimage tourism, issues of contestations and seduction of history, sacred geometry and cosmic order, and use of SOC theory. This is the first full book of its kind and to be used as the major reference and text; and will open new directions of understanding in pilgrimage studies.


    Table of Contents: Foreword by Robert H. Stoddard (USA): 1-4; Preface and Acknowledgements: 5-6; Studies of Hindu Pilgrimages: Emerging Trends and Bibliography: 7-48; Hindu Pilgrimage: History, Mythology and Present Concerns: 49-78; Sacredscapes & Pilgrimage System: Some Reflections: 79-120; The 51 Shaktipithas (Goddesses) and Sacred places: 121-158; The Ganga River: Images, Sacrality and Salvific Places: 159-194; Hindu Places of Pilgrimage: Communitas and Contestation: 195-244; Interfaces in Pilgrimage Landscape: Sacrality and Spatial Geometry: 245-278; Cosmic Ordering and Self Organisation among Sacred Cities: 279-304; Pilgrimage-Tourism in the Hindu Tradition: Perspectives and Vision: 305-332; Green Pilgrimage Initiatives 333-368; Gazetteer of Hindu Pilgrimages Places (108) in India: 369-390; Index: 391-399; the author: 400.




    About the Author

    Rana P.B. Singh is Professor & Head, Dept. of Geography, Banaras Hindu University, and pioneer in Cultural Geography and Heritage Studies, has published extensively on pilgrimage studies, heritage planning, Hindu thought, sacred geography and cultural astronomy.


    “Energy, experience, and a profound knowledge of pilgrimage-tourism, stand out boldly in Rana P.B. Singh’s Hindu Tradition of Pilgrimage: Sacred Space and System. Here is a work that at once captures the rich diversity of existing pilgrimage scholarship, which Professor Singh himself helped to fuel, over the last quarter of a century.  He has done so primarily through his own prolific scholarship, as well as by personally fostering and facilitating a large and distinguished international community of pilgrimage-tourism scholars.  In this work, Rana Singh provides a wide range of scholarly perspectives on Hindu sacred centres and spaces.  His abiding research on Hindu cosmology, and long term firsthand experience of contestations at sacred spaces embedded in this book, should spur fruitful interdisciplinary research. In fact, this stimulating book provides a whole storehouse of exciting ideas for both seasoned and budding scholars.”

    ― Prof. Surinder M. Bhardwaj,

    Emeritus Professor of Geography, Kent State University, Kent, U.S.A.

    author of Hindu Places of Pilgrimage in India (UCP 1973)


    “The abundant research on the geography of pilgrimages, especially on India, during the last half century has provided readers with a variety of viewpoints; and when extrapolated to other disciplines, it is apparent that this field of study in totality has a rich body of literature. This book continues this scholarly tradition with a set of well-researched essays on the pilgrimage systems and associated sacredscapes, illustrating variety and distinctions of cultural regions of India.”

    ― Prof. Robert H. Stoddard,

    Emeritus Professor of Geography, University of Nebraska, Lincoln, U.S.A.


    “I am always impressed by Rana Singh’s wide learning and mastering of both Indian sources and modern analytical tools. The essays are of high quality, innovative and interesting. This is a valuable addition to the growing literature on Hindu pilgrimage. I hope that the book will be a great success and attract a wide readership in both India and abroad among academics, students and general readers.”

    ― Prof. Erik Cohen,

    Emeritus Professor of Sociology,

    The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel


    “Professor Rana P.B. Singh, the foremost cultural Geographer of India, has been conducting ground breaking research at the intersections between India’s pilgrimage geographies and sacred cosmologies for many decades. His contribution, which is almost unique within Geography, merits special attention because it comes from an insider, someone completely immersed in the Hindu tradition through birthright, belief and family ties as well as through deep and sustained academic scholarship. This book, which brings together so much of his lifetime’s achievement, is a major addition to the literature on the Geographies of Religion.”

    ― Prof. Martin J. Haigh,

    Professor of Geography, Oxford Brooke University, Oxford, U.K.

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