Sacred Geography of Puri (Structure and Organisation, and Cultural Role of a Pilgrim Centre)

Sacred Geography of Puri (Structure and Organisation, and Cultural Role of a Pilgrim Centre)

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Book Specification

Item Code: UAN752
Author: N Patnaik
Publisher: Kalpaz Publications
Language: English
Edition: 2006
ISBN: 8178354772
Pages: 239
Other Details 9.00 X 6.00 inch
Weight 470 gm

Book Description

About the Book
The study of Sacred Geography of Puri (Structure and Organisation and Cultural role of a pilgrim centre) was taken up in Puri town and in its neighbourhood.

Puri is a small town on the East Sea Coast of Orissa and the headquarters of Puri district. Puri is renowned in the country and abroad as one of the famous pilgrim centre. Many pilgrims coming from various parts of the country come on pilgrimage to Puri (Car festival) of Lord Jagannath.

Puri town comprises broadly two sections, such as Sacred section and Secular section. Many religious centres comprising temples, maths, Sahis inhabited by ritual functionaries, sacred tanks, trees and various other sacred sites are located in the sacred section of Puri as the secular section comprises largely hotels and many buildings of administrative headquarters of Puri district.

Puri has many names such as Shri Kshetra, Purusottam Kshetra and Sankha Kshetra. The shape of the Kshetra is like that of a conch shell (Sankha) and therefore its name has become a Sankha Kshetra. Sankha Kshetra comprises most of the religious centres. Of all the names by which Puri is referred to Sankha Kshetra is the most significant name because Sankha is one of the Aiyudhas of Vishnu who resides in the naval or the central part of the Conch shell in the form of Lord Jagannath.

Sankha Kshetra is about 10 miles in extent of which nearly half of it have remained submerged in the sea, and the remaining portion is above the water, where most of the sacred centres are located. The study of Sacred Geography is confined to the sacred places which are located in and around Sankha Kshetra of Puri Town.

About the Author
Nityananda Patnaik (b. 1927), formerly Director of Anthropology, National Institute of Rural Development (NIRD), Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh and also the Director of Tribal and Harijan Research and Training Institute, Government of Orissa, is a scholar of wide renown and an established author. In earlier years of his career, he taught Anthropology at Utkal University and had also been a Fellow of the prestigious Indian Institute of Advanced Study, Shimla, Himachal Pradesh.

Currently, Dr. Patnaik is involved in various activities of the Social Science and Development Research Institute (SSADRI) which he has set up at Bhubaneshwar after his retirement from Government Service.

The study of Sacred Geography is an integral part of the larger study on Sacred Complex in Orissa. In fact the study on Sacred Complex began with the study on Organization of Services in the temple of Lingaraj, Bhubaneswar in the year 1958 under the guidance of Late Prof. N.K. Bose then Director of Anthropological Survey of India, Government of India.

Sacred Zone of Orissa and Puri as a Holy City of Orissa Province and Famous City of Pilgrimage Of all the regions of the earth says an inspired sage in explaining the various places of pilgrimage, "India is the noblest; and of all the countries of India. Utkal (Orissa) boasts the highest renown. From end to end it is one vast region of pilgrimage." Orissa is divided into four great regions of pilgrimage. On the southern side of the river Baitarani rises shrines after shrines of Siva. On leaving the river one enters a town called Jajpur, the headquarter of the region of pilgrimage. To the south-east lies the Sun temple at a place called Konark on the sea shore. To the southwest is the region of pilgrimage dedicated to Siva at the city of temples called Bhubaneswar.

Book's Contents and Sample Pages

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