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Picture of Cosmic Order and Cultural Astronomy

Cosmic Order and Cultural Astronomy

Sacred Cities of India

Author(s): Rana P. B. Singh with a Foreword by John McKim Malville

Book Description

Throughout the Indian subcontinent there are territories and areas wherein culture, geography, and the archetypal cosmos interact with each other to create a sacredscape that is infused with meaning, cultural performances and transcendent power. These sacred sites possess extensive mythological associations where believed that spirit can cross between different realms. In a broad perspective such studies falls within the realm of cultural astronomy, which has two broad areas, viz. archaeoastronomy, concerned with the study of the use of astronomy and its role in ancient cultures and civilizations; and ethnoastronomy that studies the use of astronomy and its role in contemporary cultures. The seven essays in this volume deals with the critical appraisal of studying cultural astronomy and cosmic order and its implications in India, illustrated with case studies like heritagescape of Khajuraho, where stone speaks; manescape of Gaya, where manes come and bless the devotees; Deviscape of Vindhyachal, where goddess resorts; Shivascape of Kashi, where Shiva dances in making order; Shaktiscape of Kashi, that possesses the spatial ordering of goddesses; and Naturscape of Chitrakut, where mother earth blesses.

Hardback

ISBN-13: 978-1-4438-1417-1
ISBN-10: 1-4438-1417-2
Date of Publication: 01/11/2009
Pages / Size: 249 / A5
Price: £39.99
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Biography

Rana P.B. Singh, Professor of Cultural Geography & Heritage Studies at Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi (India), and has published extensively on geographical thought, sacred geography, pilgrimage studies and heritage planning in India. His publications include 35 books and anthologies and over 180 research papers. On these themes he gave lectures in almost all parts of the world. His recent publications include Environmental Ethics (1993), The Spirit and Power of Place (1994), Cultural Landscapes and the Lifeworld (2004), Uprooting Geographical Thought in India: Toward Ecology and Culture in 21st Century (2009), Geographical Thoughts in India: Snapshots and Vision for the 21st Century (2009), Banaras: Making of India’s Heritage City (2009), and Cosmic Order & Cultural Astronomy (2009).