India: A Sacred Geography

India A Sacred Geography book coverIndia: A Sacred Geography
Diana L. Eck

Harmony Books, 2012

India is “a great network of pilgrimage places,” writes Diana Eck, a professor of comparative religion and Indian studies at Harvard University who offers insight into the sources in ritual and tradition that make these sites holy. The diversity of these stories and traditions gives a sense of the complexity of the religious alternatives in India’s society, shattering for the reader the notion that there is such a thing as a singular “Hinduism” and instead supporting the notion of many Hinduisms surviving side-by-side in the vast subcontinent of India. Even as Eck explores the holiness of place within these various Hinduisms, she also emphasizes elements of various Hindu traditions that acknowledge the presence of holiness all around us and wherever we are.


3 thoughts on “India: A Sacred Geography

  1. There is nothing sacred about India except Hindu, Buddhist and Muslim religious buildings there. Indian society has always been governed by Hindu caste-based ideology toward non-Hindu, low-caste Hindu communities and women.

    In Hindu society, a widow is not allowed to remarry or even wear colorful clothes or jewellery. Widows are outcasted as witches and considered impure and burden on family and Hindu society in large. Some of the widows were forced to shave their heads and were blamed for the ‘untimely’ death of their husbands. India is home to world’s largest widow population (34 million or 8% of total women population). Many of these widows end up working as prostitutes to survive. Ironically, in the same Hindu society, where cow is worshipped and cared both by the government and religious organizations.

    “The Dalits (untouchable Hindus) account for 165 million of India’s one billion-plus human population. The population of cows is pegged at 206 million. There are more cows than Dalits in India. The cows therefore, have more rights tha Dalits. For instance, you can kill Dalit before thousands of witnesses and get away with it. But the imagined murder of a cow will not be suffered. The state promotes the drinking of cow urine and dung, while Dalits are forced to eat the shit and piss of caste Hindus,” – S. Anand, Outlook India.

  2. Since I strongly respect Tikkun’s interfaith line, I invite its readers to look deeper into the truth.
    I was born a Muslim and, I am a political refugee in the US from Iran who cannot remain within that faith. My heroes are people like Father Roy Bourgeois who was defrocked due to making a woman a priest in that rotten Vatican where sex abusers are not defrocked and paid for and rehabilitated. But what happens for example in India to Muslims is terrible too like in the story that in our site we’ve translated into Farsi, Arabic, Swedish and…
    Solution? I have none except saying, Hindustan, Pakistan hands off of Kashmir. But, please tell Jewish progressives of the world to stop any military aid to India.

  3. I just read the regulation and most likely due to the way i wrote my statement won’t be posted. Still, please ask Mr. Lerner to send me a photograph signed.
    I believe in god but no religion. still, peace bringers and healers of all faiths are …. from Lerner … up to for example Mauritania Mullahs who ban cutting off women’s body as “circumcision” since it’s not in Koran …. are people who I relatively endorse. Despite the fact that they don’t necessarily have similar prospects as I do. Please e mail me his photos so I send him a thing to judge before releasing, i.e. a song about women’s rights. thanks

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *