This volume is an exploration of the various forms of bonds and attachments by which individuals in the Himalayan regions of India and Nepal are bound to their groups. To grasp these phenomena adequately, the book proposes a new analytical approach through the concept of belonging.
The book is based on several case studies carried out by anthropologists, historians, and geographers who help bring together rich ethnographical data from different regions of the Himalayas. Organized in three parts, it describes the interactions between local forms of belonging and new forms of classification imposed through national integration or modes of politics.
The book analyzes different societal formations in various historical periods and captures the ongoing change in them. Fundamentally, this collaborative publication is an attempt to go beyond (and beneath) identity constructions and to call into question the idea of permanence implied by the term.
Chapter 6: To Whom does the Pashupatinath Temple of Nepal Belong?
To Whom does the Pashupatinath Temple of Nepal Belong?
Since the seventh century or earlier, Pashupati, a form of Shiva, has been addressed as a tutelary deity by the Nepalese Licchavi, Malla, and Shaha kings. His main temple is one of the largest and most popular temples in Nepal.1 It is a national monument and symbol, and as such can be found on posters and bank notes. The temple is located about three kilometres west of Kathmandu, the capital of Nepal. The temple is surrounded by the Pashupatikshetra, the ‘Field of Shiva or Pashupati’, with numerous temples, shrines, rest-houses for pilgrims and ascetics, wells, open spaces, gardens and forests, as well as several settlement structures.
All this has ...