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Rise of a Folk GodVitthal of Pandharpur$
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Ramchandra Chintaman Dhere

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780199777594

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199777594.001.0001

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The Body Is Paṇḍharī

The Body Is Paṇḍharī

Chapter:
(p.271) 15 The Body Is Paṇḍharī
Source:
Rise of a Folk God
Author(s):

Ramchandra Chintaman Dhere

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199777594.003.0016

This final chapter presents a culminating stage in the evolution of the cult of Viṭṭhal: its interpretation in spiritual terms. The chapter discusses, in turn, spiritual interpretations that the Marathi poet-saints have given of the river at Pandharpur, of Pandharpur itself, of the temple of Viṭṭhal there, and of the god himself. The chapter discusses analogies in bhakti literature between the human body and temples, and analogies between various moral categories, such as remorse or a good person, on the one hand, and holy water-places (tīrthas), on the other. The chapter also examines the extensive image Jñāneśvar uses in comparing the Bhagavadgītā to the “Kailās” cave-temple at Ellora.

Keywords:   spiritual interpretations, Pandharpur, bhakti literature, human bodies, temples, moral categories, Ellora

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