Profile picture
Vikram Sampath @vikramsampath
, 19 tweets, 5 min read Read on Twitter
My dear Manu. Interesting "conversations" on ur TL appeared on mine n as a dear friend thought of sharing views wt a disclaimer of being neither an expert on Kerala history or Hindu theology or specifically #sabarimala. Open to b corrected (1/n)
1. I reckon u might hv mixed social evils such as dalit non-entry into temples n fundamental theology based on the sthalapuranam of #Sabarimala. Bhutanata upakhyanam doesn't forbid the former but states latter "will" of Deity to maintain naisthika or indefinite brahmacharya(2/n)
2. As part of nationwide reforms in Hindu society to allow dalits etc if these were done at #Sabarimala they didn't contravene it's fundamental character as espoused by the deity n as believed by His followers. (3/n)
3. When Devi Manjamata seeks to marry Him Lord Ayyappa as in the Bhutanata U states he has taken the extreme vow of naisthika or eternal brahmacharya that covers 8 or so v extreme vows including no contact with opposite gender esp of reproductive age. (4/n)
4. Brahmacharinis or women of those days too took such extreme vows to not intermingle (of course men can reproduce long enough!). Part of belief in power of celibacy just as say Virgin Mary/no to Mary magdalena as Christ's wife etc (5/n)
5. AFAIK #Sabarimala follows Tantric traditions n not Vedic. Among Tantric traditions diversity of customs is mind bogglingly vast. They all place lot of primacy on the power of sexual potency n energy. Various margas exist within- Kaulachara, dakshina, Vama etc etc (6/n)
6. As an ardent follower of the Kamakhya tradition of Assam I hv seen 1st hand primacy given to women (menstruating or not) in conduct of pujas. Their permission is sought to begin a process. When She is believed to menstruate in Ambubachi mela temple is shut n none allowed.(7/n)
7. One could argue it impinges my fundamental right to pray n how dare the temple shut it's doors on me n it's some hogwash created by conniving priests or whoever. But I wud like to get in ONLY if I believe in the fundamental premise of that shrine in 1st place? Club entry?(8/n)
8. Brings me to another distinction between Hindu shrines n say mosques or churches. Latter r places of congregation n community prayer to a God who resides in distant Heaven. Former is abode of deity who is consecrated thru pranapratishta as a living being (9/n)
9. Just as when I go to meet a VIP I follow protocols he or she sets, when I meet (hence word 'darshan') a deity I follow His or Her protocol. I meet only cos I believe in Him or Her and thereby the protocol set by Him/Her. This case protocol mentioned in #3 above (10/n)
10. As u well know this "exclusion" exists only in #Sabarimala n not Ayyappa temples across India n hence it's clearly basis the sthalapuranam protocol only. Begs a question too whether "exclusion" is equivalent to "discrimination"? (11/n)
11. When often arguments r made that Hindutva homogenises Hinduism n doesn't give space to diversities, isn't this the same here where a Tantric diversity is disregarded n sought to b homogenised on false equivalence of feminism or discrimination? (12/n)
12. Again AFAIK the prohibition is NOT on notions of purity or pollution caused by menstruation. There r no such taboos in tantra as #6 states. It's merely the belief that it's the will of that deity alone, whose abode u r seeking to visit (13/n)
13. If social issues of dalit ban etc have been put in the past through some cunning priest or king etc that was wrong n is rightly gone as it's not part of the essential protocol of stalapuranam but socio-cutural politics of the time. The 2 issues r vastly different here (14/n)
14. Finally court verdicts always have a right to appeal n repeal if there is popular sentiment against them. We saw it in #Section377 for e.g. or through govt ordinance on Shah Bano/SC-ST Act recently. So while sacrosanct they r not necessarily the final word. (15/n)
15. I see ppl making false equivalences with triple talaq that grievously harms a woman's life n.future just as Sati or child marriage (or dowry)did among Hindus. Nonentry into ONE temple that has its unique Tantric traditions harms no one IMHO (16/n)
16. Not getting into the dirty politics of the state govt or the silence of the centre; those miserable mischief makers with sanitary pads not following the 41 day cleansing rituals etc before entry as it's meaningless n controversial (17/n)
17. Sorry for this long thread bit couldn't resist sharing the V v little that I know to try n provide perspective esp when diverse topics such as feminism, caste, kerala history, law, tantra n theology hv got horribly mixed up wt visceral politics n heightened emotions. (18/n)
If you have not dozed off and have reached this far...thanks for indulging me :-) would love to hear your views !
Missing some Tweet in this thread?
You can try to force a refresh.

Like this thread? Get email updates or save it to PDF!

Subscribe to Vikram Sampath
Profile picture

Get real-time email alerts when new unrolls are available from this author!

This content may be removed anytime!

Twitter may remove this content at anytime, convert it as a PDF, save and print for later use!

Try unrolling a thread yourself!

how to unroll video

1) Follow Thread Reader App on Twitter so you can easily mention us!

2) Go to a Twitter thread (series of Tweets by the same owner) and mention us with a keyword "unroll" @threadreaderapp unroll

You can practice here first or read more on our help page!

Did Thread Reader help you today?

Support us! We are indie developers!

This site is made by just three indie developers on a laptop doing marketing, support and development! Read more about the story.

Become a Premium Member and get exclusive features!

Premium member ($30.00/year)

Too expensive? Make a small donation by buying us coffee ($5) or help with server cost ($10)

Donate via Paypal Become our Patreon

Thank you for your support!