Benares: A World Within a World : the Microcosm of Kashi, Yesterday and Today

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Indica, 2002 - Varanasi (India) - 419 pages
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This major contribution to the study of urban culture, firstpublished in 1999 as the magnificent photographic book BenaresSeen from Within, is now issued in a more accessible format and areduced price, its text substantially revised.Though now beset with all the characteristic urban ills of the age,Benares is arguably the oldest living city in the world to retain itsoriginal cosmic orientation. A centre of learning since antiquity, itsway of life has not essentially changed until the last few years.Among other themes, Lannoy writes about the metaphysical substructureof the city, the ancient cults of the pillar and the sun-wheel,the Buddha, yoga, commerce and weaving, pilgrimage, and extendsits survey up to the present, with Hindu-Muslim conflicts, the tensionbetween religion and secularism, and a lively account of thegreat woman-saint Anandamayi Ma.Illustrated with many photographs by the author.

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