Séminaires et manifestations scientifiques | Actualités du Centre


Séminaire "Interactions between Islamicate and Indic Societies in South and South-East Asia: Comparative Perspectives"

Jeudi 14 janvier 2021, 15h-18h sur la plateforme Big Blue Button : https://webinaire.ehess.fr/b/spe-9rk-2yw.

Jürgen Schaflechner (University of Heidelberg): “The Solidification of Tradition: Hindu Identity at the Shrine of Hinglaj Devi”

Interactions between Islamicate and Indic Societies
in South and South-East Asia: 
Comparative Perspectives


Jeudi 14 janvier 2021, 15h – 18h




Jürgen Schaflechner (University of Heidelberg): “The Solidification of Tradition: Hindu Identity at the Shrine of Hinglaj Devi”


The shrine of Hiṅglāj Devī is located in the desert of Balochistan, about 215 km west of the city of Karachi. Notwithstanding its ancient history, an annual festival (melā) at Hiṅglāj was only recently invented, in the mid-1980s. With the construction of a national highway that now—coincidentally—connects the former aloof desert shrine with an urban Pakistan, an increasingly confident Hindu community started to utilize this distant place as a main center for Hindu religious practices. The Hiṅglāj Śevā Manḍalī (HSM), the local temple organization, is partly responsible for these changes. Appealing to discourses of rationality and education, the HSM has successfully influenced perceptions of ideal “Hinduness” at the temple, and thus, significantly changed the image of the pilgrimage to and the events at the shrine. To approach these dynamics at Hiṅglāj, I suggest understanding them through the metaphor of “solidification.” Processes of solidification distinguish themselves through the persistent efforts to exclude certain religious tropes and ritual performances from gatherings at Hiṅglāj. This repeated exclusion performed mainly by the HSM has, over time, organized contingent events into a hegemonic narrative, widely seen as the “actual” core of the tradition today.
Teren Sevea (Harvard Divinity School): “Shamans, Saivas and Sufis? Malay Mediums of Animals and ‘Indic’ Islam”
This paper focuses on the spirit mediums of animals who embodied Islam in parts of the early modern and modern Malay world. These men and women were variously described as aboriginal shamans, Tantric yogis and ‘pantheistic’ Sufis by European observers, but were respected amongst followers and clients as incarnations of Rama, Muhammad, ‘Ali, Fatimah and Siva. These mediums were armed with elaborate Sufi genealogies of prophets and divinities, and as Sufis, instructed initiates into the path of trapping, hunting, shooting and healing and imparted mantras, fatwas, instructions, and methods of mediating beasts. This paper will begin by introducing these Malay mediums and debates about their ‘Indic-ness’ as well as the sacred landscape they inhabited in the Malay-Islamic world. The paper will therefrom pay particular attention to the Islamic manuscripts of mantras and fatwas transmitted by the spirit mediums of elephants, tigers, crocodiles and vermin. These mediums were ideally placed to communicate with the spirits of animals, who, as the sources I study reveal, had a historical sensibility and religious consciousness.


Le séminaire aura lieu en ligne sur la plateforme Big Blue Button : https://webinaire.ehess.fr/b/spe-9rk-2yw.


Pour participer il suffit de se connecter à l’horaire prévu du séminaire, le jeudi de 15h00 à 18h00.
Organisation : Fabrizio Speziale - Hélène Njoto - Aditia Gunawan


Centre Asie du Sud-Est (CASE)


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