A few weeks ago I spent three days in a temple on the outskirts of Hyderabad. I had gone there during the temple's Brahmotsavam (annual festivities). I was especially interested in seeing the dance rituals which are performed here during this time. This is something I'll be writing about in more detail in my other blog.
The temple was an oasis of calm in a once rural area which is quickly becoming a neighbourhood of glass buildings housing IT companies and upmarket apartment complexes. Entering the temple was like stepping into another world where time had stopped.
The temple priests were busy from dawn to dusk with various prayers and rituals. I felt completely at home here and enjoyed loitering around and observing the goings-on. The atmosphere was completely different to other temples I've visited. Maybe because it's a small family-run temple off the tourist circuit.
A priest chanting Sanskrit verses. (To hear what this sounds like, click on 'temple priests chanting' in the right sidebar under 'Listen to the sounds of India'.) His mobile phone becomes a page marker.
I'm not sure what was up here, but I'd love to know!
This was the result. An offering to Surya, the sun god. I understood why he performed the puja here: he was facing east. Another example of how art is ritual and ritual is art.
The temple deity, Lord Ranganathaswamy (reclining Vishnu) is seen here in the temple sanctum.
The temple musicians.