Journal of Vaishnava Studies



How to Cite

Phyllis K. Herman. (2022). Journal of Vaishnava Studies. Journal of Vaishnava Studies, 12(2), 63–76. Retrieved from (Original work published May 11, 2022)


As Amita Sinha has pointed out, certain geographical and topographical features can make a space inherently sacred.1 In India, this
notion applies not only to specific places but to the whole of the subcontinent. One of the most famous and graphic examples of this sacred, all-encompassing geography is Bharata Mata, ‘Mother India.’ While this goddess’ mythology, name, and temples may be fairly new, the perception of the land and certain features of the land of India as feminine has been and continues to be, articulated in all sorts of ways. While pilgrimage is one way to experience topographical religiosity, the fact of living in India is an experience of the goddess. In this essay, I would like to explore the connections between two historical and modern expressions of goddess-geography, both of which are firmly rooted in the land of India as a whole and especially in two particular locales intrinsically related to the Rama Katha.

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