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Mountain, Water, Rock, God: Understanding Kedarnath in the Twenty-First Century

Cover image of book "Mountain, Water, Rock, God" with background image of the Himalayan mountains and the shrine of Kedarnath
IRH Fellowship and Year: 
2014-2015 UW System Fellow
University of California Press, 2019

In Mountain, Water, Rock, God, Luke Whitmore situates the disastrous flooding that fell on the Hindu Himalayan shrine of Kedarnath in 2013 within a broader religious and ecological context. Whitmore explores the longer story of this powerful realm of the Hindu god Shiva through a holistic theoretical perspective that integrates phenomenological and systems-based approaches to the study of religion, pilgrimage, place, and ecology. He argues that close attention to places of religious significance offers a model for thinking through connections between ritual, narrative, climate destabilization, tourism, development, and disaster, and he shows how these critical components of human life in the twenty-first century intersect in the human experience of place.