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Modern Hindu Traditionalism addresses Hindu traditions that resisted contact with both Neo-Hindu thought and views of “classical” Hinduism perceived to be outmoded.
This book provides an in-depth understanding of Modern Hindu Traditionalism through the case study of the R?m?nand? order (samprad?ya) and the portrait of the Jagadguru R?m?nand?c?rya R?mnare??c?rya. This guru belongs to the ancient tradition of the R?m?nand? order, which is active at the present time and the biggest Vai??ava religious order in Northern India. Analyzing the historical evolution of the R?m?nand? order, the author shows how different centers have undergone different changes over the centuries, and focuses on the independence struggle of a group of R?m?nand?s from the R?m?n?j?s, which led to the creation of the role of Jagadguru R?m?nand?c?rya and the construction of the ?r? Ma?h. Drawing on extensive fieldwork, this book casts light on figures and processes central to the development of Hinduism in the twentieth and twenty-first century and consequently describes the role of religion in contemporary Indian society. The author examines the role religious institutions and their leaders have in the everyday life of individuals, how they interact with and in the society, and how they approach and interpret social and political issues. The R?m?nand?s’ use of new methods of communication, in particular social media, is an innovative part of the study.
A welcome innovation in the studies of South Asian religion, this book will be of interest to historians, anthropologists, and scholars of Hinduism and religion and politics.