KA‘s post on the relevance of temples and mosques in todays world got me thinking on the reasons why most of us visit temples. Generally people goto temples out of bhakti. Now bhakti can be of many types, I attempt to name a few
1) Daiva bhakti: This is the foremost of all, and consists of god fearing people who feel that by visiting temples, performing archanais(offerings), singing hymns to the lord, their passage to afterlife would be peaceful and his life would go without obstacles.
2) Prasada bhakti: This is the puliodhare type bhakti, a better example of which would be the character sendhil played in the film ‘Boys’. Which sannidhi(temple), which day, what time, what prasadam…..
3) Figure/Jollu bhakti: This type of bhakti is to ogle at unsuspecting maamis and collect kanni ponnus(youg lass) who come to the temple to pray for husbands who they hope will be unlike the guys who come to collect them.
4) Vendudhal/mannat bhakti: Bhaktas under this category are usually visible during exam time, or have some vendudhal like kids, visa etc. There is a very famous temple in Hyderabad where the swami is also known as ‘visa venkatesha’.
5) Peethal/show off bhakti: This type of bhakti is just to show of your newest jewelery, saree etc, or exhibit the power of your wealth by performing pujas involving high donations and basically obtain bragging rights to how religious you are.
6) Tag along bhakti: Here you are accompanying another bhakta who falls into any of the above categories
7) Wat the hell bhakti: Well you just decided to visit the temple as you didn’t have anything else to do, and a li’l hi to the lord won’t hurt.
8) Flickr bhakti: This form of bhakti can be observed when you are touring the country and visit temples with splendid architecture as you take 286 pics of yourself against various backdrops.
9) Special occasion bhakti: This could be visible when there is a festival or a kutcheri(concert) in the temple and you go just because you like the festive atmosphere.