Downtown Art & Architecture




Hindu temples, here, are called kovil. This one’s pretty much in the heart of downtown. I really do love living in a city – in a country – of such religious diversity. Especially when the land of my birth has fallen prey to rabidly insane self-righteous Christian lunatics who insist on some self-serving divine right to force their narrow-minded interpreation of truth down everyone else’s throats. (But no, I’m not bitter. Not at all.) Ramaddan is ending today with the festival of Eid al Fidr here in Colombo (random fact: Ramaddan starts and ends on different dates in different countries, based mostly on when the moon is in the correct phase or position), and somehow I’ve been even more aware than usual of the Mosques and Muslim presence in Colombo and when I went south; and of course the dominant religion is Buddhism, of which this Boddhisatva – also from Vihara Mahadevi Park downtown – is a symbol. I’ve no clue about the stone pillar (on the edge of VM park – didn’t bother to cross the street to find out more), but my guess is it’s a monument to the religion of mercantile colonialism as practiced by the British here for a couple hundred years after the Portuguese and Dutch took their turns trying to dominate this poor island.

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