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Rāmāyaṇa where ideology and arts meet narrative and historical context by Prof. Nalini Rao

Rāmāyaṇa tradition in northeast Bhārat by Virag Pachpore


From Hindupedia, the Hindu Encyclopedia

By Swami Harshananda

Ākāśamaṇḍapa is literally translated as ‘hall open to the sky’.

Places of worship have existed from very ancient times. A temple, though a place of worship, is a replica of the universe, an image of God, an image of man with God in his heart—all rolled into one.

The most essential part of a temple is the garbhagṛha or sanctum sanctorum. It is here that the image or the symbol of the deity is installed. In front of this garbhagṛha there is typically a hall (at least in the big temples) known as maṇḍapa or nṛtta-maṇḍapa or navaraṅga that is used for congregational purposes like singing, dancing, recitation of religious texts or religious discourses. This maṇḍapa can have walls or it can be just a shelter without walls. When the roof of this maṇḍapa is supported on pillars (w/o a wall) it is referred to as ākāśamaṇḍapa.


  • The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore