Sunday, January 31, 2021

Divurumwela Raja Maha Viharaya

Divurumwela Raja Maha Viharaya
Divurumwela Raja Maha Viharaya (some called Divurumpola Temple) is a Buddhist temple situated in Nugatalawa village in Badulla District, Sri Lanka.

History
The construction of the Divurumwela temple is attributed to King Aggabodhi IV in the 7th century A.D. (Gunasekara, 2004).

The small Stupa, the Bodhi-tree, and the image house can be identified as the ancient monuments within the temple premises (Priyadarshani & Gunasena, 2017). However, the old paintings in the image house have been covered in 1983 by drawing new paintings over them (Priyadarshani & Gunasena, 2017). A few stone pillars are found at the entrance to the shrine (Priyadarshani & Gunasena, 2017). An inscription is said to have been found from the temple premises (Priyadarshani & Gunasena, 2017).

A place related to Ramayanaya?
Without any archaeological or historical evidence, this Buddhist temple is being promoted by some locals and tourist agencies as a Hindu place related to Rama and Sita, two mythical figures depicted in the Indian epic Ramayanaya. According to them, Divurumwela/Divurumpola is the place where Sita had undergone Agni-pariskha for proving her chastity. To encourage this view, this place has been modified recently by the temple authorities by creating new Hindu figures and paintings.

The authenticity of the Ramayanaya is controversial and hence it is today dismissed as a myth by Sri Lankan scholars (JRASSL, 2014).

A protected site
The ancient Stupa, and the Bodhi pedestal belonging to the Divurumwela Purana Vihara situated in the Grama Niladhari Division of Welimada, in Welimada Divisional Secretary’s Division are archaeological protected monuments, declared by two government gazette notifications published on 22 November 2002 and 6 June 2008.  

Attribution
1) Divurumpola by Amila Tennakoon is licensed under CC BY 2.0

References
1) Gunasekara, S., 2004. Pattipola Bu Äla - An exceptional design of ancient Sinhala hydraulic engineering. Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society of Sri Lanka, 50, pp.33-42.
2) JRASSL, 2014. Journal of the Royal Asiatic Society of Sri Lanka New Series, Vol. 59, No. 2, Special Issue on the Ramayana (2014). https://www.jstor.org/stable/i40203619. pp.1-112.
3) Priyadarshani, S.A.N.; Gunasena, I.P.P., 2017. Pauranika Sthana Ha Smaraka: Badulla Distrikkaya (In Sinhala). Department of Archaeology. ISBN: 955-9159-48-8. pp.34-35.
4) The Gazette of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka. No: 1264. 22 November 2002.
5) The Gazette of the Democratic Socialist Republic of Sri Lanka. No: 1553. 6 June 2008. p.530.

Location Map

This page was last updated on 5 February 2021
For a complete tourist map follow this link: Lankapradeepa Tourist Map

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