Elephants in Sri Lankan Culture

Elephants in Sri Lankan Culture

 

A man hangs twig on a tree; his face is all but reverence for Pullayar. Then he cautiously treads his way on to the jungle path into a distant village or to the dreaded jungle itself, infested with wild beasts, including the much-feared big animal, the elephant. I believe that the reverence for elephant headed Pullayar has a direct link with the fear psyche of these villagers for elephants. To them Pullayar or the Hindu God Ganesh is not only the God of wisdom but their protector in the wild. Statues of God Ganesh, which is a common sight in many parts of North Eastern plain of Sri Lanka, are venerated by both Hindus and Buddhists.

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