Cha Bee visits Kataragama Temple in Sri Lanka
Kataragamam temple in Kataragama, Sri Lanka, is a temple complex dedicated to Kataragama deviyo. It is one of the few religious sites in Sri Lanka that is venerated by the Sinhala Buddhists, Hindu Sri Lankan Tamils, Sri Lankan Moors and the Vedda people.It is a collection of shrines, of which the one is dedicated to Kataragama deviyo.
The priests of the temple are known as Kapuralas and are believed to be descended from Vedda people.
Veddas, too, have a claim on the temple, a nearby mountain peak and locality through a number of legends.
There is a mosque and a few tombs of Muslim pious men buried nearby.
The temple complex is connected to other similar temples in Eastern Province dedicated to Murugan which are along the path of pilgrimage from Jaffna in the north to Kataragama in the south of the island.
Arunagirinathar traversed this pilgrimage route in the 15th century. The vicinity of the temple complex is used for secretive practices of sorcery and cursing peculiar to Sri Lanka. The entire temple complex was declared a holy place by the government of Sri Lanka in the 1950s.