This video series talks about the economics of temple culture and the discipline of the economics of religion. In this chapter, we explain the economics of religion and its origin.
The difference between economic culture and religious culture comprises of a variety of sub-fields which collectively comprise of all aspects of the social scientific study of religion.
The temple buildings that we see today are about 1,500 years old. Before that, gods were worshiped under trees, next to rivers and in caves. But the whole idea of building gigantic stone temple complexes indicates a rise in economic activity and a shift in thinking.
In fact, temples in the southern part of India were the center of economic activity during that period. When you study the history of temples, you comprehend how it played a critical role in binding communities together.
Every member would contribute by bringing whatever products or services they have. That is how you contribute and the deity in the center of the temple brings everyone together and weaves an organisation. This is the logic of the temple.So villages, especially in the southern part of India, were created around temples. And therefore even today you have temple towns that enable wealth distribution. So we understand, these stone structures were both economic and spiritual structures at the same time. When we look at it from an economic lens, we learn so much more about our culture.