Posted in रामायण - Ramayan

क्या कोई इस प्रश्न का उत्तर दे सकता है कि कयू राम सेतु का पत्थर पानी मे नही डूबता ।

ये तस्वीर उन लोगों के मुँह पर करारा तमाचा हैं जो रामायण और महाभारत जैसे ग्रंथों को  कोरी कल्पना कहते हैं । 

क्या कोई इस प्रश्न का उत्तर दे सकता है कि कयू
राम सेतु का पत्थर पानी मे नही डूबता । 

यदि उत्तर ना मिल पाये तो एक बार जोर से 
' जय श्री राम ' कहना तो बनता है । 

जय श्री राम

ये तस्वीर उन लोगों के मुँह पर करारा तमाचा हैं जो रामायण और महाभारत जैसे ग्रंथों को कोरी कल्पना कहते हैं ।

क्या कोई इस प्रश्न का उत्तर दे सकता है कि कयू
राम सेतु का पत्थर पानी मे नही डूबता ।

यदि उत्तर ना मिल पाये तो एक बार जोर से
‘ जय श्री राम ‘ कहना तो बनता है ।

जय श्री राम

Posted in Tejomahal



108 PROOFS 19:24 Hidden Facts, LORD SHIVA No comments Taj Mahal was Hindu Temple “Tejo Mahalay” the temple of shiva which was destroyed by mugals(Muslims) and changed a bit and called it their structure. Most evident of such structures is Taj Mahal–a structure supposedly devoted to carnal love by the “great” moghul king Shah Jahan to his favorite wife Mumtaz Mahal. Please keep in my mind that this is the same Shah Jahan who had a harem of 5,000 women and the same Shah Jahan who had a incestuous relationship with his daughter justifing it by saying, ‘a gardner has every right to taste the fruit he has planted’! Is such a person even capable of imagning such a wondrous structure as the Taj Mahal let alone be the architect of it? The answer is no. It cannot be. And it isn’t as has been proven. The Taj Mahal is as much a Islamic structure as is mathematics a muslim discovery! The famous historian Shri P.N. Oak has proven that Taj Mahal is actuallyTejo Mahalaya– a shiv temple-palace. His work was published in 1965 in the book, Taj Mahal – The True Story. However, we have not heard much about it because it was banned by the corrupt and power crazed Congress government of Bharat who did not want to alienate their precious vote bank–the muslims. After reading Shri Oak’s work which provides more than adequate evidence to prove that Taj Mahal is indeed Tejo Mahalaya, one has to wonder if the government of Bharat has been full of traitors for the past 50 years! Because to ban such a book which states only the truth is surely a crime against our great nation of Bharat. The most valuable evidence of all that Tejo Mahalaya is not an Islamic building is in the Badshahnama which contains the history of the first twenty years of Shah Jahan’s reign. The writer Abdul Hamid has stated that Taj Mahal is a temple-palace taken from Jaipur’s Maharaja Jaisigh and the building was known as Raja Mansingh’s palace. This by itself is enough proof to state that Tejo Mahalaya is a Hindu structure captured, plundered and converted to a mausoleum by Shah Jahan and his henchmen. But I have taken the liberty to provide you with 109 other proofs and logical points which tell us that the structure known as the Taj Mahal is actually Tejo Mahalaya. There is a similar story behind Every Islamic structure in Bharat. They are all converted Hindu structures. As I mentioned above, hundereds of thousands of temples in Bharat have been destroyed by the barbaric muslim invaders and I shall dedicate several articles to these destroyed temples. However, the scope of this article is to prove to you beyond the shadow of any doubt that Taj Mahal is Tejo Mahalaya and should be recognized as such! Not as a monument to the dead Mumtaz Mahal–an insignificant sex object in the incestous Shah Jahan’s harem of 5,000. Another very important proof that Taj Mahal is a Hindu structure is shown by figure 1 below. It depicts Aurangzeb’s letter to Shah Jahan in Persian in which he has unintentionally revealed the true identity of the Taj Mahal as a Hindu Temple-Palace. Refer to proofs 20 and 66 stated below. Aurangzeb’s letter to his father Shah Jahan written in Persian. (Source: Taj Mahal – The True Story, pg. 275) Take the time to read the proofs stated below and know to what extent we have been lied to by our own leaders. These proofs of Shri P.N. Oak have been taken from the URL: I would like to commend the creator of the above mentioned web site for taking the time to put up the proofs given by Shri P.N. Oak. For more information you can order the book, Taj Mahal – The True Story authored by Shri P.N. Oak. The ISBN number of the book is ISBN 0-9611614-4-2. The book is available through A. Ghosh (Publisher), 5720 W. Little York, #216, Houston, Texas 77091. Visit Sword Of Truth – Online Magazine for more information Proofs follow below: Name 1.The term Tajmahal itself never occurs in any mogul court paper or chronicle even in Aurangzeb’s time. The attempt to explain it away as Taj-i-mahal is therefore, ridiculous. 2.The ending “Mahal” is never muslim because in none of the muslim countries around the world from Afghanistan to Algeria is there a building known as “Mahal”. 3.The unusual explanation of the term Tajmahal derives from Mumtaz Mahal, who is buried in it, is illogical in at least two respects viz., firstly her name was never Mumtaj Mahal but Mumtaz-ul-Zamani and secondly one cannot omit the first three letters “Mum” from a woman’s name to derive the remainder as the name of the building. 4.Since the lady’s name was Mumtaz (ending with ‘Z’) the name of the building derived from her should have been Taz Mahal, if at all, and not Taj (spelled with a ‘J’). 5.Several European visitors of Shahjahan’s time allude to the building as Taj-e-Mahal is almost the correct tradition, age old Sanskrit name Tej-o-Mahalaya, signifying a Shiva temple. Contrarily Shahjahan and Aurangzeb scrupulously avoid using the Sanskrit term and call it just a holy grave. 6.The tomb should be understood to signify Not A Building but only the grave or centotaph inside it. This would help people to realize that all dead muslim courtiers and royalty including Humayun, Akbar, Mumtaz, Etmad-ud-Daula and Safdarjang have been buried in capture Hindu mansions and temples. 7.Moreover, if the Taj is believed to be a burial place, how can the term Mahal, i.e., mansion apply to it? 8.Since the term Taj Mahal does not occur in mogul courts it is absurd to search for any mogul explanation for it. Both its components namely, ‘Taj’ and’ Mahal’ are of Sanskrit origin. Temple Tradition 9.The term Taj Mahal is a corrupt form of the sanskrit term TejoMahalay signifying a Shiva Temple. Agreshwar Mahadev i.e., The Lord of Agra was consecrated in it. 10.The tradition of removing the shoes before climbing the marble platform originates from pre Shahjahan times when the Taj was a Shiva Temple. Had the Taj originated as a tomb, shoes need not have to be removed because shoes are a necessity in a cemetery. 11.Visitors may notice that the base slab of the centotaph is the marble basement in plain white while its superstructure and the other three centotaphs on the two floors are covered with inlaid creeper designs. This indicates that the marble pedestal of the Shiva idol is still in place and Mumtaz’s centotaphs are fake. 12.The pitchers carved inside the upper border of the marble lattice plus those mounted on it number 108-a number sacred in Hindu Temple tradition. 13.There are persons who are connected with the repair and the maintainance of the Taj who have seen the ancient sacred Shiva Linga and other idols sealed in the thick walls and in chambers in the secret, sealed red stone stories below the marble basement. The Archaeological Survey of India is keeping discretely, politely and diplomatically silent about it to the point of dereliction of its own duty to probe into hidden historical evidence. 14.In India there are 12 Jyotirlingas i.e., the outstanding Shiva Temples. The Tejomahalaya alias The Tajmahal appears to be one of them known as Nagnatheshwar since its parapet is girdled with Naga, i.e., Cobra figures. Ever since Shahjahan’s capture of it the sacred temple has lost its Hindudom. 15.The famous Hindu treatise on architecture titled Vishwakarma Vastushastra mentions the Tej-Linga amongst the Shivalingas i.e., the stone emblems of Lord Shiva, the Hindu deity. Such a Tej Linga was consecrated in the Taj Mahal, hence the term Taj Mahal alias Tejo Mahalaya. 16.Agra city, in which the Taj Mahal is located, is an ancient centre of Shiva worship. Its orthodox residents have through ages continued the tradition of worshipping at five Shiva shrines before taking the last meal every night especially during the month of Shravan. During the last few centuries the residents of Agra had to be content with worshipping at only four prominent Shiva temples viz., Balkeshwar, Prithvinath, Manakameshwarand Rajarajeshwar. They had lost track of the fifth Shiva deity which their forefathers worshipped. Apparently the fifth was Agreshwar Mahadev Nagnatheshwar i.e., The Lord Great God of Agra, The Deity of the King of Cobras, consecrated in the Tejomahalay alias Tajmahal. 17.The people who dominate the Agra region are Jats. Their name of Shiva is Tejaji. The Jat special issue of The Illustrated Weekly of India (June 28,1971) mentions that the Jats have the Teja Mandirs i.e., Teja Temples. This is because Teja-Linga is among the several names of the Shiva Lingas. From this it is apparent that the Taj-Mahal is Tejo-Mahalaya, The Great Abode of Tej. Documentary Evidence 18.Shahjahan’s own court chronicle, the Badshahnama, admits (page 403, vol 1) that a grand mansion of unique splendor, capped with a dome (Imaarat-a-Alishan wa Gumbaze) was taken from the Jaipur Maharaja Jaisigh for Mumtaz’s burial, and the building was known as Raja Mansingh’s palace. 19. The plaque put the archealogy department outside the Tajmahal describes the edifice as a mausoleum built by Shahjahan for his wife Mumtaz Mahal, over 22 years from 1631 to 1653 That plaque is a specimen of historical bungling. Firstly, the plaque sites no authority for its claim. Secondly the lady’s name was Mumtaz-ulZamani and not Mumtazmahal. Thirdly, the period of 22 years is taken from some mumbo jumbo noting by an unreliable French visitor Tavernier, to the exclusion of all muslim versions, which is an absurdity. 20. Prince Aurangzeb’s letter (Refer to Figure 1 above) to his father, emperor Shahjahan, is recorded in atleast three chronicles titled Aadaab-e-Alamgiri, Yadgarnama, and the Muruqqa-i-Akbarabadi (edited by Said Ahmed, Agra, 1931, page 43, footnote 2). In that letter Aurangzeb records in 1652 A.D itself that the several buildings in the fancied burial place of Mumtaz were seven storeyed and were so old that they were all leaking, while the dome had developed a crack on the northern side. Aurangzeb, therefore, ordered immediate repairs to the buildings at his own expense while recommending to the emperor that more elaborate repairs be carried out later. This is the proof that during Shahjahan’s reign itself that the Taj complex was so old as to need immediate repairs. 21. The ex-Maharaja of Jaipur retains in his secret personal KapadDwara collection two orders from Shahjahan dated Dec 18, 1633 (bearing modern nos. R.176 and 177) requestioning the Taj building complex. That was so blatant a usurpation that the then ruler of Jaipur was ashamed to make the document public. 22. The Rajasthan State archives at Bikaner preserve three other firmans addressed by Shahjahan to the Jaipur’s ruler Jaisingh ordering the latter to supply marble (for Mumtaz’s grave and koranic grafts) from his Makranna quarris, and stone cutters. Jaisingh was apparently so enraged at the blatant seizure of the Tajmahal that he refused to oblige Shahjahan by providing marble for grafting koranic engravings and fake centotaphs for further desecration of the Tajmahal. Jaisingh looked at Shahjahan’s demand for marble and stone cutters, as an insult added to injury. Therefore, he refused to send any marble and instead detained the stone cutters in his protective custody. 23. The three firmans demanding marble were sent to Jaisingh within about two years of Mumtaz’s death. Had Shahjahan really built the Tajmahal over a period of 22 years, the marble would have needed only after 15 or 20 years not immediately after Mumtaz’s death. 24. Moreover, the three mention neither the Tajmahal, nor Mumtaz, nor the burial. The cost and the quantity of the stone also are not mentioned. This proves that an insignificant quantity of marble was needed just for some supercial tinkering and tampering with the Tajmahal. Even otherwise Shahjahan could never hope to build a fabulous Tajmahal by abject dependence for marble on a non cooperative Jaisingh. European Visitor’s Accounts 25. Tavernier, a French jeweller has recorded in his travel memoirs that Shahjahan purposely buried Mumtaz near the Taz-i-Makan (i.e.,`The Taj building’) where foriegners used to come as they do even today so that the world may admire. He also adds that the cost of the scaffolding was more than that of the entire work. The work that Shahjahan commissioned in the Tejomahalaya Shiva temple was plundering at the costly fixtures inside it, uprooting the Shiva idols, planting the centotaphs in their place on two stories, inscribing the koran along the arches and walling up six of the seven stories of the Taj. It was this plunder, desecrating and plunderring of the rooms which took 22 years. 26. Peter Mundy, an English visitor to Agra recorded in 1632 (within only a year of Mumtaz’s death) that `the places of note in and around Agra, included Taj-e-Mahal’s tomb, gardens and bazaars’. He, therefore, confirms that that the Tajmahal had been a noteworthy building even before Shahjahan. 27. De Laet, a Dutch official has listed Mansingh’s palace about a mile from Agra fort, as an outstanding building of pre shahjahan’s time. Shahjahan’s court chronicle, the Badshahnama records, Mumtaz’s burial in the same Mansingh’s palace. 28. Bernier, a contemporary French visitor has noted that non muslim’s were barred entry into the basement (at the time when Shahjahan requisitioned Mansingh’s palace) which contained a dazzling light. Obviously, he reffered to the silver doors, gold railing, the gem studded lattice and strings of pearl hanging over Shiva’s idol. Shahjahan comandeered the building to grab all the wealth, making Mumtaz’s death a convineant pretext. 29. Johan Albert Mandelslo, who describes life in agra in 1638 (only 7 years after mumtaz’s death) in detail (in his Voyages and Travels to West-Indies, published by John Starkey and John Basset, London), makes no mention of the Tajmahal being under constuction though it is commonly erringly asserted or assumed that the Taj was being built from 1631 to 1653. Sanskrit Inscription 30. A Sanskrit inscription too supports the conclusion that the Taj originated as a Shiva temple. Wrongly termed as the Bateshwar inscription (currently preserved on the top floor of the Lucknow museum), it refers to the raising of a “crystal white Shiva temple so alluring that Lord Shiva once enshrined in it decided never to return to Mount Kailash his usual abode”. That inscription dated 1155 A.D. was removed from the Tajmahal garden at Shahjahan’s orders. Historicians and Archeaologists have blundered in terming the insription the Bateshwar inscription when the record doesn’t say that it was found by Bateshwar. It ought, in fact, to be called The Tejomahalaya inscription because it was originally installed in the Taj garden before it was uprooted and cast away at Shahjahan’s command. A clue to the tampering by Shahjahan is found on pages 216-217, vol. 4, of Archealogiical Survey of India Reports (published 1874) stating that a “great square black balistic pillar which, with the base and capital of another pillar….now in the grounds of Agra, …it is well known, once stood in the garden of Tajmahal”. Missing Elephants 31. Far from the building of the Taj, Shahjahan disfigured it with black koranic lettering and heavily robbed it of its Sanskrit inscription, several idols and two huge stone elephants extending their trunks in a welcome arch over the gateway where visitors these days buy entry tickets. An Englishman, Thomas Twinning, records (pg.191 of his book “Travels in India A Hundred Years ago”) that in November 1794 “I arrived at the high walls which enclose the Taj-e-Mahal and its circumjacent buildings. I here got out of the palanquine and…..mounted a short flight of steps leading to a beautiful portal which formed the centre of this side of the Court Of Elephants as the great area was called.” Koranic Patches 32. The Taj Mahal is scrawled over with 14 chapters of the Koran but nowhere is there even the slightest or the remotest allusion in that Islamic overwriting to Shahjahan’s authorship of the Taj. Had Shahjahan been the builder he would have said so in so many words before beginning to quote Koran. 33. That Shahjahan, far from building the marble Taj, only disfigured it with black lettering is mentioned by the inscriber Amanat Khan Shirazi himself in an inscription on the building. A close scrutiny of the Koranic lettering reveals that they are grafts patched up with bits of variegated stone on an ancient Shiva temple. Carbon 14 Test 34. A wooden piece from the riverside doorway of the Taj subjected to the carbon 14 test by an American Laboratory and initiated by Professors at Pratt School of Architecture, New York, has revealed that the door to be 300 years older than Shahjahan,since the doors of the Taj, broken open by Muslim invaders repeatedly from the 11th century onwards, had to b replaced from time to time. The Taj edifice is much more older. It belongs to 1155 A.D, i.e., almost 500 years anterior to Shahjahan. Architectural Evidence 35. Well known Western authorities on architechture like E.B.Havell, Mrs.Kenoyer and Sir W.W.Hunterhave gone on record to say that the TajMahal is built in the Hindu temple style. Havell points out the ground plan of the ancient Hindu Chandi Seva Temple in Java is identical with that of the Taj. 36. A central dome with cupolas at its four corners is a universal feature of Hindu temples. 37. The four marble pillars at the plinth corners are of the Hindu style. They are used as lamp towers during night and watch towers during the day. Such towers serve to demarcate the holy precincts. Hindu wedding altars and the altar set up for God Satyanarayan worship have pillars raised at the four corners. 38. The octagonal shape of the Tajmahal has a special Hindu significance because Hindus alone have special names for the eight directions, and celestial guards assigned to them. The pinnacle points to the heaven while the foundation signifies to the nether world. Hindu forts, cities, palaces and temples genrally have an octagonal layout or some octagonal features so that together with the pinnacle and the foundation they cover all the ten directions in which the king or God holds sway, according to Hindu belief. 39. The Tajmahal has a trident pinncle over the dome. A full scale of the trident pinnacle is inlaid in the red stone courtyard to the east of the Taj. The central shaft of the trident depicts a Kalash (sacred pot) holding two bent mango leaves and a coconut. This is a sacred Hindu motif. Identical pinnacles have been seen over Hindu and Buddhist temples in the Himalayan region. Tridents are also depicted against a red lotus background at the apex of the stately marble arched entrances on all four sides of the Taj. People fondly but mistakenly believed all these centuries that the Taj pinnacle depicts a Islamic cresent and star was a lighting conductor installed by the British rulers in India. Contrarily, the pinnacle is a marvel of Hindu metallurgy since the pinnacle made of non rusting alloy, is also perhaps a lightning deflector. That the pinnacle of the replica is drawn in the eastern courtyard is significant because the east is of special importance to the Hindus, as the direction in which the sun rises. The pinnacle on the dome has the word `Allah’ on it after capture. The pinnacle figure on the ground does not have the word Allah. Inconsistencies 40. The two buildings which face the marble Taj from the east and west are identical in design, size and shape and yet the eastern building is explained away by Islamic tradition, as a community hall while the western building is claimed to be a mosque. How could buildings meant for radically different purposes be identical? This proves that the western building was put to use as a mosque after seizure of the Taj property by Shahjahan. Curiously enough the building being explained away as a mosque has no minaret. They form a pair af reception pavilions of the Tejomahalaya temple palace. 41. A few yards away from the same flank is the Nakkar Khana alias DrumHouse which is a intolerable incongruity for Islam. The proximity of the Drum House indicates that the western annex was not originally a mosque. Contrarily a drum house is a neccesity in a Hindu temple or palace because Hindu chores,in the morning and evening, begin to the sweet strains of music. 42. The embossed patterns on the marble exterior of the centotaph chamber wall are foilage of the conch shell design and the Hindu letter OM. The octagonally laid marble lattices inside the centotaph chamber depict pink lotuses on their top railing. The Lotus, the conch and the OM are the sacred motifs associated with the Hindu deities and temples. 43. The spot occupied by Mumtaz’s centotaph was formerly occupied by the Hindu Teja Linga a lithic representation of Lord Shiva. Around it are five perambulatory passages. Perambulation could be done around the marble lattice or through the spacious marble chambers surrounding the centotaph chamber, and in the open over the marble platform. It is also customary for the Hindus to have apertures along the perambulatory passage, overlooking the deity. Such apertures exist in the perambulatories in the Tajmahal. 44. The sanctom sanctorum in the Taj has silver doors and gold railings as Hindu temples have. It also had nets of pearl and gems stuffed in the marble lattices. It was the lure of this wealth which made Shahjahan commandeer the Taj from a helpless vassal Jaisingh, the then ruler of Jaipur. 45. Peter Mundy, a Englishman records (in 1632, within a year of Mumtaz’s death) having seen a gem studded gold railing around her tomb. Had the Taj been under construction for 22 years, a costly gold railing would not have been noticed by Peter mundy within a year of Mumtaz’s death. Such costl fixtures are installed in a building only after it is ready for use. This indicates that Mumtaz’s centotaph was grafted in place of the Shivalinga in the centre of the gold railings. Subsequently the gold railings, silver doors, nets of pearls, gem fillings etc. were all carried away to Shahjahan’s treasury. The seizure of the Taj thus constituted an act of highhanded Moghul robery causing a big row between Shahjahan and Jaisingh. 46. In the marble flooring around Mumtaz’s centotaph may be seen tiny mosaic patches. Those patches indicate the spots where the support for the gold railings were embedded in the floor. They indicate a rectangular fencing. 47. Above Mumtaz’s centotaph hangs a chain by which now hangs a lamp. Before capture by Shahjahan the chain used to hold a water pitcher from which water used to drip on the Shivalinga. 48. It is this earlier Hindu tradition in the Tajmahal which gave the Islamic myth of Shahjahan’s love tear dropping on Mumtaz’s tomb on the full moon day of the winter eve. Treasury Well 49. Between the so-called mosque and the drum house is a multistoried octagonal well with a flight of stairs reaching down to the water level. This is a traditional treasury well in Hindu temple palaces. Treasure chests used to be kept in the lower apartments while treasury personnel had their offices in the upper chambers. The circular stairs made it difficult for intruders to reach down to the treasury or to escape with it undetected or unpursued. In case the premises had to be surrendered to a besieging enemy the treasure could be pushed into the well to remain hidden from the conquerer and remain safe for salvaging if the place was reconquered. Such an elaborate multistoried well is superflous for a mere mausoleum. Such a grand, gigantic well is unneccesary for a tomb. Burial Date Unknown 50. Had Shahjahan really built the Taj Mahal as a wonder mausoleum, history would have recorded a specific date on which she was ceremoniously buried in the Taj Mahal. No such date is ever mentioned. This important missing detail decisively exposes the falsity of the Tajmahal legend. 51. Even the year of Mumtaz’s death is unknown. It is variously speculated to be 1629, 1630, 1631 or 1632. Had she deserved a fabulous burial, as is claimed, the date of her death had not been a matter of much speculation. In an harem teeming with 5000 women it was difficult to keep track of dates of death. Apparently the date of Mumtaz’s death was so insignificant an event, as not to merit any special notice. Who would then build a Taj for her burial? Baseless Love Stories 52. Stories of Shahjahan’s exclusive infatuation for Mumtaz’s are concoctions. They have no basis in history nor has any book ever written on their fancied love affairs. Those stories have been invented as an afterthought to make Shahjahan’s authorship of the Taj look plausible. Cost 53. The cost of the Taj is nowhere recorded in Shahjahan’s court papers because Shahjahan never built the Tajmahal. That is why wild estimates of the cost by gullible writers have ranged from 4 million to 91.7 million rupees. Period Of Construction 54. Likewise the period of construction has been guessed to be anywhere between 10 years and 22 years. There would have not been any scope for guesswork had the building construction been on record in the court papers. Architects 55. The designer of the Tajmahal is also variously mentioned as Essa Effendy, a Persian or Turk, or Ahmed Mehendis or a Frenchman, Austin deBordeaux, or Geronimo Veroneo, an Italian, or Shahjahan himself. Records Don’t Exist 56. Twenty thousand labourers are supposed to have worked for 22 years during Shahjahan’s reign in building the Tajmahal. Had this been true, there should have been available in Shahjahan’s court papers design drawings, heaps of labour muster rolls, daily expenditure sheets, bills and receipts of material ordered, and commisioning orders. There is not even a scrap of paper of this kind. 57. It is, therefore, court flatterers, blundering historians, somnolent archeologists, fiction writers, senile poets, careless tourists officials and erring guides who are responsible for hustling the world into believing in Shahjahan’s mythical authorship of the Taj. 58. Description of the gardens around the Taj of Shahjahan’s time mention Ketaki, Jai, Jui, Champa, Maulashree, Harshringar and Bel. All these are plants whose flowers or leaves are used in the worship of Hindu deities. Bel leaves are exclusively used in Lord Shiva’s worship. A graveyard is planted only with shady trees because the idea of using fruit and flower from plants in a cemetary is abhorrent to human conscience. The presence of Bel and other flower plants in the Taj garden is proof of its having been a Shiva temple before seizure by Shahjahan. 59. Hindu temples are often built on river banks and sea beaches. The Taj is one such built on the bank of the Yamuna river an ideal location for a Shiva temple. 60. Prophet Mohammad has ordained that the burial spot of a muslim should be inconspicous and must not be marked by even a single tombstone. In flagrant violation of this, the Tajamhal has one grave in the basement and another in the first floor chamber both ascribed to Mumtaz. Those two centotaphs were infact erected by Shahjahan to bury the two tier Shivalingas that were consecrated in the Taj. It is customary for Hindus to install two Shivalingas one over the other in two stories as may be seen in the Mahankaleshwar temple in Ujjain and the Somnath temple raised by Ahilyabai in Somnath Pattan. 61. The Tajmahal has identical entrance arches on all four sides. This is a typical Hindu building style known as Chaturmukhi, i.e.,four faced. The Hindu Dome 62. The Tajmahal has a reverberating dome. Such a dome is an absurdity for a tomb which must ensure peace and silence. Contrarily reverberating domes are a neccesity in Hindu temples because they create an ecstatic dinmultiplying and magnifying the sound of bells, drums and pipes accompanying the worship of Hindu deities. 63. The Tajmahal dome bears a lotus cap. Original Islamic domes have a bald top as is exemplified by the Pakistan Embassy in Chanakyapuri, New Delhi, and the domes in the Pakistan’s newly built capital Islamabad. 64. The Tajmahal entrance faces south. Had the Taj been an Islamic building it should have faced the west. Tomb is the Grave, not the Building 65. A widespread misunderstanding has resulted in mistaking the building for the grave.Invading Islam raised graves in captured buildings in every country it overran. Therefore, hereafter people must learn not to confound the building with the grave mounds which are grafts in conquered buildings. This is true of the Tajmahal too. One may therefore admit (for arguments sake) that Mumtaz lies buried inside the Taj. But that should not be construed to mean that the Taj was raised over Mumtaz’s grave. 66. The Taj is a seven storied building. Prince Aurangzeb also mentions this in his letter to Shahjahan (Refer to the Figure 1 above). The marble edifice comprises four stories including the lone, tall circular hall inside the top, and the lone chamber in the basement. In between are two floors each containing 12 to 15 palatial rooms. Below the marble plinth reaching down to the river at the rear are two more stories in red stone. They may be seen from the river bank. The seventh storey must be below the ground (river) level since every ancient Hindu building had a subterranian storey. 67. Immediately bellow the marble plinth on the river flank are 22 rooms in red stone with their ventilators all walled up by Shahjahan. Those rooms, made uninhibitably by Shahjahan, are kept locked by Archealogy Department of India. The lay visitor is kept in the dark about them. Those 22 rooms still bear ancient Hindu paint on their walls and ceilings. On their side is a nearly 33 feet long corridor. There are two door frames one at either end ofthe corridor. But those doors are intriguingly sealed with brick and lime. 68. Apparently those doorways originally sealed by Shahjahan have been since unsealed and again walled up several times. In 1934 a resident of Delhi took a peep inside from an opening in the upper part of the doorway. To his dismay he saw huge hall inside. It contained many statues huddled around a central beheaded image of Lord Shiva. It could be that, in there, are Sanskrit inscriptions too. All the seven stories of the Tajmahal need to be unsealed and scoured to ascertain what evidence they may be hiding in the form of Hindu images, Sanskrit inscriptions, scriptures, coins and utensils. 69. Apart from Hindu images hidden in the sealed stories it is also learnt that Hindu images are also stored in the massive walls of the Taj. Between 1959 and 1962 when Mr. S.R. Rao was the Archealogical Superintendent in Agra, he happened to notice a deep and wide crack in the wall of the central octagonal chamber of the Taj. When a part of the wall was dismantled to study the crack out popped two or three marble images. The matter was hushed up and the images were reburied where they had been embedded at Shahjahan’s behest. Confirmation of this has been obtained from several sources. It was only when I began my investigation into the antecedents of the Taj I came across the above information which had remained a forgotten secret. What better proof is needed of the Temple origin of the Tajmahal? Its walls and sealed chambers still hide in Hindu idols that were consecrated in it before Shahjahan’s seizure of the Taj. Pre-Shahjahan References to the Taj 70. Apparently the Taj as a central palace seems to have an chequered history. The Taj was perhaps desecrated and looted by every Muslim invader from Mohammad Ghazni onwards but passing into Hindu hands off and on, the sanctity of the Taj as a Shiva temple continued to be revived after every muslim onslaught. Shahjahan was the last muslim to desecrate the Tajmahal alias Tejomahalay. 71. Vincent Smith records in his book titled `Akbar the Great Moghul’ that `Babur’s turbulent life came to an end in his garden palace in Agra in 1630′. That palace was none other than the Tajmahal. 72. Babur’s daughter Gulbadan Begum in her chronicle titled Humayun Nama refers to the Taj as the Mystic House. 73. Babur himself refers to the Taj in his memoirs as the palace captured by Ibrahim Lodi containing a central octagonal chamber and having pillars on the four sides. All these historical references allude to the Taj 100 years before Shahjahan. 74. The Tajmahal precincts extend to several hundred yards in all directions. Across the river are ruins of the annexes of the Taj, the bathing ghats and a jetty for the ferry boat. In the Victoria gardens outside covered with creepers is the long spur of the ancient outer wall ending in a octagonal red stone tower. Such extensive grounds all magnificently done up, are a superfluity for a grave. 75. Had the Taj been specially built to bury Mumtaz, it should not have been cluttered with other graves. But the Taj premises contain several graves atleast in its eastern and southern pavilions. 76. In the southern flank, on the other side of the Tajganj gate are buried in identical pavilions queens Sarhandi Begum, and Fatehpuri Begum and a maid Satunnisa Khanum. Such parity burial can be justified only if the queens had been demoted or the maid promoted. But since Shahjahan had commandeered (not built) the Taj, he reduced it general to a muslim cemetary as was the habit of all his Islamic predeccssors, and buried a queen in a vacant pavillion and a maid in another idenitcal pavilion. 77. Shahjahan was married to several other women before and after Mumtaz. She, therefore, deserved no special consideration in having a wonder mausoleum built for her. 78. Mumtaz was a commoner by birth and so she did not qualify for a fairyland burial. 79. Mumtaz died in Burhanpur which is about 600 miles from Agra. Her grave there is intact. Therefore, the centotaphs raised in stories of the Taj in her name seem to be fakes hiding in Hindu Shiva emblems. 80. Shahjahan seems to have simulated Mumtaz’s burial in Agra to find a pretext to surround the temple palace with his fierce and fanatic troops and remove all the costly fixtures in his treasury. This finds confirmation in the vague noting in the Badshahnama which says that the Mumtaz’s (exhumed) body was brought to Agra from Burhanpur and buried `next year’. An official term would not use a nebulous term unless it is to hide some thing. 81. A pertinent consideration is that a Shahjahan who did not build any palaces for Mumtaz while she was alive, would not build a fabulous mausoleum for a corpse which was no longer kicking or clicking. 82. Another factor is that Mumtaz died within two or three years of Shahjahan becoming an emperor. Could he amass so much superflous wealth in that short span as to squander it on a wonder mausoleum? 83. While Shahjahan’s special attachment to Mumtaz is nowhere recorded in history his amorous affairs with many other ladies from maids to mannequins including his own daughter Jahanara, find special attention in accounts of Shahjahan’s reign. Would Shahjahan shower his hard earned wealth on Mumtaz’s corpse? 84. Shahjahan was a stingy, usurious monarch. He came to throne murdering all his rivals. He was not therefore, the doting spendthrift that he is made out to be. 85. A Shahjahan disconsolate on Mumtaz’s death is suddenly credited with a resolve to build the Taj. This is a psychological incongruity. Grief is a disabling, incapacitating emotion. 86. A infatuated Shahjahan is supposed to have raised the Taj over the dead Mumtaz, but carnal, physical sexual love is again a incapacitating emotion. A womaniser is ipso facto incapable of any constructive activity. When carnal love becomes uncontrollable the person either murders somebody or commits suicide. He cannot raise a Tajmahal. A building like the Taj invariably originates in an ennobling emotion like devotion to God, to one’s mother and mother country or power and glory. 87. Early in the year 1973, chance digging in the garden in front of the Taj revealed another set of fountains about six feet below the present fountains. This proved two things. Firstly, the subterranean fountains were there before Shahjahan laid the surface fountains. And secondly that those fountains are aligned to the Taj that edifice too is of pre Shahjahan origin. Apparently the garden and its fountains had sunk from annual monsoon flooding and lack of maintenance for centuries during the Islamic rule. 88. The stately rooms on the upper floor of the Tajmahal have been striped of their marble mosaic by Shahjahan to obtain matching marble for raising fake tomb stones inside the Taj premises at several places. Contrasting with the rich finished marble ground floor rooms the striping of the marble mosaic covering the lower half of the walls and flooring of the upper storey have given those rooms a naked, robbed look. Since no visitors are allowed entry to the upper storey this despoilation by Shahjahan has remained a well guarded secret. There is no reason why Shahjahan’s loot of the upper floor marble should continue to be hidden from the public even after 200 years of termination of Moghul rule. 89. Bernier, the French traveller has recorded that no non muslim was allowed entry into the secret nether chambers of the Taj because there are some dazzling fixtures there. Had those been installed by Shahjahan they should have been shown the public as a matter of pride. But since it was commandeered Hindu wealth which Shahjahan wanted to remove to his treasury, he didn’t want the public to know about it. 90. The approach to Taj is dotted with hillocks raised with earth dugout from foundation trenches. The hillocks served as outer defences of the Taj building complex. Raising such hillocks from foundation earth, is a common Hindu device of hoary origin. Nearby Bharatpur provides a graphic parallel. Peter Mundy has recorded that Shahjahan employed thousands of labourers to level some of those hillocks. This is a graphic proof of the Tajmahal existing before Shahjahan. 91. At the backside of the river bank is a Hindu crematorium, several palaces, Shiva temples and bathings of ancient origin. Had Shahjahan built the Tajmahal, he would have destroyed the Hindu features. 92. The story that Shahjahan wanted to build a Black marble Taj across the river, is another motivated myth. The ruins dotting the other side of the river are those of Hindu structures demolished during muslim invasions and not the plinth of another Tajmahal. Shahjahan who did not even build the white Tajmahal would hardly ever think of building a black marble Taj. He was so miserly that he forced labourers to work gratis even in the superficial tampering neccesary to make a Hindu temple serve as a Muslim tomb. 93. The marble that Shahjahan used for grafting Koranic lettering in the Taj is of a pale white shade while the rest of the Taj is built of a marble with rich yellow tint. This disparity is proof of the Koranic extracts being a superimposition. 94. Though imaginative attempts have been made by some historians to foist some fictitious name on history as the designer of the Taj others more imaginative have credited Shajahan himself with superb architechtural proficiency and artistic talent which could easily concieve and plan the Taj even in acute bereavment. Such people betray gross ignorance of history in as much as Shajahan was a cruel tyrant ,a great womaniser and a drug and drink addict. 95. Fanciful accounts about Shahjahan commisioning the Taj are all confused. Some asserted that Shahjahan ordered building drawing from all over the world and chose one from among them. Others assert that a man at hand was ordered to design a mausoleum amd his design was approved. Had any of those versions been true Shahjahan’s court papers should have had thousands of drawings concerning the Taj. But there is not even a single drawing. This is yet another clinching proof that Shahjahan did not commision the Taj. 96. The Tajmahal is surrounded by huge mansions which indicate that several battles have been waged around the Taj several times. 97. At the south east corner of the Taj is an ancient royal cattle house. Cows attached to the Tejomahalay temple used to reared there. A cowshed is an incongruity in an Islamic tomb. 98. Over the western flank of the Taj are several stately red stone annexes. These are superflous for a mausoleum. 99. The entire Taj complex comprises of 400 to 500 rooms. Residential accomodation on such a stupendous scale is unthinkable in a mausoleum. 100. The neighbouring Tajganj township’s massive protective wall also encloses the Tajmahal temple palace complex. This is a clear indication that the Tejomahalay temple palace was part and parcel of the township. A street of that township leads straight into the Tajmahal. The Tajganj gate is aligned in a perfect straight line to the octagonal red stone garden gate and the stately entrance arch of the Tajmahal. The Tajganj gate besides being central to the Taj temple complex, is also put on a pedestal. The western gate by which the visitors enter the Taj complex is a camparatively minor gateway. It has become the entry gate for most visitors today because the railway station and the bus station are on that side. 101. The Tajmahal has pleasure pavillions which a tomb would never have. 102. A tiny mirror glass in a gallery of the Red Fort in Agra reflects the Taj mahal. Shahjahan is said to have spent his last eight years of life as a prisoner in that gallery peering at the reflected Tajmahal and sighing in the name of Mumtaz. This myth is a blend of many falsehoods. Firstly, old Shajahan was held prisoner by his son Aurangzeb in the basement storey in the Fort and not in an open, fashionable upper storey. Secondly, the glass piece was fixed in the 1930′s by Insha Allah Khan, a peon of the archaelogy dept.just to illustrate to the visitors how in ancient times the entire apartment used to scintillate with tiny mirror pieces reflecting the Tejomahalay temple a thousand fold. Thirdly, a old decrepit Shahjahan with pain in his joints and cataract in his eyes, would not spend his day craning his neck at an awkward angle to peer into a tiny glass piece with bedimmed eyesight when he could as well his face around and have full, direct view of the Tjamahal itself. But the general public is so gullible as to gulp all such prattle of wily, unscrupulous guides. 103. That the Tajmahal dome has hundreds of iron rings sticking out of its exterior is a feature rarely noticed. These are made to hold Hindu earthen oil lamps for temple illumination. 104. Those putting implicit faith in Shahjahan authorship of the Taj have been imagining Shahjahan-Mumtaz to be a soft hearted romantic pair like Romeo and Juliet. But contemporary accounts speak of Shahjahan as a hard hearted ruler who was constantly egged on to acts of tyranny and cruelty, by Mumtaz. 105. School and College history carry the myth that Shahjahan reign was a golden period in which there was peace and plenty and that Shahjahan commisioned many buildings and patronized literature. This is pure fabrication. Shahjahan did not commision even a single building as we have illustrated by a detailed analysis of the Tajmahal legend. Shahjahn had to enrage in 48 military campaigns during a reign of nearly 30 years which proves that his was not a era of peace and plenty. 106. The interior of the dome rising over Mumtaz’s centotaph has a representation of Sun and cobras drawn in gold. Hindu warriors trace their origin to the Sun. For an Islamic mausoleum the Sun is redundant. Cobras are always associated with Lord Shiva. Forged Documents 107. The muslim caretakers of the tomb in the Tajmahal used to possess a document which they styled as Tarikh-i-Tajmahal. Historian H.G. Keene has branded it as a document of doubtful authenticity. Keene was uncannily right since we have seen that Shahjahan not being the creator of the Tajmahal any document which credits Shahjahn with the Tajmahal, must be an outright forgery. Even that forged document is reported to have been smuggled out of Pakistan. Besides such forged documents there are whole chronicles on the Taj which are pure concoctions. 108. There is lot of sophistry and casuistry or atleast confused thinking associated with the Taj even in the minds of proffesional historians, archaelogists and architects. At the outset they assert that the Taj is entirely Muslim in design. But when it is pointed out that its lotus capped dome and the four corner pillars etc. are all entirely Hindu those worthies shift ground and argue that that was probably because the workmen were Hindu and were to introduce their own patterns. Both these arguments are wrong because Muslim accounts claim the designers to be Muslim, and the workers invariably carry out the employer’s dictates. The Taj is only a typical illustration of how all historic buildings and townships from Kashmir to Cape Comorin though of Hindu origin have been ascribed to this or that Muslim ruler or courtier. It is hoped that people the world over who study Indian history will awaken to this new finding and revise their erstwhile beliefs. Those interested in an indepth study of the above and many other revolutionary rebuttals may read Shri P.N. Oak’s other research books. Proofs with Photo Graphs Visit at Research of Stephen-Knapp

Posted in भारतीय मंदिर - Bharatiya Mandir

Gobind Dev Temple, Vrindavan, U.P.

Gobind Dev Temple, Vrindavan, U.P.
Temple beheaded for the ego of Aurangzeb
Feb 2013
The temple today is 55 feet tall. Before its upper part was destroyed on Aurangzeb’s orders in anticipation of his visit to Vrindavan in 1670AD, the mandir was reputed to be twice that height. On its roof, after the destruction, a mehrab or prayer wall was erected and the iconoclastic emperor offered namaaz. Almost two centuries later, F.S, Growse, who belonged to the Bengal Civil Service and was Collector of Mathura District, had the mehrab removed. First, because it was an eyesore, and second, in an endeavour to redeem whatever character was left of the temple. Since then, the temple has a flat roof. Probably, no other desecrated temple had been the subject of so much repair and refurbishmentt by British rulers.

The Gobind Dev temple at Vrindavan, Mathura, is indeed massive; its plinth is 105 feet by 117 feet. It is estimated that the original height was about 110 feet without which it would not have been possible to see the mashaal or torch either from Agra or from Delhi. The temple was built in 1590 AD by Maharaja Mansingh of Jaipur.

The Gobind Dev temple is also unique for two other reasons but we shall come to these a little later. For the satisfaction of its desecrators, the celia, or the sanctum sanctorum, was destroyed. Fortunately, the idol of Sri Krishna or Gobind had been removed to Jaipur by the pujaris in anticipation of Aurangzeb’s proposed visit in 1670 AD; the emperor was already notorious as an iconoclast. The roof of the truncated edifice was to be reserved for namaaz. No sooner had the mehrab been constructed, as illustrated in the photograph in History of Indian and Eastern Architecture by James Fergusson, Aurangzeb inaugurated it himself by offering prayers.

All except two statuettes were defaced, including the one at the door of what is now the temple, after crossing the foyer hall. The destruction was not confined to the upper floors. It extended to the hundreds of statuettes that even today adorn the temple walls outside as well as inside, the ceilings or doors. The iconoclast over-looked two small statuettes, one of Sri Krishna and the other of Radha, on the outside of the left wall as one faces the temple.

An American historian of Indian architecture, George Mitchell, has concluded that the original sanctum sanctorum was destroyed. In his words, once the garbhagriha has been torn down, there was little point in further wreckage … It seems to me that only those with some understanding of the ritual significance of the garbhagriha would have been capable of desecrating a temple in this careful manner.

Prof. R Nath introduces the subject of the Gobind Dev temple by quoting Aurangzeb’s decree of April, 1669. It said, … eager to establish Islam, (Aurangzeb) issued orders to the governors of all the provinces to demolish the schools and tempies of the infidels and with the utmost urgency put down the teaching and the public practice of the religion of these disbelievers The great temple of Gobind Dev fell a victim to iconoclastic vandalism within a year of the decree. Its inner sanctum and its superstructure were almost entirely destroyed. The main hall was also damaged. Sculpted figures on the dvarasakha were literally defaced.

The temple has yet another unique feature. According to an article in the Calcutta Review quoted by Growse. Aurangzeb had often remarked about a very bright light shiring in the far distant south east horizon and in reply to his enquiries regarding it, was told that it was a light burning in a temple of great wealth and magnificence at Vrindavan. He accordingly resolved that it should be put out and soon after sent some troops to the place who plundered and threw down as much of the temple as they could and then erected on the top of the ruins a mosque wall where, in order to complete the desecration, the emperor is said to have offered up his prayers.

Incidentally, the canopy standing on four pillars, which must have acted as a shed for the burning torch or mashaal, is lying on the ground at the back of the present sanctum sanctorum. It was so fixed, presumably by Growse in the 1870s. It has no relevance to the temple’s architecture. This reinforces the belief that this canopy belonged to the top of the once towering temple.

While Aurangzeb’s ego might have been gratified, the desecration took with it what is described by Fergusson as one of the most elegant temples in India, and the only one perhaps, from which an European architect might borrow a few hints. What did Growse have to say about this? I should myself have thought that solemn or imposing was a more appropriate term than elegance for so massive a building and that the suggestions that might be derived from its study were many rather than few.

A number of motives have been attributed to the invaders who desecrated temples, such as looting of treasures, subduing the populace by arousing dread, informing the area that a sultan had replaced the raja. There is, however, no other instance of a temple being desecrated because it defied the ego of an emperor.

Henry Hardy Cole has written: I am not sure that the restoration of the upper-most parapet is correct and think that it would have been better to leave the super- structure, as it appeared when I first saw it, with all the evidence of Aurangzeb’s destructive hand.

Posted in जीवन चरित्र

Ahilyabai Holkar

Ahilyabai Holkar

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Template:Use Hindi

Maharani Ahilya Bai Holkar
Her Highness Maharani Shrimant Akhand Soubhagyavati Ahilya Bai Sahiba
Ahilya Mata Statue at Datta Temple,SahastraDhara,Jalkoti.jpg

Queen of the Malwa Kingdom
Reign 1 December 1767 – 13 August 1795
Coronation 11 December 1767
Predecessor Malerao Holkar
Successor Tukojirao Holkar I
Consort Khanderao Holkar
Full name
Ahilya Bai Sahiba Holkar
House House of Holkar
Dynasty Maratha Confederacy
Father Mankoji Shinde
Born 31 May 1725
Grram Chaundi, Jamkhed,Ahmednagar, Maharashtra, India
Died 13 August 1795
Religion Hindu

Maharani Ahilya Bai Holkar (31 May 1725 – 13 August 1795), was the Holkar Queen of the Maratha ruled Malwakingdom, India. Rajmata Ahilyabai was born in the village of Chondi in Jamkhed, Ahmednagar, Maharashtra. She moved the capital to Maheshwar south of Indore on the Narmada River.

Ahilyabai’s husband Khanderao Holkar was killed in the battle of Kumbher in 1754. Twelve years later, her father-in-law, Malhar Rao Holkar, died. A year after that she was crowned as the queen of the Malwa kingdom. She tried to protect her kingdom from Thugs, the plunderers. She personally led armies into battle. She appointed Tukojirao Holkar as the Chief of Army.

Rani Ahilyabai was a great builder and patron of many Hindu temples which embellished Maheshwar and Indore. She also built temples and Dharmshala (free lodging) at sacred sites outside her kingdom, at prominent religious places like Dwarka in Gujarat east to the Kashi Vishwanath Temple at Varanasi on the Ganges, Ujjain, Nasik,Vishnupad Mandir, Gaya and Parali Baijnath in Maharashtra. Seeing the destroyed and desecrated temple in Somanath, Rani Ahilyabai built a temple where Lord Shiva is still worshipped by Hindus.

Early life[edit]

Ahilyabai was born on 31 May 1725 in the village of Chaundi, in the present-day Ahmednagar district in Maharashtra. Her father, Mankoji Shinde (Dhangar), was the patil of the village. Women then did not go to school, but Ahilyabai’s father taught her to read and write.

Her entrance on to the stage of history was something of an accident: Malhar Rao Holkar, a commander in the service of the Peshwa Bajirao and lord of the Malwa territory, stopped in Chaundi on his way to Pune and, according to legend, saw the eight-year-old Ahilyabai at the temple service in the village. Recognising her piety and her character, he brought the girl to the Holkar territory as a bride for his son, Khanderao (1723–1754). She was married to Khanderao in 1733. She was very brave.


The Royal Palace of Maheshwar

Courtyard of the royal palace (Rajwada), Maheshwar

Statue of Ahilya Bai Holkar in the royal palace, Maheshwar

Ahilya Bai’s husband Khanderao was killed during the siege of Kumbher in 1754. Twelve years later, her father-in-law, Malharrao died. Malharrao was succeeded by Malerao, the only son of Khanderao, but he also died on 5 April 1767. From 1767 until her death in 1795, she ruled Malwa, trained in both administrative and military matters by Malhar Rao. A letter to her from Malhar Rao in 1765 illustrates the trust he had in her ability during the tempestuous battle for power in the 18th century:

“Proceed to Gwalior after crossing the Chambal. You may halt there for four or five days. You should keep your big artillery and arrange for its ammunition as much as possible….On the march you should arrange for military posts being located for protection of the road.”

Already trained to be a ruler, Ahilyabai petitioned the Peshwa after Malhar’s death, and the death of her son, to take over the administration herself. Some in Malwa objected to her assumption of rule, but the army of Holkar was enthusiastic about her leadership. She had led them in person, with four bows and quivers of arrows fitted to the corners of the howdah of her favourite elephant. The Peshwa granted her permission on 11 December 1767, and, with Subhedar Tukojirao Holkar(Malharrao’s adopted son) as the head of military matters, she proceeded to rule Malwa in a most enlightened manner, even reinstating a Brahmin who had opposed her. Ahilyabai never observed purdah but held daily public audience and was always accessible to anyone who needed her ear.

Among Ahilyabai’s accomplishments was the development of Indore from a small village to a prosperous and beautiful city; her own capital, however, was in nearby Maheshwar, a town on the banks of the Narmada river. She also built forts and roads in Malwa, sponsored festivals and gave donations for regular worship in many Hindu temples. Outside Malwa, she built dozens of temples, ghats, wells, tanks and rest-houses across an area stretching from the Himalayas to pilgrimage centres in South India. The Bharatiya Sanskritikosh lists as sites she embellished, Kashi, Gaya, Somnath, Ayodhya, Mathura, Hardwar, Kanchi, Avanti, Dwarka, Badrinarayan, Rameshwar and Jaganathpuri. Ahilyadevi also rejoiced when she saw bankers, merchants, farmers and cultivators rise to levels of affluence, but did not consider that she had any legitimate claim to any of that wealth, be it through taxes or feudal right. She must, in fact, have financed all her activities with the lawful gains obtained from a happy and prosperous land.

There are many stories of her care for her people. She helped widows retain their husbands’ wealth. She made sure that a widow was allowed to adopt a son; in fact, in one instance, when her minister refused to allow the adoption unless he was suitably bribed, she is said to have sponsored the child herself, and given him clothes and jewels as part of the ritual. To honour the memory of Ahilyadevi Holkar, in 1996 leading citizens of Indore instituted an award in her name to be bestowed annually on an outstanding public figure. The prime minister of India gave away the first award to Nanaji Deshmukh. The only time Ahilyadevi seems not to have been able to settle a conflict peacefully and easily was in the case of the Bhils and Gonds, “plunderers” on her borders; but she granted them waste hilly lands and the right to a small duty on goods passing through their territories. Even in this case, according to Malcolm, she did give “considerate attention to their habits”.

Ahilyabai’s capital at Maheshwar was the scene of literary, musical, artistic and industrial enterprise. She entertained the famous Marathi poet, Moropant and the shahir, Anantaphandi from Maharashtra, and also patronised the Sanskrit scholar, Khushali Ram. Craftsmen, sculptors and artists received salaries and honours at her capital, and she even established a textile industry in the city of Maheshwar.

Historians of the 19th and 20th centuries—Indian, English and American—agree that the reputation of Ahilyabai Holkar in Malwa and Maharashtra was then, and is, even now, that of a saint. Nothing has ever been discovered by any researcher to discredit that. She was truly a magnificent woman, an able ruler and a great queen.

After her death, she was succeeded by Tukojirao Holkar I, her commander-in-chief, who soon abdicated the throne in favour of his son Kashirao Holkar in 1797.

Views about her[edit]

A quote by Ahilya bai atMaheshwar Palace.

“The reign of Ahilyabai, of Indore in central India, lasted for 30 Yrs. This has become almost legendary as a period during which perfect order and good Government prevailed and the people prospered. She was a very able ruler and organizer, highly respected during her lifetime, and considered as a saint by a grateful people after her death.”[1]

An English poem written by Joanna Baillie in 1849 reads:[2]

“For thirty years her reign of peace,
The land in blessing did increase;
And she was blessed by every tongue,
By stern and gentle, old and young.
Yea, even the children at their mothers feet
Are taught such homely rhyming to repeat
“In latter days from Brahma came,
To rule our land, a noble Dame,
Kind was her heart, and bright her fame,
And Ahlya was her honoured name.”

“The Great DhangarMaratha lady who affords the noblest example of wisdom, goodness and virtue. One english writer quoted that which Akbar is among male sovereigns, is Ahlia Baie among female sovereigns”.[3]

“Ahilyabai’s extraordinary ability won her the regard of her subjects and of the other Maratha confederates, including Nana Phadnavis. Collecting oral memories of her in the 1820s, Sir John Malcolm, the British official most directly concerned with the ‘settlement’ of central India, seems to have become deeply enamourned of her. “With the natives of Malwa … her name is sainted and she is styled an avatar or Incarnation of the Divinity. In the most sober view that can be taken of her character, she certainly appears, within her limited sphere, to have been one of the purest and most exemplary rulers that ever existed”.[4] Her latest biographers call her ‘The Philosopher Queen’, a reference perhaps to the ‘Philosopher kingBhoj.”[5] “Ahilyabai Holkar, the ‘philosopher-queen’ of Malwa, had evidently been an acute observer of the wider political scene. In a letter to the peshwa in 1772 she had warned against association with the British, and likened their embrace to a bear-hug: “Other beasts, like tigers, can be killed by might or contrivance, but to kill a bear it is very difficult. It will die only if you kill it straight in the face, Or else, once caught in its powerful hold, the bear will kill its prey by tickling. Such is the way of the English. And in view of this, it is difficult to triumph over them.”[6] “This great ruler in Indore encouraged all within her realm to do their best, Merchants produced their finest cloths, trade flourished, the farmers were at peace and oppression ceased, for each case that came to the queens notice was dealt with severely. She loved to see her people prosper, and to watch the fine cities grow, and to watch that her subjects were not afraid to display their wealth, lest the ruler should snatch it from them. Far and wide the roads were planted with shady trees, and wells were made, and rest-houses for travellers. The poor, the homeless, the orphaned were all helped according to their needs. The Bhils who had long been the torment of all caravans, were routed from their mountain fastnesses and persuaded to settle down as honest farmers. Hindu and Musalman alike revered the famous Queen and prayed for her long life. Her last great sorrow was when her daughter became a Sati upon the death of Yashwantrao Phanse. Ahalya Bai was seventy years old when her long and splendid life closed. Indore long mourned its noble Queen, happy had been her reign, and her memory is cherished with deep reverence unto this day.[7] “From the original papers and letters, it becomes clear that she was first-class politician, and that was why she readily extended her support to Mahadji Shinde. I have no hesitation in saying that without the support of Ahilyabai, Mahadji would never have gained so much importance in the politics of northern India.”[8]

“Definitely no woman and no ruler is like Ahilyabai Holkar.”[9]

“It reveals beyond doubt that all ideal virtues described by Plato and Bhismacharya were present in her personality like Dilip, Janak, Shri Ram, Shri Krishna and Yudhishthir. After through scrutiny of the long history of the world we find only one personality of Lokmata Devi Ahilya that represents an absolutely ideal ruler.”[10]

Over the years, in independent India, the city of Indore, when compared to neighbouring Bhopal, Jabalpur or Gwalior, has progressed dramatically: economically, through business and financial prowess, politically and in all possible ways cities are supposed to progress. In fact, the local population proudly states that they live in ‘mini-Mumbai’, a reference to the great metropolis pulsing 600 km away. The good deeds of Devi Ahilyabai, her dedication to religion and her policies are enriching the city even today! The faith and belief in the good vibes of Indore go to such an extent that local inhabitants say that if you have lived in Indore for a thousand days, you are unlikely to leave it! Long live Devi Ahilya!

A commemorative stamp[11] was issued in her honour on 25 August 1996 by the Republic of India.

As a tribute to the great ruler, Indore domestic airport has been named Devi Ahilyabai Holkar Airport. Similarly, Indore university has been renamed as “Devi Ahilya Vishwavidyalaya”.

Works throughout India[edit]

Fort Ahilya in Maheshwar

Ahilya Ghat, Varanasi

The current structure of Vishnupad Temple is built by Maharani Ahilya Bai Holkar in 1787

Ahilya Bai’s Fort

Ahilya Bai’s TempleShikhar

It was the speciality of Holkar family that they did not use public funds to meet their personal and family expenses. They had their personal fund from their private property. Devi Ahilya inherited personal fund which at that time was estimated to be sixteen crores rupees. Ahilyabai used personal fund in charitable works.[12]

Ahilya Bai’s Temple

  • Alampur (MP) – Harihareshwar, Batuk, Malharimarthand, Surya, Renuka, Ram Hanuman Temples, Shriram Temple, Laxmi Narayan Temple, Maruti Temple, Narsinh Temple, Khanderao Martand Temple, Memorial of Malharrao (I)
  • Amarkanthak– Shri Vishweshwar Temple, Kotithirth Temple, Gomukhi Temple, Dharamshala, Vansh Kund
  • Amba Gaon – Lamps for temple
  • Anand Kanan – Vishweshwar Temple
  • Ayodhya (U.P)– Built Shri Ram Temple, Shri Treta Ram Temple, Shri Bhairav Temple, Nageshwar/Siddhnath Temple, Sharayu Ghat, well, Swargadwari Mohatajkhana, Dharamshalas
  • Badrinath Temple (Uttarakhand) – Shri Kedareshwar and Hari Temples, Dharamshalas (Rangdachati, Bidarchati, Vyasganga, Tanganath, Pawali), Manu kunds (Gaurkund, Kundachatri), Garden and Warm Water Kund at Dev Prayag, Pastoral land for cows
  • Beed – Jirnnodhar of a Ghat.
  • Belur (Karnataka) – Ganpati, Pandurang, Jaleshwar, Khandoba, Tirthraj and Fire temples, Kund
  • Bhanpura – Nine Temples and Dharmashala
  • Bharatpur – Temple, Dharmashala, Kund
  • Bhimashankar – Garibkhana
  • Bhusawal – Changadev Temple
  • Bitthur – Bhramaghat
  • Burhanpur (MP) – Raj Ghat, Ram Ghat, Kund
  • Chandwad Waphegaon – Vishnu Temple and Renuka Temple
  • Chaundi – Chaudeshwaridevi Temple, Sineshwar Mahadev temple,
  • Ahilyeshwar Temple, Dharamshala, Ghat,
  • Chitrakoot – Pranpratishta of Shri Ramchandra
  • Cikhalda – Annakshetra
  • Dwarka(Gujrath) – Mohatajkhana, Pooja House and gave some villages to priest
  • ElloraGrishneshwar Temple of Red Stone
  • GangotriVishwanath, Kedarnath, Annapurna, Bhairav Temples, many Dharmashalas
  • Gaya (Bihar) – Vishnupad Temple
  • Gokarn – Rewaleshwar Mahadev temple, Holkar wada, Garden and Garibkhana
  • Gruneshwar (Verul) – Shivalaya Tirth
  • Handiya – Siddhanath Temple, ghat and dharmashala
  • Haridwar (Uttarakhand) – Kushawarth Ghat and a Huge Dharmashala
  • Hrishikesh – Many temples, Shrinathji and Govardhan ram temples
  • Indore – Many Temples and ghats
  • Jagannath Puri (Orrisa) – Shri Ramchandra Temple, Dharmashala and Garden
  • Jalgaon – Ram Mandir
  • Jamghat – Bhumi dwar
  • Jamvgaon – Donated for Ramdas swami Math
  • Jejuri – Malhargautameshwar, Vitthal, Martand Temple, Janai Mahadev and Malhar lakes
  • Karmanasini River – Bridge
  • Kashi (Benaras) – Kashi Vishwanath Temple, Shri Tarakeshwar, Shri Gangaji, Ahilya Dwarkeshwar, Gautameshwar, Many Mahadev Temples, Temple Ghats, Manikarnika Ghat, Dashaaswamegh Ghat, Janana Ghat, Ahilya Ghat, UttarKashi Dharmashala, Rameshwar Panchkoshi Dharmashala, Kapila Dhara Dharmashala, Shitala Ghat
  • Kedarnath – Dharmashala and Kund
  • Kolhapur – Facilities for temple pooja
  • Kumher – Well and Memorial of Prince Khandera
  • khargone – fort and many temples and ghats
  • Kurukshetra (Haryana) – Shiv Shantanu Mahadev Temple, Panchkund Ghat, Laxmikund Ghat
  • Maheshwar – Hundreds of temples, ghats, dharmashalas and houses
  • Mamaleshwar Mahadev Himachal Pradesh – Lamps
  • Manasa Devi – Seven temples
  • Mandaleshwar – Shiv Temple Ghat
  • Datta Mandir (Mangaon) – Datta Mandir, Near Sawantwadi, Konkan, Maharashtra, India
  • Miri (Ahmednagar) – Bhairav Temple in 1780
  • Naimabar(MP) – Temple
  • Nandurbar[1] – Temple, Well
  • Nathdwara – Ahilya Kund, Temple, Well
  • Neelkantha Mahadev – Shivalaya and Gomukh
  • Nemisharanya(UP) – Mahadev Madi, Nimsar Dharmashala, Go-ghat, Cakrithirth kund
  • Nimgaon (Nashik) – Well
  • Omkareshwar (MP) – Mamaleshwar Mahadev, Amaleshwar, Trambakeshwar Temples (Jirnnodhar), Gauri Somnath Temple, Dharmashalas, Wells
  • Ozar (Ahmednagar) – 2 wells and kund
  • Panchawati, Nasik – Shri Ram Temple, Gora Mahadev temple, Dharmashala, Vishweshwar Temple, Ramghat, Dharmashala
  • Parli Vaijnath, Parli Vaijnath – Shri Vaidyanath Mandir
  • Pandharpur (Maharashtra) – Shri Ram Temple, Tulsibag, Holkar wada, Sabha Mandap, Dharmashala and gave silver utensil for the temple, Well-Which known by Bagirao well.
  • Pimplas(Nashik) – well
  • Prayag (Allahabad UP) – Vishnu Temple, Dharmashala, Garden, Ghat, Palace
  • Pune – Ghat
  • Puntambe (Maharashtra) – Ghat on Godavari river
  • Pushkar – Ganpati Temple, Dharmashala, Garden
  • Rameshwar (TN) – Hanuman Temple, Shri Radha Krishna Temple, Dharmashala, Well, Garden etc.
  • Rampura – Four Temples, Dharmashala and houses
  • Raver – Keshav Kund
  • Sakargaon – well
  • Sambhal – Laxmi Narayan Temple and two wells
  • Sangamner – Ram Temple
  • Saptashrungi – Dharmashala
  • Sardhana Meerut – Chandi Devi Temple
  • Saurashtra (Guj) – Somnath Temple in 1785. (Jirnnodhdhar and Pran Prathistha)
  • Siddhivinayak temple‘s inner sanctum at Siddhatek in Ahmednagar District
  • Shri Nagnath (Darukhvan) – Started pooja in 1784
  • Srisailam Mallikarjun (Kurnool, AP) – Temple of Lord Shiva
  • Shri Shambhu Mahadev Mountain Shingnapur (Maharashtra) – Well
  • Shri Vaijenath (Parali, Maha) – Jirnnodhar of Baijenath Temple in 1784
  • Shri Vhigneshwar – Lamps
  • Sinhpur – Shiv Temple and ghat
  • Sulpeshwar – Mahadev Temple, annakshetra
  • Sultanpur (Khandesh) – Temple
  • Tarana – Tilabhandeshwar Shiv temple, Khedapati, Shriram Temple, Mahakali Temple
  • Tehari (Bundelkhand) – Dharmashala
  • Trimbakeshwar (Nashik) – Bridge on Kushawarth Ghat
  • Ujjain (MP) – Chintaman Ganapati, Janardhan, Shrilila urushottam, Balaji Tilakeshwar, Ramjanaki Ras Mandal, Gopal, Chitnis, Balaji, Ankpal, Shiv and many other temples, 13 ghats, well and many Dharmashalas etc.
  • Varanasi, Kashi Vishwanath Temple 1780.[13]
  • Vrindavan (Mathura) – Chain Bihari Temple, Kaliyadeha Ghat, Chirghat and many other ghats, Dharmashala, Annakstra
  • Wafgaon (Rajgurunagar, Pune) – Holkar wada and one well
  • Ambad (maharashtra) -Matsodari Devi Mandir
  • Vikharan (Shirpur Dist:Dhule maharashtra) Well


In Marathi
  • Punyashlok Ahilya by M. S. Dixit
  • Ahilyabai by Hiralal Sharma
  • Ahilyabai Charitra by Purshottam
  • Ahilyabai Charitra by Mukund Vaman Barve
  • Karmayogini by Vijaya Jahagirdar
  • Dnyat Adnyat Ahilyabai Holakar by Vinaya Khadapekar
  • Pal Samaaj on Samaaj

In popular culture[edit]

  • A film titled Devi Ahilya Bai was produced in 2002 featuring Mallika Prasad as Devi Ahilya Bai, Shabana Azmi as Harkubai (Khaanda Rani, one of Malhar Rao Holkar’s wives) and also including Sadashiv Amrapurkar as Malhar Rao Holkar, Ahilyabai’s father in law.[14]
  • A 20-minute documentary was made by Educational Multimedia Research Centre Indore, about life and time of Devi Ahilya bai holkar.
  • In Thane City in Maharashtra, a children’s play park has been named as ‘Ahilyadevi Holkar Udyan’ after Queen Ahilya Bai. Also a road has been named after her in the same city.
  • Indore‘s airport is named after her..

See also[edit]


  1. Jump up^ Jawaharlal Nehru:Discovery of India, 2004, page-304
  2. Jump up^ English poem written by Jaonna Baillie, London, 1849.
  3. Jump up^ Quote of an English writer given in the Book Ahilya Bai Holkar by Khadpekar
  4. Jump up^ Malcolm, J., A Memoir of Central India, quoted in Kamath, M. B. and Kher, V. B., Devi Ahalyabai Holkar: The Philosopher Queen, p.85 and Quoted in John Keay, India: A History, p. 407
  5. Jump up^ John Keay, India: A History, p. 407, Gordon, S., The Marathas etc., p. 162
  6. Jump up^ John Keay, India: A History, p.425. reference of Sardesai, G. S., Marathi Riyasat, Bombay, 1925, quoted in Kamath, M. B. and Kher, V. B., Devi Ahalyabai Holkar: The Philosopher Queen, p.126 and Quoted in
  7. Jump up^ Dr. Annie Besant, Ahalyabai – A Great Ruler, Children of the Mother Land, Page 290-291.
  8. Jump up^ Renowned Historian Mr. Judunath Sarkar
  9. Jump up^ Nizam of Hyderabad.
  10. Jump up^ Arvind Javlekar, Lokmata Ahilyabai. p. 140
  11. Jump up^ “Ahilyabai Holkar”. 25 August 1996. Retrieved 2012-09-17.
  12. Jump up^ Arvind Javlekar, Lokmata Ahilyabai. 2005. p. 62.
  13. Jump up^ “Shri Kashi Vishwanath Temple – A Brief history”.
  14. Jump up^ “NFDC: Cinemas of india”. Retrieved 2012-09-17.

External links[edit]

Posted in भारतीय मंदिर - Bharatiya Mandir

Temple of Govind Deo ji / Govind Dev Temple / गोविन्द देव जी

Govind Deo

 Introduction | Index | Marvels | Books | People | Establishments | Freedom Fighter | Image Gallery | Video
This website is under construction please visit our Hindi website “HI.BRAJDISCOVERY.ORG”

Temple of Govind Deo ji / Govind Dev Temple / गोविन्द देव जी

The Temple of Govind Deo is not only the finest of this particular series (Gobind Dev, Gopi Nath, Jugal Kishor and Madan Mohan.), but is the most impressive religions edifice that Hindu art has ever produced, at least in Upper India. The body of the building is in the form of a Greek cross, the nave being a hundred feet in length and the breadth across the transepts the same.

Brajdiscovery Comment

Govind Dev Temple, Vrindavan

Indian historions are not in agreement with Mr. Growse’s view that Govind Deo Temple’s building is in the form of a ‘Greek cross’ or ‘constructed of true radiating arches as in our Gothic cathedrals. The central compartment is surmounted by a dome of singularly graceful proportions; and the four arms of the cross are roofed by a waggon vault of pointed form, not, as is usual in Hindu architecture, composed of overlapping brackets, but constructed of true radiating arches as in our Gothic cathedrals. The walls have an average thickness of ten feet and are pierced in two stages, the upper stage being a regular triforium, to which access is obtained by an internal staircase, as in the somewhat later temple of Radha Ballabh. This triforium is a reproduction of Muhammadan design, while the work both above and below it is purely Hindu. It should be noted, however, that the arches are decorative only, not constructural : the spandrels in the head might be, and, in fact, for the most part had been—struck out, leaving only the lintel supported on the straight jambs, without any injury to the stability of the building. They have been re-inserted in the course of the recent restoration. At the east entrance of the nave there is a small narthex fifteen feet deep; and at the west end, between two niches and encased in a rich canopy of sculpture, a square-headed doorway leads into the choir, a chamber some twenty feet by twenty. Beyond this was the sacrarium flanked on either side by a lateral chapel; each of these three cells being of the same dimensions as the choir, and like it vaulted by a lofty dome. The latter building has greatly the advantage in size, but in the other, the central dome is more elegant, while the richer decoration of the wall surface and the natural glow of the red sandstone supply that relief and warmth of colouring which are so lamentably deficient in its western rival. The ground-plan is so similar to that of many European churches as to suggest the idea that the architect was assisted by the Jesuit missionaries, who were people of considerable influence at Akbar‘s court : was this really the case, the temple would be one of the most eclectic buildings in the world, having a Christian ground-plan, a Hindu elevation, and a roof of modified Saracenic character. But the surmise, though a curious one, must not be too closely pressed; for some of the temples at Khajurao, by Mahoba, are of similar design and of much earlier date; nor is it very likely that the Jesuits would have interested themselves in the construction of a heathen fane. It would seem that, according to the original design, there would have been five towers; one over the central dome, and the other four covering respectively the choir, sacrarium, and two chapels. The sacrarium has been utterly razed to the ground the chapel towers were never completed, and that over the choir, though the most perfect, has still lost several of its upper stages. This last was of slighter elevation than the others, occupying the same relative position as the spirelet over the Sanctus bell in western ecclesiology. The loss of the towers and of the lofty arcaded parapet that surmounted the walls has terribly marred the effect of the exterior and given it a heavy stunted appearance; while, as a further disfigurement, a plain masonry wall had been run along the top of the centre dome. It is generally believed that this was built byAurangzeb for the purpose of desecrating the temple, though it is also said to have been put up by the Hindus themselves to assist in some grand illumination. It either case it was an ugly modern excrescence, and its removal was the very first step taken at the commencement of the recent repairs. Under one of the niches at the west end of the nave is a tablet with a long Sanskrit inscription. This has unfortunately been too much mutilated to allow of transcription, but so much of it as can be deciphered records the fact that the temple was built in sambat 1647, i.e., A.D. 1590, under the direction of the two Gurus, Rupa and Sanatana. As it was in verse, it probably com bined a minimum of information with an excess of verbosity, and its loss is not greatly to be regretted. The following is taken from the exterior of the north-west chapel, where it is cut into the wall some ten feet from the ground, and is of considerable interest :—

संबत् ३४ श्री शकवंध अकबर शाह राज श्री कर्मकुल श्री पृथिराजाधिराज वंश महाराज श्रीभगवंतदाससुत श्री महाराजाधिराज श्रीमानसिंहदेव श्री वृन्दावन जोग पीठस्थान मंदिर कराजै । श्री गोविन्ददेव को कामउपरि श्रीकल्याणदास आज्ञाकारी माणिकचंद चोपाङ शिल्पकारि गोविन्ददास दील वलि कारिगरु: द:। गोरषदसुवींभवलृ ।।
” In the 34th year of the era inaugurated by the reign of the Emperor Akbar, Shri Maharaj Maan Singh Dev, son of Maharaj Bhagavan Das, of the family of Maharaj Prithiraj, founded, at the holy station of Vrindavan, this temple of Govind Dev. The head of the works, Kalyan Das, the Assistant Superintendent, Manik Chand Chopar (?), the architect, Gobind Das of Delhi, the mason, Gorakh Das.” There is some mistake in the engraving of the last words, which seem to be intended for Subham bhavatu, like the Latin `Felix, faustumque sit.’

Govind Dev Temple, Vrindavan

It was looked upon by the people in the neighbourhood convenient quarry, where every house-builder was at liberty to excavate for materials; while large trees had been allowed to grow up in the fissures of the walls, and in the course of a few more summers their spreading roots would have caused irreparable damage. Accordingly, after an ineffectual attempt to enlist the sympathies of the Archaeological Department, the writer took the op portunity of Sir William Muir’s presence in the district, on tour, to solicit the adoption on the part of the Government of some means for averting a catastrophe that every student of architecture throughout the world would have regarded as a national disgrace. Unfortunately he declined to sanction any grant from Pro vincial funds, but allowed a representation of the ruinous condition of the temple and its special interest to be made to the Government of India, for communica tion to the Maharaja ofJaypur, as the representative of the founder. .His Highness immediately recognized the claim that the building had upon him and made no difficulty about supplying tho small sum of Rs. 5,000, which had been estimated by the Superintending Engineer as sufficient to defray the cost of all absolutely essential repairs. The work was taken in hand at the beginning of August, 1873. The obtrusive wall erected by the Muhammadans on the top of the dome was demolished; the interior cleared of several unsightly party-walls and other modern excrescences; and outside, all the debris was removed, which had accumulated round the base of the building to the astonishing height of eight feet and in some places even more, entirely concealing the handsomely moulded plinth; a considerable increase was thus made to the elevation of the building the one point in which, since the loss of the original parapet and towers, the design had appeared defective. On the south side of the choir stood a large domed and pillared chhattri of very handsome and harmonious design, though erected 40 years later than the temple. The following inscription is rudely cut on one of its four pillars :-

संबत् १६९३ वरषे कातिक वदि ५ शुभदिने हजस्त श्री श्री श्री शाहजहां राज्ये राणा श्री अमरसिंह जी को बेटो राजा श्रीभीम जी और राणी श्री रंभावती चौषंडी सौराई छैजी ।।

“In the year Sambat 1693 (i.e., 1836 A.D.), on an auspicious day, Kartik Badi 5, in the reign of the Emperor Shahjahan, this monument was erected by Rani Rambhavati, widow of Raja Bhim, the son of Rana Amar Singh. ”
These works had more than exhausted the petty sum of Rs. 5,000, which (as remarked at the time) was barely enough to pay for the scaffolding required for a complete restoration; but in the meantime Sir John Strachey had succeeded to the Government of these Provinces, and he speedily showed his interest in the matter by making a liberal grant from public funds. With this the roof of the entire building was thoroughly repaired; the whole of the upper part of the east front, which was in a most perilous state, was taken down and rebuilt; and the pillars, brackets, and eaves of the external arcades on the north and south sides, together with the porches at the four corners of the central dome, were all renewed.

Govind Dev Temple, Vrindavan

A complete restoration was also effected of the Jagmohan (or choir) tower, excepting only that the finial and a few stages of stone-work immediately under it were not added; for they had entirely perished and, in the absence of the original design, Sir John Strachey would not allow me to replace them. As a general principle the introduction of any new work under such circumstances is much to be deprecated, but in this particular case there could not be any doubt as to the exact character and dimensions of the missing portions, since the stages of the tower diminish from the bottom upwards in regular proportion and all bear the same ornamentation. Certainly, the pic turesque effect would have been immensely enhanced by giving the tower the pyramidal finish intended for it, instead of leaving it with its present stunted appearance. Picture if the temple of Govind-dev required page no.248 The work was conducted under my own personal supervision without any professional assistance, except Mr. Inglis’s suggestion, which I have duly chronicled, up to March, 1877, when Sir George Couper, who had two months previously been confirmed as Sir John Strachey’s successor; suddenly ordered my transfer from the district. The restoration would most assuredly never have been undertaken but for my exertions, and as I had been engaged upon it so long, it was naturally a disappointment to me not to be allowed to com plete it. However, all that was absolutely essential had been accomplished and for the comparatively modest outlay of Rs. 38,865, nearly a lakh less than the Public Works estimate. Mr. Fergusson, in his Indian Architecture, speaks of this temple as `one of the most interesting and elegant in India, and the only one, perhaps, from which a European architect might borrow a few hints. I should myself have thought that ‘solemn’ or ‘imposing’ was a more appropriate term than ‘elegant’ for so massive a building, and that the suggestions that might be derived from its study were ‘many’ rather than ‘few;’ but the criticism is at all events in intention a complimentary one. It is, however, unfortunate that the author of a book which will long and deservedly be accepted as an authority was not able to obtain more satisfactory information regarding so notable a chef d’aeuvre. The, ground-plan that he supplies is extremely incorrect; for it gives in faint lines, as if destroyed, the choir, or Jagmohan, which happens to be in more perfect preservation than any other part of the fabric, and it entirely omits the two chapels that flank the cella on either side and are integral portions of the design. The cella itself is also omitted; though for this there I was more excuse, since it was razed to the ground by Aurangzeb and not a vestige of it now remains; though the rough rubble wall of the choir shows where it had been attached. These two parts of the building, the sacrarium and the choir, were certainly completed, towers and all. They alone were indispensably necessary for liturgical purposes and were therefore the first taken in hand, in the same way as in mediaeval times the corresponding parts of a cathedral were often in use for many years before the nave was added. In clearing the basement, comparatively few fragments of carved stone were discovered imbedded in the soil. There are some built up into the adjoining houses, but chiefly corbels and shafts, which were clearly taken from the lower stories of the temple. No fragments of the upper stages of the towers have been brought to light; from which fact alone it might reasonably be con jectured that they were never finished. This was certainly the case with the two side chapels; and the large blocks lying on the top of their walls, ready to be placed in position, are just as they were left by the original builders, when the work for some unexplained reason was suddenly interrupted. Probably, as in so many other similar cases, it was the death of the founder which brought everything to a stand-still. The tower over the central dome was also, as I conjecture, never carried higher than we now see it; but the open arcades, which crowned the facade, though not a fragment of them now remains, were probably put up, as the stones of the parapet still show the dents of the pillars. The magnificent effect which they would have had may be gathered from a view of the temple in the Gwalior fort; which, though some 600 years earlier in date, is in general arrangement the nearest parallel to the Vrindavan fane, and would seem to have supplied Min Sinh with a model. It has been subjected to the most barbarous treatment, but has at last attracted the attention of Government, and is now being restored under the superintendence of Major Keith, an officer of unbounded archchaeological enthusiasm. There is no more interesting specimen of architecture to be found in all India. A modern temple, under the old dedication, has been erected within the precincts and absorbs the whole of the endowment. The ordinary annual income amounts to Rs. 17,500; but by far the greater part of this, viz., Rs. 13,000, is made up by votive offerings. The fixed estate includes one village in Alwar and another in Jaypur, but consists principally of house property in the town of Vrindavan, where is also a large orchard, called Radha Bagh. This has been greatly diminished in area by a long series of encroachments; and a temple, dedicated to Ban Bihari, has now been built in it, at a cost of Rs. 15,000, by Raja Jay Singh Deo, Chief of Charkhari, in Bundelkhand. About a hundred years ago it must have been very extensive and densely wooded, as Father Tieffenthaller, in his notice of Vrindavan, describes it in the following terms :—” L’endroit est convert de beaucoup d’arbres et resemble a un bois sacre des anciens; il est triste par le morne silence qui y regne, quoiqu’ agreable par I’ombre epaisse des arbres, desquels on n’ose arracher un rameau, ni mine une feuille; ce serait un grand delft.” The site of the Seth’s temple was also purchased from the Govind Dev estate, and a further subsidy of Rs. 102 a year is still paid on its account.

Temples of Vrindavan

Ashtasakhi Kunj · Rang Nath Temple · Bankhandi Mahadev · Brahmchari Thakur Badi · Govind Deo Temple · Banke Bihari Temple · Shah Bihari Ji Temple ·Madan Mohan Temple · Radha Vallabh Temple · Rup Sanatan Gaudiya Math · Jaipur Temple · Jugal Kishor Temple · Radha Raman Temple · Iskcon Temple ·Radha Damodar Temple · Radha Vinod Temple · Lala Babu Temple · Gopi Nath Ji Temple · Sakshi Gopal Temple · Swarnmayi Temple · Shyamsunder Temple ·Savaman Shalgram · Shahjapur Temple · Shri Ji Temple · Tikari Rani Thakur Badi · Radha Madhav Temple · Varddhman Maharaj Kunj
Posted in भारतीय मंदिर - Bharatiya Mandir

Hindu temple

Hindu temple

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
“Devasthanam” redirects here. For the 2012 film, see Devasthanam (film).
Illustration of Hindu temples
Khajuraho - Kandariya Mahadeo Temple.jpg
A temple complex, Lord Bhaktavatsaleshwarar Temple Tamil Nadu India March 2010.jpg
(5) Krishna Temple Prem Mandir, TIJARA MATHURA VRINDAVAN.jpg
Temple of Jagnnath in Orissa.jpg

A Hindu temple (Sanskrit: मन्दिर – Mandir, प्रासाद – Prasada) is a house of god(s).[1] It is a space and structure designed to bring human beings and gods together, infused with symbolism to express the ideas and beliefs of Hinduism.[2] A Hindu temple, states George Michell, functions as a place of transcendence, where man may cross over (do tirtha) from the world of illusion to one of knowledge and truth.[1]

The symbolism and structure of a Hindu temple, states Stella Kramrisch,[2] are rooted in Vedic traditions. A temple incorporates all elements of Hindu cosmos – presenting the good, the evil and the human, as well as the elements of Hindu sense of cyclic time and the essence of life – symbolically presenting dharma, kama,artha, moksa and karma.[3][4]

The spiritual principles symbolically represented in Hindu temples are given in the ancient Sanskrit texts of India (for example, Vedas, Upanishads), while their structural rules are described in various ancient Sanskrit treatises on architecture (Brhat Samhita, Vastu Sastras).[5][6] The layout, the motifs, the plan and the building process recite ancient rituals, geometric symbolisms, and reflect beliefs and values innate within various schools of Hinduism.[2] A Hindu temple is a spiritual destination for many Hindus (not all), as well as landmarks around which ancient arts, community celebrations and economy flourished.[7][8]

Hindu temples come in many styles, diverse locations, deploy different construction methods and are adapted to different deities and regional beliefs.[9] Yet, almost all Hindu temples share certain core ideas, symbolism and themes. They are found in South Asia particularly India and Nepal, in southeast Asian countries such as Cambodia, Vietnam and islands of Indonesia,[10][11] and countries such as Fiji, Mauritius, Guyana, Suriname, South Africa, Europe and North America with a significant Hindu community.[12] The current state and outer appearance of Hindu temples reflect arts, materials and designs as they evolved over several millennia; they also reflect the effect of conflicts betweenHinduism and Islam since the 12th century.[13]

The significance and meaning of a Hindu Temple[edit]

Hindu temple reflects a synthesis of arts, the ideals of dharma, beliefs, values and the way of life cherished under Hinduism. It is a link between man, deities, and the Universal Purusa in a sacred space.[14]

The 9×9 (81) grid ‘’Parama Sayika’’ layout plan (above) found in large ceremonial Hindu Temples. It is one of many grids used to build Hindu temples. In this structure of symmetry, each concentric layer has significance. The outermost layer, Paisachika padas, signify aspects of Asuras and evil; while inner Devika padas signify aspects of Devas and good. In between the good and evil is the concentric layer of Manusha padas signifying human life; All these layers surround Brahma padas, which signifies creative energy and the site for temple’s primary idol for darsana. Finally at the very center of Brahma padas is Grabhgriya (Purusa Space), signifying Universal Principle present in everything and everyone.[2]

In ancient Indian texts, a temple is a place for Tirtha – pilgrimage.[2] It is a sacred site whose ambience and design attempts to symbolically condense the ideal tenets of Hindu way of life.[14] All the cosmic elements that create and sustain life are present in a Hindu temple – from fire to water, from images of nature to deities, from the feminine to the masculine, from the fleeting sounds and incense smells to the eternal nothingness yet universality at the core of the temple.[2]

Susan Lewandowski states[5] that the underlying principle in a Hindu temple is built around the belief that all things are one, everything is connected. The pilgrim is welcomed through 64-grid or 81-grid mathematically structured spaces, a network of art, pillars with carvings and statues that display and celebrate the four important and necessary principles of human life – the pursuit of artha (prosperity, wealth), the pursuit of kama (pleasure, sex), the pursuit of dharma (virtues, ethical life) and the pursuit of moksha (release, self-knowledge).[15][16] At the center of the temple, typically below and sometimes above or next to the deity, is mere hollow space with no decoration, symbolically representing Purusa, the Supreme Principle, the sacred Universal, one without form, which is present everywhere, connects everything, and is the essence of everyone. A Hindu temple is meant to encourage reflection, facilitate purification of one’s mind, and trigger the process of inner realization within the devotee.[2] The specific process is left to the devotee’s school of belief. The primary deity of different Hindu temples varies to reflect this spiritual spectrum.

In Hindu tradition, there is no dividing line between the secular and the sacred.[5] In the same spirit, Hindu temples are not just sacred spaces, they are also secular spaces. Their meaning and purpose have extended beyond spiritual life to social rituals and daily life, offering thus a social meaning. Some temples have served as a venue to mark festivals, to celebrate arts through dance and music, to get married or commemorate marriages,[17] commemorate the birth of a child, other significant life events, or mark the death of a loved one. In political and economic life, Hindu temples have served as a venue for the succession within dynasties and landmarks around which economic activity thrived.[18]

The forms and designs of Hindu Temples[edit]

Almost all Hindu temples take two forms: a house or a palace. A house-themed temple is a simple shelter which serves as a deity’s home. The temple is a place where the devotee visits, just like he or she would visit a friend or relative. In Bhakti school of Hinduism, temples are venues for puja, which is a hospitality ritual, where the deity is the honored, and where devotee calls upon, attends to and connects with the deity. In other schools of Hinduism, the person may simply perform jap, or meditation, or yoga, or introspection in his or her temple.

A palace-themed temples are more elaborate, often monumental architecture.

The site[edit]

The appropriate site for a temple, suggest ancient Sanskrit texts, is near water and gardens, where lotus and flowers bloom, where swans, ducks and other birds are heard, where animals rest without fear of injury or harm.[2] These harmonious places were recommended in these texts with the explanation that such are the places where gods play, and thus the best site for Hindu temples.[2][5]

Hindu temple sites cover a wide range. The most common sites are those near water bodies, embedded in nature, such as the above at Badami, Karnataka.

The gods always play where lakes are,
where the sun’s rays are warded off by umbrellas of lotus leaf clusters,
and where clear waterpaths are made by swans
whose breats toss the white lotus hither and thither,
where swans, ducks, curleys and paddy birds are heard,
and animals rest nearby in the shade of Nicula trees on the river banks.

The gods always play where rivers have for their braclets
the sound of curleys and the voice of swans for their speech,
water as their garment, carps for their zone,
the flowering trees on their banks as earrings,
the confluence of rivers as their hips,
raised sand banks as breasts and plumage of swans their mantle.

The gods always play where groves are near, rivers, mountains and springs, and in towns with pleasure gardens.

—Brhat Samhita 1.60.4-8, 6th Century CE[19]

While major Hindu temples are recommended at sangams (confluence of rivers), river banks, lakes and seashore, Brhat Samhita and Puranas suggest temples may also be built where a natural source of water is not present. Here too, they recommend that a pond be built preferably in front or to the left of the temple with water gardens. If water is neither present naturally nor by design, water is symbolically present at the consecration of temple or the deity. Temples may also be built, suggests Visnudharmottara in Part III of Chapter 93,[20] inside caves and carved stones, on hill tops affording peaceful views, mountain slopes overlooking beautiful valleys, inside forests and hermitages, next to gardens, or at the head of a town street.

The manuals[edit]

Ancient builders of Hindu temples created manuals of architecture, called Vastu-Sastra (literally, science of dwelling, Vas-tu is a composite Sanskrit word Vas means reside, tu means you); these contain Vastu-Vidya (literally, knowledge of dwelling).[21] There exist many Vastu-Sastras on the art of building temples, such as one by Thakkura Pheru, describing where and how temples should be built.[22][23] By 6th century AD, Sanskrit manuals for constructing palatial temples were in circulation in India.[24] Vastu-Sastra manuals included chapters on home construction, town planning,[21] and how efficient villages, towns and kingdoms integrated temples, water bodies and gardens within them to achieve harmony with nature.[25][26] While it is unclear, states Barnett,[27] as to whether these temple and town planning texts were theoretical studies and if or when they were properly implemented in practice, the manuals suggest that town planning and Hindu temples were conceived as ideals of art and integral part of Hindu social and spiritual life.[21]

Ancient India produced many Sanskrit manuals for Hindu temple design and construction, covering arrangement of spaces (above) to every aspect of its completion. Yet, the Silpins were given wide latitude to experiment and express their creativity.[28]

The Silpa Prakasa of Odisha, authored by Ramacandra Bhattaraka Kaulacara sometime in ninth or tenth century CE, is another Sanskrit treatise on Temple Architecture.[29] Silpa Prakasa describes the geometric principles in every aspect of the temple and symbolism such as 16 emotions of human beings carved as 16 types of female figures. These styles were perfected in Hindu temples prevalent in eastern states of India. Other ancient texts found expand these architectural principles, suggesting that different parts of India developed, invented and added their own interpretations. For example, inSaurastra tradition of temple building found in western states of India, the feminine form, expressions and emotions are depicted in 32 types of Nataka-stri compared to 16 types described in Silpa Prakasa.[29] Silpa Prakasa provides brief introduction to 12 types of Hindu temples. Other texts, such as Pancaratra Prasada Prasadhana compiled by Daniel Smith[30] and Silpa Ratnakara compiled by Narmada Sankara[31] provide a more extensive list of Hindu temple types.

Ancient Sanskrit manuals for temple construction discovered in Rajasthan, in northwestern region of India, include Sutradhara Mandana’s Prasadamandana (literally, manual for planning and building a temple).[32] Manasara, a text of South Indian origin, estimated to be in circulation by 7th century AD, is a guidebook on South Indian temple design and construction.[5][33] Isanasivagurudeva paddhati is another Sanskrit text from the 9th century describing the art of temple building in India in south and central India.[34][35] In north India, Brihat-samhita by Varāhamihira is the widely cited ancient Sanskrit manual from 6th century describing the design and construction of Nagara style of Hindu temples.[28][36][37]

Elements of a Hindu temple in Kalinga style. There are many Hindu temple styles, but they almost universally share common geometric principles, symbolism of ideas, and expression of core beliefs.[2]

The plan[edit]

A Hindu temple design follows a geometrical design called vastu-purusha-mandala. The name is a composite Sanskrit word with three of the most important components of the plan. Mandala means circle, Purusha is universal essence at the core of Hindu tradition, while Vastu means the dwelling structure.[38]Vastupurushamandala is a yantra.[22] The design lays out a Hindu temple in a symmetrical, self-repeating structure derived from central beliefs, myths, cardinality and mathematical principles.

The four cardinal directions help create the axis of a Hindu temple, around which is formed a perfect square in the space available. The circle of mandala circumscribes the square. The square is considered divine for its perfection and as a symbolic product of knowledge and human thought, while circle is considered earthly, human and observed in everyday life (moon, sun, horizon, water drop, rainbow). Each supports the other.[2]The square is divided into perfect 64 (or in some cases 81) sub-squares called padas.[28][39] Each pada is conceptually assigned to a symbolic element, sometimes in the form of a deity. The central square(s) of the 64 or 81 grid is dedicated to the Brahman (not to be confused with Brahmin), and are called Brahma padas.

The 8×8 (64) grid Manduka Hindu Temple Floor Plan, according to Vastupurusamandala. The 64 grid is the most sacred and common Hindu temple template. The bright saffron center, where diagonals intersect above, represents the Purusha of Hindu philosophy.[2][28]

The 49 grid design is called Sthandila and of great importance in creative expressions of Hindu temples in South India, particularly in ‘‘Prakaras’’.[40] The symmetric Vastu-purusa-mandala grids are sometimes combined to form a temple superstructure with two or more attached squares.[41] The temples face sunrise, and the entrance for the devotee is typically this east side. The mandala pada facing sunrise is dedicated to Surya deity (Sun). The Surya pada is flanked by the padas of Satya (Truth) deity on one side and Indra (king of gods) deity on other. The east and north faces of most temples feature a mix of gods and demi-gods; while west and south feature demons and demi-gods related to the underworld.[42] This vastu purusha mandala plan and symbolism is systematically seen in ancient Hindu temples on Indian subcontinent as well as those in southeast Asia, with regional creativity and variations.[43][44]

Beneath the mandala’s central square(s) is the space for the formless shapeless all pervasive all connecting Universal Spirit, the highest reality, the purusha.[45] This space is sometimes referred to as garbha-griya (literally womb house) – a small, perfect square, windowless, enclosed space without ornamentation that represents universal essence.[38] In or near this space is typically a murti (idol). This is the main deity idol, and this varies with each temple. Often it is this idol that gives the temple a local name, such as Visnu temple, Krishna temple, Rama temple, Narayana temple, Siva temple, Lakshmi temple, Ganesha temple, Durga temple, Hanuman temple, Surya temple, and others.[14] It is this garbha-griya which devotees seek for ‘‘darsana’’ (literally, a sight of knowledge,[46] or vision[38]).

Above the vastu-purusha-mandala is a superstructure with a dome called Shikhara in north India, andVimana in south India, that stretches towards the sky.[38] Sometimes, in makeshift temples, the dome may be replaced with symbolic bamboo with few leaves at the top. The vertical dimension’s cupola or dome is designed as a pyramid, conical or other mountain-like shape, once again using principle of concentric circles and squares (see below).[2] Scholars suggest that this shape is inspired by cosmic mountain of Meru or Himalayan Kailasa, the abode of gods according to Vedic mythology.[38]

A Hindu temple has a Sikhara (Vimana or Spire) that rises symmetrically above the central core of the temple. These spires come in many designs and shapes, but they all have mathematical precision and geometric symbolism. One of the common principles found in Hindu temple spires is circles and turning-squares theme (left), and a concentric layering design (right) that flows from one to the other as it rises towards the sky.[2][47]

In larger temples, the central space typically is surrounded by an ambulatory for the devotee to walk around and ritually circumambulate the Purusa, the universal essence.[2] Often this space is visually decorated with carvings, paintings or images meant to inspire the devotee. In some temples, these images may be stories from Hindu Epics, in others they may be Vedic tales about right and wrong or virtues and vice, in some they may be idols of minor or regional deities. The pillars, walls and ceilings typically also have highly ornate carvings or images of the four just and necessary pursuits of life – kama, artha, dharma and moksa. This walk around is called pradakshina.[38]

Large temples also have pillared halls called mandapa. One on the east side, serves as the waiting room for pilgrims and devotees. The mandapa may be a separate structure in older temples, but in newer temples this space is integrated into the temple superstructure. Mega temple sites have a main temple surrounded by smaller temples and shrines, but these are still arranged by principles of symmetry, grids and mathematical precision. An important principle found in the layout of Hindu temples is mirroring and repeating fractal-like design structure,[48]each unique yet also repeating the central common principle, one which Susan Lewandowski refers to as “an organism of repeating cells”.[18]

An illustration of Hindu temple Spires (Sikhara, Vimana) built using concentric circle and rotating-squares principle. The left is from Vijayanagar in Karnataka, the right is from Pushkar in Rajasthan.

The ancient texts on Hindu temple design, the Vastupurusamandala and Vastu Sastras, do not limit themselves to the design of a Hindu temple.[49] They describe the temple as a holistic part of its community, and lay out various principles and a diversity of alternate designs for home, village and city layout along with the temple, gardens, water bodies and nature.[2][25]

Exceptions to the square grid principle

Predominant number of Hindu temples exhibit the perfect square grid principle.[50] However, there are some exceptions. For example, the Teli-ka-mandir in Gwalior, built in 8th century CE is not a square but is a rentangle in 2:3 proportion. Further, the temple explores a number of structures and shrines in 1:1, 1:2, 1:3, 2:5, 3:5 and 4:5 ratios. These ratios are exact, suggesting the architect intended to use these harmonic ratios, and the rectangle pattern was not a mistake, nor an arbitrary approximation. Other examples of non-square harmonic ratios are found at Naresar temple site of Madhya Pradesh and Nakti-Mata temple near Jaipur, Rajasthan. Michael Meister suggests that these exceptions mean the ancient Sanskrit manuals for temple building were guidelines, and Hinduism permitted its artisans flexibility in expression and aesthetic independence.[28]

The symbolism[edit]

A Hindu temple is a symbolic reconstruction of the universe and universal principles that make everything in it function.[2][51] The temples reflect Hindu philosophy and its diverse views on cosmos and Truths.[48][52]

Hinduism has no traditional ecclesiastical order, no centralized religious authorities, no governing body, no prophet(s) nor any binding holy book; Hindus can choose to be polytheistic, pantheistic, monistic, or atheistic.[53] Within this diffuse and open structure, spirituality in Hindu philosophy is an individual experience, and referred to as kṣaitrajña (Sanskrit: क्षैत्रज्ञ[54]). It defines spiritual practice as one’s journey towards moksha, awareness of self, the discovery of higher truths, true nature of reality, and a consciousness that is liberated and content.[55][56] A Hindu temple reflects these core beliefs. The central core of almost all Hindu temples is not a large communal space; the temple is designed for the individual, a couple or a family – a small, private space where he or she experiences darsana.

Darsana is itself a symbolic word. In ancient Hindu scripts, darsana is the name of six methods or alternate viewpoints of understanding Truth.[57] These are Nyaya, Vaisesika, Sankhya, Yoga, Mimamsa and Vedanta – each of which flowered into their own schools of Hinduism, each of which are considered valid, alternate paths to understanding Truth and realizing Self in the Hindu way of life.

Kāma is celebrated in many Hindu temples, such as Khajuraho and theKonark Temple (above).[58]

From names to forms, from images to stories carved into the walls of a temple, symbolism is everywhere in a Hindu temple. Life principles such as the pursuit of joy, sex, connection and emotional pleasure (kama) are fused into mystical, erotic and architectural forms in Hindu temples. These motifs and principles of human life are part of the sacred texts of Hindu, such as its Upanishads; the temples express these same principles in a different form, through art and spaces. For example, Brihadaranyaka Upanisad at 4.3.21, recites:

In the embrace of his beloved a man forgets the whole world,
everything both within and without;
in the same way, he who embraces the Self,
knows neither within nor without.

Brihadaranyaka Upanishad7th Century BC[59]

The architecture of Hindu temples is also symbolic. The whole structure fuses the daily life and it surroundings with the divine concepts, through a structure that is open yet raised on a terrace, transitioning from the secular towards the sacred,[60] inviting the visitor inwards towards the Brahma pada and temple’s central core, as well as lifting him upwards into a symbolic space marked by its spire (sikhara, vimana). The ancient temples had grand intricately carved entrances but no doors, and lacked a boundary wall. In most cultures, suggests Edmund Leach,[60] a boundary and gateway separates the secular and the sacred, and this gateway door is grand. In Hindu tradition, this is discarded in favor of an open and diffusive architecture, where the secular world was not separated from the sacred, but transitioned and flowed into the sacred.[61] The Hindu temple has structural walls, which were patterned usually within the 64 grid, or other geometric layouts. Yet the layout was open on all sides, except for the core space which had just one opening for darsana. The temple space is laid out in a series of courts (mandappas). The outermost regions may incorporate the negative and suffering side of life with symbolism of evil, asuras and rakshashas (demons); but in small temples this layer is dispensed with. When present, this outer region diffuse into the next inner layer that bridges as human space, followed by another inner Devika padas space and symbolic arts incorporating the positive and joyful side of life about the good and the gods. This divine space then concentrically diffuses inwards and lifts the guest to the core of the temple, where resides the main idol as well as the space for the Purusa and ideas held to be most sacred principles in Hindu tradition. The symbolism in the arts and temples of Hinduism, suggests Edmund Leach, is similar to those in Christianity and other major religions of the world.[62]

The teams that built Hindu temples[edit]

Inside Hindu temples
Murufgan Temple inside the Big Temple.JPG
Shrine inside temple complex
Relief Prambanan.jpg
Ramayana scene along padas
Rameswaram Temple Inside.jpg
Outer hall, Rameswaram
A sanctum inside the Hoysaleshwara temple in Halebidu.jpg
Center, Hoysaleswara

Ancient Indian texts call the craftsmen and builders of temples as ‘‘Silpin’’ (Sanskrit: शिल्पिन्[63]), derived from ‘‘Silpa’’.[64] One of earliest mentions of Sanskrit word Silpa is in Atharvaveda, from about 1000 BC, which scholars have translated as any work of art.[65] Other scholars suggest that the word Silpa has no direct one word translation in English, nor does the word ‘‘Silpin’’. Silpa, explains Stella Kramrisch,[34] is a multicolored word and incorporates art, skill, craft, ingenuity, imagination, form, expression and inventiveness of any art or craft. Similarly a Shilpin, notes Kramrisch, is a complex Sanskrit word, describing any person who embodies art, science, culture, skill, rhythm and employs creative principles to produce any divine form of expression. Silpins who built Hindu temples, as well as the art works and sculpture within them, were considered by the ancient Sanskrit texts to deploy arts whose number are unlimited, Kala (techniques) that were 64 in number,[66] and Vidya (science) that were of 32 types.[34]

The Hindu manuals of temple construction describe the education, characteristics of good artists and architects. The general education of a Hindu Shilpin in ancient India included Lekha or Lipi (alphabet, reading and writing), Rupa (drawing and geometry), Ganana (arithmetic). These were imparted from age 5 to 12. The advanced students would continue in higher stages of Shilpa Sastra studies till the age of 25.[67][68] Apart from specialist technical competence, the manuals suggest that best Silpins for building a Hindu temple are those who know the essence of Vedas and Agamas, consider themselves as students, keep well verse with principles of traditional sciences and mathematics, painting and geography.[22] Further they are kind, free from jealousy, righteous, have their sense under control, of happy disposition, and ardent in everything they do.[34]

According to Silparatna, a Hindu temple project would start with a Yajamana (patron), and include a Sthapaka (guru, spiritual guide and architect-priest), a Sthapati (architect) who would design the building, a Sutragrahin (surveyor), and many Vardhakins (workers, masons, painters, plasterers, overseers) and Taksakas (sculptors).[22][36] While the temple is under construction, all those working on the temple were revered and considered sacerdotal by the patron as well as others witnessing the construction.[64] Further, it was a tradition that all tools and materials used in temple building and all creative work had the sanction of a sacrament.[22] For example, if a carpenter or sculptor needed to fell a tree or cut a rock from a hill, he would propitiate the tree or rock with prayers, seeking forgiveness for cutting it from its surroundings, and explaining his intent and purpose. The axe used to cut the tree would be anointed with butter to minimize the hurt to the tree.[34] Even in modern times, in some parts of India such as Odisha, Visvakarma Puja is a ritual festival every year where the craftsmen and artists worship their arts, tools and materials.[69]

The social functions of Hindu Temple[edit]

Styles of Hindu temples
Undavalli Caves.jpg
Cave temple
Bhoomi Devi Temple, Chendia, Karnataka India 2013.jpg
Forest temple
Masrur rockcut temple.jpg
Mountain temple
Seashore temple

Hindu temples served important social and economic functions in ancient India. Burton Stein states that South Indian temples managed regional development function, such as irrigation projects, land reclamation, post-disaster relief and recovery. These activities were paid for by the donations (melvarum) they collected from devotees.[7] Temples also managed lands endowed to it by its devotees upon their death. They would provide employment to the poorest.[70] Some temples had large treasury, with gold and silver coins, and these temples served as banks.[71]

In contemporary times, the process of building a Hindu temple by emigrants and diasporas from South Asia has also served as a process of building a community, a social venue to network, reduce prejudice and seek civil rights together.[72]


Hindu temples are found in diverse locations each incorporating different methods of construction and styles:

  • Mountain[73] temples such as Masrur
  • Cave[74] temples such as Chandrabhaga, Chalukya[75] and Ellora
  • Step well temple compounds such as the Mata Bhavani, Ankol Mata and Huccimallugudi.[76]
  • Forest[74] temples such as Kasaun and Kusama[77]
  • River bank and sea shore temples such as Somnath.
Hindu deities, stepwell style.
Step well temples

In arid western parts of India, such as Rajasthan and Gujarat, Hindu communities built large walk in wells that served as the only source of water in dry months but also served as social meeting places and carried religious significance. These monuments went down into earth towards subterranean water, up to seven storey, and were part of a temple complex.[78]These vav (literally, stepwells) had intricate art reliefs on the walls, with numerous idols and images of Hindu deities, water spirits and erotic symbolism. The step wells were named after Hindu deities; for example, Mata Bhavani Vav, Ankol Mata Vav, Sikotari Vav and others.[78] The temple ranged from being small single pada (cell) structure to large nearby complexes. These stepwells and their temple compounds have been variously dated from late 1st millennium BC through 11th century AD. Of these, Rani-ki-vav, with hundreds of art reliefs including many of Vishnu deity avatars, has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage site.[79]

Cave Temples

The Indian rock-cut architecture evolved in Maharashtran temple style in the 1st millennium AD. The temples are carved from a single piece of rock as a complete temple or carved in a cave to look like the interior of a temple. Ellora Temple is an example of the former, while The Elephanta Caves are representative of the latter style.[citation needed] The Elephanta Caves consist of two groups of caves—the first is a large group of five Hindu caves and the second is a smaller group of two Buddhist caves. The Hindu caves contain rock-cut stone sculptures, representing the Shaiva Hindu sect, dedicated to the god Shiva.

Arts inside Hindu temples[edit]

Illustration of Chitrardha style of art work in a Hindu temple.

A typical, ancient Hindu temple has a profusion of arts – from paintings to sculpture, from symbolic icons to engravings, from thoughtful layout of space to fusion of mathematical principles with Hindu sense of time and cardinality.

Ancient Sanskrit texts classify idols and images in number of ways. For example, one method of classification is the dimensionality of completion:[80]

  • chitra – images that are 3-dimensional and completely formed,
  • chitrardha – images that are engraved in half relief,
  • chitrabhasa – images that are 2-dimensional such as paintings on walls and cloths.
Images and idols inside Hindu temples vary widely in their expression. Raudra or ugra images express destruction, fear and violence, such as Kali image on left. Shanta or saumya images express joy, knowledge and harmony, such as Saraswati image on right. Saumya images are most common in Hindu temples.

Another way of classification is by the expressive state of the image:

  • raudra or ugra – are images that were meant to terrify, induce fear. These typically have wide, circular eyes, carry weapons, have skulls and bones as adornment. These idols were worshipped by soldiers before going to war, or by people in times of distress or errors. Raudra deity temples were not set up inside villages or towns, but invariably outside and in remote areas of a kingdom.[80]
  • shanta and saumya – are images that were pacific, peaceful and expressive of love, compassion, kindness and other virtues in Hindu pantheon. These images would carry symbolic icons of peace, knowledge, music, wealth, flowers, sensuality among other things. In ancient India, these temples were predominant inside villages and towns.[80]

A Hindu temple may or may not include an idol or images, but larger temples usually do. Personal Hindu temples at home or a hermitage may have a pada for yoga or meditation, but be devoid of anthropomorphic representations of god. Nature or others arts may surround him or her. To a Hindu yogin, states Gopinath Rao,[80] one who has realised Self and the Universal Principle within himself, there is no need for any temple or divine image for worship. However, for those who have yet to reach this height of realization, various symbolic manifestations through images, idols and icons as well as mental modes of worship are offered as one of the spiritual paths in the Hindu way of life. This belief is repeated in ancient Hindu scriptures. For example, the Jabaladarshana Upanishad states:[80]

शिवमात्मनि पश्यन्ति प्रतिमासु न योगिनः |
अज्ञानं भावनार्थाय प्रतिमाः परिकल्पिताः || ५९ ||
– जाबालदर्शनोपनिषत्

A yogin perceives god (Siva) within himself,
images are for those who have not reached this knowledge. (Verse 59)

—Jabaladarsana Upanishad, [81]

Historical development and destruction[edit]

Ancient Hindu temples outside South Asia
Ateshgah of Baku burning.jpg
Angkor Wat Aerial View Siem Reap Cambodia 2011.jpg
Prambanan Shiva Temple.jpg
Ganesh Tempel Po Nagar Nha Trang.jpg

A number of ancient Indian texts suggest the prevalence of idols, temples and shrines in Indian subcontinent for thousands of years. For example, the 4th century BC text, Astadhyayi mentions male deity arcas(images/idols) of Agni, Indra, Varuna, Rudra, Mrda, Pusa, Surya, Soma being worshipped, as well as the worship of arcas of female goddesses such as Indrani, Varunani, Usa, Bhavani, Prthivi and Vrsakapayi.[82]The 2nd Century BC ‘‘Mahabhasya’’ of Patanjali extensively describes temples of Dhanapati (deity of wealth and finance, Kubera), as well as temples of Rama and Kesava, wherein the worship included dance, music and extensive rituals. The Mahabhasya also describes the rituals for Krsna, Visnu and Siva. An image recovered from Mathura in north India has been dated to 2nd century BC.[82] Kautilya’s Arthasastra from 3rd Century AD describes a city of temples, each enshrining various Vedic and Puranic deities. All three of these sources have common names, describe common rituals, symbolism and significance possibly suggesting that the idea of idols, temples and shrines passed from one generation to next, in ancient India, at least from the 4th century BC.[82] The oldest temples, suggest scholars, were built of brick and wood. Stone became the preferred material of construction later.[83][84]

Early Jainism and Buddhism literature, along with Kautilya’s Arthasastra, describe structures, embellishments and designs of these temples – all with motifs and deities currently prevalent in Hinduism. Bas-reliefs and idols have been found from 2nd to 3rd Century, but none of the temple structures have survived. Scholars[82] theorize that those ancient temples of India, later referred to as Hindu temples, were modeled after domestic structure – a house or a palace. Beyond shrines, nature was revered, in forms such as trees, rivers, stupas before the time of Buddha and Vardhamana Mahavira. As Jainism and Buddhism branched off from the religious tradition later to be called Hinduism, the ideas, designs and plans of ancient Vedic and Upanishad era shrines were adopted and evolved, likely from the competitive development of temples and arts in Jainism and Buddhism. Ancient reliefs found so far, states Michael Meister,[82] suggest five basic shrine designs and combinations thereof in 1st millennium BC:

  1. A raised platform with or without a symbol
  2. A raised platform under an umbrella
  3. A raised platform under a tree
  4. A raised platform enclosed with a railing
  5. A raised platform inside a pillared pavilion

Many of these ancient shrines were roofless, some had toranas and roof.

Ladkhan Shiva Temple in Karnataka from the 5th century.

From 1st century BC through 3rd Century AD, the evidence and details about ancient temples increases. The ancient literature refers to these temples as Pasada (or Prasada), stana, mahasthana, devalaya, devagrha, devakula, devakulika,ayatana and harmya.[82] The entrance of the temple is referred to as dvarakosthaka in these ancient texts notes Meister,[82]the temple hall is described as sabha or ayagasabha, pillars were called kumbhaka, while vedika referred to the structures at the boundary of a temple.

A 7th century Chalukyan style temple ceiling in Karnataka

With the start of Gupta dynasty in 4th century, Hindu temples flourished in innovation, design, scope, form, use of stone and new materials as well as symbolic synthesis of culture and dharmic principles with artistic expression.[85][86] It is this period that is credited with the ideas of garbhagrha for Purusa, mandapa for sheltering the devotees and rituals in progress, as well as symbolic motifs relating to dharma, karma, kama, artha and moksha. Temple superstructures were built from stone, brick and wide range of materials. Entrance ways, walls and pillars were intricately carved, while parts of temple were decorated with gold, silver and jewels. Visnu, Siva and other deities were placed in Hindu temples, while Buddhists and Jains built their own temples, often side by side with Hindus.[87]

The 4th through 6th century marked the flowering of Vidharbha style, whose accomplishments survive in central India as Ajanta caves, Pavnar, Mandhal and Mahesvar. In South India, this period is credited with some of the earliest stone temples of the region, with Chalukya temples dated to be from 5th century by some scholars,[88] and the 6th by some others.[89] Over 6th and 7th century, temple designs were further refined during Maurya dynasty, evidence of which survives today at Ellora and Elephanta.

Many Hindu temples were destroyed and the remains used to rebuild Islamic mosques between 12th and 18th century AD. Above drawing byJames Prinsep (1832) shows an overlay of a mosque built over the ancient Hindu Vishveshvur temple.

It is the 5th through 7th century AD when outer design and appearances of Hindu temples in north India and south India began to widely diverge.[90] Nevertheless, the forms, theme, symbolism and central ideas in the grid design remained same, before and after, pan-India as innovations were adopted to give distinctly different visual expressions.

During the 5th to 11th century, Hindu temples flourished outside Indian subcontinent, such as in Cambodia, Viet Nam, Malaysia and Indonesia.

Destruction and conversion

With the arrival of Islam in South Asia, Hindu temples along with the temples of Buddhists and Jains, became targets of Islamic armies. Idols were broken up and damaged. Spires and pillars were torn down by the invading armies from Persia, Central Asia and resident Sultans. Temples were looted of their treasury and parts reused to build or to convert the temples into mosques.[91] During some periods, Muslim emperors such as Akbar encouraged arts, helped repair and protect Hindu temples. In other periods, the Sultans and emperors led a campaign of temple destruction as well as forbade repairs to damaged temples.[92] Richard Eaton has listed 80 campaigns of Hindu temple site destruction stretching over centuries, particularly from the 12th through the 18th century.[93] The religious conflict and desecrations continued during the British colonial era.[94]

The destruction of Hindu temple sites was comparatively less in the southern parts of India, such as in Tamil Nadu. Cave style Hindu temples that were carved inside a rock, hidden and rediscovered centuries later, such as the Kailasha Temple, have also survived. These are now UNESCO world heritage sites.[95]

Customs and etiquette[edit]

The customs and etiquette varies across India. Devotees in major temples may bring in symbolic offerings for the puja. This includes fruits, flowers, sweets and other symbols of the bounty of the natural world. Temples in India are usually surrounded with small shops selling these offerings.

When inside the temple, devotees keep both hands folded (namaste mudra). The inner sanctuary, where the murtis reside, is known as the garbhagriha. It symbolizes the birthplace of the universe, the meeting place of the gods and mankind, and the threshold between the transcendental and the phenomenal worlds.[96] It is in this inner shrine that devotees seek a darsana of, where they offer prayers. Devotees may or may not be able to personally present their offerings at the feet of the deity. In most large Indian temples, only the pujaris (priest) are allowed to enter into the main sanctum.[97]

Temple management staff typically announce the hours of operation, including timings for special pujas. These timings and nature of special puja vary from temple to temple. Additionally, there may be specially allotted times for devotees to perform circumambulations (or pradakshina) around the temple.[97]

Visitors and worshipers to large Hindu temples may be required to deposit their shoes and other footwear before entering. Where this is expected, the temples provide an area and help staff to store footwear. Dress codes vary. It is customary in temples in Kerala, for men to remove shirts and to cover pants and shorts with a traditional cloth known as a Vasthiram.[98] In Java and Bali (Indonesia), before one enters the most sacred parts of a Hindu temple, shirts are required as well asSarong around one’s waist.[99] At many other locations, this formality is unnecessary.

Regional variations in Hindu temples[edit]

South Indian temples[edit]

The gopuram (tower) of Natarajar Temple, a typical South Indian temple complex in Chidambaram, Tamil Nadu.

South Indian temples have a large gopuram, a monumental tower, usually ornate, at the entrance of the temple. This forms a prominent feature of Koils, Hindu temples of theDravidian style.[100] They are topped by the kalasam, a bulbous stone finial. They function as gateways through the walls that surround the temple complex.[101] The gopuram’s origins can be traced back to early structures of the Tamil kings Pallavas; and by the twelfth century, under the Pandya rulers, these gateways became a dominant feature of a temple’s outer appearance, eventually overshadowing the inner sanctuary which became obscured from view by the gopuram’s colossal size.[102] It also dominated the inner sanctum in amount of ornamentation. Often a shrine has more than one gopuram.[103]They also appear in architecture outside India, especially Khmer architecture, as atAngkor Wat. A koil may have multiple gopurams, typically constructed into multiple walls in tiers around the main shrine. The temple’s walls are typically square with the outer most wall having gopuras. The sanctum sanctorium and its towering roof (the central deity’s shrine) are also called the vimanam.[104] The inner sanctum has restricted access with only priests allowed beyond a certain point.

North Indian temples[edit]

Kedarnath Temple, Uttarakhand
Shiv Temple, Assam

North Indian temples are referred to as Nagara style of temple architecture.[105] They have sanctum sanctorum where the deity is present, open on one side from where the devotee obtains darśana. There may or may not be many more surrounding corridors, halls, etc. However, there will be space for devotees to go around the temple in clockwise fashion circumambulation. In North Indian temples, the tallest towers are built over thesanctum sanctorum in which the deity is installed.[106]

The north India Nagara style of temple designs often deploy fractal-theme, where smaller parts of the temple are themselves images or geometric re-arrangement of the large temple, a concept found in French and Russian architecture such as the matryoshkaprinciple. One difference is the scope and cardinality, where Hindu temple structures deploy this principle in every dimension with garbhgriya as the primary locus, and each pada as well as zones serving as additional centers of loci. This makes a Nagara Hindu temple architecture symbolically a perennial expression of movement and time, of centrifugal growth fused with the idea of unity in everything.[105]

Temples in Tamil Nadu[edit]

The Meenakshi Amman Temple in Madurai (top) and the Shore Templeat Mahabalipuram beach.

Temple construction reached its peak during rule of Pallavas. They build various temples around Kancheepuram andNarasimhavarman II built the Shore Temple in Mamallapuram which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The Pandyas rule created temples such as the Meenakshi Amman Temple at Madurai and Nellaiappar Temple at Tirunelveli.[107] The Cholas were prolific temple builders right from the times of the first medieval king Vijayalaya Chola. The Chola temples include Natarajatemple at Chidambaram, the Sri Ranganathaswami Temple at Srirangam, the Brihadeshvara Temple of Thanjavur,Brihadeshvara Temple of Gangaikonda Cholapuram and the Airavatesvara Temple of Darasuram which are among theUNESCO World Heritage Sites. The Nayaks of Madurai reconstructed some of the well-known temples in Tamil Nadu such as the Meenakshi Temple.[5][108]

Temples in Odisha[edit]

Odisha temple architecture classifies the spire into three parts, the Bāḍa (lower limb), the Ganḍi (body) and the Cuḷa/Mastaka(head). Each part is decorated in a different manner. Kalinga architecture is a style which flourished in Kalinga, the name for kingdom that included ancient Odisha. It includes three styles: Rekha Deula, Pidha Deula and Khakhara Deula.[109] The former two are associated with Vishnu, Surya and Shiva temples while the third is mainly associated with Chamunda and Durgatemples. The Rekha Deula and Khakhara Deula houses the sanctum sanctorum while the Pidha Deula style includes space for outer dancing and offering halls.

Temples of Goa and other Konkani temples[edit]

Saptakoteshwar Temple in Goa

The temple architecture of Goa is quite unique. As Portuguese colonial hegemony increased, Goan Hindu temples became the rallying point to local resistance.[110] Many these temples are not more than 500 years old, and are a unique blend of original Goan temple architecture, Dravidian, Nagar and Hemadpanthi temple styles with some British and Portuguese architectural influences. Goan temples were built using sedimentary rocks, wood, limestone and clay tiles, and copper sheets were used for the roofs. These temples were decorated with mural art called as Kavi kala or ocher art. The interiors have murals and wood carvings depicting scenes from the Hindu mythology.

Temples in West Bengal[edit]

In West Bengal, the Bengali terra cotta temple architecture is found. Due to lack of suitable stone in the alluvial soil locally available, the temple makers had to resort to other materials instead of stone. This gave rise to using terracotta as a medium for temple construction. Terracotta exteriors with rich carvings are a unique feature of Bengali temples. The town of Vishnupur in West Bengal is renowned for this type of architecture. There is also a popular style of building known as Navaratna (nine-towered) or Pancharatna (five-towered). An example of Navaratna style is the Dakshineswar Kali Temple.[111]

Temples in Cambodia[edit]

Art relief at the Hindu templeBanteay Srei in Cambodia

Angkor Wat was built as a Hindu temple by King Suryavarman II in the early 12th century in Yasodharapura (Khmer, present-day Angkor), the capital of the Khmer Empire, as his state temple and eventual mausoleum. Breaking from the Shaiva tradition of previous kings, Angkor Wat was instead dedicated to Vishnu. The Spire in Khmer Hindu temple is called Giri (mountain) and symbolizes the residence of gods just like Meru does in Bali Hindu mythology and Ku (Guha) does in Burmese Hindu mythology.[112]

Angkor Wat is just one of numerous Hindu temples in Cambodia, most of them in ruins. Hundreds of Hindu temples are scattered from Siem Reap to Sambor Prei Kuk in central Cambodian region.[113]

Temples in Vietnam[edit]

There are a number of Hindu temple clusters along the coast of Vietnam, with some on UNESCO world heritage site list.[114]Examples include Mỹ Sơn – a cluster of 70 temples with earliest dated to be from 4th century AD and dedicated to Siva, while others are dedicated to Hindu deities Krishna, Vishnu and others. These temples, internally and with respect to each other, are also built on the Hindu perfect square grid concept. Other sites in Vietnam with Hindu temples include Phan Rang with the Cham temple Po Klong Garai.[115]

Temples in Indonesia[edit]

Balinese Hindu temple in an open-air symmetrical layout

Hindu temples of ancient Java, Indonesia, bear resemblances with temples of South Indian style. The largest of these is the 9th century Javanese Hindu temple, Prambanan in Yogyakarta, now a UNESCO world heritage site. It was designed as three concentric squares and has 224 temples. The inner square contains 16 temples dedicated to major Hindu deities, of which Siva temple is the largest. The temple has extensive wall reliefs and carvings illustrating the stories from the Hindu Epic Ramayana.[116]

In Bali, Pura (Balinese temple) is designed as an open-air worship place in a walled compound. The compound walls have a series of intricately decorated gates without doors for the devotee to enter. The design, plan and layout of the holy pura follows a square layout.[117][118]

Temples outside Asia[edit]

A Hindu temple in Hamm Germany, and Atlanta United States.

Many members of the South Asian diaspora have established Hindu mandirs outside India as a means of preserving and celebrating cultural and spiritual heritage abroad. Describing the hundreds of mandirs that can be found throughout the United States, scholar Gail M. Harley observes, “The temples serve as central locations where Hindus can come together to worship during holy festivals and socialize with other Hindus. Temples in America reflect the colorful kaleidoscopic aspects contained in Hinduism while unifying people who are disbursed throughout the American landscape.”[119] Numerous mandirs in North America and Europe have gained particular prominence and acclaim.

Temple Management[edit]

The Archeological Survey of India has control of most ancient temples of archaeological importance in India. In India, day-to-day activities of a temple is managed by a temple board committee that administers its finances, management and events. Since independence, the autonomy of individual Hindu religious denominations to manage their own affairs with respect to temples of their own denomination have been severely eroded and the state governments have taken control of major Hindu temples.

Etymology and nomenclature[edit]

Hindu temple is located in India

Hindu temple
Hindu temple
Hindu temple
Hindu temple
Hindu temple
Hindu temple
Hindu temple
Hindu temple
Hindu temple
Hindu temple
Hindu temple
Hindu temple
Hindu temple
Hindu temple
Hindu temple
Hindu temple
Hindu temple
Hindu temple
Hindu temple
Hindu temple
Hindu temple
Hindu temple
Hindu temple
Hindu temple
Hindu temple
Hindu temple
Hindu temple
Hindu temple
Hindu temple
Hindu temple

Major Hindu temple sites for Tirtha and general tourism in India. Orange markers are UNESCO world heritage sites.

In Sanskrit, the liturgical language of Hinduism, the word “mandir” means “house”. Ancient Sanskrit texts use many words for temple, such as matha, vayuna, kirti, kesapaksha, devavasatha, vihara, suravasa, surakula, devatayatana, amaragara, devakula, devagrha, devabhavana, devakulika, and niketana.[120]

The following are the other names by which a Hindu temple is referred to in India:

  • Devasthana (ದೇವಸ್ಥಾನ) in Kannada
  • Deul/Doul/Dewaaloy in Assamese
  • Deval/Raul/Mandir(मंदिर) in Marathi
  • Deula (ଦେଉଳ)/Mandira(ମଦିର) in Oriya and Gudi in Kosali Oriya
  • Gudi (గుడి), Devalayam (దేవాలయం), Devasthanam (దేవస్థానము), Kovela (కోవెల), Kshetralayam (క్షేత్రాలయం), Punyakshetram (పుణ్యక్షేత్రం), or Punyakshetralayam (పుణ్యక్షేత్రాలయం) in Telugu
  • Koil, or kō-ail (கோயில்) and occasionally Aalayam (ஆலயம்) in Tamil; the Tamil word “Koil” means “residence of the king” and is used to refer to a distinct style of Hindu temple with Dravidian architecture
  • Kshetram (ക്ഷേത്രം), Ambalam (അമ്പലം), or Kovil (കോവിൽ) in Malayalam
  • Mandir (मंदिर) in Nepali, Punjabi, Marathi, Gujarati and Hindi
  • Mandiram (మందిరం),[121]
  • Mondir (মন্দির) in Bengali

In Southeast Asia temples known as:

Temple sites

Some lands such as Varanasi, Puri, Kanchipuram, Dwarka, Amarnath, Kedarnath, Somnath, Mathura, Rameswara and others, are considered holy in Hinduism. They are called kṣétra (Sanskrit: क्षेत्र[122]). A kṣétra has many temples, including one or more major ones. These temples and its location attracts pilgrimage called tirtha (or tirthayatra).[123]

See also[edit]

Media related to Hindu temples at Wikimedia Commons


  1. ^ Jump up to:a b George Michell (1988), The Hindu Temple: An Introduction to Its Meaning and Forms, University of Chicago Press, ISBN 978-0226532301, Chapter 4, pp 61-65
  2. ^ Jump up to:a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q Stella Kramrisch, The Hindu Temple, Vol 1, Motilal Banarsidass, ISBN 978-81-208-0222-3
  3. Jump up^ Stella Kramrisch, The Hindu Temple, Vol 2, Motilal Banarsidass, ISBN 978-81-208-0222-3, pp 346-357 and 423-424
  4. Jump up^ Klaus Klostermaier, The Divine Presence in Space and Time – Murti, Tirtha, Kala; in A Survey of Hinduism, ISBN 978-0-7914-7082-4, State University of New York Press, pp 268-277
  5. ^ Jump up to:a b c d e f Susan Lewandowski, The Hindu Temple in South India, in Buildings and Society: Essays on the Social Development of the Built Environment, Anthony D. King (Editor), ISBN 978-0710202345, Routledge, Chapter 4
  6. Jump up^ MR Bhat (1996), Brhat Samhita of Varahamihira, ISBN 978-8120810600, Motilal Banarsidass
  7. ^ Jump up to:a b Burton Stein, The Economic Function of a Medieval South Indian Temple, The Journal of Asian Studies, Vol. 19 (February, 1960), pp 163-76
  8. Jump up^ George Michell (1988), The Hindu Temple: An Introduction to Its Meaning and Forms, University of Chicago Press, ISBN 978-0226532301, pp 58-65
  9. Jump up^ Alice Boner (1990), Principles of Composition in Hindu Sculpture: Cave Temple Period, ISBN 978-8120807051, see Introduction and pp 36-37
  10. Jump up^ Francis Ching et al., A Global History of Architecture, Wiley, ISBN 978-0470402573, pp 227-302
  11. Jump up^ Brad Olsen (2004), Sacred Places Around the World: 108 Destinations, ISBN 978-1888729108, pp 117-119
  12. Jump up^ Paul Younger, New Homelands: Hindu Communities, ISBN 978-0195391640, Oxford University Press
  13. Jump up^ For the effect on Hindu temples of Islam’s arrival in South Asia and Southeast Asia, see:
    • Marc Gaborieau (1985), From Al-Beruni to Jinnah: idiom, ritual and ideology of the Hindu-Muslim confrontation in South Asia, Anthropology Today, 1(3), pp 7-14;
    • Richard Eaton (2000), Temple Desecration and Indo-Muslim States, Journal of Islamic Studies, 11(3), pp 283-319
    • Annemarie Schimmel, Islam in the Indian Subcontinent, ISBN 978-9004061170, Brill Academic, Chapter 1
    • Robert W. Hefner, Civil Islam: Muslims and Democratization in Indonesia, Princeton University Press, ISBN 978-0691050461, pp 28-29
  14. ^ Jump up to:a b c George Michell (1988), The Hindu Temple: An Introduction to Its Meaning and Forms, University of Chicago Press, ISBN 978-0226532301, Chapter 1
  15. Jump up^ Alain Daniélou (2001), The Hindu Temple: Deification of Eroticism, Translated from French to English by Ken Hurry, ISBN 0-89281-854-9, pp 101-127
  16. Jump up^ Samuel Parker (2010), Ritual as a Mode of Production: Ethnoarchaeology and Creative Practice in Hindu Temple Arts, South Asian Studies, 26(1), pp 31-57; Michael Rabe, Secret Yantras and Erotic Display for Hindu Temples, (Editor: David White), ISBN 978-8120817784, Princeton University Readings in Religion (Motilal Banarsidass Publishers), Chapter 25, pp 435-446
  17. Jump up^ Pyong Gap Min, Religion and Maintenance of Ethnicity among Immigrants – A Comparison of Indian Hindus and Korean Protestants, Editor: Karen Leonard (Immigrant Faiths), ISBN 978-0759108165, Chapter 6, pp 102-103
  18. ^ Jump up to:a b Susan Lewandowski, The Hindu Temple in South India, in Buildings and Society: Essays on the Social Development of the Built Environment, Anthony D. King (Editor), ISBN 978-0710202345, Routledge, pp 71-73
  19. Jump up^ Stella Kramrisch, The Hindu Temple, Vol 1, Motilal Banarsidass, ISBN 978-81-208-0222-3, page 4
  20. Jump up^ Stella Kramrisch, The Hindu Temple, Vol 1, Motilal Banarsidass, ISBN 978-81-208-0222-3, page 5-6
  21. ^ Jump up to:a b c BB Dutt (1925), Town planning in Ancient India at Google Books, ISBN 978-81-8205-487-5; See critical review by LD Barnett, Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies, Vol 4, Issue 2, June 1926, pp 391
  22. ^ Jump up to:a b c d e Stella Kramrisch (1976), The Hindu Temple Volume 1 & 2, ISBN 81-208-0223-3
  23. Jump up^ Jack Hebner (2010), Architecture of the Vastu Sastra – According to Sacred Science, in Science of the Sacred (Editor: David Osborn), ISBN 978-0557277247, pp 85-92; N Lahiri (1996), Archaeological landscapes and textual images: a study of the sacred geography of late medieval Ballabgarh, World Archaeology, 28(2), pp 244-264
  24. Jump up^ Susan Lewandowski (1984), Buildings and Society: Essays on the Social Development of the Built Environment, edited by Anthony D. King, Routledge,ISBN 978-0710202345, Chapter 4
  25. ^ Jump up to:a b Sherri Silverman (2007), Vastu: Transcendental Home Design in Harmony with Nature, Gibbs Smith, Utah, ISBN 978-1423601326
  26. Jump up^ GD Vasudev (2001), Vastu, Motilal Banarsidas, ISBN 81-208-1605-6, pp 74-92
  27. Jump up^ LD Barnett, Bulletin of the School of Oriental and African Studies, Vol 4, Issue 2, June 1926, pp 391
  28. ^ Jump up to:a b c d e Michael Meister (1983), Geometry and Measure in Indian Temple Plans: Rectangular Temples, Artibus Asiae, Vol. 44, No. 4, pp 266-296
  29. ^ Jump up to:a b Alice Boner and Sadāśiva Rath Śarmā (1966), Silpa Prakasa Medieval Orissan Sanskrit Text on Temple Architecture at Google Books, E.J. Brill (Netherlands)
  30. Jump up^ H. Daniel Smith (1963), Ed. Pāncarātra prasāda prasādhapam, A Pancaratra Text on Temple-Building, Syracuse: University of Rochester, OCLC 68138877
  31. Jump up^ Mahanti and Mahanty (1995 Reprint), Śilpa Ratnākara, Orissa Akademi,OCLC 42718271
  32. Jump up^ Amita Sinha (1998), Design of Settlements in the Vaastu Shastras, Journal of Cultural Geography, 17(2), pp 27-41, doi:10.1080/08873639809478319
  33. Jump up^ Tillotson, G. H. R. (1997). Svastika Mansion: A Silpa-Sastra in the 1930s. South Asian Studies, 13(1), pp 87-97
  34. ^ Jump up to:a b c d e Stella Kramrisch (1958), Traditions of the Indian Craftsman, The Journal of American Folklore, Vol. 71, No. 281, (Jul. – Sep., 1958), pp. 224-230
  35. Jump up^ Ganapati Sastri (1920), Īśānaśivagurudeva paddhati, Trivandrum Sanskrit Series,OCLC 71801033
  36. ^ Jump up to:a b Heather Elgood (2000), Hinduism and the religious arts, ISBN 978-0304707393, Bloomsbury Academic, pp 121-125
  37. Jump up^ H Kern (1865), The Brhat Sanhita of Varaha-mihara, The Asiatic Society of Bengal, Calcutta
  38. ^ Jump up to:a b c d e f Susan Lewandowski, The Hindu Temple in South India, in Buildings and Society: Essays on the Social Development of the Built Environment, Anthony D. King (Editor), ISBN 978-0710202345, Routledge, pp 68-69
  39. Jump up^ The square is symbolic and has Vedic origins from fire altar, Agni. The alignment along cardinal direction, similarly is an extension of Vedic rituals of three fires. This symbolism is also found among Greek and other ancient civilizations, through thegnomon. In Hindu temple manuals, design plans are described with 1, 4, 9, 16, 25, 36, 49, 64, 81 upto 1024 squares; 1 pada is considered the simplest plan, as a seat for a hermit or devotee to sit and meditate on, or make offerings with Vedic fire in front. The second design of 4 padas lacks the central core, and is also a meditative constructive. The 9 pada design has a sacred surrounded center, and is the template for the smallest temple. Older Hindu temple vastumandalas may use the 9 through 49 pada series, but 64 is considered the most sacred geometric grid in Hindu temples. It is also called Manduka, Bhekapada or Ajira in various ancient Sanskrit texts.
  40. Jump up^ In addition to square (4) sided layout, Brhat Samhita also describes Vastu and mandala design principles based on a perfect triangle (3), hexagon (6), octagon (8) and hexadecagon (16) sided layouts, according to Stella Kramrisch.
  41. Jump up^ Rian et al (2007), Fractal geometry as the synthesis of Hindu cosmology in Kandariya Mahadev temple, Khajuraho, Building and Environment, Vol 42, Issue 12, pp 4093-4107, doi:10.1016/j.buildenv.2007.01.028
  42. Jump up^ Stella Kramrisch (1976), The Hindu Temple Volume 1, ISBN 81-208-0223-3
  43. Jump up^ Datta and Beynon (2011), Early Connections: Reflections on the canonical lineage of Southeast Asian temples, in EAAC 2011 : South of East Asia : Re-addressing East Asian Architecture and Urbanism : Proceedings of the East Asian Architectural Culture International Conference, Department of Architecture, National University of Singapore, Singapore, pp 1-17
  44. Jump up^ V.S. Pramar, Some Evidence on the Wooden Origins of the Vāstupuruṣamaṇḍala, Artibus Asiae, Vol. 46, No. 4 (1985), pp 305-311
  45. Jump up^ This concept has equivalence to the concept of Acintya, or Sang Hyang Widhi Wasa, in Balinese Hindu temples; elsewhere it has been referred to assatcitananda
  46. Jump up^ Stella Kramrisch (1976), The Hindu Temple Volume 1, ISBN 81-208-0223-3, pp 8
  47. Jump up^ Michael W. Meister, Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians, Vol. 65, No. 1 (Mar., 2006), pp 26-49
  48. ^ Jump up to:a b Trivedi, K. (1989). Hindu temples: models of a fractal universe. The Visual Computer, 5(4), 243-258
  49. Jump up^ S Bafna, On the Idea of the Mandala as a Governing Device in Indian Architectural Tradition, Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians, Vol. 59, No. 1 (Mar., 2000), pp. 26-49
  50. Jump up^ Michael W. Meister, Maṇḍala and Practice in Nāgara Architecture in North India, Journal of the American Oriental Society, Vol. 99, No. 2 (Apr. – Jun., 1979), pp. 204- 219
  51. Jump up^ George Michell (1988), The Hindu Temple: An Introduction to Its Meaning and Forms, University of Chicago Press, ISBN 978-0226532301, pp 21-22
  52. Jump up^ Edmund Leach, .The Gatekeepers of Heaven: Anthropological Aspects of Grandiose Architecture, Journal of Anthropological Research, Vol. 39, No. 3 (Autumn, 1983), pp 243-264
  53. Jump up^ See:
    • Julius J. Lipner, Hindus: Their Religious Beliefs and Practices, 2nd Edition, Routledge, ISBN 978-0-415-45677-7, page 8; Quote: “(…) one need not be religious in the minimal sense described to be accepted as a Hindu by Hindus, or describe oneself perfectly validly as Hindu. One may be polytheistic or monotheistic, monistic or pantheistic, even an agnostic, humanist or atheist, and still be considered a Hindu.”;
    • Lester Kurtz (Ed.), Encyclopedia of Violence, Peace and Conflict, ISBN 978-0123695031, Academic Press, 2008;
    • MK Gandhi, The Essence of Hinduism, Editor: VB Kher, Navajivan Publishing, see page 3; According to Gandhi, “a man may not believe in God and still call himself a Hindu.”
  54. Jump up^ Monier-Williams Sanskrit-English Dictionary, क्षैत्रज्ञ Jim Funderburk and Peter Scharf (2012); Quote:
    • क्षैत्रज्ञ [ kṣaitrajña ] [ kṣaitrajña ] n. ( fr. [ kṣetra-jñá ] g. [ yuvādi ], spirituality, nature of the soul Lit. W.; the knowledge of the soul Lit. W.
  55. Jump up^ See the following two in Ewert Cousins series on World Spirituality:
    • Bhavasar and Kiem, Spirituality and Health, in Hindu Spirituality, Editor: Ewert Cousins (1989), ISBN 0-8245-0755-X, Crossroads Publishing New York, pp 319-337;
    • John Arapura, Spirit and Spiritual Knowledge in the Upanishads, in Hindu Spirituality, Editor: Ewert Cousins (1989), ISBN 0-8245-0755-X, Crossroads Publishing New York, pp 64-85
  56. Jump up^ Gavin Flood, Brill’s Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Editor: Knut Jacobsen (2010), Volume II, Brill, ISBN 978-90-04-17893-9, see Article on Wisdom and Knowledge, pp 881-884
  57. Jump up^ Stella Kramrisch, The Hindu Temple, Vol 1, Motilal Banarsidass, ISBN 978-81-208-0222-3, pp 8-9
  58. Jump up^ Thomas Donaldson (2005), Konark, Oxford University Press, ISBN 978-0195675917
  59. Jump up^ Michael Rabe (1996), Sexual Imagery on the “Phantasmagorical Castles” at Khajuraho – The Artha of Temple Kama, International Journal of Tantric Studies, Vol 2, No 2
  60. ^ Jump up to:a b E Leach, .The Gatekeepers of Heaven: Anthropological Aspects of Grandiose Architecture, Journal of Anthropological Research, Vol. 39, No. 3 (Autumn, 1983), pp 249-250
  61. Jump up^ Mary Beth Heston, Iconographic Themes of the Gopura of the Kailāsanātha Temple at Ellora, Artibus Asiae, Vol. 43, No. 3 (1981 – 1982), pp 219-235
  62. Jump up^ E Leach, .The Gatekeepers of Heaven: Anthropological Aspects of Grandiose Architecture, Journal of Anthropological Research, Vol. 39, No. 3 (Autumn, 1983), pp 262
  63. Jump up^ zilpin University of Cologne, Germany
  64. ^ Jump up to:a b Samuel Parker (1987), Artistic practice and education in India: A historical overview, Journal of Aesthetic Education, pp 123-141
  65. Jump up^ Ananda Coomaraswamy, Indian Architectural Terms, Journal of the American Oriental Society, Vol. 48 (1928), pp 269
  66. Jump up^ Vatsyayana, Kamasutra I.3, Jayamangala
  67. Jump up^ Stella Kramrisch, The Hindu Temple, Vol 1, Motilal Banarsidass, ISBN 978-81-208-0222-3, pp 11
  68. Jump up^ Misra, R. N. (2011), Silpis in Ancient India: Beyond their Ascribed Locus in Ancient Society, Social Scientist, Vol. 39, No. 7/8, pp 43-54
  69. Jump up^ Joshi (2013), Boon of astronomy: Rituals and religious festivals in Odisha for a peaceful society, International Journal of Physical and Social Sciences, 3(5), pp 162-176
  70. Jump up^ T Mahalingam (1951), Economic life in the Vijayanagar Empire, University of Madras, pp 490-498
  71. Jump up^ Burton Stein (February 4, 1961), The state, the temple and agriculture development, The Economic Weekly Annual, pp 179-187
  72. Jump up^ See:
    • Diana L. Eck (2000), “Negotiating Hindu Identities in the US”, in Harold Coward, John R. Hinnells, and Raymond Brady Williams (Editors) – The South Asian Religious Diaspora in Britain, Canada, and the United States, SUNY Press, ISBN 978-0-7914-4509-9, 219–237
    • Marion O’Callaghan (1998), Hinduism in the Indian Diaspora in Trinidad, Journal of Hindu-Christian Studies, Vol. 11, Article 5, doi 10.7825/2164-6279.1178
    • Chandra Jayawardena, Religious Belief and Social Change: Aspects of the Development of Hinduism in British Guiana, Comparative Studies in Society and History, Vol. 8, No. 2 (Jan., 1966), pp 211-240
  73. Jump up^ Meister, .Mountain Temples and Temple-Mountains: Masrur, Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians, Vol. 65, No. 1 (Mar., 2006), pp. 26- 49
  74. ^ Jump up to:a b Michael W. Meister, Forest and Cave: Temples at Candrabhāgā and Kansuān, Archives of Asian Art, Vol. 34 (1981), pp. 56-73
  75. Jump up^ Gary Tarr, Chronology and Development of the Chāḷukya Cave Temples, Ars Orientalis, Vol. 8 (1970), pp 155-184
  76. Jump up^ Jutta Neubauer (1981), The Stepwells of Gujarat: in art-historical perspective,ISBN 978-0391022843, see Introduction, Chapters 1 and 2
  77. Jump up^ Meister, A Field Report on Temples at Kusuma, Archives of Asian Art, Vol. 29 (1975/1976), pp. 23-46
  78. ^ Jump up to:a b Jutta Neubauer, The stepwells of Gujarat, India International Centre Quarterly, Vol. 26, No. 2 (SUMMER 1999), pp 75-80
  79. Jump up^ Rani-ki-vav at Patan, Gujarat, UNESCO World Heritage Site
  80. ^ Jump up to:a b c d e Gopinath Rao (1914), Elements of Hindu Iconography Madras, Cornell University Archives, pp 17-39
  81. Jump up^ Jabaladarsana Upanishad 1.59
  82. ^ Jump up to:a b c d e f g Michael Meister (1988), Encyclopedia of Indian Temple Architecture, Oxford University Press, 0-691-04053-2, Chapter 1
  83. Jump up^ Subhash Kak, Early Indian Architecture and Art, Migration & Diffusion, Vol.6/Nr.23, pages 6-27, 2005.
  84. Jump up^ Stella Kramrisch, The Hindu Temple. University of Calcutta, Calcutta, 1946.
  85. Jump up^ Banerji, New Light on the Gupta Temples at Deogarh, Journal of the Asiatic Society of Bengal, Vol V (1963), pp 37-49
  86. Jump up^ Saraswati, Temple Architecture in the Gupta Age, Journal of the Indian Society of Oriental Art, Vol VIII (1940), pp 146-158
  87. Jump up^ Joanna Williams, The Art of Gupta India, Empire and Province, Princeton, 1982
  88. Jump up^ Ananda K. Coomaraswamy, History of Indian and Indonesian Art (New York, 1965 reprint), pp 78-80
  89. Jump up^ Gary Tartakov, The Beginning of Dravidian Temple Architecture in Stone, Artibus Asiae, Vol. 42, No. 1 (1980), pp 39-99
  90. Jump up^ Michael Meister (Editor), Encyclopedia of Indian Temple Architecture – South India 200 BC to 1324 AD, University of Pennsylvania Press (1983), ISBN 0-8122-7840-2
  91. Jump up^ See:
    • Elizabeth Merklinger, The Mosques of Raichur: A preliminary classification, Kunst des Orients, Vol. 12, H. 1/2 (1978/1979), pp 79-94
    • Mark Jarzombek et al. (2010), A global history of architecture, Wiley, ISBN 978-0470402573, Chapters and Sections: “1200 CE – Delhi through Qutb Minar”
    • Ali Javid, World Heritage Monuments and Related Edifices in India, Volume 1,ISBN 978-0875864839, pp 263, Quote – “The stones to construct the mosque were obtained by demolishing twenty seven Hindu and Jain temples.”
  92. Jump up^ See:
    • Peter Jackson (2003), The Delhi Sultanate: A Political and Military History, Cambridge University Press, ISBN 978-0521543293, pp 168
    • A.L. Srivastava (1966), Delhi Sultanate, 5th Edition, Agra College
    • Vincent Smith (1920), The Oxford History of India: From the Earliest Times to the End of 1911, Oxford University Press, pp 268-269, 306-307, 437-438
  93. Jump up^ Richard Eaton (January 5, 2001), Temple desecration and Indo-Muslim states, Frontline, pp 70-77 (Archived by Columbia University)
  94. Jump up^ Marc Gaborieau (1985), From Al-Beruni to Jinnah: idiom, ritual and ideology of the Hindu-Muslim confrontation in South Asia, Anthropology Today, 1(3), pp 7-14
  95. Jump up^ Ellora Caves Cave 16 – Kailasha Hindu Temple, 8th Century CE, UNESCO
  96. Jump up^ Werner, Karel (1994). A Popular Dictionary of Hinduism. Curzon Press. ISBN 0-7007-1049-3.
  97. ^ Jump up to:a b Narayanan, Vasudha. “The Hindu Tradition”. In A Concise Introduction to World Religions, ed. Willard G. Oxtoby and Alan F. Segal. New York: Oxford University Press, 2007
  98. Jump up^ Bain, Keith, Pippa Bryun, and David Allardice. Frommer’s India. 1st. New Jersey: Wiley Publishing, 2010. Page 75
  99. Jump up^ Indonesia Handbook, 3rd Edition, ISBN 978-1900949514, pp 38
  100. Jump up^ Ching et al., Francis D.K. (2007). A Global History of Architecture. New York: John Wiley and Sons. p. 762. ISBN 0-471-26892-5.
  101. Jump up^ Ching, Francis D.K. (1995). A Visual Dictionary of Architecture. New York: John Wiley and Sons. p. 253. ISBN 0-471-28451-3.
  102. Jump up^ Michell, George (1988). The Hindu Temple. Chicago: University of Chicago Press. pp. 151–153. ISBN 0-226-53230-5.
  103. Jump up^ “gopura”. Encyclopædia Britannica. Retrieved 2008-01-20.
  104. Jump up^ Ram Raz, Henry Harkness (1834), Essay on the Architecture of the Hindus atGoogle Books
  105. ^ Jump up to:a b Adam Hardy (2007), The Temple Architecture of India, John Wiley & Sons,ISBN 978-0470028278
  106. Jump up^ Williams, Raymond (2001). Introduction to Swaminarayan Hinduism. Cambridge University Press. pp. 123–136. ISBN 978-0-521-65422-7.
  107. Jump up^ Sastri 1970, pp. 18–182.
  108. Jump up^ Stein (1978), South Indian Temples: An Analytical Study, New Delhi, ISBN 978-0706905816
  109. Jump up^ Dibishada Brajasundar Garnayak, Evolution of Temple Architecture in Orissa, Orissa Review, November 2007
  110. Jump up^ Padmaja Vijay Kamat, Temple Economy in Goa: A Case Study, The Macrotheme Review 2(5), Fall 2013, pp 97-111
  111. Jump up^ Pika Ghosh (2005), Temple to Love: Architecture and Devotion in Seventeenth-century Bengal, ISBN 978-0253344878, Indiana University Press
  112. Jump up^ Stella Kramrisch, The Hindu Temple, Vol 1, Motilal Banarsidass, ISBN 978-81-208-0222-3, pp 170-172
  113. Jump up^ Kubo Sumiko, Geomorphology, Archaeo-stratigraphy, and 14C Ages of Sambor Prei Kuk Pre-Angkorean Site, Central Cambodia, BULLETIN of the Graduate School of Education of Waseda University (Japan), No.22, March 2012
  114. Jump up^ My Son Sancuary Vietnam, UNESCO World Heritage Site
  115. Jump up^ Ngô Vǎn Doanh (2006), Champa: Ancient Towers. Hanoi: The Gioi Publishers, Chapter 16
  116. Jump up^ Prambanan Temple Compounds UNESCO world heritage site
  117. Jump up^ Brigitta Hauser-Schaublin (1993), Keraton and Temples in Bali, in Urban Symbolism (Editor: P. Nas), Brill Academic, ISBN 978-9004098558
  118. Jump up^ Hildred Geertz, The Life of a Balinese Temple, ISBN 978-0824825331, University of Hawaii Press
  119. Jump up^ Harley, Gail M (2003). Hindu and Sikh Faiths in America. Facts on File, Inc. ISBN 0-8160-4987-4.
  120. Jump up^ Sanskrit words for Temple Cologne Digital Sanskrit Lexicon, Koeln University, Germany
  121. Jump up^
  122. Jump up^ Monier-Williams Sanskrit-English Dictionary, क्षेत्र Quote – “sacred spot, place of pilgrimage”.
  123. Jump up^ Knut A. Jacobsen (2012), Pilgrimage in the Hindu Tradition: Salvific Space, Routledge, ISBN 978-0415590389

External links[edit]

Posted in भारतीय मंदिर - Bharatiya Mandir

Why no commission of enquiry for temples’ destruction?

Why no commission of enquiry for temples’ destruction?

No Comments

Margashirsha Krushna Ashtami, Kaliyug Varsha 5111

By Mr. V Sundaram, Retired IAS Officer

I Interviewed Dr Subramanian Swamy, President of Janata Party, and one of the most fearless and authentic voices speaking on behalf of the beleaguered Hindus of India today. When I asked him about ludicrous joke of the supine and serpentine Liberhan Commission Report, Dr Swamy told me in categorical terms: “It is time for Muslims of India to act with grace. Then I put this question to Dr Subramanian Swamy: ‘Who will render justice to the Hindus of India who continue to remain as third-class citizens even 62 years after our independence, whose Temples were destroyed literally in thousands in the most savage manner in all parts of India for over a thousand years from 712 AD till 1800 AD?’ He gave me this reply: “To the best of my knowledge more than 30, 000 Temples were destroyed by the Muslim marauders who invaded India in the Millennium you are referring to. Irrefutable contemporary Islamic documentary evidence exists to prove this fact. Many of them were exquisite Temples noted for their artistic and sculptural value of timeless significance — Temples like the Somnath Temple, Gobind Dev Temple at Vrindavan-Mathura, the Bija Mandal Temple at Vidisha etc. I would demand a NATIONAL MILLENNIUM COMMISSION OF INQUIRY to go into this issue of large scale destruction and defilement of Hindu Temples to ascertain the facts in the larger public interest of the majority Hindus of India.”

When Dr Subramanian Swamy referred to irrefutable contemporary Islamic evidence, then I thought of the great landmark book written in 2 volumes by Sri Sitaram Goel, under the title, ‘HINDU TEMPLES – WHAT HAPPENED TO THEM’. Volume I gives the preliminary survey of destruction in Andhra Pradesh, Assam, Bengal, Bihar, Delhi, Diu, Gujarat, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Karnataka, Kashmir, Kerala, Lakshadweep, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Punjab, Rajasthan, Tamil Nadu and Uttar Pradesh. The cover page of Volume I has been presented below.

What is most interesting about Volume I is that it not only gives a detailed list relating to the large scale destruction of Hindu Temples during the Muslim rule in India, it also gives a long list of recent destruction of Temples in Bangladesh. Using the Babari Masjid-Rama Janmabhoomi controversy as a pretext, Muslim mobs with the full official support of the Government of Bangladesh went on a rampage all over Bangladesh in October 1989. Starting from October 29, 1989, the mob fury reached its climax on November 9 and 10, 1989 after the Shilanyas ceremony at Ayodhya. Many Temples were demolished or burnt down or damaged in various ways. Images of deities were broken and thrown out. Temple priests were beaten up. They attacked and burnt down Hindu houses and business establishments in many places, murdered many Hindus and inflicted injuries on many others. Sitaram Goel has cited details  relating to large scale destruction of Temples in Bangladesh within a period of 2 months in October-November 1989.

Volume II of Sitaram Goel’s book presents authentic documentary evidence from purely Islamic sources. We can see from this presentation that the destruction of Hindu Temples at the hands of the Islamized invaders continued for more than 1100 years, from the middle of the 7th century to the end of the 18th century. It took place all over the vast cradle of Hindu culture, from Sinkiang in the North to Tamil Nadu in the South, and from Sistan in the West to Assam in the East. The cover page of Volume II has been presented above at the top of this story.

To quote the words of Sitaram Goel: ‘All along, the iconoclasts remained convinced that they were putting into practice the highest tenets of their religion. They also saw to it that a record was kept of what they prized as a pious performance. The language of the record speaks for itself. It leaves no doubt that it took considerable pride in doing what they did. … Looking at the very large number of Temples big and small, destroyed or desecrated or plundered or converted into Muslim monuments, economic or political explanations can only be a futile, if not, fraudulent exercise. The explanations are not even plausible. In fact, it is not at all difficult to locate the system of belief which inspired this kind of behaviour pattern. We have only to turn to the scriptures of Islam – The Koran and the Sunnah of the Prophet – and we run straight into what we are looking for. The principles and the pious precedents which were practiced and followed by the subsequent swordsmen of Islam are, all of them, there. The scriptures of Islam do not merely record what happened in the past, they also prescribe that what is recorded should be imitated by the faithful in the future, till the end of time. That is why the swordsmen of Islam who functioned in much later times than that of the Koran and the Sunnah, did what they did. It is the very nature of Islamic scriptures that they make permanent what can otherwise be dated and dismissed as temporary aberrations’

What the Justice Liberhan Commission has deliberately failed to note — what the Justice Sachar Committee has deliberately plotted not to see — is this patent fact. The very same Islamic scriptures referred to above are still being taught in thousands of Maktabs and Madrassas spread over the length and breadth of India, Pakistan and Bangladesh. At the same time, the swordsmen who destroyed innumerable Temples and monasteries (Hindu, Jain and Buddhist) all over the vast cradle of Hindu culture retain their halos as the heroes of Islam. This fact alone can easily explain why Hindu Temples become the first targets of attack even today when ever Muslim mobs are incited against the Hindus by the mullahs and politicians in Pakistan, Bangladesh and Kashmir.

Unfortunately for the Hindus of India, the National Movement for the Restoration of Hindu Temples has got bogged down around the Rama Janmabhoomi at Ayodhya. The fundamental and very much more important question, namely, why Hindu Temples met the deathly fate they did at the hands of the Islamic invaders, has not been even whispered, much less discussed. Pseudo-secular Hindu leaders seem to have deliberately and mischievously endorsed the Muslim propagandists in proclaiming that Islam does not permit the construction of a Mosque at other peoples’ places of worship. Here the brilliant words of Sitaram Goel are absolutely apt and relevant: ‘One wonders whether this kowtowing to Islam is prompted by ignorance, or cowardice, or calculation, or a combination of them all. The Islam of which Hindus are talking exists neither in the Koran nor in the Sunnath of the Prophet Mohammad. It is hoped that this Volume II will help in clearing the confusion’.

Let me now go on to deal with what inspired Sitaram Goel to produce his two outstanding volumes on Islamic destruction of Hindu Temples for a thousand years from the 8th century AD till the end of the 18th century. The Times of India, New Delhi in August and September 1986 had published two photographs on the front page relating to Islamic destruction of Hindu images. The first photo was of stones from the Kutub Minar at Delhi depicting defaced carvings of Hindu deities. The editorial comment in the Times of India had said that the stones were found with their faces turned inwards during repairs of a wall of the Kutub Minar. The second photo was that of Aurangazeb’s Idgah on the Katra Mound at Mathura standing on the site with the rubble of a pre-existing Kesavadeva Temple. The editorial comment was that a Committee had been formed at Mathura for the liberation of Krishnajanmabhoomi. The second photograph was displayed by Arun Shourie who had joined the Times of India, a few months earlier to take over as Chief Editor from Girilal Jain.

The Stalinist Communist anti-Hindu “historians” led by Romila Thapar and S. Gopal (son of Dr Radhakrishnan, former President of India) jumped into the fray and wrote a strong letter of protest to the Times of India. They proclaimed that the Kesavadeva Temple which had been destroyed by Aurangazeb for rich booty as well as for being a centre of “Hindu rebellions” was built at first during the reign of Jehangir and occupied the site of a Buddhist Monastery destroyed by Hindus. They had questioned the historicity of Sri Rama and Sri Krishna and contended that, according to a Persian text, the Babri Masjid did not occupy the site of a pre-existing Rama Temple. At the same time, they had accused Hindus of having destroyed Buddhist and Jain monuments and pre-Hindu animist shrines.

An article titled ‘Hideaway Communalism’ by Arun Shourie in the Indian Express of 5 February, 1989 told the story of how a book written in Arabic and Urdu by a Rector of the Nadawatul-Ulama at Lucknow mentioned several historical mosques which had replaced pre-existing Hindu Temples and how the references to this replacement had been omitted in the English translation of the same book.

In the most inspiring and instructive manner, Sitaram Goel writes in his preface to Volume I of ‘Hindu TEMPLES: What happened To Them’: ‘As a student of history in school and college, I had been taught the history of Medieval India in the conventional way, presenting Islam as a great religion and the Islamic invaders and rulers as indigenous Indian princes.

Later on, Mahatma Gandhi’s mindless slogan of sarva-dharma-sama-bhava had prevented me from studying the history and theology of Islam from primary source. But Ram Swaroop’s magnum opus, ‘The Word as Revelation: Names of Gods’ and his subsequent study, ‘Understanding Islam through Hadis: Faith or Fanaticism’ had made me aware of Islam’s real character. I could see that there was more to the history of medieval India than the reigns of Muslim dynasties, their rise and fall, the wars they waged, the harems they collected and the monuments they built etc. It was by now several years since I had been reading the primary sources in English and Urdu — the Quran, the orthodox Hadis collections, the Hidaayah, the numerous histories written by medieval Muslim chroniclers, and Reports of the Archaeological Survey of India (ASI) about the genesis of many Muslim monuments which dotted the land. I had become fully aware of the Holocaust caused by Islam in India for centuries on end through its victims and slaves — the Arabs, the Turks, the Afghans, the Iranians and the native Hindu converts. I was in a position to compile the record of Islamic iconoclasm and place it in the context of Islamic theology.’

Keeping this larger obje-ctive in view, Sitaram Goel requested Ram Swaroop to recommend the name of a historian for undertaking the above task, as he himself was too preoccupied with other equally pressing tasks. Ram Swaroop suggested the name of Dr Ganesh Lal Varma who had been writing good pieces in the weekly ‘ORGANISER’.  Dr Varma accepted the assignment proposed by Sitaram Goel. A few weeks later, Dr Varma wrote an article in the ‘Organiser’ mentioning the names of a few Muslim monuments which stood at the original site of Hindu Temples or had been built with temple materials. He had cited a report of the ASI and wrote a long report on the list of such temples giving details as to who had built those temples and when. Ram Swaroop ‘was quite annoyed because he felt that Dr Varma’s articles failed to convey what he and Sitaram Goel wanted to convey, namely, that Hindu Temples had been destroyed by such and such Muslim ruler inspired by the theology of Islam.

Dr Varma went on collecting more and more material and writing articles in the ’Organiser’. In all he wrote 18 articles in the ’Organiser’ in 1987 in which he had covered 350 Muslim Monuments which were constructed in the original Templesites after demolishing the Hindu Temples, many of which had wantonly used the Hindu Temple materials for the construction of those Islamic monuments. But he had not mentioned the theology of Islam. Nor did he take care to place them in a chronological context. Therefore Dr Varma’s list made practically no impact on public opinion. I am shocked to see from Sitaram Goel’s preface that even the General Secretary of the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) at that time was not even aware that such an authentic list had appeared in the mouthpiece of the Sangh Parivaar. Failure to widely publicise Dr Varma’s list was a grave strategic failure on the part of the VHP/ BJP combine which on it’s own had produced till that time no literature at all on the subject of Islamic iconoclasm and large-scale Hindu Temple destruction and which was trying to coax the Muslims out of their cherished Babri Masjid by merely flattering Islam.

What seems to have finally inspired Sitaram Goel to produce his 2 magisterial Volumes on Islamic destruction of Hindu Temples was a brilliant article of Arun Shourie titled ‘Hideaway Communalism’ in the Indian Express of New Delhi on 5 February, 1989. In this article Arun Shourie presented his story by referring to the English version of a major book by a renowned Muslim scholar Maulana Hakim Sayid Abdul Hai. He was renowned Muslim scholar and Rector of one of the greatest centres of Islamic learning in India, namely the Nadwatul-Ulamah of Lucknow. This was founded in 1894 and is second only to the Darul-Ulum at Deoband.

Maulana Hakim Sayid Abdul Hai in his original Arabic book had listed some of the Mosques, including the Babri Masjid at Ayodhya, which were built on the sites and foundations of original Hindu temples using their stones and structures. The Arabic version of this book was published in 1972 in Hyderabad, the Urdu version in 1973 in Lucknow and the English version was published in 1977. Great care was taken by the underground Islamic currents and forces, ever working for the destruction of Hindu India, to completely censor out from the English version of the book, the tell-tale passages relating to the large-scale destruction of Hindu Temples that were detailed in the original Arabic version. The scoop that Arun Shourie had achieved was indeed historic.

Maulana Hakim Sayid Abdul Hai’s son Maulana Abul-Hassan Ali Nadwi or Ali Mian, who became Rector of the Nadwatul-Ulamah of Lucknow in 1961 wrote a foreword to the Arabic version of his father’s book in 1972. To quote the words of Arun Shourie: “It is an eloquent, almost lyrical foreword. … It did not suck away the wealth of the country, he writes, and vomit it elsewhere as Western powers did. On the contrary, it brought sophistication, culture, beneficent administration, peace, tranquillity to the country. And so on.”

Arun Shourie then asks a highly delightful question: “Such being the trans-national Islamic eminence of the author writing the foreword, such being the greatness of the original work by his father Maulana Hakim Sayid Abdul Hai, why is it not the cynosure of the Muslim fundamentalists’ eyes?” The answer seems to lie in the Chapter “Hindustan Ki Masjidein’ or ‘The Mosques of Hindustan’. In barely 17 pages, a few facts about some of the principal mosques are described in a few lines each. Why do Muslim / Marxist historians of Aligarh Muslim and Jawaharlal Nehru Marxist Universities choose to be silent and furtive about this chapter? Why? Descriptions of 7 very important mosques provide the answer.

In order to understand the total nature and extent of the letter and spirit of Muslim destruction of Hindu Temples, all that we need do is to quote a few sentences about 7 mosques written by Maulana Abdul Hai in his book in the original Arabic version and which were deliberately censored out in English Edition.

1. ‘Quawwat al-Islam Mosque’

“According to my findings the first Mosque of Delhi is Qubbat al-Islam or Quwuat al-Islam which, it is said Qutbud-Din Aibak constructed in Hijra 587 after demolishing the Temple built by Prithvi Raj and leaving some parts of the Temple (outside the Mosque proper) and when he returned from Gazni in Hijra 592, he started building, under orders from Shihaibud-Din Ghori, a huge Mosque of inimitable red stones and certain parts of the Temple were included in the mosque.

2. The Mosque at Jaunpur

“This was built by Sultan Ibrahim Sharqi with chiselled stones. Originally it was Hindu Temple. After he demolished the Temple, he constructed the Mosque. It is known as the ATALA MASJID. The Sultan used to offer his Friday prayers and Id prayers in it.

3. The Mosque at Qanauj

“This Mosque stands on an elevated ground inside the fort of Quanauj. It is well known that it was built on the foundations of a Hindu Temple that stood there. It is a beautiful Mosque. They say it was built by Ibrahim Sharqi in Hijra 809.

4. Jami (Masjid) at Etawah

“The Mosque stands on the bank of the Jamuna at Etawah. There was a Hindu Temple at this place, on the site of which the Mosque was constructed.

5. Babri Masjid at Ayodhya

“This Mosque was constructed by Babar at Ayodhya, which Hindus call the birth place of Ramchanderji. It is said that Sita had a Temple here in which she lived and cooked food for her husband. On that very site Babar constructed this Mosque in Hijra 963.

6. Mosques of Alamgir (Aurangazeb) at Benaras

“It is said that the Mosque of Benares was built by Amalgir on the site of the Bisheshwar Temple. That Temple was very tall and held as holy among the Hindus. On this very site and with those very stones Alamgir constructed a lofty Mosque and its ancient stones were rearranged after being embedded in the walls of the Mosque. It is one of the renowned Mosques of Hindustan. The second Mosque at Benaras is the one which was built by Alamgir on the bank of the Ganga with chiselled stones. This is also a renowned Mosques of Hindustan. It has 28 towers, each of which is 238 feet tall.

7. Mosque at Mathura

“Alamgir built a Mosque at Mathura. It is said that this Mosque was built on the site of the Gobind Dev Temple which was very strong and beautiful as well as exquisite.”

December 6, 2009 was observed by the Muslims of India as the Babri Masjid Day. If the Hindus of India in majority today have to follow the ‘noble’ example of their “compassionate Muslim brethren”, then in the light of the details of Islamic destruction of Hindu temple published above, the Hindus of India have a fundamental right to observe all the 365 days from 1st January 2010 onwards, as such and such Temple Destruction Day every day of the year, for the next 10 years just to complete one round of commemoration of savage Islamic destruction of Hindu Temples during the Millennium from 712 AD till 1800 AD.

In these columns on 7 December and 8 December 2009, I have referred to the unprovoked, uncontrolled, unabashed and Islamic state sponsored destruction of Hindu Temples in India for a thousand years from the beginning of the 8th century AD to the end of the 18th century AD. For the one and only Babri Masjid, the Hindus of India can furnish a list of at least 30,000 centres in India where Mosques had been built on original temple sites by completely demolishing the temples and using the damaged rubble of those temples with Islamic fervour for the construction of mosques on those very sites in order to uphold the glory and grandeur of Islam from time to time, strictly in accordance with the tenets of the Koran and Sharia.

15TH AUGUST 1947 SAW THE DAWN OF FREEDOM ONLY FOR THE MUSLIMS OF PAKISTAN. Very unfortunately for the Hindus of India 15th of August 1947 was really a day of mourning. Many Hindu families in Western Punjab and East Bengal lost their near and dear ones. More than half a million Hindu men, women and children were slaughtered mercilessly by the rampaging Muslim mobs in Pakistan with the full official approval of Mohammad Ali Jinnah, responsible for the partition of India on religious lines. Thousands and thousands of Hindus in Pakistan were grievously injured, their property looted and their women subjected to gang rapes and abduction in accordance with the known tenets of Islam relating to the treatment of the Kaffirs by the Momins (practicing Muslims).

Jinnah created Pakistan for the sake of Islam. “Mahatma” Gandhi allowed Jinnah to partition India in order to appease the Muslims of India. Jawaharlal Nehru and his Congress Government have promoted the cause of Islamization for the further partition of India by stages after independence till date.

The beleaguered Hindus of India today would like to put 2 simple and straight questions to Dr Manmohan Singh:

1. Are you aware of the documentation done by Sita ram Goel in regard to the large scale savage destruction of Hindu Temples in India for a thousand years by the Muslim invaders, marauders and rulers?

2. If the demolition of the Babri Masjid (where there was no worship for 60 years from 1949 till date!) demands a Liberhan Commission of Inquiry, paid out of public funds in perpetuity for a millennium or 17 years which ever is earlier, then will not by the same token and the same logic, the large-scale Islamic destruction of Hindu Temples by the Muslim invaders / marauders / rulers for a millennium equally call for at least 4 REGIONAL COMMISSIONS OF INQUIRY — North, East, West and South (NEWS) — to assuage the shattered religious feelings and emotions of the oppressed and suppressed Hindus of India today?

In the history of Islam, iconoclasm and razing other people’s temples are not just aberrations — stray acts of zealous but misguided rulers — but are central to the faith. They derive their justification and validity from the Kuranic Revelation and the Prophets Sunnah or practice. Shrines and idols of the “unbelievers” (non-Muslims or Kaffirs) began to be destroyed during the Prophets own life time and indeed at his behest. Sirat-un-Nabi, the first pious biography of the Prophet, tells us how during the earliest days of Islam, young men at Medina influenced by Islamic teachings repeatedly crept into a house every night and carried it’s idol and threw: “it on it’s face into a cesspit”. However, desecration and destruction began in right earnest when Mecca was conquered. The fact is that the Revelation of the Prophet of Islam does not stand alone. It is rooted in the older Judaic Revelation from which Christianity derives. The two Revelations differ in some particulars but they have important similarities.

Muslim historians, in India and abroad, have written hundreds of accounts in which the progress of Islamic Armies across the cradle of Hindu culture is narrated, stage by stage and period by period. A very pronounced feature of these Muslim histories is a description — in smaller or greater detail but always with considerable pride and delight —— of how the Hindus were slaughtered en masse or converted by force, how hundreds of thousands of Hindu men and women and children were captured as booty and sold into slavery, how Hindu Temples and monasteries were razed to the ground or burnt down, and how images of Hindu Gods and Goddesses were destroyed or desecrated.

In Volume I of his work, ‘HINDU TEMPLES: What Happened to Them’, Sita Ram Goel has written a brilliant chapter (Chapter 7) titled ‘Let the Mute Witnesses Speak’, completely documenting the unparalleled Islamic destruction of Hindu Temples in a very detailed manner which the anti-Hindu secular brigade of Arjun Singhs, Mulayam Singh Yadavs, Prakash Karats and the like can never succeed in obliterating once for all from the collective Hindu consciousness of the HINDU NATION.

I am presenting below in summary form the details relating to the destruction of temples from Islamic literary sources furnished by Dr Sita Ram Goel in Chapter 7 of Volume I.

I. TARIKHU’L-HIND By Abu Rihan Muhammad bin Ahmad al-Biruni al-Khwarizmi.
This author spent 40 years in India during the reign of Sultan Mahmud of Ghazni (AD 997 – 1030). His history treats of the literature and learning of the Hindus at the commencement of the 11th century.

The Muslim Rulers He Wrote ab0ut:

A. Jalam ibn Shaiban (9th century AD) Multan (Punjab)

“A famous idol of theirs was that of Multan, dedicated to the sun, and therefore called Aditya. It was of wood and covered with red Cordovan leather; in its two eyes were two red rubies. It is said to have been made in the last Kritayuga …..When Muhammad Ibn Alkasim Ibn Almunaibh conquered Multan, he inquired how the town had become so very flourishing and so many treasures had there been accumulated, and then he found out that this idol was the cause, for there came pilgrims from all sides to visit it. Therefore he thought it best to have the idol where it was, but he hung a piece of cow’s flesh on its neck by way of mockery. On the same place a mosque was built. When the Karmatians occupied Multan, Jalam Ibn Shaiban, the usurper, broke the idol into pieces and killed its priests…”

B. Sultan Mahmud of Gazni (AD 997-1030)

1. Thanesar (Haryana):

“The city of Taneshar’ is highly venerated by Hindus. The idol of that place is called Cakrasvamin, i.e. the owner of the cakra, a weapon which we have already described. It is of bronze, and is nearly the size of a man. It is now lying in the hippodrome in Ghazna, together with the Lord of Somnath, which is a representation of the penis of the Mahadeva, called Linga.”

2. Somnath (Gujrat)  

“The linga he razed was the stone of Somnath …. The image was destroyed by the Prince Mahmud, may God be merciful to him! —AH 416. He ordered the upper part to be broken and the remainder to be transported to his residence, Ghaznin, with all its coverings and trappings of gold, jewels, and embroidered garments. Part of it has been thrown into the hippodrome of the town, together with Cakrasvamin, an idol of bronze that had been brought from Taneshar. Another part of the idol from Somnath lies before the door of the mosque of Ghaznin, on which people rub their feet to clean them from dirt and wet.”


By Abu Nasr Muhammad ibn Muhammad al Jabbaru’l-Utbi.

This author’s work comprises the whole of the reign of Subuktigin and that of Sultan Mahmud down to the year AD 1020.

The Muslim Rulers He Wrote ab0ut:

A. Amir Sbuktigin Of Ghazni Lamghan (Afghanistan)

“The Amir marched out towards Lamghan, which is a city celebrated for its great strength and abounding wealth. He conquered it and set fire to the places in its vicinity which were inhabited by infidels, and demolishing idol temples, he established Islam in them.”
B. Sultan Mahmud of Ghazni (AD 997-1030)

1.Narain (Rajasthan)

“The Sultan  …reduced chiefs, who, up to that time obeyed no master, overturned their idols, put to the sword the vagabonds of that country …”

2. Nardin (Punjab)

”The Sultan marched with a large army in the year AH 404 (AD 1013) … A stone was found there in the temple of the great Budda on which an inscription was written purporting that the temple had been founded 50,000 years ago.”

The barbarous anti-Hindu attempts by Marxist historians like Habib, Romila Thapar and others to deliberately clothe the destruction of Hindu Temples in terms of economic motives, have to explain as to how and why when the besieged Hindus tried to ransom their idols by expressing willingness to pay their weight in gold, the Muslim invaders rejected such gainful offers with contempt. According to Muslim historical sources, the Muslim invaders wanted to ‘earn merit in the eyes of Allah’ rather than ‘mere mammon’.

Source: News Today

Posted in भारतीय मंदिर - Bharatiya Mandir

Govind Dev (Govindaji) Temple

Govind Dev (Govindaji) Temple

Govind Dev (Govindaji) Temple was once a magnificent seven storeyed structure built in the form of a Greek cross. It is said that the Emperor Akbar donated some of the red sandstone that had been brought for the Red Fort at Agra, for the construction of this temple. Built at the astronomical cost of one crore rupees in 1590 by his general Raja Man Singh, the temple combines western, Hindu and Muslim architectural elements in its structure. It was destroyed by Mughal ruler Aurangzeb.

Posted in रामायण - Ramayan

लखनऊ/अयोध्या. अयोध्या में राम जन्मभूमि-बाबरी मस्जिद मामले

लखनऊ/अयोध्या. अयोध्या में राम जन्मभूमि-बाबरी मस्जिद मामले
के मुख्य मुद्दई हाशिम अंसारी ने मंगलवार को बयान देकर
सबको चौंका दिया है। बाबरी मस्जिद मुद्दे के राजनीतिकरण से
नाराज उन्होंने कहा कि अब रामलला को वह आजाद देखना चाहते हैं।
वह अब किसी भी कीमत पर वे बाबरी मस्जिद के मुकदमे
की पैरवी नहीं करेंगे। छह दिसंबर को काला दिवस जैसे
किसी भी कार्यक्रम में शामिल नहीं होंगे। उन्होंने
कहा कि रामलला तिरपाल में रहें और लोग महलों में। लोग लड्डू खाएं
और रामलला इलायची दाना, यह नहीं हो सकता। (देखें वीडियो)
हाशिम ने कहा कि बाबरी मस्जिद की पैरवी के लिए एक्शन
कमेटी बनी थी, लेकिन आजम खान उसके कन्वेनर (संयोजक) बना दिए
गए। अब सियासी फायदा उठाने के लिए वे मुलायम के साथ चले गए।
एक्शन कमेटी के जितने लीडर थे, उनको पीछे छोड़ दिया। हाशिम ने
कहा, “मुकदमा हम लड़ें और राजनीति का फायदा आजम खान उठाएं।
इसलिए मैं अब बाबरी मस्जिद मुकदमे की पैरवी नहीं करूंगा।
इसकी पैरवी आजम खान करें।”
चित्रकूट में मंदिर के दर्शन करने वाले आजम अयोध्या क्यों नहीं आते
हाशिम अंसारी यही नहीं रुके, उन्होंने आगे कहा कि आजम खान
चित्रकूट में छह मंदिरों का दर्शन कर सकते हैं, तो अयोध्या दर्शन
करने क्यों नहीं आते। उन्होंने कहा, “बाबरी मस्जिद हो या राम
जन्मभूमि, यह राजनीति का अखाड़ा है। मैं हिंदुओं
या मुसलमानों को बेवकूफ बनाना नहीं चाहता। मेरे हक़ में फैसला हुआ
है। अब हम किसी कीमत पर बाबरी मस्जिद मुकदमे
की पैरवी नहीं करेंगे। छह दिसंबर को मुझे कोई कार्यक्रम
नहीं करना है, बल्कि अपना दरवाजा बंद करके अंदर रहना है।”
नेता मस्जिद का नाम लेकर अपनी रोटियां सेंक रहे हैं
हाशिम अंसारी से ने पूछा कि आपने जो सुलह-
समझौते की कोशिश की थी, उसके बारे में क्या कहेंगे? जवाब में
उन्होंने कहा कि जब कोशिश की थी, उसी समय हिंदू महासभा सुप्रीम
कोर्ट चली गई। परिषद के अध्यक्ष बाबा ज्ञान दास ने पूरी कोशिश
की थी कि हिंदुओं और मुसलमानों को इकट्ठा करके मामले
को सुलझाया जाए। उन्होंने कहा कि बाबरी मस्जिद
का मुकदमा 1950 से चल रहा है। सारे नेता चाहे वह हिंदू
हो या मुसलमान, मस्जिद का नाम लेकर अपनी रोटियां सेंक रहे हैं।
उन्होंने साफ कहा, “जितने भी नेता हैं सब कोठियों में रह रहे हैं और
रामलला तिरपाल में रह रहे हैं। मैं रामलला को तिरपाल में
देखना नहीं चाहता। खुद तो 100 रुपए किलो की बढ़िया मिठाई
खा रहे हैं और रामलला इलायची दाना खा रहे हैं, यह नहीं हो होगा।
अब हम रामलला को हर कीमत पर आजाद देखना चाहते हैं। अब
मुकदमे की कार्रवाई आजम खान करें, मुझको नहीं करना।”

Posted in भारतीय मंदिर - Bharatiya Mandir

थाइलैण्ड – Thiland

Arun Upadhyay इन्द्र को पूर्व दिशा का लोकपाल कहा गया है अर्थात् उनका क्षेत्र भारत के मध्य उज्जैन से पूर्व ओड़िशा से वियतनाम तक था। वियत् = आकाश या शून्य। इसका प्रतिरूप आन्ध्र तट (प्राचीन कलिंग) पर अनाम है। वियतनाम का भी पुराना नाम अनाम ही है-दोनों का अर्थ बिना नाम का, अव्यक्त ब्रह्म है। देवी अथर्वशीर्ष में भी पराशक्ति को कहा है-शून्यं च अशून्यं च। इन्द्र सम्बन्धी प्रायः ३५ वैदिक शब्दों का प्रयोग केवल ओड़िशा में होता है। इन्द्र का हाथी ऐरावत इरावती (बर्मा, थाईलैण्ड) में) के पूर्व का था तथा सफेद था अतः आज भी थाई हाथियों को सफेद ही कहते हैं। इन्द्र को बट्-महान् कहते थे। अतः थाइलैण्ड में मुद्रा को बट () कहते हैं। इस अर्थ में बट्-महान् = अधिक पैसे वाला। कम्बोडिया में भी बड़े या मुख्य मन्दिर को अंकुर-वट कहते हैं। इन्द्र के हाथियों को वटूरी तथा ऐरावत को महा-वटूरि कहते हैं। आज भी असम, थाइलैण्ड, वियतनाम में वटूरि का अर्थ हाथी होता है। इन्द्र को अच्युत-च्युतः कहते थे अर्थात् अच्युत (अपराजित) को भी पराजित करनेवाला। असम के राजवंश को भी अच्युत= चुतिया कहते थे। च्युत का नागपुर झारखण्ड था। आज भी रांची में चुतिया मोड़ है। झारखण्ड को भी चुतिया-नागपुर कहते थे जो अंग्रेजी माध्यम से छोटानागपुर हो गया। इन्द्र का एक नाम सुत्रामा था, जिनके नाम पर सुमात्रा द्वीप है। रामायण के अनुसार इन्द्र ने यहां एक महल बनाया था।-(किष्किन्धा काण्ड अध्याय ४०)-रत्नवन्तं यवद्वीपं सप्तराज्योपशोभितम्। सुवर्णकुड्यकं चैव सुवर्णाकरमण्डितम्॥२७॥ यवद्वीपमतिक्रम्य शिशिरो नाम पर्वतः। दिवं स्पृशति शृङ्गेण देव-दानवसेवितः॥२८॥ गृहं च वैनतेयस्य नानारत्नोपशोभितम्। तत्र कैलास सङ्काशं विहितं विश्वकर्मणा॥३८॥