13 January 2018

Kalyani - The Pond..

The temple town of Shravanabelagola gets its name from its pond, Kalyani. Belagola or Bili kola meaning white pond, which became Shravanabelagola, with the visit of many jain monks called Sharavanas. The pond which is said to have been formed by the milk poured by Gullakayajji(visit the link to know the story) on Bahubali idol on Vindhyagiri Hill.
Bahubali, Bahubali Mahamastakabhisheka 2018, Karnataka, Travel
The pond which had been the main source of water of the town for years, has steps which lead you to water. It is surrounded by wall with gates surmounted by towers and presently restricted with entry. I still recall those days, when it was open to public, and the water fountain at the centre used to be functional and light at night.
Bahubali, Bahubali Mahamastakabhisheka 2018, Karnataka, Travel
The towers on the gates too have great carving from inside out and the pond with the reflection of the surrounding greens adores the beautiful of the temple town when viewed from both the hills.

History

(info credit Mahamasthakabhisheka)
It was built by Annaiah the officer of Kammata (mint) but he died before its completion. Later his grandson Krishnawodeyar-I completed the gopura, the tank and corridor as mentioned in Anathakavi’s Gommateshwara Charite. In the course of years the construction was also taken over by Chikkadevarajendra Wodeyar, the king who ruled Mysore state from A.D. 1672-1704 and was completed in A.D. 1723 in his memory as he died during the period of its construction.

6 January 2018

Akhanda Bagilu or Akhanda Dwara...

Its the first blog post for the year, and I am continuing with my series on Shravanabelagola, a travel guide for all those who are planing a visit to the place for the historical Mahamasthakabhisheka event scheduled from 15th Feb to 25th Feb this year. 
Here is the post about Akhanda Bagilu - the Monolithic Gateway.
Bahubali, Bahubali Mahamastakabhisheka 2018, Karnataka, Travel
As we ascend the Vindhyagiri hill further ahead of Odegal Basadi and take few steps, we stand in front of the Akhanda Bagilu or the Monolothic Gateway. Carved out of a single boulder, the gateway has  Gajalakshmi panel above the door lintel. Goddess Lakshmi is seated on a lotus, flanked by two elephants who anoint the goddess with pots in their trunks. Crocodiles and lions form the upper part of the panel. Showcasing one of the best craftsmanship of Ganga dynasty, this is considered to be one of the finest and largest reliefs of Gajalakshmi in the country.
Bahubali, Bahubali Mahamastakabhisheka 2018, Karnataka, Travel
 On either side of the gate way are small shrines dedicated to Bharatha and Bahubali. A big boulder adjoining the left shrine has inscriptions and carvings of many Jain monks. They are said to be Bharatha's sons, called Mooka Makkalu or dumb children. While few call them dumb, other write ups say, they kept silent by choice. All these monks are said to have attained enlightenment with their grand father, the first thirthankara, Adhinatha.
Bahubali, Bahubali Mahamastakabhisheka 2018, Karnataka, Travel
While the doorway is assigned to 980AD, the two shrines are said to be added around 1130AD by Bharathamayya, a general of king Hoysala Vishnuvardhana. 

30 December 2017

Architectural Marvel of Odegal Basadi...

The first temple you encounter as soon as you enter the first fort of Vidhyagiri hill is Odegal Basadi. Odegal meaning support stones, the temple stands completely with the support of the stones arranged at an angle to the raised temple platform. Its a great architectural marvel, to construct a temple of its kind decades back.
Bahubali, Bahubali Mahamastakabhisheka 2018, Karnataka, Travel

Bahubali, Bahubali Mahamastakabhisheka 2018, Karnataka, Travel
The temple said be built in 10th century by Chamundaraya, is a thrikuta basadi, with three sanctums  dedicated to Adhinatha, Shanthinatha and Neminatha Thirthankara. Like in any Hoysala temple, the mahamadapa which houses the three sanctum has a raised circular platform at the centre with pillars around. These circular platforms in Hoysala temples were used by Shantala, queen of Hoysala king Vishnuvardhana to dance with devotion in front of the lord.