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Topic ClosedAmazing sun temples of India

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Jinit View Drop Down
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Direct Link To This Post Topic: Amazing sun temples of India
    Posted: 08-May-2014 at 11:01
Durga temple, Aihole

The name of the temple in this case is misleading as it isn't dedicated to goddess Durga. It is named as such after a nearby fort. (The sanskrit word for the Fort is Durga). The temple was built around 725 AD during the reign of the Chalukya ruler Vijayaditya. 

In the context of India temple architecture the temple holds an unique position due to various reasons. First of all the building doesn't fit in any of the conventional category of Indian temple architecture. The Hall and Porch are built into Dravida style, while the Shikhara or the pyramidal top is built in Nagara style. The entire temple itself is built in the apsidal form which is extremely unusual for the Hindu temples of the time.

The biggest mystery however concerns the deity to whom this temple was dedicated, At some point of time the main deity from the inner sanctum was removed and the reliefs on the temple walls contain the representation of wide variety of deities, which makes its identification difficult. Over the years it has been connected variously with Buddha, Shiva, Vishnu, Durga and Aditya (surya - Sun diety). It was associated with Buddhism because in the past the apsidal temple architecture was erroneously associated exclusively with Buddhism. However in reality Apsidal architecture was also used by the Ajivikas, Jaina and Hindu cults too. Besides it is little bit difficult to explain the Hindu iconography in Buddhist temple. Shaiva temples of the region generally had tradition for the separate Nandi pavilion infront of the temple, which is absent in this case, so it can't be Shiva temple either. Since the Goddess isn't the principal presentation on the reliefs it can't be dedicated to Goddess Durga either. Vishnu temples of the region and period tend to have exclusive Vaishnava iconography, while as suggested earlier the temple contains representation of the various deities.. So it can't be Vishnu temple either. Most of the art historians today consider it as Sun temple as there is an image of the Sun deity above entrance, in addition to several representations of Sun god in the temple. Besides an inscription has been found which refers to it as a temple of Aditya. So it is safe to assume that the temple was indeed dedicated to Sun god.

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Circular stone on the ground is actually the fallen top of the temple.


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Edited by Jinit - 08-May-2014 at 11:04
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Jinit View Drop Down
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 08-May-2014 at 11:04
The temple has an ambulatory pathway running along the entire outside of the apse. 

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The passage consists of a gallery, the inner wall of which has 11 wall niches. These niches frame a sculptures of various deities, however only 7 have survived. These reliefs although damaged to certain extent are still considered masterpieces of the Chalukya period.


Lord Shiva with his bull Nandi
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Durga as Mahishasurmardini (the one who killed buffalo demon)
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Lord Vishnu with his vehicle Garuda
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Lord Vishnu in his boar incarnation rescuing the Mather Earth from the ocean
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Lord Vishnu in the Nursinha Avatara (incarnation in the form of partial man partial lion)
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Lord Harihara (Half Shiva and Half Vishnu)
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josan420 View Drop Down
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25-Oct-2015 at 08:09
I think You forgot this one:
1400 years old Sun Clock carved on a Indian Temple
http://www.mysteryofindia.com/2015/03/1400-years-old-sun-clock-of-chola-empire.html
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Centrix Vigilis View Drop Down
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Direct Link To This Post Posted: 25-Oct-2015 at 12:31
Your name is in violation of the CoC as a probable spammer or spam bot. Further you are not, as an initial poster, allowed to post a web link in your signature block until you have received permission to do so.

Obviously you failed to read the CoC as required upon membership. The post link has been edited.

And you are suspended.
"Absence of evidence is not evidence of absence"

S. T. Friedman


Pilger's law: 'If it's been officially denied, then it's probably true'

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