Monday, January 26, 2015

Our Treasure - II

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You must have read the first part of this series about our ancient treasures, here.  The sculptures mentioned here also are at Badami caves, Bagalkot, Karnataka, which was built in 578 CE by the Chalukya King, Mangalesha, according to the old Kannada script found here. (wiki link)

These cave temples are cut from Badami softstone rocks.  You can see the pictures here and in the earlier post.  You can read more details from the wiki link.

I mentioned about the Hindu God, Vishnu's beautiful sculpture in my earlier post.  Here some sculptures of Shiva and others in Cave no. 1. 

Please click on the picture and notice the minute design of the hands, the weapons in the hands of Shiva, the posture of the body, legs, etc. This is called 'Thandava Nrutya' by Shiva.  In this posture, he is called Nataraja, 'Natana raja' King of dancing.  Bharatnatyam, which is the Indian classical dance, the postures are derived from the postures of Nataraja here and from various other temple walls. 

I am not a scholar on Hiduism, so, I am stopping here and just posting the pictures, I admired!

5 ft. tall Statue of Shiva as Nataraja (the dancing pose)  with 18 hands.  You can see Ganesha and Nandi, the Bull too, here.
This statue is on the outer wall of the cave. I wonder where the sculptors stand and do this so perfectly!
I am posting this picture just to show where it is, in the cave.
Nagaraja...serpent god hanging from the ceiling.  Click on the pictures to view better pl.
This image is on the ceiling! The guide gave a story...the sculptors lie down on the wooden ladder/saaram and cut this with broad leaves placed on their eyes which are slightly heated so that just the nerves in the leaves are there to see through and work.  The stone pieces might not fall on their eyes and hurt them, though I don't think it is enough.  We can just admire them.  I saw many many more images on the ceilings here and other places like Ajanta, Pattada Kallu etc.

One more design on the ceiling
This is Shiva with his wife Parvati and his vaahana (transport!) Nandi.  Look at the designs on the pillars and ceiling.  My picture is not this clear.  Thanks to this photographer, I noticed many things here in this picture and his other pictures in the link.

This is Narasimha (Nara, means human, Simha means Lion).  Another avataar of Vishnu.  Notice the designs on the pillars and the corners of the ceiling images. 
He looks relaxed here, not like Ugra Narasimha...angry faced Narasimha.  Look at the details...ornaments and other images on the sides.

The details of this cave are here!

The is the sandstone rock from which these temples are carved.  Really amazing. Many many more sculptures are there.  I am covering only some which caught my eye instantly. 


Let me write more about this cave in the coming posts. Our country has got treasures like this all over.  Let us treasure them.  We should be proud to be Indians. 

HAPPY REPUBLIC DAY (TODAY!)!

GANATANTRA DIWAS KI SHUBH KAANAYEIN!

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Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Wordless Wednesday!

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Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Our Treasure - I

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Para Vasudeva (Vishnu), at Badami Caves, North Karnataka
'Eega Raja durbarada olage praveshisiri', the guide said and we were asked to enter this beautiful palace hall-like place in the Badami Caves.

It took sometime for me to decipher what he was saying...I was stunned at the beauty of the sculpture...it was mind boggling! I really had a feeling that I had entered a palace!

We had a 2 week visit to Ajanta-Ellora Cave paintings/sculptures in Maharashtra, Aihole, Pattada Kallu and Badami cave temples in Karnataka.

Badami caves were built by the Chalukya King, Mangalesha in the year 578 CE. We can see an old Kannada inscription on a stone here about the period. Badami was called Vatapi in those days. These rock temples (4 temples, one for Shiva, 2 for Vishnu and one for Jain/Mahaveera) are carved out of the soft Badami sandstone on a hill in the late 6th to 7th centuries.

This temple of Vishnu was the best and the biggest and it had splendid giant figures of Paravasudeva, Bhuvaraha, Harihara and Narasimha (all avataras of Vishnu). I will post the other pictures later! The guide said that the avatara of Vishnu here, is called Para Vaasudeva!

A closer picture of the sculpture! Look at the heads of the snakes, the fingers, nails, toes, ornaments, the flow of the anga vastra (the cloth flowing from the shoulder), the way the feet are poised...click on the picture to view clearly!

You can see the tiny figures around the main sculpture here! The snake's body looks so natural, thin in the end and then it becomes thicker on top!  These sculptures go beyond religions!                                                                                       

The 70 feet wide cave in which this sculpture is seen.
The Vishnu temple is on the left. We had to climb many uneven steps to reach there.

The caves were carved through these rocks! Incredible!

This beautiful photograph is by Dinesh Kannambadi.  Looks clearer than my picture!
Many more beautiful sculptures are there.  This post will become tooo long then.  I am planning to do small small posts, so that it would be easy to read.

We have got so many precious treasures here, in our own country.  I regret for not visiting these places earlier.  We should be very proud of our ancestors for leaving treasures like these for us and our future generation to admire.  These cave temples will stay for thousands of years to declare the greatness of our Indian heritage.

HAPPY LOHRI,
(TODAY)

 HAPPY PONGAL, 
(15.1.15)

MAKARA SHANKRANTHI, 

TO ALL MY FRIENDS! 

BE HAPPY ALWAYS!

P.S.: Our Treasure - II is here!

        Our Treasure - III is here!

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Happy 2015!

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