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Popular Temples in India

From the arresting Himalayan ranges in the North, to Kanyakumari in the South India is suffused with
famous temples which date back to ancient times. The adornment in these traditional temples is one of
the world's primary artistic legacies. Today they are a paradigm of how life was earlier and that how the
worshiping has been after years of passing.

Have a look at some of the most famous ones.

Khajuraho Temples- Khajuraho temple is situated in Madhya Pradesh. The Khajuraho temples are
internationally famous for the erotic sculptures that enrich the walls. Architecturally these temples are
unique. They are built on high platforms, several meters off the ground in a combination of light sandstone
and granite. Each of these temples has an entrance hall or mandapa, and a sanctum sanctorum or
garbha griha. The roofs of these various sections have a discrete form. The porch and hall have
pyramidal roofs which are made of several horizontal layers. The inner roof is a conical tower, a massive
load of stone made of minute towers called Shikhara.

Meenakshi Temple-.The Meenakshi temple has distinguished and elegantly carved towers, dedicated to
Goddess Meenakashi in Madurai (Tamil Nadu). Considered as the south gateway, the Meenakshi
temple consists of identical temples of God Shiva and Goddess Meenakshi, each one as high as about
nine storeys. The temple is an outstanding example of sculpture and architecture. The Meenakshi temple
has grandiose stonewalls and towers. The image of Goddess Meenakshi is said to be carved out of a
lone emerald. The temple was refurbished many times adding corridors and grand sculptures to it.
According to the legend of this temple the marriage of the goddess Meenakshi to Shiva took place in
Madurai and is still celebrated every summer with grand gusto.

Sun Temple -The wonderful Sun temple is a living monument of Orissa's splendid past. The Sun
Temple of Konark is regarded as the crest of art and architecture of the ancient Kalinga era. The entire
temple was designed in the form of a mammoth chariot drawn by seven spirited horses on twelve pairs of
elegantly carved wheels. Each of the wheels is nearly 10 feet in diameter. The studies represent the
imposing parade of the Sun God. The temple holds the distinction of being one of the few UNESCO
World Heritage Sites in India.

Golden Temple- The temple is in the capital city of Punjab (Amritsar). It was built by the fifth guru of the
Sikhs and is located on a small island in the centre of a pool called the Amrit-sar ('pool of nectar') and is
linked to land by a marble walkway. The golden color comes from the cover of gold foil. The architecture
of the temple is considered as an epitome of creativity and it represents a unique accord between the
Muslims and the Hindus. Symbolically, it has entrances on all four sides to show that it is open to
worshippers of all castes and creeds.

Mahabodhi Temple- The fifty meter high Mahabodhi Temple is located in Bihar in the city of Gaya. The
temple is an evidence of the history of Buddhism. It is one of the four holy sites related to the life of the
Lord Buddha, particularly the attainment of Enlightenment. This temple is located near the spot where
Gautama Siddhartha had attained salvation. The temple is considered as one of the earliest Buddhist
temples built entirely in brick. The sculpted stone balustrades are an outstanding example of stone. The
four towers on the corners rise gracefully. Delimited on all four sides by stone railings, Mahabodhi Temple
bears railings of two types, the older railings are made from sandstone and the other railings are of
unrefined granite.
Ajanta Ellora Caves- The famous caves of Ajanta and Ellora are situated in the state of Maharashtra.
These caves are regarded as a world heritage site and were dug out from a solid rock. They symbolize
the three faiths of Hinduism, Buddhism and Jainism. They are placed in a horseshoe shape. Out of the
total 34 caves, 12 caves to the south are Buddhist, the 17 in the centre are dedicated to Hinduism, and
the 5 caves to the north are dedicated to Jainism. These caves are divided into 'Chaitya-Grihas' (stupa
halls) and 'Viharas' (dwelling halls). The carvings and the paintings in the caves portray the life of Lord
Buddha. Along with this, several types of human and animal figures are also carved out of the rocks.
Aurangabad is the closest city from these cave temples. These caves are a famous heritage site of India.

Dilwara Jain Temples- Dilwara Jain temples, Mount Abu are sacred pilgrimage place of the Jains. The
temples are a mix of simplicity as well as delicacy. They are five in number all of which are built in white
marble. The two most famous of these are Vimala Vasahi and Luna Vasahi. The Vimala Vasahi is
dedicated to the 1st Jain Tirthankara (saint). The entrance to the temple is from the east through a arched
porch which leads to a six-pillared pergola with a three-tiered smosan (representation of the holy
mountain of the Jains) in the center. The smosan is surrounded by 10 statues including that of the
founder Vimala and his family, each seated on a beautiful elephant made out of a single block of white
marble, about four feet high. The Luna Vasahi is dedicated to the 22nd Jain Tirthankara (saint). It is
slightly smaller then the Vimala Vasahi. The eight pillars of Luna Vasahi assembly hall are of different
types. The emphasize is on the ceiling with superbly carved figures of dancers, animals and parade of
horsemen.

The Indian temples portray a true intermingling of different cultures of India. The Indian temples are a
perfect example of Unity in Diversity, because there is hardly any city, town or village in the country that
does not have temples. The Indian temples depict the different sects’ prevalent here. Thus the Hindu
temples are amongst the finest in India that are spread almost in every segment.

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