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Thursday 31 December 2020

Nageshwara And Chennakeshava Temples

-  Where Mohini & Varahi Beckon

Awesome....Thanks for staying on from part II

As I was walking around the temple trying to understand and decipher as many carvings as I could, I came across a couple of small kids playing catch. To my horror, they were happily using the carvings for target practice. A couple of adults nearby did not even seem to realise the harm that was being caused.
A beautiful carving
A beautiful carving - Photo Credit - Ramani Shankar

I just took a wild guess that they must be kids from the surrounding village for whom the temple complex was just a centuries-old playground. In the nicest and firmest voice I could muster, I asked them to play elsewhere. Only after that another villager came running and took charge of the situation. 

No wonder there are so many broken noses, faces and other fractured pieces of carvings in the temple. 

Wednesday 30 December 2020

Nageshwara And Chennakeshava Temples

-  Carvings & More

Thanks for walking with me from part I.

Remember my blog about Lakshmi Narasimhaswamy temple in Bhadravati, where I spoke about the figurine of 'the man in the long coat'? The priest in that temple had told us that that figurine was of the chief architect of the temple. 

Man in Long coat?
The supposed Visha Kanya
or the mystery person in the 
long coat

I was absolutely surprised when I saw a very similar carving here and I was told that this is the 'Visha Kanya' or poisonous maiden. The 'Visha Kanyas' were brought up from childhood with controlled doses of poison. By the time they were grown up their mere touch could kill someone. 

Nageshwara And Chennakeshava Temples

- The Twins Of Mosale Hosehalli

This trip was different. I was not travelling with Meera. This trip was with a different group of people, who were equally, happily enthusiastic about heritage, and my parents. In fact, I was not even originally supposed to travel. But after being cooped up for so long, unable to do the right kind of justice to spotted owlets and its mission to bring as many stories as possible from hidden gems all over, I just chose to grab the chance and I am glad I did. 

Our journey was supposed to take us to Belur, Halebidu, Veeranarayana Swamy temple at Belavadi and Dodda Gadavalli. But after a recent and unfortunate desecration of an idol at Dodda Gadavalli by some misguided treasure hunters, the plan had to be changed. 

This took us through some very scenic and incredibly pleasant roads on that cloud interspersed winter morning to the twin temples of Nageshwara and Chennakeshva at Mosale Hosehalli. There are times when seated at the far end of a 21 seater bus makes you feel every bump and stone personally. The journey, however, was overall fun and totally worth it. This included the roller coaster drop and climb over a dried-up water canal since there was a bridge construction right next to it. Google maps also showed a long thin road snaking across seemingly nowhere to suddenly reach the temple. 

Nageswara and Chennakeshave temples
The twins of Moasale Hosehalli

Tuesday 22 December 2020

Veeranarayana Temple In Belavadi - Additional Information

The main story of this temple can be found here.

It was an incredible feeling when I got a chance to visit the Veeranarayana Swamy temple at Belavadi again.  I had started this year with a visit to this temple in January. I do not know how it works, but I guess some energy from the temple made sure I visited the temple again before the year-end. 

The Veeranarayana Temple
The seven doorways or Sapthadwara

Thursday 10 December 2020

Chikkamagaluru - A 100-Year-Old Unique Heritage

Belavadi is a tiny and quaint village and is just 10 kilometres from the world-famous Hoysaleshwara temple at Halebeedu in Hassan district.

In the aftermath of visiting the famous Hoysala style architectural marvel, the Veeranarayana Swamy Temple at Belavadi in Chikkamagaluru district, we took a stroll around the village which once had about 400 Brahmin families living around the temple. 

It was a hot and sunny day and to walk around the village made us thirsty and hungry but this village has neither any tourist facility nor any hotels or restaurants. Despite our rumbling stomach, we decided to take a peek around this ancient village.

Front view of the house
Front view of the house

Tuesday 8 December 2020

Lepakshi Temple

-  The Incomplete Kalyan Mantapa And More

Thank you for joining me from Part IV

Another place filled with drama, intrigue and designs is the incomplete Kalyan Mantapa or the marriage hall near the southwest side of the temple. 

The pillars stand all decked up in their incredible carvings, yet bare because of the missing ceiling.  Our guide dramatically narrated the macabre story behind the unfinished mandapa. 

Entrance to the kalyan mantapa
Entrance to the kalyan mantapa

Saturday 5 December 2020

Lepakshi Temple

-  Hanging Pillar And Other Architectural Expertise

Thank you for joining me from part III

The story of the hanging pillar of Lepakshi is definitely not a new one, but it still does not fail to intrigue.  Of the 70 pillars in the dancing hall, one pillar was the chosen one. Hanging from the ceiling in a perfectly straight manner, this pillar balances the weight of all the other pillars around it. Such an immaculate calculation of the place, weight, angle and positioning of the pillar!!!

The hanging pillar
The hanging pillar