The Temples of Halebid & Belur - All of life set in stone...

The Temples of Halebid & Belur - All of life set in stone...

As well as the carvings on the exterior walls, the pillars inside the temple - which hold up its roof - are breathtaking in their design and individuality - no two are alike. The dark and cool interior offers a refuge from the spring sunshine, yet looking out, through the passage, the glossy blackness of the interior sucks the daylight into the shrine.... 

.... one can still be impressed by the craftsmanship and marvel at the intricacy of the carvings. For the Hindu family this is the perfect place where stories can be passed on, where the imagery will reinforce the moral of the tale, and where, as the child grows up, all of life is laid before them, including the demands of adulthood - at a height of six foot. 

 

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Shravanabelagola - Monk of the White Pond

Shravanabelagola - Monk of the White Pond

As we approached the top I was struck not by the climb that those regularly coming for prayer and supplication must make but the fact that the buildings were constructed here at all with tools and supplies having to be brought up.

So, already duly reverential, seeing the monolith in its fullness could be said to be almost sublime. Despite its size, even close to it has a stillness and calmness that is tangible. A mixture of awe and peace floats in the air and there is nothing to do but to look...

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Madurai: Meenakshi Temple

Madurai: Meenakshi Temple

The Meenakshi Temple in so many ways demands superlatives. The splendid precinct, the towering gateways, the colourful statues and the vibrant life - all are breathtaking. Alas, the distracting thing is its transformation from temple to attraction. Meenakshi is one of only a small number of occasions when I am very aware of the throng of tourists.

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Mylapore Moments : Stories of people & Myths / Beliefs of Gods & Goddesses

Mylapore Moments : Stories of people & Myths / Beliefs of Gods & Goddesses

As we walk barefoot around the temple, our right shoulders to the building, because the left side is not as respectful, Lakshmi regales us with stories about a few of the multitude of gods of the Hindu faith. Shiva, to whom Mylapore temple is dedicated is the god of destruction. When Shiva dances, all is destroyed. To Western minds this concept may seem negative, but from destruction come new beginnings. After Shiva has danced, the only thing that remains is the skull he holds in his hand, from which will come renewal and rebirth.

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Mylapore Moments: Kapaleeshwara Temple

Mylapore Moments: Kapaleeshwara Temple

Their stories will follow us around and will change at each chapter. Nothing is certain about a religion with 300 million gods. “No. 330 million gods!” “Oh no. 340 million!” “No, no no. You've all got it wrong. Three gods. Several million avatars.” Well, whatever the number, the stories are infinite and various.

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