Sunday, April 7, 2013

Khajuraho Group of Monuments


The Khajuraho Group of Monuments in Khajuraho is a famous tourist and archaeological site known for its sculptured temples dedicated to Shiva, Vishnu, and Jain patriarchs, famous for their erotic sculptures. The Khajuraho Group of Monuments has been listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and is considered to be one of the "seven wonders" of India.
One thousand years ago, under the generous and artistic patronage of the Chandela Rajput kings of Central India, 85 temples, magnificent in form and richly carved, came up on one site, near the village of Khajuraho. The amazingly short span of 100 years, from 950 AD - 1050 AD, saw the completion of all the temples, in an inspired burst of creativity. Of the 85 original temples-most constructed of hard river sandstone-about 20 are still reasonably well preserved. Both internally and externally the temples are richly carved with excellent sculptures that are frequently sensual and, at times, sexually explicit. The temples are divided into three complexes-the western is the largest and best known, containing the magnificent Shaivite temple Kandariya Mahadev, a 31m high agglomeration of porches and turrets culminating in a spire.
The Khajuraho temples contain some sexual or erotic art outside the temple or near the deities. Also, some of the temples that have two layers of walls have small erotic carvings on the outside of the inner wall. There are many interpretations of the erotic carvings. It has been suggested that these suggest tantric sexual practices. Meanwhile, the external curvature and carvings of the temples depict humans, human bodies, and the changes that occur in bodies, as well as facts of life. Some 10% of the carvings contain sexual themes; those reportedly do not show deities but rather sexual activities between people. The rest depict the everyday life of the common Indian when the carvings were made and activities of other beings.
The creators of Khajuraho claimed descent from the moon. The legend that describes the origin of this great dynasty is a fascinating one: Hemavati, the beautiful young daughter of a Brahmin priest was seduced by the moon god while bathing in the Rati one evening. The child born of this union between a mortal and a god was a son, Chandravarman. Harassed by society, the unwed mother sought refuge in the dense forest of Central India where she was both mother and guru to her young son. The boy grew up to found the great Chandela dynasty. When he was established as a ruler, he had a dream-visitation from his mother, who implored him to build temples that would reveal human passions, and in doing so bring about a realization of the emptiness of human desire. Chandravarman began the construction of the first of the temples, successive rulers added to the fast growing complex.
The Khajuraho temple complex offers a professional light and sound show every evening. The first show is in English language and the second one in Hindi. The show is about an hour long and covers the history, philosophy and the art of sculpting of these temples. It is held in the open lawns in the temple complex.
The Khajuraho Dance Festival, held every year in the first week of February (1st to 7th), is an opportunity for visitors to experience various classical Indian dances set against the backdrop of the Chitragupta or Vishwanath Temples.

                                                              I don't claim the information to be my own. It has been collected from various sources 


1 comment:

  1. Very nice blog. Thanks for sharing with us Khajuraho is very attractive place to visit. Very attractive creativity is there to see
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