KONARK SUN TEMPLE: INCRIDIBLE ARCHITECTURE IN INDIA
Konark Sun Temple is located in India at Konark, in the state of Orissa.It buillted in the 13th century as the name Sun Temple and has another special name of the temple known as Black Pagoda.Konark temple is a WORLD HERITAGE SITE also as a SEVEN WONDERS of WORLD as per survery of th poll collected by NDTV and DISCOVERY media .The SUN temple which describes the culture and architecture of EASTERN GANGA DYNASTY KING NARASIMAHADEVA in the year (1238-1250CE).SUN temple is great orissan architecture for Ganga dynasty.
TEMPLE ARCHITECTURE:It is located on the shoreline, now a little over 3 km from the sea, the temple takes the form of the chariot of Surya (Arka), the Sun God, and is heavily decorated with stone carving.The entire complex was designed in the form of the God's huge chariot drawn by seven spirited horses on twelve pairs of exquisitely decorated wheels at its base.The huge wheels carved at the base of the temple are one of the major attractions.
The spokes of the wheels serve as sundials and the shadows cast by these can give the precise time of the day. The pyramidal roof soars over 30 m 98 ft in height. The erotic sculptures similar to the temple in Khajuraho temple
The entrance is guarded by two giant lions, which are each shown crushing a war elephant. Each elephant in turn lies on top of a human body.Here lion is represented as pride and elephant is represented as money both money and pride crushes man.
The temple symbolizes the majestic stride of the Sun God. At the entrance of the temple is a Nata mandir. This is where the temple dancers used to perform dances in homage to the Sun God. All around the temple, there are various floral and geometric patterns. The temple is now partly in ruins, and a collection of its sculptures is housed in the Sun Temple Museum.
The most popular theory about the root of the fall of Konark temple rests with the Kalapahad. According to the history of Orissa, Kalapahad invaded Orissa in 1508. He destroyed Konark temple, as well as a number of Hindu temples in Orissa. The Madala Panji of Puri Jagannath temple describes how Kalapahad attacked Orissa in 1568. Including Konark temple, he broke most of the images in most of the Hindu temples in Orissa. Though it was impossible to break the Sun temple of Konark, the stone walls of which are of 20 feet (6.1 m) to 25 feet (7.6 m) thick, he somehow managed to displace the Dadhinauti (Arch stone) and thus made a way for the temple to collapse. He also broke most of the images and other side temples of Konark. Due to displacement of the Dadhinauti, the temple gradually collapsed and the roof of the Mukasala was also damaged, due to the stones falling down from the temple top.
Consequently, Orissa came under Muslim control in 1568. There were attempts to destroy the Hindu temples. The Pandas of Puri, to save the sanctity of the Puri temple, took away the Jagannath from the temple and kept the image in a secret place. Similarly, it is said that the Pandas of Konark took away the presiding deity of the Sun temple and buried it under the sand for years. Latter on the image was said to have been removed to Puri and kept in the temple of Indra, in the compound of the Puri Jagannath temple. According to others, the Puja image of the Konark temple is yet to be discovered. But others hold the view that the Sun image now kept in the National Museum of Delhi was the presiding deity of the Konark Sun temple.
However, the Sun worship in the Konark temple was ended upon the removal of the image from the temple. This resulted in the end of pilgrimages to Konark. The port at Konark was also closed, due to pirate attacks. Konark was as glorious a city for Sun worship as it was for commercial activities, but after the cessation of these activities, Konark became deserted and was left to be enveloped by a dense forest over the years.
In 1626, the then king of Khurda now a district in Orissa Raja Narasimha Dev, son of Purusottam Dev, took away the Sun image to Puri along with two other moving deities - Sun and Moon. Now they are found in a temple in the compound of Puri Jagannath temple.
King Narasimha Deva-I of the Ganga Dynasty had ordered this temple to be built as a royal proclamation of the political supremacy of his dynasty. A workforce of 12 hundred artisans and architects invested their creative talent, energy and artistic commitment for an exhausting period of 12 years. The king had already spent an amount equivalent to the state's revenue receipts of 12 years. However, the completion of the construction was nowhere near sight. Then the king issued a final command that the work be completed by a stipulated date..
The victorious King of Orissa, Narasimhadeva erected a victory pillar designed as a war chariot. This temple was dedicated to Surya the Sun god, at a location near the temple town of Puri.
He named this place Konark which means “Essence of the Corners” While the structure commemorates the victory in the battle against the Muslims, the name Konark commemorates the science of astronomy of which the King was an avid student.
Here the Muslims met their match. The people of Orissa were hardy fighters. (In ancient and medieval times, Orissa was also called Kalinga or Utkal – from Uttam Kala which means ‘Excellent Art’ that reflects the artistic tradition of sculpture of that region).
The bravehearts of Orissa had given a hard time to Samrat Ashoka Maurya, when in the 3rd century BCE. Kumara, the king of Kalinga, gave a tough battle to the Mauryan invader, before Orissa could be annexed to the Maurya Empire.