Brihadisvara Temple, a Hindu temple devoted to Shiva found in the South Bank of the Kaveri river in Thanjavur, Tamil Nadu, India. It is one of the enormous South Indian temples and an exemplary example of a fully known Dravidian architecture. It was built by the Tamil king at that period Raja Raja Chola I between 1003 and 1010 AD. This temple is also a part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site. The original monuments of this 11th-century temple were created around a moat. It included gopura, the main temple, its tremendous tower, inscriptions, frescoes, and sculptures especially relevant to Shaivism, but moreover of Vaishnavism and Shaktism beliefs of Hinduism. The temple was bruised in its history and some artwork is now missing. Additional mandapam and memorials were added in centuries that followed. The temple now stands amidst strengthened walls that were put in after the 16th century. Created out of granite, the vimana tower above the sanctum is one of the tallest in South India. The temple has a huge colonnaded hallway and one of the biggest Shiva lingas in India.
Brihadisvara is a sanskrit word. In Sanskrit Brihat means Big and Ishvara means Lord. The name means Big Lord.
The Brihadeswara Temple is located in the town of Thanjavur, about 350 kilometers southwest of Chennai.
FACTS BEHIND THE TEMPLE
1} Underground passages:
With more than a hundred underground passages, directing to various areas, the Tanjore temple stands as an exemplary character of a capital of the Chola dynasty. These secret paths make way to the king’s palace, other temples, important spots near Tanjore, and many additional regions. The most mysterious about these tunnels are some paths lead to hazardous spots and since the map of the tunnel is unspecified, all of them are sealed. The historians contemplate it as a safety trap of Raja Raja Chola.
2} Cap Stone:
The topmost part of the Raja Gopuram of Brihadeeswarar temple is a single stone, weighing 80 tons. Even now the method, which was used by the Cholans, to pull the mass stone towards the peak of the gopuram is unfamiliar because the temple was created when machines like cranes, rope cars, and escalators were not accessible.
3} No Shadow:
Another architectural marvel of the Raja Gopuram is, the shadow of the tower does not subside on the ground. The geometrical construction is excellent and it was created 1000s of years ago with exact balance, which resists natural and political phenomenon.
4} Mysterious Statue:
The Nandhi statue, modeled during the Raja Raja Cholan period, kept growing in the size. It could be even because of the unusual weather circumstance and to control its growth, it was kept aside and nailed to the grounds. However, the current sculpture before Lord Shiva is a single stone statue and was given by the Maratha rulers in the 17th-19thcentury.
5} 216 feet Vimana:
The major tower has an indented shape and the stones are connected without any binding material, while they stand powerfully in their strength. Another miracle is the 216 feet hollow tower, without any binding material, has an ideal stability and balance, despite all the natural crises in 1000 years.
6} Stairs on the top:
Further, there is a small staircase above the primary goddess that directs to the upper part of the tower. If mantra OM is recited inside the hollow area, the spiritual vibration creates an endless experience.
7} Granite Stones:
Tanjore is a productive red soil area, where there is no evidence of granite stones, yet the temple had been totally built with the strongest granites in the world. The transportation used by the historical Cholas is still unknown. Moreover, the statue designs and holes on the stones are so complicated to create with copper or iron chisels, which were used during those duration.
The extremely high quality paintings in the Tanjore big temple explicitly demonstrate the cultural excellence of the Chola province in the Raja Raja Chola period. The colors of the paintings are still sharp and decent, even after 1000 years.
India has many more such heritages which contains many mysteries and are unsolvable till date. Many researchers, archaeologists and scientists have try their best to unravel the mysteries but the couldn’t. People who believes that HINDUISM is just a mythology they have to comprehend that there are various artifacts found all over the world which clearly expresses that Hinduism was for real. Holy books of Hinduism has the solution for all the things. I would also like to speak of that I am not saying that any other religion is less than Hinduism but I am trying to say that Hindiusm is not less than any different religion. Many great scientists such as Niel Bohr, Albert Einstein, Nikola Tesla and many more have found the true meaning of physics in the Vedas. If you want to speculate it you can, if you don’t want to believe then the facts wont change.
Glory of Mighty Cholas… Glory of Mighty Bharata…
By Abhinav Kumar, New Delhi