Who built Dilwara Temple? It is the oldest and most famous temple in the Dilwara temple complex. Carved entirely out of white marble, it is believed to have taken 1, masons and 1, labourers 14 years to build and cost Rs The white marble of which the entire temple is built was brought from the relatively nearby marble quarries of Ambaji in Gujarat, 25 km south of Abu Road.
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Who built Dilwara Temple? It is the oldest and most famous temple in the Dilwara temple complex. Carved entirely out of white marble, it is believed to have taken 1, masons and 1, labourers 14 years to build and cost Rs The white marble of which the entire temple is built was brought from the relatively nearby marble quarries of Ambaji in Gujarat, 25 km south of Abu Road. Makaras guard the entrance, and below them are conches. The cusped arches and ornate capitals are beautifully designed and superbly made.
Immediately outside the entrance to the temple is a small portico known as the Hastishala elephant hall , built by Prithvipal in which contains a figure of the patron, Vimal Shah, on horseback.
Dilwara belonged to Saivite Hindus who were unwilling to part with it until Vimal Shah could prove that it had once belonged to a Jain community. In a dream, the goddess Ambika Ambadevi or Durga instructed him to dig under a champak tree where he found a huge image of Adinatha and so won the land.
To the southwest, behind the hall, is a small shrine to Ambika, once the premier deity. Similar to many other Jain temples, the plain exterior of the temple conceals a wonderful ornately carved interior which is remarkably well preserved given its age.
The ceilings feature engraved designs of lotus-buds, petals, flowers and scenes from Jain and Hindu mythology. The main temple is set within a rectangular court lined with small shrines and a double colonnade, an early example of the Jain architectural style in Western India. The temple stands in an open courtyard surrounded by a corridor. The walls of the main hall are lined with 57 shrines. Architecturally, it is suggested that these are related to the cells which surround the walls of Buddhist monasteries, but in the Jain temple the shrines are reduced in size to house simple images of a seated Jain saint.
In the southeast corner of the temple between cells 22 and 23 is a large black idol of Adinath, supposedly installed by Vimal Shah in The sanctum is meant for worship to the deity. The sanctum with a pyramidal roof has a vestibule with entrances on three sides. To the east of the sanctum is the mandapa grand hall , a form of octagonal nave nearly 8 metres in diameter.
The exquisite lotus ceiling carved from a single block of marble rises in 11 concentric circles, carved with elaborately repeated figures.
On the pillars are carved female figurines playing musical instruments and superimposed across the lower rings are 16 brackets carved in the form of the goddesses of knowledge, each one holding her own symbol which is believed to be a memorial of victorious Brahma Kumaris follower from the last Kalpa.
Dedicated to the 22nd Tirthankara, Neminatha, this temple was built in memory of their late brother Luna. Dilwara Temple History Designed after Vimal Vasahi temple, this temple took 2, workers 15 years to build. This temple is smaller than Vimal Vasahi but the ground plan and architecture is similar.
However, the architectural details here are far more perfect and refined. The decorative carving and jali work within this temple are so fine that the marble looks almost transparent in some places. The small domes in front of the shrine containing the bejewelled Neminatha figure, the exquisitely carved lotus on the sabha mandapa ceiling and the sculptures on the colonnades are especially noteworthy. The Rang mandap or grand hall features a central dome from which hangs a big ornamental pendent featuring an elaborate carving of a lotus.
Arranged in a circular band are 72 figures of Tirthankars in sitting posture and just below this band are small figures of Jain monks in another circular band. The Hathishala or elephant cell features 10 beautiful marble elephants neatly polished and realistically modelled. The Navchowki or main hall features some of the most magnificent and delicate marble stone cutting work of the temple. Each of the nine ceilings here seems to exceed the others in beauty and grace. The Gudh mandap or sanctum features a black marble idol of the 22nd Jain Tirthankar Neminatha.
The Kirthi Stambha is a big black stone pillar that stands on the left side of this Dilwara temple. The pillar was constructed by Maharana Kumbha of Mewar.
Read More on Dilwara Temples Dilwara Temples Architecture The Dilwara Temples is considered as the most beautiful Jain pilgrimage sites in the world for the spectacular use of marble in its making. Standing amidst the forested hills, a high wall surrounds the temple complex. It looks very simple from the outside. With intricately carved designs on pillars, ceilings, entryways and panels, the sumptuous temple radiates the Jain values like honesty and simplicity.
Dilwara Jain Temples, Mount Abu: Address, Dilwara Jain Temples Reviews: 4.5/5
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