History of the Prachin Shiv Mandir at Agra – Part II (The Myth of the Taj Mahal)

Since the ancient times, it has been the practice of Hindu kings to assiduously follow the tenets as laid down in the Shilpa Shastra while building forts, palaces, mansions, temples and dharmashalas. Traditionally, these grand structures were built along river banks, seashores or lakes to observe the obligatory rites and rituals of the Hindu scriptures.  ... Continue Reading →

History of the Prachin Shiv Mandir at Agra – Part I (The Myth of the Taj Mahal)

Lazy and uninformed "historians" of Indian (commissioned by the British Raj) and British origin have done an outstanding job for over three centuries to whitewash our glorious Hindu heritage and relegate the contributions of our valorous Hindu kings to obscurity. A concerted effort to prevent one from learning about Hinduism, the oldest civilization in the... Continue Reading →

Narmada Parikrama: Sahastradhara, Maheshwar, Khargone District, Madhya Pradesh

Sahastradhara, one of the most mesmerizing tirthasthalas of Maheshwar is best accessed by boat from the heart of the ancient city. Sahastradhara derives its name from the Sanskrit words sahastra which means thousand and dhārā which means streams or watercourses.   According to the Puranas, Ravana, Lord of Lanka chanced upon the serene waters of the Rewa River while... Continue Reading →

Narmada Parikrama: Shri Raja Rajeshwar Sahasrarjuna Temple, Maheshwar, Khargone District, Madhya Pradesh

One of the oldest temples in Maheshwar also known as Gupta Kashi is Shri Raja Rajeshwar Sahasrarjuna Temple, a little distance away from the Kashi Vishwanath Temple. As the name suggests, this temple is dedicated to the mighty Raja Kartavirya Arjuna or Sahastrabahu Arjuna (the thousand-armed one).   Raja Kartavirya Arjuna is believed to be... Continue Reading →

Narmada Parikrama: Jaleshwar Temple, Maheshwar, Madhya Pradesh

Considered by scholars, yogis, tapasvis and saints to be one of the most important tirthasthalas of Akhanda Bharat, Maheshwar is a religious, cultural, intellectual, historical, artistic and architectural powerhouse. A local saying, 'नर्मदा नदी से निकलने वाला हर कंकर (पत्थर) शंकर का रूप होता है |' that literally translates to each and every pebble that... Continue Reading →

History of Banaras – Part VII (Conclusion)

अयोध्या मथुरा माया काशी काञ्ची अवन्तिका । पुरी द्वारावती चैव सप्तैते मोक्षदायकाः॥ Kashi, a name that evokes a multitude of emotions ranging from bliss, joy, ecstasy, love and relief is the city that promises liberation. Since the dawn of time, Kashi has been considered to be the centre of learning, knowledge, wisdom and Advaita. Sages,... Continue Reading →

History of Banaras – Part II

The stature of Benares as the seat of learning, knowledge and wisdom grew under the patronage of the Maukharis of Kannauj, Gurjara-Pratiharas and the mighty Kalachuris towards the end of the 10th century.   The period of the Kalachuris is often referred to as the golden era in the city's history marked with the construction... Continue Reading →

Vishnu Varaha and ruins, Karitalai / Karanpur, Vijayraghavgarh, Katni District, Madhya Pradesh

The large red sandstone boulders of Kaimur Range have for long fascinated the rulers of Central India be it the Guptas, the Paramaras, the Chalukyas of Kalyani, Gurjara-Pratiharas, Gahadavalas and others to mention a few. Remarkable monolithic sculptures of red sandstone with exceptional detailing are found particularly in the Katni district of Madhya Pradesh.  ... Continue Reading →

Narmada Parikrama: Vindhyavasini Beejasan Durga Devi, Salkanpur Village, Budni Tehsil, Sehore District, Madhya Pradesh

One of the most revered Durga Mata temples in India is the Vindyavasini Beejasan Durga Devi Temple located in Salkanpur village at a little distance from Hoshangabad that lies on the Narmada Parikrama. This ancient temple is situated atop a hillock at an elevation of 800 feet and accessed by a flight of about 1000... Continue Reading →

Narmada Parikrama: Karna Matha Temples (Amarkantak Group of Ancient Temples), Amarkantak, Anuppur District, Madhya Pradesh

The Narmada Parikrama, a 3500-km journey that starts near the Arabian Sea in Gujarat takes one to the origin of the Narmada River at Amarkantak. Known as Amarkuta in Kalidasa's Meghaduta, Amarkantak has been mentioned in the Hindu scriptures as a mountain of incalculable sanctity. Amarkantak is one of the most frequented places of pilgrimage in... Continue Reading →

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