Lonar Crater Lake - Religious Setting - Daitya Sudan Temple

Daitya Sudan Temple

Daitya Sudan Temple is a Vishnu temple dated to the Chalukya Dynasty which ruled Central and Southern India between the 6th and 12th centuries. It belongs to the Hemadpanthi class and is built in the form of an irregular star. It features carvings similar to those seen at Khajuraho temples. The deity of this temple is made of an ore with a high metal content that resembles stone. The area outside the sanctum is dark and under the light from a torch carvings can be viewed on the ceiling. The exterior walls are also covered with carved figures. The plinth of the temple is about 1.5 m in height, and the unfinished roof suggests an intended pyramidal form for the tower.

The temple of Daityasudana at Lonar is the best example of the Hemadpanthi style. From the standing image of Surya in the principal niche on the back of the temple it is conjectured that the temple was originally dedicated to the Sun-god.However in the present form its vaishnav temple of god vishnu in its daityasudan avatar. There is a story that a demon i.e. daitya called as lonasur or lavanasur used to reside in this locality along with his sisters . He was killed by lord vishnu in his daityasudan avatar hence the name.

The temple measures 105 ft. long by 84.5 ft. broad . Its a tree chamber temple, the inner most being garbh gruh i.e. sanctum sanctorum where the idol of lord vishnu standing atop lavanasur is there . The present day idol was made by bholse rulers of Nagpur after the original went missing . The second chamber is called antarl where individual pooja are performed, on the roof of this block one can see beautiful cravings of puranic stories viz. Killing of Lavanasur by Lord Krishna and appearance of Dhar of Lonar ; story of Kansa and Krishan, story of Narasimha and HiranKashyap and lastly raskrida. The outermost chamber is called as sabahmandap which is meant for group offerings and performance . This portion as well as the enterance gate does not match the style and construction elements of the temple overall . The brickwork might have been added later to the damaged or unfinished temple which might have been caused due to various invasion post 10th century India .

The temple overall is star shaped . The main enterance is east facing .The principle niche at the back of the temple has image of surya (sun god ) which gives rise to the speculation that this might have been ( or intended to be ) temple of sungod . The other niche on the right of the temple i.e. on south has image of chamunda devi . The one on left of the temple i.e. north has narashima in it .All of these 3 niches are built like mini temples in themselves having elaborate pillars, base and decoration .

There are nemorous ridges onto the temple with different decoration,images having iconic as well as artistic significance . Many of the images depict deities or incidents on Hindu purans

Read more about this topic:  Lonar Crater Lake, Religious Setting

Famous quotes containing the word temple:

    The divinity in man is the true vestal fire of the temple which is never permitted to go out, but burns as steadily and with as pure a flame on the obscure provincial altar as in Numa’s temple at Rome.
    Henry David Thoreau (1817–1862)