Let me share my wonderful experience in the heart of India, Madhya Pradesh. The trip organized by HolidayIQ in association with Madhya Pradesh Tourism was called #ChaloMPWithHolidayIQ. One of the fascinating aspects of traveling is the opportunity to explore the unexplored and experience the inexperienced! In this blogpost, I will be talking about experiencing Vibrant culture of Madhya Pradesh.
Mahamati Prannathji Temple is a famous pilgrimage of Pranamis and attracts many devotees during Sharada Purnima. It’s believed that Mahamati Prannathji lived at the site for 11 years after which he took samadhi inside one of the domes of this temple. The temple was built in 1692 and has Muslim and Hindu architectural styles in its domes and Lotus formations. The temple is divided into six parts namely Shri Gummatji, Shri Bangalaji, Shri Sadguru Mandir, Shri Baijurajji Mandir, Shri Chopada Mandir and Shri Khijada Mandir.
This place is exemplary. The architecture of this temple in Panna is interesting with a mix of influences from Islamic, Hindu and Sikh places of worship. So Quaint, so peaceful, an architectural marvel. Situated in the heart of Panna town, it is not difficult to find out this place. Straight road entering the city, leads you to the temple. Friendly people, lovely surroundings, you just feel you have left the outer world outside. Camera/Video was allowed.
We were blessed to visit this place. Every single follower or believer you meet inside will greet you with a pranaam. A thing not found in many religions. I did feel respected & humble by coming here & saying my prayers. Do visit. You can also get a room here. They have rooms inside the compound.
The Govindgarh Fort was constructed in 1857 by Raghuraj Singh on the banks of Raghuraj Sagar lake. It was in the hands of the royal family till 1984 after which it has passed onto the tourism department. Today, it lies crumbled and broken apart. However, it is very clear that this used to be an opulent fort in its heydays.
Govindgarh considered as the summer capital of the King of Rewa, is around 13 km from the town of Rewa. Famous for its Sunderja Mangoes, Govindgarh is also known as Mini Vrindavan. It’s believed that around one-third of this region was covered with dense forests and was home to various species of trees like timber and others. First ever White Tiger was also caught here.
This place houses numerous temples like Chowandi Temple, Ram Govind Temple, and Hanuman Temple. Moreover, Panchmukhi Temple and Shiva Temple lie in proximity to each other in the Govindgarh Fort, and can also be visited. Fully shrouded in the undergrowth, the ruins here speak of the past glory of the Maharajas of Rewa. There is a beautiful lake here, and it looks attractive.
Baghel Museum preserves the personal belongings of the Maharaja of Rewa. This museum also displays the packed body of the first white tiger spotted by the Maharaja of Rewa. Besides these items, the museum also houses old equipment used for hunting by the Maharaja. Tourists can also view some of the military weapons on the premises of the institution.
This museum is not well maintained but has a lot of real history about Rewa especially the Maharajah Gulab Singh. There is a lot of history about how the first white tiger captured here and how an entire generation of white tigers created from that. This museum doesn’t allow photography inside, but the guide is very knowledgeable and recommended to understand the culture.
Rani Talab is among the oldest water wells of Rewa. The Rani Talab is situated in the southern part of the city and is considered holy. The water of the well is used for many purposes such as cultivation, irrigation, and fisheries. A temple of Goddess Kali is also situated on the west side of the lake.
Rani Talab is an excellent place for sightseeing as well as for religious purpose. It has a great temple which is necessary to visit during Navratri times. It has a big lake where people can enjoy boating.
One of Seven Wonders of India – Khajuraho!
Khajuraho, located in the district of Chhatarpur in the state of Madhya Pradesh is an ancient city. The word Khajuraho derived from the Sanskrit word ‘kharjur’ which means ‘date palms.’ Today, Khajuraho is known all over the world for its temples, which belong to the medieval Hindu and Jain period. Khajuraho’s Temple consists of engravings of all aspects of old lifestyle, sociology and human settlement and not only the sculptures related to sex.
Khajuraho is a world famous for its temples which were built 1100 years ago. Khajuraho town is a tiny town with a population, not more than 20,000. A group of 85, they are the largest group of Hindu and Jain temples in the world, although only about 25 of them remain today. The destination is also a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is one of the seven wonders of India.
History of Khajuraho!
The temples were built by the Chandel monarchs who were initially called Bargujar Rajputs of Rajasthan. The Rajputs moved here when the Mlechcha invaders attacked the northern part of India. Khajuraho was known as the cultural capital of the Chandel Rajputs who ruled over this part of India for almost two centuries from 10 AD to 12 AD.
Khajuraho initially had around 80 temples, but hardly 25 remain in good condition now. Amongst these, the most famous ones are Chausth Yogini, Brahma, Lalgun Mahadev, Matangeshwar, Varaha, Lakshman, Parshwanath, ChaturBhuja, Ghantai, Vishwanath, Devi Jagdambi, Chitragupta, Kandriya Mahadevi, Vaman, Adinath, and Duladev. These temples built between 950 AD and 1150 AD.
The images of Goddesses and Gods sculpted on the temple walls represent the many manifestations of the divine Shakti and Shiva, the female and male principles, the Yin and the Yang.
The Erotic Sculptures of the Khajuraho Temples!
The erotic art at Khajuraho is deemed to represent the pinnacle of love and passion. It is because of these erotic sculptures that these temples are also known as the Kama Sutra temples. However, during the period between 900 and 1300 AD most Hindu, Jain and Buddhist temples across western and southern India featured some form of erotic art. However, at these other temples, the sculptures were carved at the plinth level, below the eye level and rarely got noticed. Most of the erotic sculptures can be found either on the outside or inner walls of the temples but not near the deities. It is only at Khajuraho that these sculptures were so prominently displayed on the main wall of the temples. It’s the celebration of womanhood.
The Kandariya Mahadeva Temple: The temple built between circa 1025-1050 ad is the largest, and the loftiest monument of Khajuraho dedicated to Lord Shiva. It consists of an entrance porch (artpha mandapa), mandapa, maha manoapa, antarala (vestsule) and garbhagriha (sanctum). The sanctum enclosed by a pradakshinapatha (ambulatory passage)
Jain Temple Adinath Khajuraho: This Jain temple appreciated for the enshrined image of Adinatha. Originally encompassed all the essential members of a nirandhara temple including mandapa and the ardhamandapa which has since completely lost.
More About Western and Eastern Temples!
The western side of the site is the most popular area, which includes the Kandariya Mahadeva, the largest and one of the most famous of the Khajuraho temples. Dedicated to Lord Shiva, the temple-studded with magnificent sculptures and one of the most ornately crafted temples at Khajuraho. The Chaunsath Jogini Temple, situated on the bank of the Shivsagar Lake, is believed to be the oldest temple in Khajuraho. This temple is different from the other temples at Khajuraho and depicts a style distinct from the Chandela style of architecture.
The Eastern temples are lesser known but just as important as they reflect a very different side of Khajuraho. The Brahma Temple dedicated to Lord Vishnu. Dated from 925 AD, this is one of the most prominent and beautiful structures in the eastern group. The temple wrongly came to be associated with Lord Brahma due to the presence of a four-faced Shivalinga. There is also a stark difference between this and the typical western group temples, devoid of the ornate carvings, sensuous sculptures, and elaborate architectures. Instead, it is a simple structure and made of granite along with a pyramidal spire made of sandstone. At the entrance, on either side, one can see the carvings of river goddesses Ganga and Yamuna. The temple situated on the banks of the Khajursagar tank with the Khajuraho village as the backdrop.