Thursday, March 13, 2014

GREAT INSPIRING Hindu Temples UNESCO HERITAGE #decoding #hinduism




Angkor Wat (Angkor) at Angkor, Cambodia
Angkor Wat is the principle temple of Angkor, which served as the seat of the Khmer Empire and was enlisted as a World Heritage Site in 1992. Angkor Wat was constructed as a Hindu temple dedicated to Vishnu, the god of preservation, in the 12th century under Suryavarman II. Later on, it was used for Theravada Buddhist worship, but remains the largest existing Hindu temple. A rare architectural achievement of mankind, the carvings on its walls tell stories of Vishnu and his reincarnated forms, and from ancient Hindu epics, the Ramayana and Mahabharata



These elaborately decorated Hindu temples sing praise to the glory of God with their breathtaking architecture. Hinduism is sometimes called the world's oldest religion, and many of these sacred structures are full of history.
Though these beautiful places of worship celebrate spirituality, noted Hindu monk Swami Vivekananda was careful to teach that temples are simply a means of reaching God, not an end.
Man is to become divine by realizing the divine. Idols or temples, or churches or books, are only the supports, the help of his spiritual childhood. ― Swami Vivekananda, Complete Works



Ekambareswarar Temple
This temple dedicated to Shiva is located in Kanchipuram, Tamil Nadu, India.
Virupaksha Temple -- Group of Monuments at Hampi
The Virupaksha Temple is located on the banks of the river Tungabhadra within the ruins of the ancient city of Vijayanagara, India in the village of Hampi, which was enlisted as a World Heritage Site in 1986. The temple's history goes back to the 7th century. It is dedicated to the Hindu god Shiva, and is the main center of pilgrimage in Hampi.
Pura Tanah Lot
This temple is located on a rock formation off the Indonesian island of Bali. It's one of seven Balinese sea temples.


Konark Sun Temple

The Konark Sun Temple is located in Konark, India overlooking the Bay of Bengal, and was enlisted as a World Heritage Site in 1984. It was constructed in the 13th century by King Narasimhadeva I and is dedicated to the Sun god. This is one of the most majestic temples of India, and was originally conceived of as a chariot of the Sun deity. The chariot is drawn by seven horses on 12 pairs of decorated wheels at its base.
Elephanta Caves
The Elephanta Caves are a group of caves sacred to Hindus and Buddhists that are located east of Mumbai, India. It was designated as a World Heritage Site in 1987 and art historians date its construction to between 5th and 8th centuries. The principal cave contains exquisite carvings of the Hindu god Shiva in his various forms, and for a long time, has been a place of worship for Hindus. The photo depicts Ardhanarishwara, a composite half-male, half-female form of Shiva and his consort Parvati.

Airavatesvara Temple -- Great Living Chola Temples
One of the three Great Living Chola Temples designated as a World Heritage Site in 2004, the Airavatesvara Temple is located in Darasuram, India. It was built by Rajaraja Chola II in the 12th century in the Dravidian style of architecture. The temple is dedicated to the Hindu god Shiva.
Shore Temple -- Group of Monuments at Mahabalipuram
The Shore Temple is located near Chennai, India along the Coromandel coast, and is part of a group of monuments in Mahabalipuram, which was declared a World Heritage Site in 1984. The monuments in Mahabalipuram were founded by the Pallava kings, were constructed in the 7th and 8th centuries and particularly known for rock-cut architecture. The Shore Temple is distinctive in that it is one of the first structural (not rock-cut) stone temples of its time. The temple is dedicated to Shiva, the Hindu god of destruction.
Kailasnatha Temple -- Ellora Caves
The Ellora Caves are a group of caves sacred to Hindus, Buddhists and Jains located near Aurangabad, India. The caves were designated as a World Heritage Site in 1983 and were constructed between 5th century and 10th century. These caves are world-known for rock-cut temples containing elaborate carvings on the walls. Kailasanatha, the primary cave, is carved out of a single rock and is designed to appear like Mount Kailasa, believed to be the abode of the Hindu god Shiva. This photo shows the exterior of the Kailasanatha Temple.
Brihadeeswarar Temple (Periya Koyil) -- Great Living Chola Temples
One of the three Great Living Chola Temples designated as a World Heritage Site in 1987, the Peruvudaiyar Koyil is located in Thanjavur, India. It was built by Rajaraja Chola I in the 11th century in the Dravidian style of architecture. It was built is a very grand manner to denote the king's power and affluence. Today it remains one of India's largest temples. The temple is dedicated to the Hindu god Shiva.
Brihadiswara Temple (Gangaikonda Cholapuram) -- Great Living Chola Temples
One of the three Great Living Chola Temples designated as a World Heritage Site in 2004, the Brihadiswara Temple, more commonly known as Sivan Koyil, is located in Gangaikonda Cholapuram. It was build by the Chola king Rajendra I in the 11th century in the traditional Dravidian style of temple architecture. The temple is dedicated to the Hindu god Shiva
Hazara Rama Temple -- Group of Monuments at Hampi
The Hazara Rama Temple is a ruined temple complex located within the ruins of the ancient city of Vijayanagara, India in the village of Hampi, which was enlisted as a World Heritage Site in 1986. The temple is dedicated to Rama and is particularly well-known for stories of the Ramayana that are etched on its walls.
Krishna Temple Complex -- Group of Monuments at Hampi
The Krishna Temple Complex is located within the ruins of the ancient city of Vijayanagara, India in the village of Hampi, which was enlisted as a World Heritage Site in 1986. It was built in the 16th century by Krishnadevaraya. The temple is dedicated to Krishna, and is particularly well-known for impressive carvings on the temple walls
Vittala Temple Complex -- Group of Monuments at Hampi
The Vittala Temple is located within the ruins of the ancient city of Vijayanagara, India in the village of Hampi, which was enlisted as a World Heritage Site in 1986. The temple was built in the 15th century and is dedicated to Vishnu, the Hindu god of preservation. This temple is particularly well-known for its iconic stone chariot as well as the musical pillars (pillars when tapped emanate a musical note).
Chaturbhuj Temple -- Group of Monuments at Khajuraho
The Chaturbhuj Temple is located in Khajuraho, India and is one of a number of Hindu and Jain temples called Khajuraho Group of Monuments, which was enlisted as a World Heritage Site in 1986. The temples were built by the rules of the Chandella dynasty between the 10th and the 12th centuries. The Khajuraho temples are known worldwide for erotic sculptures on the temple walls and are considered to be one of the seven wonders of India. Chaturbhuj is the only temple that lacks erotic inscriptions. This temple is dedicated to Vishnu.
Devi Jagambi Temple -- Group of Monuments at Khajuraho
The Devi Jagdambi Temple is located in Khajuraho, India and is one of a number of Hindu and Jain temples called Khajuraho Group of Monuments, which was enlisted as a World Heritage Site in 1986. The temples were built by the rules of the Chandella dynasty between the 10th and the 12th centuries. The Khajuraho temples are known worldwide for erotic sculptures on the temple walls and are considered to be one of the seven wonders of India. This temple is dedicated to Devi, the mother goddess.
Duladeo Temple -- Group of Monuments at Khajuraho
The DulaDeo Temple is located in Khajuraho, India and is one of a number of Hindu and Jain temples called Khajuraho Group of Monuments, which was enlisted as a World Heritage Site in 1986. The temples were built by the rules of the Chandella dynasty between the 10th and the 12th centuries. The Khajuraho temples are known worldwide for erotic sculptures on the temple walls and are considered to be one of the seven wonders of India. This temple is dedicated to Shiva, the Hindu god of destruction.
Javari Temple -- Group of Monuments at Khajuraho
The Javari Temple is located in Khajuraho, India and is one of a number of Hindu and Jain temples called Khajuraho Group of Monuments, which was enlisted as a World Heritage Site in 1986. The temples were built by the rules of the Chandella dynasty between the 10th and the 12th centuries. The Khajuraho temples are known worldwide for erotic sculptures on the temple walls and are considered to be one of the seven wonders of India. This temple is dedicated to Vishnu.
Kandariya Mahadeo Temple -- Group of Monuments at Khajuraho
The Kandariya Mahadeva Temple is located in Khajuraho, India and is one of a number of Hindu and Jain temples called Khajuraho Group of Monuments, which was enlisted as a World Heritage Site in 1986. The temples were built by the rules of the Chandella dynasty between the 10th and the 12th centuries. The Khajuraho temples are known worldwide for erotic sculptures on the temple walls and are considered to be one of the seven wonders of India. Kandariya Mahadeva is the largest and best-preserved temple from the medieval ages found in India. This temple is dedicated to Shiva, the Hindu god of destruction.
Madurai Meenakshi Amman Temple
Located on the southern bank of River Vaigai in the temple city of Madurai, Meenakshi Amman Temple is a historic Hindu temple in Tamil Nadu, India.
Lakshmana Temple -- Khajuraho Group of Monuments
The Lakshmana Temple is located in Khajuraho, India and is one of a number of Hindu and Jain temples called Khajuraho Group of Monuments, which was enlisted as a World Heritage Site in 1986. The temples were built by the rules of the Chandella dynasty between the 10th and the 12th centuries. The Khajuraho temples are known worldwide for erotic sculptures on the temple walls and are considered to be one of the seven wonders of India. This temple is dedicated to Vishnu.
Pancha Rathas-- Group of Monuments at Mahabalipuram
The Pancha Rathas are located near Chennai, India along the Coromandel coast, and are part of a group of monuments in Mahabalipuram, which was declared a World Heritage Site in 1984. The monuments in Mahabalipuram were founded by the Pallava kings, were constructed in the 7th and 8th centuries and particularly known for rock-cut architecture. The Pancha Rathas are temples in the form of chariots, and are named after the five Pandavas (Arjuna, Bhima, Yudishthira, Nakul and Sahadeva), and Draupadi.
Thirukadalmallai -- Group of Monuments at Mahabalipuram
The Thirukadalmallai Temple is located near Chennai, India along the Coromandel coast, and is part of a group of monuments in Mahabalipuram, which was declared a World Heritage Site in 1984. The monuments in Mahabalipuram were founded by the Pallava kings, were constructed in the 7th and 8th centuries and particularly known for rock-cut architecture. This temple is dedicated to Vishnu, the Hindu god of preservation.
Varaha Temple -- Group of Monuments at Mahabalipuram
The Varaha Temple is located near Chennai, India along the Coromandel coast, and is part of a group of monuments in Mahabalipuram, which was declared a World Heritage Site in 1984. The monuments in Mahabalipuram were founded by the Pallava kings, were constructed in the 7th and 8th centuries and particularly known for rock-cut architecture. The Varaha Temple is a rock-cut cave temple dedicated to Varaha (meaning 'Boar'), the third incarnation of Vishnu.
Mallikarjuna and Kashivishwanatha Temples -- Group of Monuments at Pattadakal
The Mallikarjuna and Kashivishwanatha temples in the village of Pattadakal, India are part of a group of monuments in Pattadakal, which was declared a World Heritage Site in 1987. These temples were built by the Chalukya dynasty in the 8th century and include a mixture of south and north Indian temple architecture styles. These temples are dedicated to Shiva, the Hindu god of destruction.
Sangameshvara Temple -- Group of Monuments at Pattadakal
The Sangameshwara Temple in the village of Pattadakal, India is part of a group of monuments in Pattadakal, which was declared a World Heritage Site in 1987. These temples were built by the Chalukya dynasty in the 8th century and include a mixture of south and north Indian temple architecture styles. The Sangameshwara temple is dedicated to Shiva.
Virupaksha Temple -- Group of Monuments at Pattadakal
The Virupaksha Temple in the village of Pattadakal, India is part of a group of monuments in Pattadakal, which was declared a World Heritage Site in 1987. These temples were built by the Chalukya dynasty in the 8th century and include a mixture of south and north Indian temple architecture styles. The Virupaksha temple is dedicated to Shiva.
Prambanan
The Prambanan Temple complex is located in Central Java, Indonesia and was declared a World Heritage Site in 1991. It is the largest Hindu temple in Indonesia, and one of the largest in South-East Asia. The three main shrines are dedicated to Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva, and there are smaller temples / shrines dedicated to other deities.

Pashupatinath - Group of Monuments at Kathmandu Valley
The Pashupatinath Temple, located in eastern Kathmandu, Nepal, and part of the Group of Monuments at Kathmandu Valley, was declared a World Heritage Site in 1979. One of the oldest and most important Shiva temples, entrance is forbidden to those perceived to be non-Hindus.
This photo shows the entrance to the Pashupatinath Temple.
Changu Narayan -- Group of Monuments at Kathmandu Valley
The Changu Narayan Temple, located in the Bhaktapur district of Nepal is part of the Group of Monuments at Kathmandu Valley. It was declared a World Heritage Site in 1979. The temple is dedicated to Vishnu and is believed to be the oldest temple in Nepal.

Bhaktapur Durbar Square -- Group of Monuments at Kathmandu Valley
The Bhaktapur Durbar Square (generic name for a plaza opposite a royal palace) in eastern Kathmandu is part of the Group of Monuments at Kathmandu Valley and was declared a World Heritage Site in 1979. There are several temples in this square dedicated to many deities, and the most important one is the Taleju Temple, which does not permit those perceived to be non-Hindu to enter.

Bhaktapur Durbar Square -- Group of Monuments at Kathmandu Valley
The Bhaktapur Durbar Square (generic name for a plaza opposite a royal palace) in eastern Kathmandu is part of the Group of Monuments at Kathmandu Valley and was declared a World Heritage Site in 1979. There are several temples in this square dedicated to many deities, and the most important one is the Taleju Temple, which does not permit those perceived to be non-Hindu to enter.
 
Datdawtaung Cave
Kyauk Sel, Myanmar
Khao Luang Caves
Phetburi, Thailand
Cave in Hpa-An
Kayin State, Burma
Dambulla Cave Temple
Dambulla, Sri Lanka
Kawgoon Cave
In this photo taken on Jan.25, 2014, Buddhist monks and tourists tour the Kawgoon cave in Pa-An township, Karen state, Myanmar. Kawgoon cave is a historic site housing a statue of the Buddha and protective dieties. (AP Photo/Khin Maung Win)
Kawgoon Cave
Myanmar
Pindaya Caves
Pindaya, Myanmar
Pindaya Caves
Pindaya, Myanmar
Pindaya Caves
Pindaya, Myanmar

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