Devaki and Krishna in Goa

The Avatar "The crisis in which the Avatar appears, though apparent to the outward eye only as a crisis of events and great material changes, is always in its source and real meaning a crisis in the consciousness of humanity when it has to undergo some grand modification and effect some new development. For this... Continue Reading →

Chalukya Temple Trail – Badami 3

Photos by Suhas Mehra, text by Beloo and Suhas Mehra Continued from Part 2 We continue our exploration of the famous Badami cave temples carved out of the soft red sandstone atop a hill. After exploring caves 1 and 2 we now climb up to cave 3, and the exterior view itself makes us stop... Continue Reading →

Chalukya Temple Trail – Badami 2

Photos by Suhas Mehra, text by Beloo and Suhas Mehra Continued from Part 1 As we start climbing up the steps to reach cave 2, we turn around and take one more look at the majestic cave temple 1 with Nataraja who has already stolen our hearts!   Dedicated primarily to Lord Vishnu, cave 2... Continue Reading →

Chalukya Temple Trail – Badami 1

Photos by Suhas Mehra, text by Beloo and Suhas Mehra   After Aihole (see three parts - 1, 2, 3), we now travel to Badami for a completely different aesthetic experience.  Badami was the capital of the early Chalukyas who ruled much of Karnataka during the 6th to 8th centuries. Situated on the banks of... Continue Reading →

Chalukya Temple Trail – Aihole 3

Continued from Part 2 Photos by Suhas Mehra, text by Beloo and Suhas Mehra After Pulakeshin I established the Chalukya kingdom making Badami its capital in 543 CE, a great phase of experimentation and innovation in temple architecture began in the southern region of Karnataka. In parts 1 and 2 we explored various temples at... Continue Reading →

Chalukya Temple Trail – Aihole 2

Continued from Part 1 Photos by Suhas Mehra, text by Beloo and Suhas Mehra "...everyone who has at all the Indian spirit and feeling, can at least give some account of the main, the central things which constitute for him the appeal of Indian painting, sculpture and architecture." (Sri Aurobindo, CWSA 20: 261) Aihole, a... Continue Reading →

Chalukya Temple Trail – Aihole 1

Photos by Suhas Mehra, text by Beloo and Suhas Mehra Aihole, also known as Aivalli, Ahivolal, Ilavalapura or Aryapura, is a sleepy village about 140 km from Hampi, or about 450 km from Bangalore. The story goes that after killing the decadent Kshatriyas who had been abusing their power, Lord Parasurama, the sixth avatār of... Continue Reading →

The Magnificence of Lepakshi – Part 3

Text by Beloo and Suhas Mehra; some photos by Suhas Mehra, some taken from the website of IIACD (International Institute for Art, Culture and Democracy). Continued from Part 2 In this final part of the series, we zoom in on the magnificent mural paintings of the Veerabhadra Swami Temple at Lepakshi. Many of the murals... Continue Reading →

The Magnificence of Lepakshi – Part 2

Photos by Suhas Mehra, text by Beloo and Suhas Mehra. Continued from Part 1 After experiencing some of the splendour that fills the compound of Swamy Veerabhadra Temple, let us now proceed toward the interior of the mandir. As noted before, according to the earliest inscriptions available, the present temple is about 500 years old,... Continue Reading →

The Magnificence of Lepakshi – Part 1

Photos by Suhas Mehra. Text by Beloo and Suhas Mehra. “Le Pakshi!” said Lord Rama to Jatayu. Grief-struck Rāma and Lakshmana had been desperately searching for Sita when they met Jatayu. Sita had mysteriously disappeared one afternoon when both the brothers were gone in chase of a golden deer. (Rāma had gone first, but then... Continue Reading →

Hampi Continues to Live – Part 8

Continued from Part 7 Hazara Rama temple (Photos by Suhas Mehra, text and quotes selection by Beloo Mehra)   यावत्स्थास्यन्ति गिरयः सरितश्च महीतले | तावद्रामायणकथा लोकेषु प्रचरिष्यति || "As long as the mountains and even rivers flourish on the surface of the earth, so long the legend of Ramayana will flourish in this world... [Valmiki... Continue Reading →

Hampi Continues to Live – Part 7

Continued from Part 6 Chakratirtha, Tungabhadra River and Kodandarama temple (Photos by Suhas Mehra, text by Beloo Mehra)   Not far from Vittala temple, a short walk along some semi-paved/stepped rocks and you will soon find yourselves entering into a cave-like rock formation. A few minutes later as you come out out of this cool... Continue Reading →

Hampi Continues to Live – Part 6

Continued from Part 5   Raghunatha Temple and Malyavanta Hill   One of the lesser-known but most beautiful places to visit in Hampi is the Raghunatha temple on top of the Malyavanta Hill. During our trip to Hampi in 2018, we spent some time on top of this hill. The 360-degree view from there is... Continue Reading →

The Narasimha Avatar: Optimisation Gone Astray

"The Avatar is necessary when a special work is to be done and in crises of the evolution." ~ Sri Aurobindo, CWSA, Vol. 28, p. 485. The story goes like this: The demon-king Hiraṇyakaśipu wanted revenge on Lord Viṣṇu and his followers. He undertook many years of austere penance to fulfill his desire. Lord Brahma... Continue Reading →

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