April 3, 2011

The Dilwara Temple of Chennai

Have you been to the Dilwara Temple of Chennai? No? You don't get my question? Well, I am referring to Chandraprabha Swami Temple of Sowcarpet. This temple is inspired by the architecture of the famous Dilwara temples near Mt. Abu in Rajasthan. Hence, I can call this Jain temple as Dilwara Temple of Chennai, right?

Sowcarpet is the locality where a lot of North Indian Jains reside. Hence, in the Mint Street of Sowcarpet, there are two main Jain temples located. The older temple is called as Juna Mandir. Chandraprabha Temple is a new one and hence it is called as Naya Jain Mandir.

The temple is located on an elevation from the ground level. In the congested narrow Mint street, the temple made of white marble shines like silver and it attracts the passers-by to turn their face towards it.

Chandraprabha Swami is the eighth Tirthankara. The sanctum enshrines the image of this Tirthankara along with his two disciples.

Parshvanath, the 23rd Tirthankara and Adinath, the very first Tirthankara are also found in two separate shrines in this temple.

There are other sub-shrines too such as Vijaya, Vasupoojya Swami, Muniswartha Swami, Mallinatha, Seemandhar Swami, Jwala Devi, Padmavati and Mani Bhadra. The meditation hall is located in teh basement. In addition, there are few images of Yakshas found in the niches on the outer wall of the temple.

Happy travelling.

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