Mahaprabhu Jagannath Sculpted In The SunTemple Wall
Mahaprabhu Jagannath in the Sun Temple wall at Konark:Savior of Odias for Centuries
# It is clear from the statue of King Langula Narasimha Deva of the Ganga dynasty begging for blessings in front of the statue of Mahaprabhu Jagannath, sculpted in the Sun Temple wall that Mahaprabhu Jagannath was the most revered of this nation even a thousand years ago.
The diversity of the cultural and social background of ancient Odisha is reflected in its historical monuments, archeological sites, traditional arts, sculptures, dances and music. All these unique varieties of resources taken together have given Odisha the foundation of a rich cultural heritage.From ancient times, Odisha has attracted a large number of scholars, artists and tourists. Odisha was once known as Utkal , which literally means a state excelling in fine art. When we remember the prominent awe-inspiring monuments of Odisha, the Lord Jagannath temple at Puri and the Sun Temple at Konark come to our mind first. Let’s highlight a special aspect of the personality of the mighty and art lover king Langula Narasimha Dev ( The Builder of the famous Sun temple at Konark).King Narasimha Dev had three more world-famous achievements
Narsinghanath Temple of Simachal
Chandrasekhar Temple of Kapilas
Kshirchora Gopinath Temple
Mahaprabhu Jagannath has been the savior of Odias for centuries. The address of the Odias in the world court is that they are residents of Jagannath Dham( the abode of Lord Jagannath).
It is clear from the statue of King Langula Narasimha Deva of the Ganga dynasty begging for blessings in front of the statue of Shri Jagannath, sculpted in the Sun Temple wall that Mahaprabhu Jagannath was the most revered of this nation even a thousand years ago.
Langula Narasimha Dev I was also a supreme devotee of Mahaprabhu Jagannath, and he used to perform special worship of Mahaprabhu Jagannath before he goes out on any of his war expeditions.King Langula Narasimha Dev was a powerful king (1238-1264) and warrior of the Eastern Ganga dynasty of medieval Odisha. He repeatedly defeated the Muslim forces of the Sultan of Bengal, who had been threatening the rule of the Eastern Ganga dynasty over Kalinga (ancient Odisha) since the time of his father Anang Bhimdev III.
Here I am going to mention an interesting artwork from the wall of the Konark Sun Temple (photo provided).
If you look closely, you can see the image of Mahaprabhu Jagannath in a large white-marked rectangular area, even though it has decayed. There are statues of Goddess Durga, Mahisasura Mardini (damaged) and a Shiva linga (extremely damaged, almost invisible) on both sides of Mahaprabhu Jagannath.
The image of the ruling king can be seen inside the small white rectangular area
The National Museum of New Delhi also has a collection of artifacts collected from the premises of the Sun Temple at Konark.Exactly the same sculpture, which is made of a relatively hard stone (chlorite slab) that retains many architectural features is also displayed in the National Museum of New Delhi. Photo of that artwork is given below.
King Langula Narasimha Deva of the Ganga dynasty begging for blessings in front of the statue of Shri Jagannath, sculpted in the Sun Temple wall
Source: National Museum, New Delhi
# The same artwork can be seen on the outer walls of the Bhogmandap in the vicinity of the Shri Jagannath Temple which is almost intact. Some historians believe that this artifact was originally in the Konark Sun Temple along with other artefacts which were later relocated to the Puri Shri Jagannath Temple along with the Arun Pillar during the Maratha rulers.
# Can we conclude from this sculpture that the ancient Kalinga had three major religious beliefs (Vaishnavism, Shaivism, and Shaktiism), and that the king was constantly striving to maintain religious harmony and peaceful coexistence among them.
Please give your valuable opinions in this regard in the comment box.
If you would like to get informed,everytime I post something new, then please click the follow button .
Dr. Manoj Mishra