Thursday, 7 October 2010

Kanyakumari - A journey to CHITHARAL JAIN TEMPLE... Experience...

Chitharal - A JOURNEY 

The final turn was really a sharp bent where a cemented surface formed the parking lot to a historic place located in a remote hamlet of Marthandam - a township in Tamil Nadu, very      closer to the Kerala Tamil Nadu border. The three cars were parked in the scorching sun and the          15 member gang alighted from the chariots. All our eyes fell on the magnanimous structure standing with its head high. It is not yet another man made concrete high rise. It was a natural rock formation. 

A little ahead lies, umpteen number of steps to climb up to reach the Chitharal Jain Temple - a rock temple which is still maintained in its original shape untouched by humans, in the name of modernisation.

The concrete laid path with occassional steps seems to go up endlessly and none of us were quite sure what is in store for us at the end of this journey. 

The eagerness of seeing the unknown acted as the propellent and the climb up progressed slowly but steadily. The pace was really slow, thanks to the umpteen number of photostops and the facebook maniacs amongst us wanted to click profile pics every now and then. Interesting to see that facebook has been embrassed by the young and the old alike and it seems to be order of the day to post images and updates on facebook at least every day.

As the elevation increased, so does the beauty of greenery around. A stream amidst the thick green cover added spice to the whole ambience. 

Even after reaching this height the upward trail seemed to have got no endpoint in sight. But the increase in wind flow, simply blew away fatigue. Another 5 minutes walk and we reached a point from where there seems to be a detour. But the alternate track was through a well rounded rock. We chose this path. Gripping was a little bit difficult, but keeping our body swayed towards front we managed to climb up. A glance behind can send shivers to the light hearted, but this trek was really worth it. Those who went up first looked like they could touch the sky. 

But still the Jain temple is no where in sight. So the trek continued but now we had the close company of the clear blue skies and relatively heavy winds.

Clicking spree soon became viral as everyone was seeing capturing others using their digicams or mostly on mobiles. They cannot be blamed though as the scenery was so exemplary that one will instinctively feel like capturing the frame for some sweet memories later on in life, but wonder how, one is going to revisit all the images which he/she take on a digicam, as the number of images which is shot on a single trip will be amounting to hundreds. 

Watch the above picture closely and you can see three homo-sapiens climbing up the back of that huge elephant shaped rock. Meanwhile I was finding the puff clouds and the blue sky as the perfect backdrop for silhouttes and made all those near me as models. The experiment results were quite promising 

Ample time spent here, under the scorching sun, but not even a trace of fatigue. The winds blowing across and the magnanimity of the surrounding was enough to keep fatigue at bay. The trekking party resumed journey and the top point seemed to be near. Only one more big boulder was in front of us. 

No, you don't have to be a mountaineer to climb up in that nearly vertical surface. There is a small path way through the side of that rock. A little more ahead we could see what is on top of this rock, our destination. A beautiful temple. 

Once the destination is in sight, the pace increased and within no time we were on level with the top most point, the temple, the rock cut temple is now just a few yards away.

This place must have seen a lot of history, it could have seen generations of people visiting here, it must have known about the transformation taking place in the world. Even when the world around it is changing this place stayed the same, thanks to it being declared as a protected monument by the archeological department of India. The entry itself was unique. We have to scrap through this path. 

The path became narrow as we entered, now it is going steep

Carefully tread down the rock cut steps and reached a wide open space with the rock cut temple on one side. The inscriptions on the side tells about the story of Jainism. Wonder what we will leave behind as part of our history and tradition coz in this digital world whatever we create has only momentary existence when we consider the durations which historians look into. 

Further tread down the steps and the architecture of the temple slowly unfolds.

Walk through and we reached the entrance of the temple. Get inside and the only light is that of lamps. Everything is kept original.

There is a pond amidst the rocks right in front of the entrance. Touch the water and it is so cool, even-though it is directly under the hot shining, sun.

More inscriptions are present here, but this time they are not in pictures, but in different scripts. Wonder whether any one has decoded what is written here.

Close up shots of those inscriptions, for the use of anyone interested.

Now I almost made one round of this rock cut temple, each side is presenting a different view, the back side through which we entered was a narrow rock cut lane, followed by picture inscriptions, then came the entrance to the temple, the next side had the scripts and the temple looked really royal from this side. 

Aha another big rock is here. Within no time I climbed up the rocks and was completely enthralled by the view. This is the top point and the 360 degree view which one would get from here cannot be explained in words or cannot be captured in the frames of a camera. You have to be here to experience it. Nevertheless I took some shots to quench my photographic desire. 

Another post card shot 

Gazing around, I could see, plains covered in green veil fluttering in the air, water bodies Cris-crossing, the same old boulders through which we came up, overlooking the puffy blue skies, it was pure bliss !! 

By this time I was alone, I had completely forgotten about the party, it was me and my camera alone. Moving ahead through the rocks, I got another beautiful view of the temple, this being the best point to view the rock cut temple. 

I salute you nature, I salute the wonderful sculptors, I salute those responsible for keeping this prestine and untouched, for giving me such a wonderful experience. I stood at this point gazing at the temple for a long time with my mind completely in a standby mode. 

As I reached the closer to the temple, I could hear a melodious voice, quite worthy of the atmosphere here. There is no electricity here and so the deafening speakers are absent here, the melodious voice was coming directly from the vocal chords of a human.

Time just flew, we had targeted just Four hour for Chitharal visit, but it was already past 1 O clock when we decided to start our trek back and that too with a desire to spend more time here. We could have spend the whole day here.  Each one of us were thrilled. By this time we got used to the sun. By the time we reached the bottom, this place had etched a special place deep inside our heart. A Beautiful real time experience for our whole life...

COURTESY :- & writer of tat blog....& google

To see the related post to this then click the link shown below:- (VIDEOS)
Chitharal Jain Temple - Video  

To see the related post to this then click the link shown below:- (PHOTOS)

To see the related post to this then click the link shown below:- (Journey Experience)