The unheard temples of Karnataka: Kambadahalli

While everyone was busy getting ready to office and gearing themselves for the week ahead, we excitedly set out to explore these unheard temples of Karnataka on a chilly Monday morning. We leisurely spent 2-3 hours at temples of Nuggehalli and then headed to Kambadahalli. Kambadahalli is about half an hour from Nuggehalli where Panchakuta Basadi temple complex resides.

Kambadahalli is located near to the famous town of Shravanabelagola and gets its name from the Brahmadeva pillar erected in front of the temple complex. It is believed that there were 72 Jain temples in Kambadahalli village. This temple complex was built by the kings of Western Ganga dynasty in 10th century. The monument is protected by the Archeological Survey of India as a National Monument.

The temple complex consists of five Basadis was built in two phases according to the board outside. This beautiful monument is built in Dravidian style. The temple which is oriented to the north towards the Brahmadeva pillar has five shrines. Three shrines are connected to a mantapa The other two shrines which are disconnected and lie to the north and are dedicated to other Tirthankaras.

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Panchakuta Basadi temple complex
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The disconnected shrine at Panchakuta Basadi

On the outside it seemed like any other Jain temple but as I entered inside I stopped in my tracks as I saw the sight in front of me. Two Digambaras sat from where I stood, silently meditating on a cold windy afternoon without any consciousness of the outside world.

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Let go and be free!

I tiptoed quietly around the temple corners only to find many more Digambaras. Some in meditation and some were indulged in conversation with locals and  nuns (female Jain monks). The monks looked unselfconscious of their stark nakedness and the nuns seemed devoid of any impulses of the naked bodies in front of them.

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Beyond worldly possessions 

As I walked out I looked back and to me the whole picture looked like casual chatter between friends sans of gender or clothes.The locals also seemed at ease and I heard the laughter. I do not believe travel brings a change in you every single time but sometimes it makes you discover how  close minded the world is and set in its ways.How I wish the whole world cared less and judged nobody for what they choose to wear!

USEFUL INFORMATION:

  • Kambadahalli is at a distance of 135 km from Bangalore.To reach here one has to drive on the Hassan Road till Bellur Cross (105 kms) and turn left to reach Nagamangala. Kambadahalli lies 15 km to the west from here on the Shravanabelagola Road. A deviation to the right from the main road after 14 km, will lead you to the village. It is at a distance of 30 km from Nuggehalli and 18 km from Shravanabelagola respectively.
  • Be respectful to the privacy of the monks in the temple.

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I read. I travel. I become. © Kavya,2019.

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