Temples of Karnataka

Namaste! [a Hindi greeting]. While in India, we’ve done our best to explore the local temples, as religion is a major part of the culture and everyday life. The majority of people practice Hinduism but there are also Christians and Jains in Karnataka (the Indian state we’re living in).

Temple sign written in Kannada, the local language

Temple sign written in Kannada, the local language

 

Hindu temple on campus

Hindu temple on campus

 

You must remove shoes before entering

You must remove shoes before entering

 

Sri Krishna Temple in Udupi, a nearby town

Sri Krishna Temple in Udupi, a nearby town

 

Bathing pools at Sri Krishna Temple

Bathing pools at Sri Krishna Temple

 

These structures are pulled by elephants during festivals

These structures are pulled by elephants during festivals

 

Chalk is applied to the upper forehead before worship

Chalk is applied to the upper forehead before worship

We  also saw 3 Jain temples. Jainism is a strict religion whose followers do not believe in doing harm to any living creature, no matter how small. These structures are from the 1400’s.

View from above

View from above

 

A sacred place

A sacred place

 

The statue of Shravanabelagola is about 50 feet tall

The statue of Shravanabelagola is about 50 feet tall

 

What we know as a swastika has been used in Hinduism and Jainism for centuries as a symbol for good. They refer to it as ‘swastik.’ Unfortunately the Nazis used the mirror image of it for their purposes and therefore it has a negative association for Westerners.

Jain swastik

Jain swastik

 

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Posted in India Scholars 2014

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