Ranakpur – Chaturmukha Jain Temple

In continuation, from Kumbhalgarh:

We picked our stuff and waited for bus to arrive. Ranakpur is almost an hour away as per google. Bus came in 10 minutes, after almost 2 hours, we got down at Sayra (Main Junction). Took a sharing taxi (Jeep) to Ranakpur (Rs. 30) which was on way to Falna.

After 1 hour of unwinding roads, we got down at gate of the Ranakpur Jain Temple. The view of the marvel structure, gave another ‘paisa vasool’ moment. It is a three storeyed marble structure. Built in 15th Century. The temple is dedicated to Bhagvan Adinath, the First Tirthankar. There was no ticket charges, only camera charges of Rs. 100, which I gladly paid, each and every pillar had intricate designs, craftsmanship was beyond words.

With intricate carvings on each and every pillar, roof and outer façade. Witnessing the jaw dropping art and architecture, we moved at our own pace, capturing each and every carvings in detail. The temple has four entrances and the Sanctum Sanctorum has four huge white marble images of Bhagvan Adinath, 72 inches tall, facing four different directions. Hence, it is popularly known as Chaturmukh Jain Temple.

As per the Ranakpur website, there are seventy six smaller domed temples, four rangamandapas, four main temples situated in four directions, many subsidiary temples, total 84 in number (inspiring human to strive for emancipation from cycles of 84 lakhs of birth & death and attain eternal salvation).

The most beautiful structure are the pillars, in every directions, innumerable, magnificently carved, arranged in such a way that one can view the image from any corner. It is said that there are 1444 pillars. The design on every pillar is different from one another. The upper and lower parts of the domes are linked by brackets that have sculptures.

There is a Rayan Tree (Mimusos laxandra) and footprints of Bhagavan Rishabhadev on a slab of marble.

There was certain serenity in the ambiance.

After trying to capture each and every pillars, sat down for some time for that peaceful moment.

I went out and took tour of the well maintained Complex, there was a Surya temple at one end, and few more scattered around. The Surya Narayan temple dates back to 13th Century, again rebuilt in 15th Century, dedicated to Sun God. It is located bit away from the Jain Temple. I followed the path, while exploring the outskirts of the Complex. I was amazed at the view, there were hardly any people around. The temple was carved beautifully and seemed weathered over the years.

Again went back to main temple. Captured the amazing carvings on the roof, each with different design. After sitting for sometime in the serene and cool atmosphere, we had to leave.

Around 4.00 pm, we came out and waited for bus or taxi to arrive.

There was no hotel for refreshments, except a small stall, where we packed some snacks and ate them while waiting for bus.

After almost an hour, bus arrived. It took another 2 hours to reach Falna Station at 6.30 pm.

We made the inadvertent mistake of not checking the timing of the train correctly, I relied on my friend, who confirmed it to be at 06:30 hrs in the evening, because of which we left Kumbhalgarh in a hurry. While in bus, I checked the timings and realised, the train is supposed to arrive at 09:30 PM. Offcourse, the precious time for Kumbhalgarh was lost, while waiting for Train at Station. As scheduled, the train reached Mumbai in the morning next day.

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