In a previous blog, I have introduced you to the ancient temples of Lord Shiva in Hampi and the stories behind them. If you haven’t read my previous blog, you can read it from this link Ancient temples of Lord Shiva – Hampi
In the current blog, I will introduce you to the ancient temple of Lord Krishna. Being a strong believer in Srimad Bhagavad Gita, I always feel excited to visit the temples of Lord Krishna.
Sri Krishna Temple – Hampi
This was the first temple we visited during our Hampi trip. This temple was built in the 15th century by King Krishnadevaraya. It was built in the glory of winning the battle of Udaygiri. Today, the idol of Lord Krishna is not present in the shrine of Sri Krishna Temple. It is kept in the archeological museum of Chennai for its safety purposes.
It is said that during the annual festivals in Hampi, the idol of Lord Krishna brought back to Hampi. And the idol gets anointed in a Pushkarni lake which is located 300 meters from Sri Krishna Temple. After the Hampi festivals get over, the idol of Lord Krishna is sent back to the archaeological museum in Chennai.
In front of the main gate of Sri Krishna Temple, there is a huge field name Krishna Bazaar. During the 15th century, Krishna Bazaar was one of the huge trading markets in Hampi. You will find these kinds of huge bazaars (Market) in front of all the main temples in Hampi. People from all over the world used to come to these Bazaars for the trading of Gold, Diamonds, Animals, etc. These Bazaars played a huge role in the prosperity of Hampi.
Ugra Narasimha Temple – Hampi
Ugra Narasimha statue is located just beside the Badavilinga temple. Narasimha is the 4th avatar of Lord Vishnu. If we break the word Narasimha in two, Nara means Human and Simha means Lion.
The height of this statue is 6.75 meters. This statue was built in the 16th century during the rulership of King Krishnadevaraya. If you’ll look closely, you’ll see that the hands of the statue have been cut. This was done by the Mughals during they looted Hampi after defeating it in the 16th century. They have sabotaged mostly all the monuments and the temples of Hampi during that time.
Earlier, a statue of the goddess Lakshmi was placed just beside the Ugra Narasimha Statue. Goddess Lakshmi is the wife of Lord Vishnu. Today, that statue is placed in the archaeological museum of Hampi for its safety purposes.
Mythological story of Narasimha Avatar:
There was a true devotee named Prahlada. His father was a demon named Hiranyakashipu who had a hatred towards Lord Vishnu for killing his brother Hiranyaksha. Hiranyakshipu hated that his own son who is the heir of a demon species worships Lord Vishnu, his enemy. Hiranyakashipu tried all the methods to stop Prahlada from stopping him to worship Lord Vishnu. But he didn’t succeed to break Prahlada’s devotion.
Holika Dahan (An Indian festival of Holi):
Hiranyakashipu’s sister Holika had a boon that she can’t get burnt or die in the fire. So with the help of his sister, he tried to kill Prahlada by letting him sit on Holika’s lap and flaming the fire on them. But in this, Holika herself died from the fire even though she had a boon. And nothing happened to Prahlada. That is a miracle of devotion. Today, because of that incident we are celebrating the festival of Holi in India.
Death of Hiranyakashipu:
Hiranyakashipu had a boon that neither by a human nor by an animal, neither at a night nor in day, neither at home nor at outside, no one can kill him. One day during the royal court, he challenged Prahlada that where is your Lord Vishnu? And what can he mess with me? In return, Prahlada replied that Lord Vishnu is everywhere, in every atom. By pointing to one of the pillars and mocking him, Hiranyakashipu asks Prahalada, “Is your Lord Vishnu is present in this pillar as well?!” And suddenly that pillar breaks and the Narasimha comes out of it.
He killed Hiranyakashipu between the door of the royal court and in the time of evening. This way, against the Hiranyakashipu’s boon, he got killed neither by a human nor by an animal, neither inside the home nor outside, and neither in a day nor at night.
Achyutaraya Temple – Hampi
This temple was built in the 16th century by King Achyutaraya during his rulership. Achyutaraya was a younger brother of King Krishnadevaraya. This temple is dedicated to Lord Tiruvengalanatha, one of the forms of Lord Vishnu. Since King Achyutaraya built this temple, this temple is known by his name i.e. Achyutaraya temple.
This temple is located at the base of the famous hill of Hampi i.e. Matanga hill. Matanga hill is the highest hill in Hampi.
Vijay Vitthala Temple – Hampi
I was highly excited to visit this temple during my Hampi trip. This temple is dedicated to Lord Vitthala, one of the forms of Lord Krishna. It was built in the 15th century by King Devaraya 2. Later in the 16th century, King Krishnadevaraya expanded the complex of the temple. And contributed towards its unique artwork. This temple is also built in the Dravidian style just like other major temples of Hampi.
During Vijayanagara, this temple was one of the main temples in Hampi. But after the Mughals looted Hampi, they destroyed this temple and its monuments. And sadly this temple is in its ruin state today. The artwork of this temple is wonderful and unique.
This is one of the famous chariots in India. People who visit Hampi must come here to witness this Stone Chariot. The picture of this stone chariot can also be found on the Indian currency of 50 rupees. In India, we have similar kinds of Stone Chariots which are situated in Konark (Odissa) and Mahabalipuram (Tamil Nadu).
This Stone Chariot is a temple in itself. It is a temple of Garuda who is Vahana (vehicle) of Lord Vishnu. During Vijayanagara time, every year during the festivals of Hampi, the journey of this chariot was taken out. Today, due to its safety purposes, the government has banned the journey of this chariot.
The Musical Pillars:
In the complex of Vitthala temple, this Musical Pillars Hall is a major tourist attraction. There are nearly 56 main pillars in the hall. And each pillar is surrounded by 7 minor pillars. These 7 pillars emit 7 different musical notes by tapping on them i.e. Sa–Re–Ga–Ma–Pa–Dh–Ni. Which we also consider as a Gamut of the music.
During the British rulership in India. Britishers broke 2 of the pillars of this hall. Just to see what’s inside the pillars. And they found nothing inside, it was just like a normal pillar. It is still a mystery that from where and how these pillars are emitting the sound out of it. Today, The government has banned the entrance inside this hall for its safety purpose.
I hope you have enjoyed reading this blog 🙂
And you also felt an amazed after knowing the stories of these temples and monuments.
Visiting these kinds of places and knowing the stories behind them always makes me feel proud and grateful for our country and its rich culture.
In my next blog, I will introduce you to some of the famous and hidden Sunset and Sunrise points in Hampi.
Stay tuned for the next blog. 🙂