Hindu Temple | History of Temples | Temple Architecture

Hindu Temple 

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Unlike different organized religions, in Hinduism, it's not obligatory for an individual to go to a temple. Since all Hindu residence often has a small shrine or ‘puja room’ for the day by day prayers, Hindus typically go to temples solely on auspicious events or throughout nonsecular festivals. Hindu temples additionally don't play a vital function in marriages and funerals, however, it's usually the assembly place for non-secular discourses in addition to ‘bhajans’ and ‘kirtans’ (devotional songs and chants).

History of Temples

In the Vedic interval, there have been no temples. The most important object of worship was the fireplace that stood for God. This holy hearth was lit on a platform within the open-air below the sky, and oblations have been supplied to the fireplace. It will not be sure when precisely the Indo-Aryans first began constructing temples for worship. The scheme of constructing temples was maybe a concomitant of the thought of idol worship.

Locations of Temples

As the race progressed, temples grew to become vital as a result of they served as a sacred assembly place for the group to congregate and revitalize their religious energies. Large temples have been often constructed at picturesque locations, particularly on river banks, on prime of hills, and on the seashore. Smaller temples or open-air shrines can crop up nearly wherever - by the roadside and even below the tree.

Holy locations in India are well-known for their temples. Indian cities — from Amarnath to Ayodha, Brindavan to Banaras, Kanchipuram to Kanya Kumari — are all recognized for his or her great temples.

Temple Architecture

The structure of Hindu temples developed over an interval of greater than 2,000 years and there's a nice selection on this structure. Hindu temples are of various styles and sizes — rectangular, octagonal, semi-circular — with several types of domes and gates. Temples in southern India have a special fashion than these in northern India. Although the structure of Hindu temples is different, they primarily have many issues in widespread.

 6 Parts of a Hindu Temple

1. The Dome and Steeple: The steeple of the dome known as ‘shikhara’ (summit) that represents the mythological ‘Meru’ or the very best mountain peak. The form of the dome varies from area to area and the steeple is usually within the type of the trident of Shiva.

2. The Inner Chamber: The interior chamber of the temple referred to as ‘garbhagriha’ or ‘womb-chamber’ is the place the picture or idol of the deity (‘murti’) is positioned. In most temples, the guests can not enter the garbhagriha, and solely the temple clergymen are allowed inside.

3. The Temple Hall: Most massive temples have a corridor meant for the viewers to take a seat. This can be referred to as the ‘nata-Mandira’ (corridor for temple-dancing) the place, in days of yore, girls dancers or ‘devadasis’ used to carry out dance rituals. Devotees use the corridor to take a seat, meditate, pray, chant or watch the clergymen carry out the rituals. The corridor is often adorned with the work of gods and goddesses.

4. The Front Porch: This space of the temples often has an enormous metallic bell that hangs from the ceiling. Devotees getting into and leaving the porch ring this bell to declare their arrival and departure.

5. The Reservoir: If the temple will not be within the neighborhood of a pure water physique, a reservoir of contemporary water is constructed on the temple premises. The water is used for rituals, in addition, to maintain the temple flooring clear and even for a ritual bathtub earlier than getting into the holy abode.

6. The Walkway: Most temples have a walkway across the partitions of the interior chamber for circum-ambulation by devotees across the deity as a mark of respect to the temples god or goddess.

Temple Priests

As against the all-renouncing ‘swamis’, temple clergymen, variously often known as ‘pandas’, ‘pujaris’ or ‘purohits’, are salaried employees, employed by the temple authorities to carry out day by day rituals. Traditionally they arrive from the Brahmin or priestly caste, however, there are numerous clergymen who're non-Brahmins. Then there are temples which can be arranged varied sects and cults just like the Shaivas, Vaishnavas and the Tantriks.

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