The Airavatesvara temple at Darasuram houses thousands of carvings. Historians think the temple was built about 850 years ago by Chola kingdom. One the temple wall, there is a deity carved who holds 2 flowers in his hands. If you read Indian scriptures, you will realize that this represents the Sun God, Surya. Now, within a distance of 10 feet, on another side of the temple, we can see the same Sun God carved again. This is a rare sight, to see the same deity carved twice, close to each other. Why did the ancient builders carve the same god twice, within a distance of 10 feet? Of course, the standard answer is quite simple: It is a Hindu temple, and thousands of gods are carved for religious worship. This is not a satisfactory answer for me, because I’ve always argued that every carving was done for a specific reason. So, I take a closer look at each of them. Here are these 2 carvings side by side, and you can try to figure out the difference between them.
|What is the difference between these 2 Sun Gods?|
From his hair, and the weapons he is holding, he can be identified as a god by the name of “Kaala Bhairava”.If you look at the standard explanations of this God, it is somewhat simple and it is known as a fierce or frightful form of Lord Shiva. But a deeper look into this deity, shows that the word Kaala means Time and the word Bhairava is split into three words, Creation, Sustenance and Destruction. So, the real meaning of Kaala Bhairava is something similar to the eternal timekeeper. Now, we know the meaning of these 3 carvings, but we still don’t know why they have been carved. Think of these 3 deities: The morning sun, the eternal timekeeper, and the evening sun. What could they possibly indicate? What are these horses doing in the middle? If you take a step back and look at the entire picture, the horses on either side are pulling the entire temple, which is shaped like a chariot using these 2 wheels!
Why are these wheels carved here? Each wheel is made of multiple rocks, this is not a monolithic block. I am not gonna go into the details of how difficult it is to create a circle out of multiple rocks. Why did the ancient builders take enormous pains to create this wheel? If you observe carefully, some spokes are actually carved on 3 different pieces of rock. This kind of precision is nearly impossible! But why did they go to great lengths to achieve this? Merely for decoration? Not a chance! Let’s count the number of spokes – each wheel has 32 spokes. Believe it or not, these 2 wheels make up an ancient clock, a sundial, which is lying around undiscovered for many centuries, until now.
Nobody knows that this is a sundial, even though all these carvings – the timekeeper, the morning sun, and the evening sun, specifically indicate that this is a sundial. These 32 spokes divide 24 hours into 45 minute segments. One wheel can be used in the morning, and the other wheel in the afternoon. Now you know why the ancient builders carved the morning Sun above one wheel, and the evening sun above the other wheel.
In another video, I have already shown you how the Sundial at Konark Sun Temple works in detailed fashion, so I am not gonna bore with the same information. But really quickly, the angle between each spoke represents 45 minutes, and 45 minutes are split into 10 beads, which can specifically show the current time up to the accuracy of four and a half minutes. I have asked the locals and the priests, but nobody knows that this is a sundial. Searching on the internet also gives us no results, which means I have just discovered this sundial.
In another post, I have already shown you how the entrance and exit signs are carved at Darasuram temple. The entrance symbol is located near the morning Sundial and the exit sign, near the evening Sundial. If you have worked in an average store or a gas station, we use something called a "Time Clock System". Every day, employees get their cards punched with the current time before they start working, and just before leaving they get them punched again. It turns out that the ancient Indians did the same thing: An employee of the temple would look at the morning Sundial before entering the premises, and after his day is over, would look at the evening sundial while leaving. Even better, they might have had guards at the entrance and exit signs who noted down when the employee entered or left, using the Sundial.
The truth is, every ancient Indian temple has loads of hidden secrets hiding in plain sight. If you start looking, you can understand why these brilliant carvings were created. For example, look at this little guy (below picture) who is driving the horse and the chariot. Under the morning sun, this guy has just started his day, his hair is well groomed, he is smiling and his one leg is in front of the other, he is looking forward and has just begun driving the chariot. Under the evening Sun, the same guy is carved frowning, because he is tired, his hair is all messed up, his legs are wide apart, one of his hands is on his hips, and he is looking away from the horse, because his day is over.
If you visit this temple, look at the elephants as well, they give you enormous insight about what the ancient builders were really trying to tell us. Now, I want to point out that this sundial is just the tip of the iceberg. There are bigger secrets hiding in plain sight. For example, we found the eternal timekeeper carved below one of the horses. What lies below the other horse? A big surprise!
Lord Buddha. Why is Buddha carved in a Hindu temple? Historians swear that Chola Kings who built the temple were strict Shaivaites (worshipers of Shiva) and were intolerant of other faiths. However, we not only see other gods such as sculptures of Vishnu in the temple, but also Buddha! This shows that the Chola Kings were not just tolerant, they were welcoming other religions into their temples. The Tamil kings had a brilliant way of embracing all cultures: they used both Tamil and Sanskrit names, and allowed all faiths to merge into Hinduism.
Every carving has a meaning, so why is Buddha carved under this horse, hidden from the eyes of casual visitors? This hand signal of Buddha is also rare to find in ancient sculptures. This hand signal is called 'Jnana Mudra' which means “Symbol of Knowledge or Wisdom”. What knowledge is he pointing to? How is he connected to the eternal timekeeper on the other side?
Consider these points if you are trying to decode this further:
|Identify these gods and find out the ancient builders were telling us!|
- Praveen Mohan