Saturday, April 11, 2009

Learning of temple?

Looking at it from across the road, one is sure it is a Jain temple; the distintictive whiteness of soapstone and marble, unique to these temples, is a giveaway. But the entrance throws a googly at you. Though it does say "Shree Jain Prarthana Mandir", it goes on to also describe the Guru Shree Shantivijai Jain College for Women, leaving one confused if it is two-in-one structure.

From what is visible over the walls, there seems little chance of holding classes in what seems to be a multi pillared, open-hall kind of arrangement on the first floor. The students, however are not required to be inside this building, though it was built to encourage them to be more devout. A rather unusual feature of this temple is that it has two chief deities; on the ground floor is Gurudev Yogiraj Shanti Sureshwari. He is in the standard mode, back to a wall, facing all the devotees. On the first floor, the idol of Shree Parshvanathji, the 23rd Thirthankara, is in the middle of the hall, facing all four directions. That seems to be a really unique way of keeping watch on everything that's going around!


5 comments:

Jacob said...

Beautiful building...thanks for the commentary, too.

lviss said...

The one in Meenambakkam ?

Shantaram said...

@ Jacob: Thanks... yes, it does look grand.

@ Lviss: Hmm... for women? No, this one's in Vepery

Ram N said...

Oh ... i love the trivia on the swamiji seeing on all 4 directions. I always was hesitant to step inside a jain temple, for the fear of not being allowed inside. Is there a restriction?

Shantaram said...

@ Ram: From what I understand, there is no restriction - except maybe on festival days.