A temple is the dwelling of the Gods and a place of worship. This also remains a solemn structure dedicated for religious activities.
Our country can very well be called ‘the land of the temples’, where innumerable Hindu temples dot the landscape. Many of these are very ancient and some are also massive in size and grand in appearance. These were designed, constructed and are being maintained based on sound spiritual principles enunciated in the ancient texts including the Vedas and Upanishads. The Hindu temples stand as the very symbol of the values and beliefs steeped in the Indian culture and ethos for the past thousands of years. Patronized generously by the rulers in the olden times, these temples also stood as a sign of their regal power and might, apart from being the embodiment of art and architecture.
Though held equally sacred, temples in different regions have their own distinct structural styles and the differentiation lies essentially in the shape and pattern of the Shikara, the super structure. The North Indian temples are built in the Nagara style, which consists principally of two structures, the taller sanctum, the main shrine and the shorter mandapa, the front hall. Their Shikaras normally resemble large cones and are decorated with many similar, mini images. Whatever be the region or the structure, a visit to any of these magnificent institutions is sure to appeal deeply to anyone’s spiritual, religious and aesthetic senses and take one to sublime heights.