Friday, February 20, 2009

26th Nov 2005: Badami

The Nataraj statue with 18 hands depicting 81 mudras from the Bharatnatyam form of dance.

We reached Badami in the late morning and even though it was Nov it was hot. Though the roads were really bad these heritage sites are extremely well maintained by the Karnataka Govt.

The mid morning sun made the red sandstone hill resplendent. As we climbed the steps to the caves I was unprepared for the site. I almost gasped at the greater than human sized carvings, a glimpse of which I caught as I reached at the entrance of the first cave.

The guide told us stories about these sculptures. He pointed out how these cave represented unity in diversity. They were home to Shaivism, Vaishnavism as well a Jainism and Buddhism. Read more here about the history.

I found it really amazing to see how the stand stone lent itself so well for the carvings. The layers in the cross section provided a visual of drapery to the statues. It looked as if the clothes carved were really draped on them.

We climbed a few steps towards the second cave and the apple green pool in the ravine was another soothing surprise. It was a little cooler on this side of the hill as the towering fort cast a shadow. For security reasons the fort was closed for visitors.

The sight of Agastya Lake reminded me of Ruskin Bond's The hidden Pool

There was a small museum at the foothills which we checked out. We did not visit the dargah, may be some other time. From here we proceed to have lunch and then were on our way to Pattadkal.

1 comment:

Sharmila said...

I hope you will come up with the post on Hampi .. too bad you mistakenly deleted the snaps. Good writeup again. :-)