Rajarani Temple: Khajuraho of the East


After the unforgettable trip to the Nandankanan zoological park, I was heading to my next destination which was the Rajarani temple. Temples at Bhubaneshwar is known for the splendid designs and architectures and Rajarani is one of those temples which is famous for its majestic structure. Rajarani temple was built in the 11th century and today it is maintained by the Archaeological Survey of India.

The temple is said to have known as the Indreshwar temple previously. The temple is constructed out of red sandstone and yellow turbid sandstone which is locally known as the Rajarani. The carvings on the temple are ornate with erotic sculptures and hence the temple is also known as the Khajuraho of the east. The structure of the temple was very majestic and the lawns which surround the temple are beautifully kept and maintained and serve as a good place to relax from sightseeing.

Rajarani Temple, Bhubaneswar

Rajarani Temple, Bhubaneswar | Image Resource: wikimedia.org

The temple is built on a raised platform with two structures. The first structure is a central shrine which is called as the vimana. The other one is a curvilinear spire and is called as the bada. The Rajarani temple is one of those whose religious significance is yet not known. Even though there is no image of any diety inside the sanctum, but the images and the erotic carvings indicate the Saivite origin of the temple.

The temple due to its erotic carvings is locally famous as the Love temple. I was very surprised as to how liberal people in those times were that they used to decorate places of worship with these sculptures and in today’s so called modern times even a “love scene” in a movie has to be passed by a censor board. One really wonders if we have progressed or regressed in the times gone by.

Sculpture on Rajarani Temple, Bhubaneswar

Sculpture on Rajarani Temple, Bhubaneswar | Image Resource: wikimedia.org

The trip to Rajarani temple was a very informative trip and a good place to capture some beautiful images of this architectural marvel. After the trip to Rajarani temple I decided to have a quick break for some refreshment drinks and a light meal after that take a visit to the Odisha State Museum of Bhubaneswar.

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