Chaya Someshwara Temple – A Marvelous Feat In Architecture!

 

The ancient Chaya Someswara temple at Panagal in Nalgonda is a part of Telanagana’s glorious culture and heritage! More than that, it is an architectural Marvel.

 

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The ‘Chaya Someshwara Temple’ 100 kms from Hyderabad, which until quite recently, lay abandoned for some unknown reason. The Temple its epitome of beaux arts marvel, derived its name from the mystifying shadow (Chaya). The incredible ‘shadow undisturbed’, the origin of that puzzled visitors since times immemorial, is a distinctive feature of the brilliant temple.

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The temple was built in the 11th – 12th centuries during Ikshvaku family. The temple is known for the everlasting shadow (Chaya) on the presiding god Lord Shiva’s Linga in the main temple at any time of the day. Engineered by Kunduru Cholas in 12th century, the temple, accepted as Thrikutalayam, testifies the wonderful creative thinking and talent of its architects.

It has been a secret for almost 800 years. Recently one physics lecturer has built the model and found that, it is an architectural marvel and the temple is built with such a precision that the unknown shadow is a combination of 4 pillars inside and opposite to the Garbha gudi and the architect (shilpi) had maintained a different passage for the light to fall on the pillars to get that effect.

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There are three Garbha gudis in the temple and each has its own specialty

 

1) Linga garbha gudi There is a shadow of pillar on linga which is constant and can be seen at all times and even in moon light. But you does not know from which pillar that shadow is forming, you can test that by standing beside any pillar and you can’t see your shadow, hence you doesn’t know the source pillar of the shadow.

2) Brahma Garbha gudi If you stand opposite to this second Garbha gudi, you can see four shadows of you

3) Linga Garbha gudi II If you stand opposite to this Garbha gudi you will see the shadow of yours on the opposite side.

One of the Garbhagudis (santum sanctorum), which is in the west and facing east, designated as the main temple of the Thrikutalayam contains a constant shadow in the form of a single pillar from dawn to dusk.

Throwing light on the mysterious phenomenon, a local physics lecturer of Suryapet, revealed that the properties of light particularly scattering was responsible for the formation of the single shadow. “The pillars in front of the Garbhagudi (west) are placed in such a way that they allow formation of single shadow by scattering of light irrespective of the position of the sun. He demonstrated this by designing a working model of the temple. The application of properties of light in framing the pattern of the pillars by the designer of the temple over six hundred years ago reveals the scientific consciousness of our architects.

 

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