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Midnapore




Page: 18/26

Hindu Books > Temples And Legends of India > Temples And Legends Of Bengal > Midnapore

Rekha Temple, Barakar in Bengal Page17

The upper left hand holds a human skull while the lower holds the head of a demon. There are also two small idolsrepresenting Siva and a small image of Dasabhuja Mahishamardini, on the same platform with the deity. This is obviously a Sakti temple is crowned by a chakra or discus, which may have been set up by one of the Kaibartta Rajas. Animal sacrifice is not encouraged.

The temple has the clear impact of the Orissan style of architecture. The three apartments of the Baradeul, the Jagamohan and the Natmandir are usually found in any of the big Orissa temples. The Jagannath Temple at Puri has them and also a place where the Pandits sit and have religious discourses. The Jnan-Mandap of this Midnapore temple has its counterpart where Mukti-Mandap sits in Puri. "Various conflicting traditions narrate how the temple was founded. The most popular relates how in the days of king Garuradhwaj, of the ancient Peacock dynasty, a fisherman was one day unable to procure a dish of Saul fish for the table of the king, and the angry monarch ordered him to be put to death.

The fisherman managed to make his escape to the jungle, where the goddess Bhima appeared to him. She told him to lay in a stock of the fish and dry them, and promised that she would restore them to life, when he wanted them, by sprinkling them with water of a certain well, which had the virtue of restoring dead things to life. The fisherman followed the instructions of the goddess, and daily took the fresh fish to the king, who, finding that the supply never failed, in season and out of season, questioned the fisherman, and extracted from him the secret of the immortal well.




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