Specialty of Kerala Temples
In sum, what is special about Kerala temples, which have started attracting world attention for the unique architectural style and forms, which many in India are not even aware of? Writes Ronald Bernier:
"Firstly, Kerala temples emphasize horizontal movement as symbolic of the path toward
truth. The temple is not a mountain, although it is built around an axis. Its enshrined
‘engine’, a holy power in the form of a sculpture or symbol from which energy
and goodness radiate activates it."
Mighty as it is, a figural image at the centre of the womb may smile in benevolent, friendly acceptance. Perhaps Kerala's is the most houselike of all the divine dwellings in India. Its materials are natural and clearly earth-derived. The monument touches the masses in terms of earthly experience rather than of the worldly grandeur and pomp. At the same time, there is room for preciousness (why shouldn't Garuda
be made of gold?) since the temple is after all a heavenly abode.
It is not for its precious parts that Kerala temple design is best to be remembered, but for its special accomplishments primarily in the use of wood. Wooden art throughout the subcontinent has suffered with the ravages of time, from changing tastes and fashion, and with the results of deforestation.