Dwarka Temple / Jagatmandir Temple ( Chhota Char Dham )
Dwarkadhish – Dwarka
Dwarka is sanctified as the place where Lord Vishnu slew the demon Shankhasura. The Puranas mention the 12 Jyotirlingas or columns of light representing Lord Shiva which manifested in different parts of the country. One of these is located in Dwarka and is known as the Nageshwar Mahadev. The Jagat Mandir or Nij Mandir forms the sanctum of the Dwarkadish temple and dates back to 2500 years. Jagat Mandir has its own hall of audience and a conical spire. The roof of the hall is supported by 60 columns and the main temple rises five storeys high. The spire rises to a height of 157 feet and is richly carved. One of the most popular temples in Dwarka is that of Rukmini, Krishna’s wife, considered an incarnation of Goddess Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth and beauty. The Sharad Peetha, one of the four Maths established by Jagatguru Shankaracharya, is also situated here.
Dwarka is an important pilgrimage center. It is steeped in legends, being associated with the life of Lord Krishna. In Puranic times, present-day Dwarka was known as Kushasthali or Dwaravati and enjoyed pride of place as the most important spot on the Saurashtra coast. It is said that Lord Krishna, after slaying Kansa, left his abode at Mathura and traveled with the entire Yadava community to the coast of Saurashtra where he founded a town and named it Swarnadwarika.
Dwarka Temple From Market
Vajranabh, Lord Krishna’s successor and great grandson, is believed to have built the present temple Dwarkanath, also called Trilok Sundar. Many Hindus fervently believe that the temple was erected in one night by a supernatural agency, under Vajranabh’s direction. Legend has it that when dying, Lord Krishna asked his devotees to leave Swarnadwarika so that the sea could engulf it. Until this day, Lord Krishna’s city lies buried under the sea. Excavations have revealed that the sea swallowed five settlements, the present-day Dwarka being the sixth in line.
Special Thanks to Chatts for Image
Dwarka Temple View from Highway
The temple of Dwarkadheesh, also known as Jagat Mandir, is built on the north bank of the Gomti Creek. The temple dates back to 2,500 years. Architecturally the temple is constructed on the same plan and system as most of the Hindu sacred edifices of antiquity. Sixty columns support the roof of the audience hall of the Jagat Mandir. The main temple is five-story high with the lavishly carved conical spire rising to a height of 157 feet. There is the one-meter tall, four handed black idol of Ranchhodrai, the ruler of Dwarika. Amongst the large number of temples belonging to different periods in the history of Dwarka, the most popular with pilgrims is the temple of Rukmini, Lord Krishna’s wife, who is considered an incarnation of Lakshmi, the goddess of wealth and beauty.
Dwarka Temple Evening Sun Set View
In addition to its temples and legends, Dwarka is also sanctified as the seat of Adi Shankaracharya, who established four seats (maths) in four different directions in the country. Research work in Sanskrit is carried on at the Shankaracharya’s seat known as Sharad Peetha.
Dwarka Dhish Temple – Dwarka
The temple is built in honour of Princess Rukmini who was married to Lord Krishna.
The temple is quite small but beautifully craved with elephants, flowers, dancers and several aspects of Shiva, on every wall.
The flags on this temple (and the main temple of Dwarkadish) were enormous. The flag was changed as pilgrims and believers paid to have a different flag raised, sometimes even every hour, particularly at Dwarkadish.