Puri Journals

The Sun Temple of Konark

A June 2008 trip to Puri by Anannya

Konark - East West Alignment Photo, Puri, India More Photos
Quote: The 13th century Sun Temple of Konark is a World Heritage Site. It is a marvel of architecture and design. Built as a chariot of the sun, there is a fusion of planetary physics, Hindu mythology and the political ideologies of the times. Konark deserves full immersion.

The Konark Sun Temple

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Konark Sun Temple Entrance Photo, Puri, India
The Konark Sun Temple was built some time in the 13th century by the King Narasimhadeva I of the Eastern Ganga Dynasty. It's significance has three main contributors - the imaginative design, the carvings on the walls and the historical events associated with it.The design: The entire temple is designed like a chariot - The chariot of the sun which makes its daily journey across the sky. Combining the physics of planetary motion, this temple is a marvel in science with wheels designed as sun dials, the layout of the temple aligned in the east-west plane and the corridor of pillars arranged to align with the position of sun depending on the solstices and equinoxes. The carvings:...Read More
Konark - East West Alignment Photo, Puri, India
The Sun Temple of Konark is shaped as a chariot to carry the sun god in his daily journey from the east to the west. The entire layout is oriented in the East-West plane. And every equinox, spring and vernal, the sun rises from the east directly above the zenith of the main sanctum hall. There are pillars in front of the main building forming a corridor of sorts, on the equinox days, the sun moves exactly along the mid point of this corridor. On solstice days, the position of the sun shifts north or south depending on the solstice. And one these days, the path of the sun directly above either of these pillar lines. Then there are the wheels. Each of the wheels has t...Read More

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