Middle Kingdoms of India, Part 72


Mangalwedha Temple, Maharashtra

Aug 14, 2015 — CANADA (SUN) — A serial presentation of India's great history, religious movements and temple architecture.

The Badami Chalukyas

Completing today our summary of the Badami Chalukyas and the various regions of India through which their influence spread, we go now to the town of Valpoi, Goa, on the West Coast.

Goa is known for many things, and in more modern times, particularly the presence of both Christian and Hindu worship in close quarters. In ancient times, Goa was known as a seat of worship of Lord Brahma -- a relatively rare presence outside of Pushkar. In fact, the worship of Lord Brahma arrived in the Goa region during the period of the early Chalukyas of Badami.

One of India's best known temples devoted to Lord Brahma is located in the village of Brahma Carambolim (or Kormoli) in the Satari taluka, 7 kilometers from Valpoi, Goa. The main temple is described as being situated in the Brahma-Carambolim village, which distinguishes it from Carambolim Village proper, near Old Goa, Tiswadi taluka, where the Deity originally resided.

Lord Brahma
Brahma Carambolim - Valpoi, Goa

After the arrival of the Portuguese, who brought the Christian influence to Goa, the original Brahma temple was sacked, thus the Deity was moved to a safer location. The temple was built in the 5th century, although the Deity of Lord Brahma was installed much later. The Deity was brought to Kormoli in the 11th century.


Moving north along India's west coast, we come to the town of Mangalwedha in Solapur district of Maharashtra. Mangalwedha is approximately 50 km. southwest of the city of Solapur, and 25 km southeast of Pandharpur, a famous Vaisnava seat.

Known for being the birthplace of Sri Jayatirtha, the great Dvaita saint and commentator on Sri Madhvacarya's works, Mangalwedha is also home to an ancient Brahma Temple.

Mangalwedha is mentioned as 'Metulingpuri' in the Bhima Mahatmya of Skanda Purana, but some historians question that identification. There are many monumental stone ruins from the Chalukya kings of Kalyani found around Mangalwedha, indicating that it was an important center during the 9th to 11th Centuries.

Numerous inscriptions give evidence that the town of Mangalwedha was under the rule of the Chalukyas of Kalyani, later becoming the seat of the Kalachuryas.


The Chalukya dynasty was also a well-known presence in Gujarat. They situated their capital city at Anahilvad in the latter part of the 10th Century, and it survived until the middle of the 13th Century.

Among other areas of life the Chalukya's impacted, they had a significant influence on devotional art. From the 12th to 16th Centuries, the Western Indian School of painting prevailed in the region of Gujarat, Rajasthan and Malwa. While the subjects of artists working in the area were primarily Vaisnava, one of the motivating forces in regional art was Jainism, much like Buddhism's impact manifested in Ajanta and the Pala arts.

Jainism was patronised by kings of the Chalukya dynasty who were ruling in Gujarat and parts of Rajasthan and Malwa, from 961 A.D. to the end of the 13th Century. An enormous number of Jain religious manuscripts were commissioned from 12th to 16th Centuries by Chalukya princes, ministers and rich Jain merchants who wished to earn religious merit.


At the foot of a large hill near the town of Hathma, in the Barmer district of Rajasthan, is the ancient village of Kiradu, Jodphur. An inscription dated 1161 A.D. reveals that the place was once known as Kiratkoop. It was the capital of the Parmars from the 11th to 13th Centuries. Because the Parmars were under the Gujarati Chalukya's influence, temple architecture in the area was influenced by their style.

There are ruins of five ancient temples at Kiradu, often described as being one Visnu temple and four Shiva temples. But in fact, one of these was a temple devoted to Lord Brahma.

Kiradu ruins


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