Langudi – Odisha’s Miraculous Buddhist Hill

Year 1995! I had just registered my PhD programme on Buddhist Archaeology at Pune’s Deccan College. I had come to Odisha for my initial fieldwork. On a fine late afternoon, I had stumbled upon Langudi Hill with my other companions Dr Pradip Mohanty and Dr Harish Prusty, both experts in Buddhist Archaeology. Remains of Rock-Cut … Continue reading Langudi – Odisha’s Miraculous Buddhist Hill

Sri Surya Pahar: Riddles of an Unwritten Past

The very mention of Sri Surya Pahar generally evokes a sense of doubt and confusion. Most people are unaware of it and even those who know the name find it hard to locate it on a map. The fact that it is one of the oldest and largest archaeological sites providing a vital clue to … Continue reading Sri Surya Pahar: Riddles of an Unwritten Past

Turtuk – Living On The Edge

“The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page-” thus spake the Augustine of Hippo; and since I am a voracious reader, I decided to read a few more pages this year. This reading took me up the long, winding roads of the greater Himalayas, and I found myself wandering in the 'land … Continue reading Turtuk – Living On The Edge

Mandapeshwar Caves – Isolated Remains Of A Tumultuous Past

4 kms in an hour. My bike can go faster but not the rush hour traffic and crowd of Swami Vivekanand Road in Borivali. Does not matter if its a sunday today for in Mumbai every waking hour is a rush hour. Exhausted but finally in front of Mandapeshwar caves. How I wish I could go back … Continue reading Mandapeshwar Caves – Isolated Remains Of A Tumultuous Past

Kalpavriksha and Its Depiction in Art and Architecture – An Overview

Moolatho Brahma roopaya, madhyatho Vishnu roopine, Agratha shiva roopaya Vruksha rajaya they Nama. My salutations to the king of trees. Whose root is the form of Brahma, Middle is the form of Lord Vishnu, And top is the form of Lord Shiva. Aswatha sarva papani satha janma arjithanicha, Nudhaswa mama vrakshendra, sarva aiswarya pradho bhava. … Continue reading Kalpavriksha and Its Depiction in Art and Architecture – An Overview

Ajanta – India’s First Renaissance

One of the most famous disciples of Gautama Buddha during his lifetime was King Bimbisara. He invited Gautama Buddha and his Sangha members for a meal at his royal court - the Rajagriha. While having dinner, sitting next to Gautama Buddha, the King wondered: ‘Where could I find a place for the Blessed One to … Continue reading Ajanta – India’s First Renaissance

Buddhist Weavers of Maniabandha – A Confluence of Ideas

One of India’s greatest gifts to the world of ideas is Buddhism, a religion that was propounded by Gautama Buddha in the middle of 1st millennium BCE, on the principles of compassion and detachment. Odisha, lying on the east coast of India had been a major centre of Buddhism right from the time of Buddha. … Continue reading Buddhist Weavers of Maniabandha – A Confluence of Ideas

Sanchi Panels – An Art Studio driven by Common People

In the middle of 3rd century BC, India had gone through a traumatic event, the Kalinga War, but its consequence had far positive reaching. The Kalinga War transformed Ashoka from being a cruel king to a man of compassion, and an ardent follower of Buddhism. Till then Buddhism had spread its wings to the whole … Continue reading Sanchi Panels – An Art Studio driven by Common People