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Dilwara Temple

The Dilwara Temple, also known as the Dilwara Jain Temples, are a group of Śvētāmbara Jain temples located about 2.5 kilometers from the Mount Abu settlement in Sirohi District, the only hill station in Rajasthan. The earliest Dilwara Temple built by Bhima I and is believed to have been designed or financed by Vastupala, a Jain minister of Dholka. These temples, which date back to between the 11th and 16th centuries, are renowned for their Māru-Gurjara architecture.

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    Dilwara Temple

    They are particularly famous for their use of pure white marble and intricate carvings. Managed by Seth Shri Kalyanji Anandji Pedhi, Sirohi, the Dilwara Temples are a significant pilgrimage site for Jains and a popular tourist attraction. The Dilwara Temples are considered the most impressive Jain temples in Rajasthan.

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    Dilwara Jain Temple Complex: A Detailed Overview

    Dilwara Temple complex consist of five major sections or temples devoted to five jain trithankaras(saints):

    Shri Mahaveer Swami Temple

    The Dilwara Jain Temple complex comprises five main sections, each dedicated to a Jain Tirthankara (saint). The Shri Mahaveer Swami Temple, built in 1582, honors Lord Mahaveer, the 24th Tirthankara. Though relatively small, its upper walls feature paintings by craftsmen from Sirohi, completed in 1764.

    Shri AdiNath Temple (Vimal Vasahi Temple)

    The oldest temple in the Dilwara Jain Temple complex is the Shri AdiNath Temple, also known as the Vimal Vasahi Temple. Constructed in 1031 A.D. by Vimal Shah, a minister of the Solanki dynasty of Gujarat, this temple is dedicated to Shri Adinath Ji, the first Jain Tirthankara. It features an open courtyard surrounded by beautifully carved marble corridors. The internal dome is adorned with floral designs, and the temple hall’s pillars showcase carvings of female figures playing musical instruments. The Guda Mandapa, a simple hall decorated with images of Shri Adinath, is another highlight.

    Shri ParshavNath Temple (Khartar Vasahi Temple)

    Built by the Mandika clan between 1458-59 A.D., the Shri ParshavNath Temple, also known as Khartar Vasahi Temple, boasts the tallest shrine and four large Mandapas among the Dilwara temples. The intricate carvings on the pillars exemplify the architectural excellence of the Dilwara Jain Temples.

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    Shri Rishabdaoji Temple (Peethalhar Temple)

    The Shri Rishabdaoji Temple, known as Peethalhar Temple due to its brass (‘Pittal’) statues, was built by Bhima Shah, a minister of the Gujarat dynasty. Like other temples in the Dilwara Temple complex, it includes a Gudu Mandapa and Navchowki.

    Shri NemiNathJi Temple (Luna Vasahi Temple)

    The Shri NemiNathJi Temple, or Luna Vasahi Temple, was constructed in 1230 A.D. by two brothers, Tejpal and Vastupal. Dedicated to the 22nd Jain Tirthankara, Shri Nemi Nathji, this temple features a hall called Rag Mandapa, which houses 360 intricately crafted marble idols of Jain Tirthankaras. Among these, the idol of Shri Neminath Ji, made of black marble, stands out. The temple’s pillars were built by Maharana Kumbha of Mewar, further enhancing the grandeur of the Dilwara Jain Temple complex.

    These temples, located in Mount Abu, collectively known as the Dilwara Temple complex, demonstrate architectural brilliance and spiritual significance, making them a remarkable destination for visitors. The Dilwara Temple built by various dynasties showcases the rich heritage and devotion of Jain culture.

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    Dilwara Jain Temple: Architecture

    The five Dilwara temples, located on Mount Abu, are among the most renowned Jain temples. The earliest, Vimal Vasahi, was constructed in 1031, followed by Luna Vasahi in 1230. The remaining three were built between 1459 and 1582. All these temples are made of white marble, which enhances their beauty and has remained a key material in their construction.

    The oldest and largest temples, especially Luna Vasahi, are famous for their intricate carvings, even by the high standards of Jain architecture. The main buildings of Vimal Vasahi, Luna Vasahi, and the third temple are encircled by “cloister” screens of devakulikā shrines. These screens are relatively plain on the outer walls. For Vimal Vasahi, this screen was added later, around the time Luna Vasahi was constructed. These three temples feature an axis from the sanctuary through a closed and then an open mandapa to a larger hall, known as a rangamandapa, used for dance or drama. Surrounding the main temple with a curtain of shrines became a distinctive feature of Jain temples in West India and is still used in some modern temples.

    In later temples of the Māru-Gurjara style, the pure white marble used at Dilwara became highly sought after and even essential. In modern times, this style has spread to other regions of India and abroad, with local Rajastani marble often being carved and transported to new buildings.

    The Dilwara temples have a grand entrance, yet their architecture reflects Jain values of honesty and frugality through its simplicity. The intricate carvings on the ceilings, doorways, pillars, and panels are remarkable. It is said that the workmen were paid in gold based on the weight of the marble powder they scraped off during the carving process.

    These Dilwara Jain temples, especially the Dilwara temple Mount Abu, are not only religious landmarks but also masterpieces of marble architecture. The Dilwara temple built by dedicated artisans, continues to be a symbol of Jain devotion and artistic excellence.

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    Dilwara Temple: Entry Fee

    The Dilwara Jain Temples are open daily, including public holidays, from 12 P.M. to 5 P.M. There is no entry fee for visiting the Dilwara Temple. However, photography inside the temple complex is not permitted. Visitors typically spend an hour or two exploring and admiring the intricate architecture of the Dilwara Temple.

    How to Reach Dilwara Temple

    The Dilwara Jain Temple is located about 2.5 km from Mount Abu, making it easily accessible. State and private buses operate from major cities such as Jodhpur and Udaipur. Private taxis and cabs are also available. The nearest airport is in Udaipur, which is approximately 185 km from Mount Abu. The Abu Road Railway Station, located 28 km from the Dilwara Temple, provides good connectivity with major cities.

    Dilwara Jain Temple Timings

    Day Jain Devotees Tourists
    Monday 6:00 am – 12:00 pm 12:00 pm – 5:00 pm
    Tuesday 6:00 am – 12:00 pm 12:00 pm – 5:00 pm
    Wednesday 6:00 am – 12:00 pm 12:00 pm – 5:00 pm
    Thursday 6:00 am – 12:00 pm 12:00 pm – 5:00 pm
    Friday 6:00 am – 12:00 pm 12:00 pm – 5:00 pm
    Saturday 6:00 am – 12:00 pm 12:00 pm – 5:00 pm
    Sunday 6:00 am – 12:00 pm 12:00 pm – 5:00 pm

    FAQs on Dilwara Temple

    What is Dilwara Temple famous for?

    The Dilwara Jain Temple complex in Mount Abu is famous for its stunning marble architecture and intricate stone carvings. Built between the 11th and 16th centuries, these temples are dedicated to various Jain Tirthankaras (spiritual leaders).

    Who built the Dilwara Temple and which dynasty was it?

    The Dilwara temples, located about 2.5 kilometers from Mount Abu, were built by Vastapul Tejpal, who was a minister under Bhima, a ruler of the Chalukyas of Gujarat dynasty.

    What is the dress code for visiting the Dilwara Temple?

    For women, the recommended dress code is a saree or half-saree with a blouse, or a chudidhar with pyjama and upper cloth.

    Is the Dilwara Temple a Buddhist temple?

    No, the Dilwara Temples are a group of Svetambara Jain temples. They are located about 2.5 kilometers from Mount Abu, Rajasthan's only hill station, and are also known as the Delvada Temples.

    What is the speciality of the Dilwara Temple?

    The speciality of the Dilwara Temple is its extraordinary architecture. The intricate carvings on marble stone and the high-quality craftsmanship are visible in every part of the temple. The opulent entranceway is particularly stunning and spectacular.

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