The ancient temple of Nrusinghanath is situated in the Bargah district Of Odisha. Odisha is famous for its great and magnificent temples. The temple of Nrusinghanath adds more pride and glory to the state. It houses Lord Nrusinghanath who is an avatar of Lord Vishnu. The temple celebrates the Vaishnavite tradition which is predominant in Odisha. Most of the temples in Odisha worship Lord Vishnu and one can see the characteristic takeover of Vaishnavism over Shaivism in the temples located here. The temple is situated on the foot hills of Gandhamardhan Hill. The foundation of this temple was laid by Baijal Singh Dev, the king of Patnagarh. The temple belongs to 1313 A.D. It is a great temple and a gem to the entire country.
Nrusinghanath Temple Architecture
Nrusinghanath Temple is 45 feet high. The temple is divided into two parts. The first part is the sanctum which houses the seat of Lord Nrusinghanath and the second part is the Jagamohana. Jagamohana is a typical element of the Nagara architecture which is prevalent in north Indian temples. Kalinga style of architecture comprises of this element. Jagamohana is an assembly hall in Hindu Temples.
Most of the temples in Odisha have this part housed in them. The most famous example of this is the Konark Sun Temple. Due to collapse of the main temple tower, what appears today is the Jagamohana. The entrance of the temple is beautifully carved. It is colourful and adorned beautifully sculpted images of gods and goddesses. The entire temple complex is surrounded by a simple yet sober boundary wall.
History behind the Nrusinghanath Temple
The temple houses the beloved Lord Nrusinghanath. According to Odiya and Devnagari inscriptions, the temple was built by Baijal Singh Dev in 1313. A very interesting mythological legend surrounds this temple.In a book named ‘Nrusingha Charitra’ a woman named Jamuna Kandhuni composed a Kavya that sang the glory of Marjara Keshari. It talked about the oppression caused by a demon and how the demon was grounded. It is said that a monstrous demon used had created chaos and havoc at this place. So, in order to maintain peace and order in here, Lord Vishnu came to the rescue and killed the demon. Since that day onwards people started worshipping Lord Nrusinghanath, an avatar of Lord Vishnu. The demon was Mushika Daitya and was eaten by Vishnu Mani. The demon never came of the tunnel. This story is symbolic of grounding torture and turmoil caused by an evil being. Lord Nrusinghanath still guards the tunnel and is highly revered at the very place.
A Chinese traveler, Huen Tsang had suggested that this place was a center of Buddhist scriptural learning.
Tourist Attractions in and around the Nrusinghanath Temple
The temple experience a huge influx of pilgrims and tourists throughout the year. There are several picnic spots and waterfalls near the temple. Friends and families come here to enjoy and relax particularly during the winters. Apart from this there exists a beautiful park that attracts many tourists.
There is a beautiful garden situated next to the temple. The garden houses the depictions of the different avatars of Lord Krishna. In addition to this there also exists a 28ft Hanuman Statue in the center of the Garden. This is a new development near the temple.
Another major tourist attraction is the annual big fair held in here on Nrusimha-chaturdashi. This fair is conducted with great pomp and show. It attracts thousands of pilgrims every year.
When here one must not lose the wonderful opportunity of visiting the nearby tourist attractions. Some of them being the Chal Dhar, Bhim Dhar, Kapil Dhar and the Sita Kunda. These places are in a range of 2km from the temple. The Kapil Dhar waterfall is a natural wonder. The waterfall glitters in sunlight. It is a wonderful spot for photography enthusiasts. This place provides wonderful landscapes for taking pictures.
A Tourist’s Guide to Nrusinghanath Temple
Nrusinghanath Temple is situated near Durgapalli. The nearest city is the city of Sambalpur. The temple is open on all days of the week from 64am to 6pm. Entry is not ticketed. Photography is not allowed inside the temple complex. The nearest railway station head is at Bargah railway station and the nearest airport is in Bhubaneswar airport, the capital city of Odisha. The temple is famous among pilgrims and nature lovers. The temple and its surrounding areas gives the visitors a taste of everything. It is the best destination for the ones who seek serenity and quiet.