Over the eons of civilization,the society has identified itself as a representation of change, continually trying to achieve utopia. It has graduated from the ranks of the establishment of social ethics,the confluence of cultural values and the attempts to create a stable present. Times stands testimony to the fact that divides arise out of inequality and insecurity it represents. Shri Jagannath Chetana being assimilated with different faiths and beliefs is the hope and ray of light that seems best suited to dispel this darkness of ignorance and can pave the way in establishing world peace and harmony in preaching the essence of "Unity in Diversity" which basically reflects in it.
 
Marga Darshak
Advisors
Central Executive Body
State Executive Body
All Members List
 
 
The exact geographical location of the Temple of Shri Jagannath is latitude 19' 18' 17", and longitude 58°51' 39". According to traditions of the temple was originally built by Yayati Kesari (Yayati-ll of Somavamsi dynasty) on the site of the present shrine. Another tradition attributes the construction of the temple to Anangabhima Deva, grandson of Anantavarman Chodaganga Deva. But the epigraphical records fully support that it was Chodaganga Deva ( 1112- 1148 A.D.) who built the present temple. (The sanctuary and the porch).
Among the existing temples in orissa, the temple of Shri Jagannath is the highest. The temple (214 ft 8 inches high from the road level) is on a perfect pancharatha plan. All the paraphrenalia of feudal pomp and splendour observed.
In the daily life of the emperors or potentates of old can be noticed in the daily worship of Shri Jagannath. By a statute, the temple has been placed under a Managing Committee since 1960 with the Gajapati Maharaja of Puri as the ex-officio chairman. The members of the committee are appointed by the state government.
The following is a description of the temple and its accessory structures.
The Sun Pillar :- In front of the entrance to the eastern  gateway there is the beautiful Sun pillar (Aruna stambha)which originally stood before-the Temple of the Sun at Konark and was shifted here by the Marathas. The Sun pillar is a monolithic shaft of chlorite with sixteen sides. It is 25 feet and 2 inches in height, 2 feet in diametre, and 6 feet and 31/2 inches in circumference. It stands on an  exquisitely carved pedestal (Made of chlorite) of 7 feet 9 inches square and 6 feet high, and has a capital on the top  2 1/2 feet high, over which squats the praying Aruna. The capital is formed of two rings surmounted by a series of lotus petals. The measurements thus give a total height of 33 feet 8 inches from the ground to the top of the capital. In its present situation the pillar is about two centuries old  but its execution dates from the early part of the 13th Century.
Enclosures :- The temple has two big concentric walls and four gates both in outer and inner walls. The outer wall of the temple is known as Meghanada Prachira (665 ft. X 640 ft. ) and the inner wall is known as. Kurma Bedha (420 ft. x 315 ft.). The height of the outer wall varies from 20 ft to 24 ft. with serrated battlement on its top. The loftiness of the walls proves that the temple had served the purpose of a fort. This is corroborated by the fact that at the time of the muslim invasion the civilians as well as the soldiers took shelter inside the compound when certain portions of it were damaged. There is no historical evidence to prove when the outer and the inner walls were constructed. But from the Madala Panji and the local tradition it is known that these were built not earlier than the l5th century A.D.

 The Gates :- In the temple of Shri Jagannath there are four gates both in outer and inner enclosures. The eastern entrance of the outer enclosure is called Singhadwara or the Lions’ Gate. The entrance on the southern, western and northern sides of the outer enclosure is called Aswadwara, Vyaghradwara and Hastidwara respectively. They are also called as Purbadwara, Dakhinadwara, Paschinadwara, and Uttaradwara according to their directions. Worshipping the gates also forms a part of the daily ritualistic service of the temple. The eastern gate is beautifully ornamented. Navagraha reliefs are carved on the architraves of all the gates.

  Next...