Location: The 108th Divya Desam of lord Vishnu proclaiming the memoirs of Lord Krishna is situated at Dwarka in Gujarat, India. It is believed that the earlier structure of the shrine was built in Dvarka city which has been sunk into the ocean after Mahabharata battle eight times.
Another name of the shrine: One of the Char Dham ‘Dwarkadheesh mandir’ is also renowned as Pushtimarg temple where the scripted guidelines and religious rites of Shree Vallabhacharya and Shree Vitheleshnathji are followed with reverence. The inclusion of this shrine as one of the ‘Char Dham’ is the outcome of Adi Shankaracharya who visited this shrine in 8th century.
Presiding Deity: Dwarkadheesh Krishna
Etymology: ‘Dwarka’ is the ‘name of the city’ while the suffix ‘ adi’ stands for first & ‘eesh’ means ‘God’. The conjugation of all the foregoing phrases forms the word ‘Dwarkadheesh’ which stands for ‘the king of Dwarka’.
Testimonial scriptures: Divya Prabandha
Historical era of its foundation: 16th century C.E. (2500 years ago)
Founder ‘King’ of the shrine: The grandson of lord Krishna namely ‘Vajranabha’
Pious occasion to visit the shrine: Shri Krishna Janmashtmi
Description of the temple:
- Architectural style: The overview structure of this incredible temple resembles the prints of ‘Chalukyan style’. And ‘Dwarkadheesh temple’, one of the two buildings of this temple depicts the splendid architecture in Shaiva style while the second monument named as ‘Bet-Dwarka Temple’ denotes peculiar specimen of architecture in ‘Vaishnava style’.
- Height: 51.8 meters
- Two ‘Sikhara’ of Jagat Mandir (shrine) of this temple: The two Shikhara are designed to imprint the impression of divinity that can be glimpsed even from distant region. Out of the twos, Nij Shikhar is relatively longer that illustrates the exact location of the abode of ‘Dwarkadheesh’.
- Pillars: 72 exquisite pillars are erected out of which 60 are demonstrating the exclusive masterpiece work of carving at marvel on them.
- Storey: 5 storey
- Height of the spire: 78.3 m
- Material used: Limestone
- Sanctum: The solemn sanctum of Jagat Mandir or Nija Mandir unfolds the remnants of 2500 years ago which has a tall tower and an audience-hall.
- Number of steps to come outside: The flight of 56 steps enables pilgrims to lead to the heavenly view of ‘Gomti River’.
- Dynasties resemble through the sculptures: The dynasties which once glorified their imperialism by possessing their control over this temple are the Guptas, Pallavas & Chavdas.
- Moksha Dwaar: This is assumed to be the entrance to salvation from the north that shows route to have a spectacular view of presiding deity.
- Swarg Dwaar: This is the southern entrance that enables the devotees and visitors to move ahead to the steps that would endure them the chance of witnessing the magnetic picturesque image of ‘Gomti River’.
- Idols: The sculpture of lord Krishna, known as ‘Shankha Chakra Gada Padma Chaturbhuj’or Dwarkadheesh, is made up of lustrous black stone measuring 2.25 ft high holding a conch, the Sudharshan Chakra, a mace and a lotus in its various hands. This idol was supposed to be brought from ‘Rukmini Temple’ and kept it confided for years in order to conceal it from the evil-sight of invaders.
- Mythological belief: As per prevalent locales’ belief, the builder of this shrine is none other than deity architecture ’Vishwakarma’
- Flag hoisting: As a lofty hill, the apex of this temple is bedecked with flags having icons of moon and the sun painted on it. It is changed 5 times a day since the temple authority has its 5 replicas.