The renowned Jain temple at Ranakpur is dedicated to Adinatha.
The temple is designed as chaumukha—with four faces. The construction of the temple and quadrupled image symbolize the Tirthankara's conquest of the four cardinal directions and hence the cosmos.
The dating of this temple is controversial but it is largely considered to be anywhere between the late 14th to mid-15th century. Inspired by a dream of a celestial vehicle, Dhanna Shah, a Porwad, is said to have commissioned it, under the patronage of Rana Kumbha, then ruler of Mewar. The architect who oversaw the project is said to have been named Deepaka. It is believed that, the construction of the Temple was such a challenge that, many skilled architect had failed to develop it and, Deepaka, was just an ordinary man, who helped develop with his vision. There is an inscription on a pillar near the main shrine stating that in 1439 Deepaka, an architect, constructed the temple at the direction of Dharanka, a devoted Jain.
This temple was nominated as one of the top 77 wonders in a contest for the new seven wonders of the world. Pandit Man Singh, who took me around the Temple said, it costed around Rupees 150 crores (around 350 million US Dollars) at that time to construct the Temple and around 1500 tourists visit the Temple during the peak season.
To see more photos of the Temple, please click here
Contributed by: Mohinder Pal Singh
Date: March 29, 2010