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An Ancient and Historical - Kopeshwar Temple, Khidrapur, Maharashtra

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This temple is situated at the junction of Maharahstra and Karnataka. This is the only but lesser known temple in Maharashtra with such type of Architecture. This temple is built on the banks of River Krishna, it has a beautiful architecture with various intricate carvings on the interior and exterior walls.

The unique thing you will observe about this temple is that the Shiva temple without Nandi. The story behind is:

' Sati ' the beloved wife of Shiva went to her father Daksha Prajapati’s place to attend the Yagnya along with Nandi. Daksha had organized a Yagya and invited all God and Goddesses, but he did not invite Shiva or Sati because he was unhappy that his daughter had married an ascetic. Sati learnt about the yagna and asked Shiva to go with her. When Shiva refused, Sati insisted upon going and was escorted by Nandi (Shiva's troops) to her father's kingdom. Daksha insulted her & used bad words for Lord Shiva. Humiliated 'Sati ' jumped in the Yagnya fire and ended her life. Lord Shiva got very angry when he heard this news & he created Virbhadra the Rudra from his hairs & asked him to destroy Prajapati's yagnya. Lord Shiva was very angry at the death of his beloved wife ' Sati ', so the name derived is 'Kopeshwar Mahadev'. Due to his anger the whole world started shaking & was at the verge of destruction. To pacify Lord Shiva from anger Lord Vishnu came there & stopped Lord Shiva from destroying the world, so the name ' Dhopeshwar ' was given to the idol of Lord Vishnu. Since Nandi had gone with ' Sati ' , we do not see a Nandi idol in the Kopeshwar mandir. 

The entire temple is divided into four parts Swargamandapa, Sabhamandapa,Antaral kaksha and Garbha gruha. The main attraction of this temple is Swargamandapa. When we enter the Svarga Mandapa, it is open to the sky with a circular opening. Looking at the sky one gets mesmerized and gets a feeling of looking at the heavens, justifyies the name Svarga Mandapa. At the periphery of the Svarga Mandapa we can see beautifully carved idols of Lord Ganesh, Karthikeya swami, Lord Kubera, Lord Yamraj, Lord Indra, etc. along with their carrier animals like peacock, mouse, elephant etc. If we stand at the center of the Svarga Mandapa we can see idols of Lord Brahma on the left-hand side wall of the entrance of sabha mandap. In the center we can see the Lord Shiva Kopeshwar shivling situated in the Girbh Gruha & towards right hand side wall we can see the beautifully carved idol of Lord Vishnu. So at one glance we can see the Tridev ' Brahma Mahesh Vishnu '. A stone pedestal mounted east of the temple's southern door has a carved inscription in Sanskrit, written in Devnagari script. Also, the exterior wall of this temple has lots of beautifully carved statues, idols and dancers with very sharp ornaments and depicting the culture of that time. It takes more then 5hours if you are really interested to explore the architecture of the temple in detail. Visit to the temple with Guide is highly recommended.

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