Udupi Temple Complex, Karnataka, 090214

Having participated in the Manipal Bird Day, my friends Prabhakar and Savita

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took me to the famous Sri Krishna temple at Udupi.

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The

Krishna Temple

is the one that most devotees go to visit, but the Sri Krishna Matha is one of the

Ashta Mathas

(mattha, or matt, or mutt…are different ways of spelling it), the eight monasteries, and their heads being:

Palimaru – Sri Hrishikesha Tirtha
Adamaru – Sri Narasimha Tirtha
Krishnapura – Sri Janardhana Tirtha
Puttige – Sri Upendra Tirtha
Shirur – Sri Vamana Tirtha
Sodhe – Sri Vishnu Tirtha
Kaniyooru – Sri Raama Tirtha
Pejavara – Sri Adhokshaja Tirtha

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The ashta mathas are named after the villages in which they were originally located. Today, the mathas are situated in the temple town of Udupi. The mathas work to propagate the Dvaita philosophy. They also administer the famous Udupi Krishna Temple by way of a formal rotation scheme called

Paryaya

There are many, extensive buildings:

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The Kaniyoor Matha

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has two colourful dwAra pAlakAs (entrance guards):

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Note the ornate pillars, too.

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It was surprising to see a mango tree already fruiting in February!

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The rathA (temple chariot) is majestic:

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The wheels are of wood:

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Here are some of views of the beautiful woodwork on the rathA:

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(in the centre is a drum, which I think is beaten during processions.)

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The ratna rathA (chariot of gems) was locked up, but one could peep in through a small window:

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One “rathA” is made of the wood, but is more like a gOpurA (temple tower) as it is not set on wheels.

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We went to the very first “udupi hotel”; today, Udupi cuisinee is one of the hallmarks of Karnataka cuisine, represented across the world.

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We had masAl dosAs:

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After the first assault, this became a “hol(e)y” masal dosa!

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There are shops all around the complex, but this young man was selling his wares independently:

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This is called an “appa kArai” in Tamizh; oil or ghee is poured into the little depressions, and sweet or savoury batter balls, called “appam”, are fried. My friend Shyama Priya tells me that the appa kArai pictured here are made of shale/claystone, and appams fried in them turn out golden!

My friends took the decision to move to Manipal from Bangalore, when their son Aditya studied there. It’s a move that they are very happy with; they are very involved with the student community in the university town, and are deeply involved with birding, theatre, music, and other activities.

They have a lovely “tree” bookshelf dividing their drawing and dining areas:

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In the middle of a busy, happy life, Prabhakar knows how to relax:

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Thank you to my dear friends for a very memorable visit! Will post about the Manipal Bird Day soon…

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