The Varanasi Heritage Dossier/Jangambari Math Area
Location[edit | edit source]
25º 18.406’ North and 83º 00.373’ East (Jangambari Math). 25º 18.427’ North and 83º 00.369’ East (Kashyapeshvara/ Angirasheshvara Temple).
Exact location on a map[edit | edit source]
Jangambari, and Agastakunda, near Godaulia
Area[edit | edit source]
0.02ha (three separate properties)
Historical/cultural/natural significance[edit | edit source]
Jangambari Math. This Math (monastery) is 300m south of the Godaulia Crossing along the Godaulia-Assi Road. According to tradition it is believed that the Adi (First) Shankaracharya established the 5th pitha (sacred site of control) in Kashi around 827 CE. The other four pithas are Shringeri in the south, Govardhana at Puri in the east, Jyotira at Badrinath in the north, and Sharda at Dvaraka in the west. Jangambari Math is the headquarters of Lingayatism or Virashaivism, whose followers are mainly concentrated in Karnataka and part of Maharashtra, in central and south India. Later in the 12th century the great saint Basava rejuvenated and popularised this sect. During the medieval period (16th -17th century) this Math (monastery) was given grants and protection by the Mughal Emperors, and those orders are preserved here. There preserved the farmans (“order to follow”) of Mughal emperors who supported the maintenance and prosperity of the Math and always requested to support the empire; some notables are of Akbar (1575), Jahangir (1618), Shahjahan (1630), and Aurangazeb (1675). The Math has a huge building with several big and small courtyards, apartments and passages. Inside the Math there are many temples and samadhis (tombs) of the saints associated with the Math, and there are around 60 thousand Shiva lingas installed inside. The image of Chandramaulishvara is patron deity of the Math. The throne on which the first master sat is used only once in a lifetime of the succeeding chief at the time of coronation. Many monasteries and temples are under the control of the Jangambari Math. There are many rest houses for pilgrims where pilgrims, mostly from the south India, get shelter. The monastery is an unique example of continuity and maintenance of a tradition during last twelve hundred years. In the vicinity of Jangambari Math, and owned by it, is twin linga temple of Kashyapeshvara and Angirasheshvara (Jangambari Road, D 35/ 79). Both of these sages are mentioned in the Vedic literature. Kashyapa, one of the Prajapati, was son of Marichi, who was born from Brahma’s mouth, and from whom the creation started. Angira got birth from the mouth of Brahma, and was the first who composed the prayer verses in honour of Indra. The foundation of such lingas refers to the process of continuing the tradition through ritual and iconography. By the rituals the old traditions and messages are maintained and continued, of course at different stages the transformations are also accepted. The existence of the shrine of the two great sages reminds the tradition of meditation in the “sublime forest of bliss”, Anandavana, which continued its reputation and even in the later period attracted even the Buddha in 6th century BCE.
Present state of conservation[edit | edit source]
Except by the Jangambari Math and the local public organisations, those work on their own ways, there are no specific action plans, programmes and strategies for conservation and preservation of the ghats.
Specific measures being taken for conserving the specific property[edit | edit source]
It is expected that by the support of active people participation, awareness to save the age-old rich heritage, and development under the Master Plan (and its judiciary control) the great heritage and tradition of Jangambari Math will be protected and conserved for the better befit to the society.
Ownership[edit | edit source]
The temples are owned by the Jangambari Math.