Pareswanath Temple – Swetambar
The Pareshnath Jain temple of Kolkata is one of the most revered and holy shrines of the Jains in Kolkata. The temple is known not only for its enthralling beauty but also for its spiritual atmosphere that attracts a lot of faithful devotees. Along with the interiors, the temple premise is also very scenic with a beautiful garden decorated with blocks of glass mosaics and silver European-styled statues. The garden is surrounded with a huge variety of flowers. There are also many fountains that look brilliant when water gushes out of them in perfect harmonization. A well-maintained reservoir, adds up to the surrounding beauty with colorful fish swimming the surface of the glistening water. The whole environment of the temple radiates much peace and serenity that has a very calming effect on the mind, body and spirit.
The temple is devoted to Pareshnath, who was the 23rd Jain Tirthankar. Besides the Pareshnath Temple, the temple complex also houses four other temples, devoted to four different holy preachers, who are regarded as Avatars by the Jains. One of the major attractions of the temple is a lamp, which is burning with ghee perpetually inside the sanctum sanctorum, since the inception of the temple in 1867.
Location of the Pareshnath Jain Temple
Badridas Temple Street, North-East Kolkata.
History of the Pareshnath Jain Temple
The Pareshnath or Parshwanath Jain Temple of Kolkata was built by Ray Badridas Bahadur in 1867. Thousands of people visit this temple annually. The Pareshnath Jain Temple is actually a complex of 4 temples. The main shrine is dedicated to the 10th Jain Avtaar (incarnation of God) Sri Sitalnath Ji. The four main temples are Shitalnath Ji Temple, Chandraprabhu Ji temple, Mahavir Swami Temple, and Dadawadi and Kushal Ji Maharaj Temple where the footprint of Jain Acharya Jin Dutt Kushal Suri is kept and worshiped. Towards the south of the temple of Sri Sitala Nath Ji, lies the shrine of Sri Chanda Prabhujidev, which was built by Ganeshlal Kapoorchand Jahar in the year 1895.
Main Jain temple is the Paryushan where festival is celebrated in Bhadrav month. During this period the Jains observe Ahimsa, listen to recitations of scriptures of worship and perform charitable deeds. The last day of festival is called Samvatsari. It is one of the most important Jain temples in Kolkata. The deity of Lord Shitalnath Ji is seated in the sanctum sanctorum, and his diamond-studded forehead is a major attraction for the visitors. The other deities are also beautifully decorated with semi-precious stones and precious metals.
Structure and Interior of the Pareshnath Jain Temple
The interiors of the temple are lavishly decorated with high quality mirrors and glasses. The quintessential Jain temple chandeliers (Jhar Battis) decorate the ceilings adding beauty to the top. The floor is intricately paved with marble and embellished with exquisite floral designs that provide a classy look to this colossal architecture. In the interior, the temple walls are adorned by paintings of the renowned painter Ganesh Muskare. The Temple gateway is splendidly eye-catching.
- There is a lamp, which burns with ghee inside the sanctum sanctorum, which has been continuously burning ever since the initiation of the temple since 1867. The lamp bears silent testimony to the contemporary world since ages and it is wonderful to acknowledge the mysticism associated with.
- The temple celebrates Paryushan in Bhadrav month (between 16 August and 15 September).
- Jains believe in ahimsa or peace and are committed to charitable deeds.
- Pareshnath Jain Temple adorned with beautiful mirrors, multi-hued stones and glass-made mosaics is truly an architectural splendor of Kolkata.
- The construction of the temple was initiated in the year 1867 by Ray Badridas Bahadur.
- The main temple is devoted to 10th Jain Avtaar, Sri Sital Nath Ji. The deity of Sri Sital Nath Ji, enshrined inside the temple dons a diamond-studded forehead.