Kanchipuram

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Kanchipuram is a city in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu in the Tondaimandalam region, 72 km (45 mi) from Chennai - the capital of Tamil Nadu. Known as the City of Thousand Temples, Kanchipuram is known for its temple architectures, 1000-pillared halls, huge temple towers and silk sarees. Kanchipuram serves as one of the most important tourist destinations in India.

Quotes[edit]

  • Kanchipuram is a place where many sadhus and saints have visitied. Sri Chaitanya, Sri Nityananda, and Madhvacharya have all visited. And Chanakya Pandit as well as Vedanta Deshika, the important Vaishnava acharya after Ramanuja, were both born here. It is also here, it is said, that Ramanujacharya received the vashishtadvaita philosophy from Kanchipurna, one of his gurus. On the birth celebration of Vedanta Deshika, the small deities of Vishnu and His consorts of Lakshmi, Sri and Bhudevi are brought out for a procession around the temple and to the shrine of Vedanta Deshika to give him Their blessings. It is a grand festival. Priests chant mantras from the Taitiriya Upanishad, Purusha-sukta and Tirupavai, and distribute prasada, sandalwood paste, and tulasi garlands after offering them to the deities.
    • Knapp Stephen, Spiritual India Handbook (2011)
  • [Kanchipuram] is another important and interesting temple town. It is one of the seven most sacred cities of India, which include Kanchipuram, Varanasi, Haridwar, Ujjain, Mathura, Ayodhya, and Dwaraka..... Kanchipuram also has a number of the 108 Divya Desams, or holiest sites for Lord Vishnu for the followers of Ramanujacharya.
    • Knapp Stephen, Spiritual India Handbook (2011)
  • “…On his arrival at Condapilly, he was informed by the country people, that at the distance of ten days’ journey was the temple of Kunchy the walls and roof of which were covered with plates of gold, and ornamented with precious stones; but that no Mahomedan monarch had as yet seen it, or even heard of its name. Mahomed Shah, accordingly, selected six thousand of his best cavalry, and leaving the rest of his army at Condapilly, proceeded by forced marches to Kunchy… Swarms of people, like bees, now issued from within, and ranged themselves under the walls to defend it. At length, the rest of the King’s force coming up, the temple was attacked and carried by storm, with great slaughter. An immense booty fell to the share of the victors, who took away nothing but gold, jewels, and silver, which were abundant…”
    • About Sultan Muhammad Shah II Bahmani (AD 1463-1482) conquests at Kanchipuram (Tamil Nadu). Tarikh-i-Firishta by Firishta.
  • About a century later, in 1481 cE, the Bahmani ruler, Muhammad Shah III (1463-1482) attacked Kanchi. Ferishta and Taba-Taba categorically mentioned his plunder of the holy city. According to Ferishta, the Bahmani Sultan was informed of the “the temple of Kinjee, the walls and roof of which were plated with gold, ornamented with precious stones...” The Sultan selected six thousand soldiers from his army and marched towards the city,
    Crowds, like bees, now issued from within (the temple), and ranged themselves under the walls to defend it. The troops coming up, the Sultan assaulted the place, which was carried with great slaughter of the Hindoos. An immense plunder fell to the victor, who took nothing away but gold, jewels, and silver, so abundant were those valuable commodities. The Sultan then plundered the city of Kinchee and after reposing in it for a week, returned to his grand army.
    Taba-Taba wrote of the attack, From the rise of Islam up to this time, no Muhammadan monarch had set foot in it; no stranger had laid hand on the cheek of the bride of that idol-temple.
    • (Ferishta Vol. I 1794: 166-167), Taba-Taba in (Srinivasan, Kanchipuram through the Ages, 1979: 228). quoted from Jain, M. (2019). Flight of deities and rebirth of temples: Episodes from Indian history. 275

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