Hello, friends welcome to Indian Art & culture. Today I am going to tell you something about the Difference between chaityas and viharas. So let’s start.
DIFFERENCE BETWEEN CHAITYAS AND VIHARAS
- Buddhism and Jainism have introduced the art of rock-cut caves. The caves were cut out of huge solid rocks. The Buddhist and Jain monks lived in these caves and meditated.
- About 1200 Buddhists and Jain cave structures are found in India. The most famous ones are those found at Ajanta and Ellora in Aurangabad, Nasik, and Karle.
- Chaitya is a hall of worship. It is a rectangular hall with finely polished interior walls. There were a number of well-proportioned columns. A semicircular roof stood over these columns. On either side of the hall will large entrances, Opposite the entrance at one end of the hall stood a Stupa. DIFFERENCE BETWEEN CHAITYAS AND VIHARAS
- The Chaitya Hall of Karle is the oldest rock-cut cave temple found near Pune in Maharashtra. It is said to have been built between 125 BC and 100 BC. The Chaitya halls is cut off a solid rock to a depth of about 124 feet. It is 40 meters long, 15 meters high, and 15 meters broad. inside there are 37 octagonal pillars of remarkable beauty. Some of these pillars have capitals. All the columns have capitals with carvings of a kneeling elephant mounted on a bell-shaped basis.
- The stupa at the end of the charter hall has an umbrella at the top, suggesting its association with Buddhism. There is a wooden facade made of teak wood.
- This facade makes it look as if the entire structure is resting on the back of an elephant with ivory tusks and metal ornaments. The Chaitya hall was used for prayers and meetings. DIFFERENCE BETWEEN CHAITYAS AND VIHARAS
- The Viharas were the monasteries for monks to live in. These were built near the Chaityas at Udaigiri in Orissa Jain cave temples belonging to the period of King Karavela have been excavated.
- During the Ashokan period, the caves were just plain rooms, small in size, and opened to the central hall. they were just enough for one person to sleep, In some viharas, simple bed like structures with shells have been found.
- The Ajanta and Ellora caves are situated near Aurangabad in Maharashtra. both are carved out of a huge rock about 380 meters wide and 80 meters high. at Ajanta and Ellora there are Chettiars and viharas.
The Characteristic Feature of Chaityas and Viharas:-
- The caves at Ajanta represent both in Hinayana and Mahayana sects of Buddhism as well as Jainism and Hinduism.
- Of the many Chaityas, cave number 19 is the most remarkable. There are standing figures of Buddha inside the cave. It has carved pillars and capitals.
- An imposing stupa with the standing image of Buddha is found at the end of the hall. the entire facade of this cave is sculptured and as an impressive front.
- The viharas at Ajanta are of different sizes. While some are near the Chaityas others are found at convenient places at a distance. These viharas vary from a single cell to a double storage structure consisting of a number of cells and a particle.
- The Ajanta were built from the 2nd century BC to about 7th century AD. These caves were constructed according to a floor plan with definite dimensions.
- Frescoes are paintings done on wet plaster in which colors become fixed as the plaster dries. The Ajanta frescoes have special importance on their own. They’re found on the walls and ceilings at Ajanta. DIFFERENCE BETWEEN CHAITYAS AND VIHARAS
- The painting reflects different phases of Indian culture from Buddha’s birth to the 8th century AD. Natural colors like purple, white, green, brown, yellow, blue, and black were used in these paintings.
- The frescoes seem as fresh as ever. They depict the themes of court life, feasting, processions, men and women at work, festivals, various, natural scenes including wild animals, birds, and flowers. The artists have used the technique of shading to give a three-dimensional quality.
- Similarly at Bagh caves, 150 kilometers to the north of Ajanta, beautiful fresco paintings have been found. Though the themes in these paintings are both secular and religious, they depict some aspects of Buddhist life and rituals.
- One of the most famous paintings shows a procession of elephants. Another painting depicts a dancer and women musicians. These paintings have been influenced by the Ajanta style of paintings. DIFFERENCE BETWEEN CHAITYAS AND VIHARAS
- About 48 kilometers from Ajanta, situated in Aurangabad district, Ellora caves a 35 in number out of which 18 pertain to the Hindu religion, 12 to Buddhist, and 5 to Jain religion. They are carved out of a volcanic hillock. They’re both chairs and viharas.
- The most famous Chaitya there is Viswakarma Chaitya and the most famous vihara is Mahawada Vihara. Vishwakarma has 28 pillars. It has an 8-meter high stupa with a beautiful statue of Buddha in a sitting position with attendants on either side.
- There are 12 rocket viharas at Ellora. the Mahawada vihara has a large hall with 24 pillars and 23 cells on its sides.
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