Tag Archives: Kempe Gowde

Bull of Bangalore is a handy Nandi

HEADED DOWN to the Bull Temple in Bengaluru on Saturday. Nandi is the vehicle (vahana) of Lord Shiva, but this temple is unusual because Nandi takes pride of place while in the temple itself is only a small shrine to Shiva in the usual shape of a Shiva Lingam.

The bull is made out of one huge piece of white granite, with oil applied to it every week or so to keep its colour black.  This site dates the temple to 1537AD, says it was constructed by Kempe Gowde, and gives the legend about how the 4.6 metre tall bull came to be. The carving is very impressive.

When you circumambulate the temple, you’ll discover a plastered over hole at the back. This was originally there to allow lower caste people to see inside the temple – they weren’t allowed to cross the precincts.

Outside, and to the right of the temple there’s a raised platform on which are several flagstones decorated with the nagas, or snake gods.  ♥