Bojjannakonda, the Sankaram

August 24, 2008 at 2:48 pm Leave a comment

Two adjoining hills, Bojjannakonda and Lingalakonda, are based about 50 kilometers from the city of Vizag. Surrounded by lush green fields on all sides, they hold the remains of an old settlement of Buddhist monks known as Sankaram (previously called Sangharam). These settlements date back to the 4th century AD and are believed to have flourished till the 9th century.

Discovered during the excavations conducted by Alexander Rea, the antiquities span both the Hinayana and Mahayana times of Buddhism. Hinayana, the inferior path to enlightenment, dates back to 1st or 2nd century CE. Mahayana, the superior path, is one of the two major branches of modern day Buddhism. (Further references and details can be found if you follow the links)

Bojjannakonda consists of the many monolithic stupas, rock cut caves and other significant structures. The main stupa itself is partly rock cut and partly brick enclosed. Of all the rock cut caves, four are regarded as sanctuaries. Of these, three contain relief carvings of Lord Buddha and the other, a rock cut stupa. A chain of brick built Viharas, Chaitya and cells for the monks are also located here.

Lingalakonda, one the other hand, displays elephantine monolithic rock cut stupas resembling the Linga form of Lord Shiva, hence the name.

The pictures attached here have been photographed when my friends and I have explored the area.


Entry filed under: buddhism, culture, india, pilgrimage, Places of Interest, Tourism, Travel. Tags: , , , , , , .

Vizag – the City of Destiny

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August 2008

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