Friday, 22 July 2016
Hi readers, myself shishir Raj and I am from Rajgir, nalanda from bihar state in India. I want to tell you all I was visiting Rajgir with my friends. I enjoyed a lot there. First of all let me introduce you about Rajgir.
Rajgir is a city and a notified area in Nalanda district in the Indian state of Bihar . The city of Rajgir (ancient Rājagṛha; Pali : Rājagaha; Hindi: राजगृह) was the first capital of the kingdom of Magadha , a state that would eventually evolve into the Mauryan Empire. Its date of origin is unknown, although ceramics dating to about 1000 BC have been found in the city. This area is also notable in Jainism and Buddhism as one of the favorite places for Lord Mahavira and Gautama Buddha and the well known "Atanatiya" conference was held at Vulture's Peak mountain.
Rajgir is connected to Patna via Bakhtiarpur by rail and road. Bakhtiarpur lies midway between Patna and
Mokameh. Road access is by NH 30A to Bakhtiarpur and NH 31 towards south to reach Bihar Sharif . From Mokameh NH 31 to Bihar Sharif. From there, NH 82 will leads to Rajgir. Rajgir is around 100 KM from both Patna and Mokameh. It is located in a green valley surrounded by rocky hills, Rajgir hills . Indian Railways run trains directly from Rajgir to New Delhi , Shramjeevi Express .
The name Rajgir came from Rājagṛiha 'house of the king' or "royal house", or the word rajgir might have its origin in its plain literal meaning, "royal mountain". It was the ancient capital city of the Magadha kings until the 5th century BC when Udayin (460-440 BC),son of Ajatshatru,moved the capital to Pataliputra . In those days, it was called Rajgrih, which translates as 'the home of Royalty'. Shishunaga founded Shishunaga dynasty in 413 BCE with Rajgir as its initial capital before it was moved to Patliputra.
Rajgir is also famous for its association with Haryanka dynasty Kings Bimbisara and Ajatashatru . Ajatashatru kept his father Bimbsara in captivity here. The sources do not agree which of the Buddha 's royal contemporaries, Bimbisara and Ajatashatru , was responsible for its construction. Ajatashatru is also credited with moving the capital to Pataliputra (modern
Patna ).Buddha's cave, Griddhakuta Hill, Rajgir.
The epic Mahabharata calls it Girivraja and recount the story of its king, Jarasandha, and his battle with the
Pandava brothers and their allies Krishna . Jarasandha who hailed from this place, had been defeated by
Krishna 17 times. The 18th time Krishna left the battlefield without fighting. Because of this Krishna is also called 'ranachorh' (one who has left the battlefield).
Mahabharata recounts a wrestling match between
Bhima (one of the Pandavas) and Jarasandha, the then king of Magadha. Jarasandha was invincible as his body could rejoin any dismembered limbs. According to the legend, Bhim split Jarasandha into two and threw the two halves facing opposite to each other so that they could not join. There is a famous Jarasandha's Akhara (place where martial arts are practiced). It is also mentioned in Jain and Buddhist scriptures, which give a series of place-names, but without geographical context. The attempt to locate these places is based largely on reference to them and to other locations in the works of
Chinese Buddhist pilgrims, particularly Faxian and
Xuanzang . It is on the basis of Xuanzang in particular that the site is divided into Old and New Rajgir. The former lies within a valley and is surrounded by low-lying hills, Rajgir hills . It is defined by an earthen embankment (the Inner Fortification), with which is associated the Outer Fortification, a complex of cyclopean walls that runs (with large breaks) along the crest of the hills. New Rajgir is defined by another, larger, embankment outside the northern entrance of the valley and next to the modern town. It was here that Gautama Buddha spent several months meditating, and preaching at Gridhra-kuta , ('Hill of the Vultures'). He also delivered some of his famous sermons and initiated king Bimbisara of Magadha and countless others to Buddhism. On one of the hills is the Saptparni cave where the First Buddhist Council was held under the leadership of Maha Kassapa .
It is sacred to the memory of the founders of both the religions: Jainism and Buddhism and associated with both the historical Mahavira and Buddha .
Son Bhandar Jain cave, Rajgir
Lord Mahavira , 24th Tirthankara spent fourteen years of his life at Rajgir and Nalanda, spending Chaturmas (i.e. 4 months of the rainy season) at a single place in Rajgir (Rajgruhi) and the rest in the places in the vicinity. It was the capital of his favourite Shishya (follower) King Shrenik. Thus Rajgir is a very important religious place for Jains.The twentieth Jain tirthankara, Munisuvrata is supposed to have been born here.An ancient temple(about 1200 years old) dedicated to Munisuvrat bhagwan is also present here along with many other jain temples.This temple is also a place for four Kalyanakas of Bhagwan Munisuvratnath.
View of Rajgir hills from Jarasandha 's Akhara
👉Geography and climate
The city was in a valley surrounded by seven hills: Vaibhara, Ratna, Saila, Sona, Udaya, Chhatha, and Vipula.
Rajgir has also developed as a health and winter resort due to its warm water ponds. These baths are said to contain some medicinal properties that help in the cure of many skin diseases. The Saptparni cave is also the source of the Rajgir Hot Water Springs that have curative properties and are sacred to the Hindus , Jains and Buddhists . Another attraction of the region is the ropeway that leads uphill to the Vishwa Shanti Stupa (Peace Pagoda), Makhdoom Kund and monasteries built by Japanese devotees of the Buddha on top of the Ratnagiri Hills.
Temperature: maximum 47 °C, minimum 20 °C. Winter: maximum 28 °C, minimum 6 °C
Rainfall: 1,860 mm (mid-June to mid-September)
Dry/warm season: October to March
The renowned Son Bhandar Caves is situated at Rajgir, Nalanda in Bihar state. Son Bhandar group of caves has two caves known as eastern and western cave. Son bhandar caves are concerned with Jainism and considered to belong to 3-4 century AD. These caves were first inspected by Cunninghum and he concluded to have analogy with Saptparni caves of Buddhism creed. After Cunninghum several scholars visited this place and some had opinion to concern with Buddhism. After some time all Buddhism connections were refused because of an inscription found on the southern wall of a cave. According to this inscription these caves were built by inspiration of a Jain Muni Vair for Jain ascetics. Sculptures of Teerthankaras were also carved in these caves. From architectural aspect; these caves are analogous to Nagarjuni cave and Barbar caves of Mauryan era. Therefore it can be concluded that construction time should not be much differ from above mentioned caves. These caves should be related to Digambar sect of Jainism as Xuanzang wrote in his book about Vaibhar hill of rajgir that the place was occupied by Digambar Jaina monks for meditation purpose. After some centuries these caves were converted by Hindus as Lord Vishnu sculpture was also found from mound of a cave.
Historically, Rajgir has been a very important place in
Jainism , as capital to many empires. Main tourist attractions include the ancient city walls from Ajatshatru's period, the Bimbisar's Jail, Jarasandh's Akhara, Gridakuta hill, Sonabhandara cave and the Jain temples on the five peaks.
Rajgir is famous for its hot water springs, locally known as Brahmakund, a sacred place for Hindus . Another major attraction is the peace pagoda , Vishwa Shanti Stupa , built in 1969, one of the 80 peace pagodas in the world, to spread the message of peace and non-violence. The rope-way that leads to it is another attraction. The Japanese temple is beside the Venu Vana. Venu Vana is an artificial forest, where one can enjoy Eternal peace, and meditate.And famous Makhdoom Kund. Sri Ramakrishna Math is a non-political spiritual organization which have been engaged in various forms of humanitarians, social service activities.
Bamboo Grove in Venu Vana.
Son Bhandar cave with 4-5th century Jain images and inscriptions
Rajgir Heritage Museum is another place of Interest, recently inaugurated by CM Nitish Kumar.
As of the 2011 India census , Rajgir had a population of 41,587 . Males constitute 53% of the population and females 47%. Rajgir has an average literacy rate of 52%, lower than the national average of 59.5%: male literacy is 61%, and female literacy is 41%. In Rajgir, 19% of the population is under 6 years of age.But now the literacy average of Rajgir is (increasing from 2007) about 70%.
👉Transportation and hotels
Bihar State Tourism Development Corporation provides travel facility from state capital Patna to visit Bodh circuit ( Bodhgaya , Rajgir, Nalanda , Vaishali , Kesaria,
Lumbini, Kushinagar , Sarnath ), Jain Circuit (Rajgir,
Pawapuri) and Sikh Circuit in Bihar. Also, Corporation owns hotels and circuit house at respective tourist places. These hotels are available for tourist at very reasonable price.
➡ Air: The nearest is Gaya International Airport , Gaya which is 78 km which is connected to International Destinations like Bangkok , Columbo , etc. Another
airport is at Patna 101 km. Air India, Indigo, Jet Airways and Go Air connect Patna to Kolkata,
Bengaluru , Mumbai , Delhi, Ranchi and Lucknow .
➡ Rail: Rajgir railway station connects the city to other parts of country yet the nearest convenient railhead is at Gaya Junction railway station 78 km. The
Bakhtiyarpur-Tilaiya line provides improved rail connectivity to many places.
➡ Road: Rajgir is connected by road to Patna - 110 km,
Nalanda - 12 km, Gaya - 78 km, Pawapuri - 38 km,
Bihar Sharif - 25 km, etc.
➡ Bus: Regular buses are available from all the above said points to Rajgir.
➡ Local Transport: Taxis and Buses and Tongas are available.
Nalanda International Cricket Stadium is a proposed cricket stadium in the city. In 2013, it was announced by the Chief Minister of Bihar Nitish Kumar that an international cricket stadium will be constructed at Rajgir in Bihar 's Nalanda district . After completion the stadium will home of Bihar cricket team.
Now this is all about Rajgir so come on the point. Now I am showing you some pics.
Jungle of Rajgir
This is a jungle there we visited. Swarm Bhandar a cave whose doors cannot be opened .
This is the cave under the hill. after that we visited maniar math this is also a very good place.
Let me introduce you my friends. The person in blue t-shirt is sujeet kumar. The person in green t-shirt is nagendra kumar. The person in grey t-shirt in the middle is Ujjwal kumar. The person in red t-shirt is satish kumar. The person in green shirt is Vishnu kumar. At last the person in grey t-shirt is Amit Raj kishore. And I am capturing the photo.
Now it's my turn. This is me who is sitting on the little tree grown near the pond in black t-shirt.
The Famous Maniar Math of Rajgir.
Dating 1 century CE, the Maniar Math was a monastery of a cult which worshipped snakes. Several snake and cobra figurines have been found in the vicinity in excavations.
Swarna Bhandar is an ancient cave site located in the town of Rajgir in Nalanda District. Literally meaning the 'store of gold', this site is also known as Bimbisara Bhandar or Sonbhandar Caves.
Dating back to 500 BC, these rock-cut caves have a lot of historical significance as well as aesthetic value.
It is believed that the treasury of King Bimbisara is present in this cave. Swarna Bhandar has two cave chambers that were hollowed out from a huge monolithic rock. The outer chamber is said to be the guard room. On the rear wall of this outer chamber there are two vertical straight lines and one horizontal line cut into the rock which is supposed to be the doorway to the treasury. The second chamber consists of a few traces of seated and standing figures etched into the exterior wall. One can also find ancient inscriptions in Sankhlipi carved on the wall, which is considered to be the clue to open doorway and is not yet deciphered.
Situated close to Rajgir, Swarna Bhandar is easily reachable by road. A fascinating place for history students and archaeologists, these caves will also catch the attention of the tourist.
One can also visit Ajatasatru's Fort, located in Rajgir.
So I hope you would like this post. Meet you in my next blog. Therefore I suggest you all to come and visit Rajgir and if you need any help you can contact me on Facebook Fan's page and Twitter
Next post: Visiting Rajgir with friends part 2