Join us in exploring the intricate details, legends, and significance of the colossal statue of the Varaha, an avatar of Vishnu, in the ancient village of Eran in Madhya Pradesh, offering a captivating glimpse into the vibrant heritage of Central India.
Madhya Pradesh, the second-largest state of India, is known for its cultural heritage, rugged natural beauty, and historical monuments. The Varaha statue in Madhya Pradesh is a stunning example of the state’s historical and architectural wonders. Dating back over a thousand years, this larger-than-life statue honours Varaha, the third reincarnation of Lord Vishnu as per Hindu mythology.
Learn more about the Varaha statue in Eran, Madhya Pradesh.
Madhya Pradesh – The heart of India
Madhya Pradesh covers a large part of Central India with a diverse geography featuring lush forests, barren mountain ranges, fertile plains, and rugged plateaus. Known for its wildlife sanctuaries and rich biodiversity, the state is equally famous for its well-preserved forts, temples, and palaces. From lively fairs and colourful festivals to delicious cuisines, and from well-made handicrafts to famed tourist spots, Madhya Pradesh really does seem to offer a complete package. But what is it that makes the village of Eran a frontrunner when it comes to ancient and historic sites?
What is Eran famous for?
Eran, an ancient village and archaeological site, is situated between the Bina and Reuta Rivers. Known by various names such as Erakanya, Airikina, and Erakaina, the village is rich in remnants from the Chalcolithic period and the Gupta Empire. The few structures remaining like columns and doorways are enough to give the sense of stepping back in time. One of the biggest attractions in Eran is the Varaha statue, a colossal sculpture carved from a single block of red sandstone. The village also houses a museum that is home to a large collection of antiques and other archaeological finds. Other attractions include an old temple complex and several inscriptions from the Gupta period.
Historical significance of the Varaha statue in Eran
Depicting a wild boar, the Varaha statue represents the third avatar of Lord Vishnu. Legend has it that the Varaha appeared to save the world from the demon Hiranyaksha, who dragged the earth to the bottom of a sea. The 10-foot-high statue portrays Goddess Earth hanging from the boar’s right tusk, symbolising her rescue from the depths of the sea. Carved figures cover the sculpture, illustrating over a thousand sages saved by Varaha after the earth’s submersion.
Historians consider the Varaha statue both a shrine to honour the boar as well as an avatar of Lord Vishnu and an important archaeological site to learn more about the practices and customs of that period.
Quick facts about the Varaha statue
- An 8-line Sanskrit inscription on the neck of the boar mentions benevolent rulers and gods of the yesteryears.
- The Varaha statue is a theriomorphic (a deity, an avatar of Vishnu, having an animal form) structure, the earliest known of its kind.
- The sculpture is one of the largest Varaha statues in the country and stands as a remarkable testament to the historical and cultural richness of Madhya Pradesh.
Best time to visit Eran
The best time to visit Eran, Madhya Pradesh is the winter season, spanning October to February.
How to reach
By air: The Raja Bhoj Airport is approximately 160 km away
By train: Bina Railway Station is approximately 17 km away
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
– How tall is the Varaha Statue, and what is its historical significance?
The Varaha statue stands impressively at a height of approximately 10 feet. Tracing its origins back to the 5th century during the Chalcolithic period, this monumental sculpture holds paramount archaeological significance, offering valuable insights into the historical era.
– When was the Varaha Statue in Eran created, and by whom?
Historical records indicate that the Varaha statue was commissioned by King Dhyana Vishnu during the period of 485-500 C.E., a testament to the artistry and patronage of that era.
– Can visitors access the Varaha Statue in Eran?
Tourists can easily visit and access the Varaha statue in Eran. There are currently no restrictions on tourists walking up to the base of the statue, taking photographs, or even touching it.
– Is there any entry fee or specific visiting hours for the Varaha Statue in Eran?
There is no entry fee or specific timings apply for visiting the statue complex and the adjoining temples.
– Is there any nearby accommodation available for tourists visiting the Varaha Statue in Eran?
There are plenty of hotels and guesthouses in Eran, and other nearby towns and villages. Most accommodations are situated at a distance of 10 to 12 km from the statue and temple complex.
– What is the best way to reach the Varaha Statue in Eran?
The most convenient route to reach the Varaha statue in Eran involves first reaching Bhopal. Subsequently, travellers can opt for road or train transportation to Bina or Sagar, followed by a journey to Mandi Bamora. The Varaha statue is a mere 10 km away from Mandi Bamora.
– Are there any other attractions to explore in the vicinity of the Varaha Statue in Eran?
While visiting the Varaha statue, consider exploring the Udayagiri caves, just 2 to 3 hours away from Eran. For those with more time on hand, a trip to Khajuraho, approximately 5 to 6 hours away, promises additional cultural delights.