• This episode is also available as a blog post: https://indianwildlifeadventuresblog.wordpress.com/2021/05/25/chausat-yogini-temple-morena/

    The Super Women Chausat Yogini ( Jogini ) Temples of India There are many stories which are engraved in these magnificently carved stones across this beautiful land called India. Some engraved in stone and some forgotten legends of the past. As train came to stop at Morena Railway Station, a new journey started for wondering soul of mine. We, a group of wildlife and birding enthusiast had come to visit the Chambal Sanctuary. While driving to our place of stay Mr Vijay, a local resident and our contact suggested to visit Chausath (64) Yogini Temple located about 33 km from this Central Indian town. All 3 of us jumped in unison “Let’s Go”.

    What make this temple unique is wait till hear the entire story of this very nice temple. The landscape is plain and mainly agriculture fields. Villages dotting the roadside made the journeys nice and engaging. A hillock appeared over the horizon and the temple became visible. The Chausath Yogini Temple, Morena, also known as Ekattarso Mahadeva Temple,

    Standing atop an isolated hill of about hundred feet high, this circular temple commands a splendid view of the cultivated fields & village below. Reaching here you are welcomed by a stone structure of “Nandi Cow”, this stone idol would have been a beautiful carved stone once upon a time. Though the Yogini cult known as Chausath (64) Yogini temples was once popular in India, only few temples remain now. Presently there are two temples in Madhya Pradesh and two in Odisha that exists today.

    Unique Architecture of Chausat Yogini temples is that the temples are roofless. These shrines are dedicated to the Yogini (or Joganis), the female masters of Yoga. They more or less equated to female divine Power, representing the sacred feminine force. The Legend & Belief of Yoginis Since 10th century the Yoginis were represented in the number of 64. This tantric adaptation of divine form of female power. It is believed that they have had “siddhis” or extraordinary powers, including the power of flight. Chausat Yogini Temple, Morena, Madhya Pradesh. Morena, known as the gateway to the famous ravines of Chambal and Yamuna River, is culturally a very vibrant and established place. Overlooking the Mitavali Village lies this beautiful temple. Hidden from Civilisation in middle of nowhere one can reach by road.

    What make this temple unique is that it is one of its kind which, inspite been almost 1000 years old is still very well preserved. A Temple & A Parliament Many of these curious visitors have compared this temple with the Indian parliament building as both are circular in style. Many have drawn conclusions that this temple was the inspiration behind the Parliament House. Despite the obvious similarities and popular belief that the Madhya Pradesh temple did indeed serve as inspiration for India’s Parliament building, there’s no historical proof saying so. The design of the temple has withstood earthquake shocks, without any damage to its circular structural features, in the past several centuries.

  • This episode is also available as a blog post: https://indianwildlifeadventuresblog.wordpress.com/2021/05/15/dhikala-chaur-a-tigress-sighting/

    Those who have grown up reading Jim Corbett books, would know what Dhikala Chaur is all about. One of the best preserved grasslands of North India, the place is full of wildlife and birdlife. The grassland is a happy hunting ground for many tiger and tigress and is considered a prime property for them due to abundance of prey. This is truly grassland paradise for it has everything for everyone. One can sight multitude of birds and reptile life.

    Tracking A Hungry Tigress

    It was early in the morning and we had been following this tigress since our arrival into Dhikala, a very shy tigress was hungry and had not been able make a kill. We started in the morning, in the direction of her last location which we had sighted a day earlier. The guide advised us to wait around that area and check out for alarm calls or any movement.  Birders have tendency to start photography or observing birds  as soon as possible and if it happens to be in Corbett National Park,  then the intensity is much higher. We all got busy and started clicking the winged neighbours perched on the tree, not realising that our tigress was sitting some bushes away from us for an ambush. Suddenly the jungle erupted into a cacophony of all kinds of calls and noise. She pounced a spotted deer but missed by micro second. This videos captures her movement seconds she came out of the bushes. At that time we were alone and away from all the jeeps but alarm calls of cheetals echoing the area attracted the nearby jeeps and  within minutes, many clicking her majesty, I asked my friend how come they come to know about tigress movement and he replied in Jungle the news travels faster than the city, but  one has to have keen ears and sight for the information. I looked at the distance towards the tigress as she slowly walked away and marking her territory and we bit her good bye.

    Taking the famous quote of Christopher McDougall and twitting a bit to make it more Indian,“Every morning in India, a deer wakes up, it knows it must outrun the fastest tiger or it will be killed. Every morning in India, a tiger wakes up. It knows it must run faster than the slowest deer, or it will starve. It doesn’t matter whether you’re the tiger or a deer, when the sun comes up, you’d better be running.”

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  • This episode is also available as a blog post: https://indianwildlifeadventuresblog.wordpress.com/2016/09/26/ranthambhore-tiger-photographic-safaris-3/