“On a white marble terrace an immaterial light shelllike the apartments of the blessed, whose foot does not touch ordinary ground.” – Swiss Art Historical Luminary, Heinrich Wolfflin
‘Taj Mahal‘….India’s pride, World’s 3rd wonder!!!… Still attracting millions of visitors everyday. People come from every corner of the earth and as soon as they take turn from the main gate and have their first glimpse of this massive marble architecture, most of them stop right there and forget to move until they feel the push from behind. Gradually, the gasping awe turns into sheer ecstasy and even an otherwise harsh critic cannot help but sing praises of its spectacular glory.
“You know Shah Jahan, life and youth, wealth and glory, they all drift away in the current of time. You strove therefore, to perpetuate only the sorrow of your heart? Let the splendor of diamond, pearl and ruby vanish? Only let this one teardrop, this Taj Mahal, glisten spotlessly bright on the cheek of time, forever and ever.” – Rabindra Nath Tagore
History says, it took almost 17 years and thousand of workers to build this humongous white marble tomb and till date nobody could ever showcase such an extraordinary architectural genius.
Errrr…. hold on…well, it’s true that Taj Mahal still remains ‘the teardrop’ on the ‘cheek of time’, but it will always be an amalgamation of architecture and emotion. If we only consider the architectural flair, we will soon have another rival emerging on the land of Dayalbagh, near Agra, to compete pretty hard and if the claim of its builders is true, it’ll probably be better than the original Taj Mahal.
Well, even if we find this as an exaggeration by some flamboyant people, still looking at the excellence of the ornamentation and stonework, I would definitely not hesitate to say that ‘The Radha-Swami’ temple is going to be the best architectural monuments in india, (after Taj Mahal, of course 🙂 ). The Radha-Swami Temple is based on the concept of Unity and faith in one supreme creator. The construction has been going on since 1904, it is still not known how many more years will it take to complete (at least I don’t know 😛 ).
However, it is not the faith or the concept that makes me praise this massive marble structure (I feel hesitant to call it a temple or a mosque or a church or anything of that sort since this architecture does not comply with either of these religious views, or should I say it follows all). I found it really surprising when I heard that the whole building is decorated with all the plants and flowers available in India, of course in the form of carved marbles. Apparently, after entering the building, it felt like more of a garden than a temple. As I was looking, I found that all the side walls and pillar are decorated with flowers and vegetations. Every type of flower, fruit and creeper are decorated there in carving and inlay works. All the trees and fruits are carved so accurately that it’s only the color that would distinguish the marble from an original one. The colors that were seen in inlay works were actually the colored marbles that were imported from the various parts of Western and Central India and cut here finely so that even a tiny piece would fit perfectly its place. In fact, I could even see a small factory right behind the main building where hundreds of men were either cutting the marbles or carving and polishing them. I stopped for a while and wondered, what would happen with those people who are the real jeweller behind this shine.
“Marble, I perceive, covers a multitude of sins.” ― Aldous Huxley
I’m not sure how many generations would it need to complete this monument but one thing is for sure, once this will be completed, we will have another place where people would come from all over the world, spellbound, unaware of the crowd waiting behind until they feel the push….still murmuring: “Taj Mahal of this era!!!..” 😀
(Disclaimer: I could not find any of the photos I had taken, so I had to take these snaps from Google. So, apparently, I do not own any these photos. But my motive was to write about the architectural excellence of the Radha-Swami Temple and comparison with Taj Mahal was simply a part of it. I apologize if anyone finds that offensive)