Vishnupad mandir – temple at Gaya

The Gaya town is an important entity for Hindu religion followers. This is because of the fact that here Hindus worship their forefathers. But this town has great significance because Lord Buddha attained enlightenment here.  But few people know that this place has a great temple of Lord Vishnu, where the foot of the lord is seen. This place has a story behind where Lord Vishnu helped mankind. Another great temple in Gaya is Mangla Gauri temple.

 

Vishnupad Mandir (Temple)

This temple is in the town of gaya, bihar, dedicated to Lord Vishnu. There is an interesting story behind this temple. Once a demon known as Gayasura, did a heavy penance and sought a boon that whoever sees him should attain salvation (Moksham). Since salvation is achieved through being extreme orthodox and too good (committing no known or unknown mistakes) in one’s lifetime, people started obtaining it easily. Unable to withstand this, Lord Vishnu asked Gayasura to go under the earth and he put his right foot on demon’s head. After pushing Gayasura below the surface of earth, Lord Vishnu’s foot print remained on the rock which is seen even today.

Though the origins of the temple are unknown, Ahilya Bai Holkar, the ruler of Indore, had rebuilt the present octagonal shrine with Lord Vishnu’s footprints at the centre in 1787. The 40 cm long footprint of Lord Vishnu is imprinted in solid rock and surrounded by a silver plated basin.

Vishnupad Mandir at Gaya
Vishnupad Mandir at Gaya

 This temple is situated in a huge complex along with about 24 other temples. The main temple is 30 metres tall and has a mandap attached to it. The temple has the footprints of Vishnu in an octagonal enclosure. The footprint has a silver umbrella above it. The temple is built of large gray granite blocks jointed with iron clamps. The octagonal shrine faces east. Its pyramidal tower rises up a 100 feet.

Lord Vishnu's feet imprint
Lord Vishnu’s feet imprint

This place is also believed to be the one under which the Lord Buddha meditated for six years.

Gaya is situated about 92 kms. south of Patna and 15 kms. north of Bodh Gaya. Gaya is one of the most important pilgrimage places for the Hindus and Buddhists as at bodh gaya, Bhagwan Buddha has attained enlightenment.