(Last Updated on : 26/05/2012)
Shri 1008 Digambar Jain Kshetra located at Beenaji in Madhya Pradesh
is a Jain pilgrimage centre. It is an Atishaya Kshetra i.e. Place of Miracles. The temple is located close to the bank of Sukh - Chain River. Beena village is also located near the temple. The presiding deity of the temple is Lord Shantinatha
History of Beenaji Digambar Jain Kshetra
According to the history of Beenaji Digambar Jain Kshetra once there lived a king named Benu. The name of his queen was Kamalawati. Both of them were very courageous rulers and brave warriors and were followers of Jainism
. The queen usually accompanied the king in his war. The place has been thus named as Beena in memory of King Benu. The place is also associated with many miracles and legends. According to one legend a businessman lived in Malkhera. He often used to tale the route to Beena. At a particular place he always experienced a stroke. One night he saw a dream where he was instructed to unearth the place he received the stroke where he will be able to see the God. The man did as he was told. Next he saw another dream where he was told that the next day he would see God. He was also told that he must proceed towards a direction of his choice where he would like to install the idol. The God will follow him but he must not look behind. If he did so the God will not move further from there. According to the instructions the next day the man received the vision of God and was very pleased. He offered his prayers to him and worshipped him with full devotion. He then began moving towards the village without looking back. After moving a mile he turned back to check whether God is following him or not. He saw the God was standing at a little distance away from him. But as he moved on the God did not move any further. The man then realised his mistake. Soon the news spread in the whole village. They then thought of constructing a temple and installing the idol of Lord Shantinath in it. This temple was constructed by Pande Jai Chand in V. S. 1803. Some other idols that were worshipped during that time were also installed in this temple. Devotees from different places visit the temple to offer their prayers to the Lord and fulfill their desires.
Temples of Beenaji Digambar Jain Kshetra
There are three temples located in Beenaji that have been magnificently decorated with intricate designs.
- The first temple located here is known as 'Mama - Bhanja Mandir'. The temple houses the idol of Lord Mahavira
and has been beautifully carved. It is made of lime, bricks and silica and is16 feet in height. Apart from this there is another idol of Lord Chandraprabha
installed in the temple. The idol is dark red in colour and is almost 6 feet in height. It is seated in a padmasana
posture. The gateway of this temple is a unique piece of art and depicts the Rajasthani art. It is almost 40 feet in height and adorns the beauty of the temple. Small pinnacles have been constructed at the four corners of the temples. The presence of a cave in the temple enhances its look. The entrance of the cave is very artistic and is carved with striking idols of Yakshas and Yakshanis
. A huge artistic pinnacle can also be seen in the sanctum.
- The second temple located in Beenaji id dedicated to Lord Shantinath. It is 18 feet in height and is dark red in colour. It is seen in a standing posture.
- The third temple is known as 'Gandha Kuti Temple'. The devotees need to climb 40 stairs to reach the temple.
Apart from this there is a Maan Stambha or Column of Dignity that enhances the beauty of the place. It is made of marble and looks very appealing. There is a museum at Beenaji Kshetra. It houses several artistic broken idols that depict the architectural pattern of ancient period. These idols have been collected from a nearby area and look very attractive. An idol of a woman doing 'Panchang Namaskar' is very appealing among the different idols. She is adorned with ornaments and holds a dagger in her hand. A woman's palm can be seen carved on the back of this idol and is thought to be the idol of Kamalawati, the queen of King Benu. The idol depicts the situation when the queen is worshipping the Lord before going for a war. The idol behind it portrays the god blessing her. Apart from this another image of a palm can also be seen giving blessings. It is known as 'Sati Chaura' by the people.
Beenaji Digambar Jain Kshetra is enclosed by scenic beauty that mesmerizes the pilgrims. Being located at the bank of river 'Sukh - Chain,' the kshetra is surrounded by greenery that is very appealing to the eyes. Annual gatherings are organised here by the temple authorities. A fair is held every year in the last week of the month of December. The temple has provisions for dharamshalas or rest houses for the pilgrims. These are well equipped with all modern facilities.
Beenaji Digambar Jain Kshetra is well connected by rail, road and air. Devari Kalan is situated on the Sagar-Narsinghpur
highway. Beena Barha is only 8 km away from Devari Kalan. Busses and taxies are always available.