The Sacred Sravana-Belagola

It is the privilege of Bharatiya jnanpith to publish on the occasion of the One Thousand Year Celebrations of the installation of Gommatesvar Bahubalis Statue and its Mahmastakbhisek at Sravana- Belagola, Karnataka, on 22nd February 1981. This remarkable book � The Sacred Sravana Belagola � A Socio � Religious Study� is the only book of its kind in English giving in a succinct manner an account of the environment, the shrines, the monuments and the historical development, of Sravana-Belagola as also delineating the unique lopment of Sravana-Belagola as also delineating the unique role of Chamundraja in conceiving the project of getting the colossus of Bhubali carved out of a whole rock and finding sculptors who could chisel out in tangible form the intrinsic spirituality of the great Yogi that Bahubali was. The benign smile blooming forth from the rapture of deep mediation is a living blessing that purifies the devotees and enchants the visitors.

Dr. Vilas A. Sangave is a scholar of deep study. His comprehension of his themes is always through, without being ponderous. Because of his rich background of history, sociology and Jain lore, he has made this study a mirror which reflects facets of Indian culture best epitomised even in the name of this pious piece of earth-Sravana-Belagola, the pond of crystal-clear waters in an idyllic setting sanctified by the mediating Sharmana Sadhus of yore. The utility of the book will impress, we hope, the academician as well as the general reader.

How one wishes the founders of Bharatiya Jnanpith, late Shri Sahu Shanti Prasad Jain and Shrimati Rama Jain, were sitting at the feet of Bhagwan Bahubali on this auspicious occasion. They set the path which Bharatiya Jnanpith has been endeavoring all along to follow. Sahu Shriyans Prasad Jain as President and Shri Ashok Kumar Jain as Managing Trustee of Bharatiya Jnanpith are guiding our activities and giving us all encouragement to expand the activities of the Trust.

As in all such project pursued by others on this Great Occasion, the author�s source of inspiration has been Pujya Elacharya Vidyanandji Maharaj, honored as Siddhanta Chakravati. The blessing of His Holiness Karmayogi Bhattarka Charukirtiji Swami of Sravana-Belagola are ever with us too.

Laxshmi Chandra Jain

6th February 1981 Bharatiya Jnanpith