14 Facts About Elephanta Caves


Elephanta Caves are a collection of cave temples predominantly dedicated to the Hindu god Shiva.

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Elephanta Caves contain rock cut stone sculptures, mostly in high relief, that show syncretism of Hindu and Buddhist ideas and iconography.

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The Elephanta Caves is connected by ferry services from the Gateway of India, Mumbai between 9AM and 2PM daily, except Monday when the Caves are closed.

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The Elephanta Caves island is a protected monument area as per the requirements of UNESCO.

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Elephanta Caves wears the sacred thread across his chest, she the customary jewelry.

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Elephanta Caves is the master of discipline, the teacher of Yoga arts, the master who shows how yoga and meditation leads to the realization of ultimate reality.

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Elephanta Caves's posture is well formed and suggests that the 6th century artist knew this asana.

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Elephanta Caves sits on a lotus with a stalk shown as if coming out of the earth, his legs are crossed symmetrically.

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The Elephanta Caves site was first occupied by Hinayana Buddhists, before the arrival of the Brahmans to the island, to raise a large stupa to the Buddha with seven smaller stupas around it, probably around the 2nd century BCE.

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The historic Elephanta Caves artwork was inspired by the mythology, concepts and spiritual ideas found in the Vedic texts on Rudra and later Shiva, the epics, the Puranas and the Pashupata Shaivism literature corpus of Hinduism composed by the 5th-century.

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Macneil concurs that Elephanta Caves were defaced and damaged during the colonial period, but assigns the responsibility not to the soldiers but to the Portuguese authorities.

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The Elephanta caves re-emerged as a centre of Hindu worship, and according to British administration records, the government charged the pilgrims a temple tax at least since 1872.

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The earliest efforts to preserve the Elephanta Caves were taken by British India officials in 1909 when the site was placed under the Indian Archaeological Department and the Ancient Monuments Preservation Act included it within its scope.

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Elephanta Caves are mentioned more than once in Herman Melville's Moby Dick, and feature in Somerset Maugham's 1944 novel The Razor's Edge.

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