Shrine of Saint Jñaneshwar with Altar Ornaments in Alandi.
CL7002LP, 15 x 20 inch
Photographer: Sadashiv R. Pantsachiv, Circa 1955
Saint Jñaneshwar was born in 1275 and only lived to his early 20s. Already as a teenager he became renowned for delivering a beautifully worded commentary on the Bhagavad Gita which was written down and became known as Jñaneshwari. Jñaneshwar Maharaj taught the Bhagavad Gita in the local Marathi language making it accessible to the common people of Maharashtra. After completion of this divine work, the young sage spent time in seclusion in a cave in Alandi near Pune and attained advanced samadhi there. This photo shows the shrine placed at the site of his jiva-samadhi in Alandi. It is said that on his own volition, he was entombed here while in a higher state of samadhi, wherein he is actually sitting inside in a suspended state or a subtle stillness. Thus he consciously chose to suspend his physical body and close his earthly activity at a young age. Widely revered as an incarnation of Krishna, his shrine is visited by thousands of pilgrims every year. A few centuries after he was enshrined, Saint Eknath entered the shrine and reported seeing a radiant young man seated in meditation. Saint Jñaneshwar is in stillness and present as a light body anchored in Alandi.
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