Monkey Temple Jaipur

Jan Leeming

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Jan's Blog

Computers and the internet are amazing things. One of my concerns with putting together this site was that it could remain current, yet with all my travelling I've often much to say, but little time to say it. Years ago when reading the news it would take me days on end to reply to the kind letters people sent. Now, with the magic of the modern age, I can keep you up to date with what I'm doing and other events in my life.


Date: 8th January 2016

The Monkey Temple

I have a fascination with Eastern religion and India is rich in its diversity. There are so many Hindu Gods you can hardly count them - in fact there's a claim that there is one for every day of the year. Whether that is true or not, there are certainly many and predominant among them appears to be the Monkey God. I simply do not have the erudition to even attempt to précis the explanation of Hinduism so yet again, if you are interested, look it up on Wikipedia. It is fascinating and claims that the Hindu religion is the oldest in the world.

We were fortunate in that we visited the massive Monkey Temple on the outskirts of Jaipur. Although there is an easy entrance to the Temple we did it the hard way with a 40 minute walk up a fairly steep slope but it did afford us a great view down the valley and to the site of the Temple. Of course Monkeys were everywhere and having made a steep ascent we now faced a steep descent which afforded us an excellent appreciation of the various levels of the Temple. At the commencement there is a small shrine and a holy man who will receive your offerings and give you a blessing. This is fronted by a rather green expanse of water and many monkeys darting hither and thither.

You go down some steps and get a view of a very large 'staircase' descending into the valley. I was bemused by the rolled barbed wire surmounting the balustrade at the side of the steps. Our guide explained that youths had jumped into the water below and there had been fatalities - hence the wire to deter them. This wire was also adorned with scraps of clothing - the explanation was that the sick come here for a cure and after total immersion in the Holy water, they divest themselves of their old 'diseased' clothing and don new garments. We were so hot we'd have willingly taken the plunge ourselves but I think that might have been frowned upon. In the first pool, fed by mountain waters, men and boys were dunking themselves in the water and to my surprise they were joined by many women jumping into the water fully clothed in their beautiful sarees.

The Waters then plunged down to a much bigger pool and many Monkeys were taking advantage of a cool off. Finally at the bottom of the stairs we arrived at the actual Temple - it was stunning. Just like so many other buildings we saw, the glorious paintings which adorned every wall looked as fresh as the day they were first created- centuries ago. We entered an inner temple and met a Holy Man who had been there for 40 years according to our guide. He was in a small room, brightly coloured and with a small image of the Monkey God. He looked very severe and I wondered if I could make him smile - which I did!

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