Dharmasthala, Sep 14, 2018: The fourth Maha Mastakabhisheka of Bahubali in Dharmasthala will be performed on February 2019.
The Maha Mastakabhisheka is held once in every 12 years. The padabhisheka to the statue is held every year.
The 39-ft high monolithic statue was sculpted by the famous sculptor Renjala Gopalakrishna Shenoy under the aegis of Ratnavarma Heggade in 1973. The statue was then positioned atop the Ratnagiri Hill in the temple town in February 1982 by D. Veerendra Heggade, Dharmadhikari of Dharmasthala, after the demise of Ratnavarma Heggade.
The transportation of the gigantic monolithic statue, with a pedestal of 13 ft and weighing about 170 tonnes, from Karkala to Dharmasthala was a tremendous challenge. A distance of 64 km was covered on a trolley with 64 wheels, driven by three tractors of 250 HP over treacherously winding roads in 1970.
The Maha Mahamastakabhisheka of Bahubali has since been performed thrice in 1982, 1995 and in 2007, with a grand spectacle that brought together many Jain monks and people from all over the country and beyond.
The shrine can be reached by climbing up the steps of the hill or by road. On top of the hill, there are shelters and drinking water facilities for pilgrims.
The monolithic stone sculpture symbolises renunciation, self-control and subjugation of the ego as the first step towards salvation.
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