Situated on a raised platform immediately south of Lolark Kund, one of the oldest sacred sites in Kashi, the Sri Lolarkeshwar Mahadev temple was an unexpected surprise as I explored the area of the city adjacent to Assi and Tulsi Ghat.
I have to confess that even the name of this temple I am not completely sure of, as google maps fails to identify it and none of my reference books helped either. The name Sri Lolarkeshwar Mahadev is sometimes attributed to the temple annexed to Lolark Kund, but I believe the actual name for that temple is Lolark Aditya Mandir. My embarrassingly poor Hindi doesn’t help matters either, otherwise I could have simply asked the locals in the vicinity.
There is no great age to this temple, although it may well stand on the site of something far more ancient being located so close to the Kund. What stands before us today is likely to have been constructed in the 18th century, but the lack of antiquity is more than compensated for with the temple’s pretty carvings, paintings, and surprisingly leafy surroundings.
Finding so much greenery around a compact temple close to the Ganga in Varanasi is a rarity, which probably accounts for why I can remember visiting this site with so much clarity almost two years after my last trip to India. Sometimes seemingly unassuming little temples can stay lodged in the mind, which is certainly the case here.
Due to the lack of any concrete information regarding the temple, this will be one of my shorter blog efforts as I’m faced with potentially another year of not being able to travel. If any of my readers can shed any further light as to the history of this temple (or indeed the correct name!), I would gladly add more content to this piece.
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