Moodbidri in Karnataka is known to
the world as an ancient center of Jain learning. It is a small
town which lies at a distance of 37 kilometers northeast of the
Dakshin Kannad district headquarters, Mangalore. The site has an
average elevation is 147 meters or 482 feet.
Between 14th to 16th centuries
Moodbidri became a center of Jain religion, culture, art and
architecture. This period of Moodbidri in Karnataka witnessed the
construction of eighteen Jain temples. The head of the Jain Math
here is a Bhattaraka who belong to the Mula Sangh order. The most
popular among them are:
Guru Basadi in Moodbidri is the
ancient most of the Jain monuments. A marvelous stone idol of
Parshwanatha which is about 3.5 meters tall lies in the sanctum of
this Basadi. If you go there you will witness the rare Jain palm
leaf manuscripts of 12th century AD known as ‘Dhavala texts’.
Tribhuvana Tilaka Chudamani Basadi
in Moodbidri is the biggest as well as the most ornamented of the
Jain temples of this area. This temple is popularly known as
Thousand pillared temple (Savira Kambada Basadi). This is a huge
granite temple was constructed in 1430 AD. The 2.5 meters tall
bronze icon of Lord Chandranatha Swami lies in the sanctum of this
The three storied building of the
Tribhuvana Tilaka Chudamani Basadi in Moodbidri was supported by
the the rulers, the Jain Bhattaraka Swamiji, merchants as well as
the common people. The temple is known for the open pillared hall
in front. A 15-meter high monolithic pillar known as the
manastambha stands in front of the Basadi.
The famous medieval Kannad author of
Bharatesha Vaibhava, Ratnakara Varni, belonged to Moodbidri.
Moodbidri at Karnataka was the land
of the Chowtas, a Jain ruling family.