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iXiGOers Dec 09 2012

What is the history and culture of Mathura?

Vineet Sharma DEC 10 2012
0 people found this answer useful Useful ?Yes

The beautiful river Yamuna flows gently past the serene town of Mathura, while the temple bells give it an aura of calming spirituality. But how did this town come to be? If the history of Mathura intrigues you, read further and gain some insights into what gives this city its unique character.

  • Historic OriginsMathura is believed to have been ruled by a number of dynasties and kingdoms, dating back to as early as 6th Century BCE. The kingdoms here ranged between the Mauryas, Kushans, Kambojas, Yavanas and Sakas. The Archeological Survey of India has found several evidences of these dynasties here, proof of which lie in the Government Museum here.

    Another important aspect of Mathura’s history is its tryst with the Mughal ruler Aurangzeb, who tried to destroy the Keshav Deo Temple (now the Krishna Janmabhoomi Temple Complex) and established the Jama Masjid right adjacent to it. Both the temple and the mosque now stand in tandem, as a symbol of harmony and peace between religions.

  • Mythic TiesOther than this factual history, Mathura is closely linked to the mythic and fabled birth of Lord Krishna and of his consort, Radha in the nearby village of Barsana. Krishna is believed to have been born in a prison cell, where his uncle Kansa kept his mother Devaki and his father Vasudeva captive. A prophecy had told Kansa that he would be slayed by the 8th child of Devaki, and he thus killed all children of hers right at birth. Krishna escaped this captivity under mystical conditions and reached safely across the river to his adoptive parents’, Nanda and Yashoda’s home. He later grew to slay Kansa and play an important role in the war of The Mahabharata.

    Mathura is believed to have been first mentioned in the Ramayana, one of the oldest Hindu epics and is named as one the 7 holiest cities in India in various Puranas. Its strong ties with the Hindu religion are an inseparable part of its character.

  • Mathura TodayMathura continues to be a spiritual destination, popular among pilgrims and tourists for its ties with Krishna and Radha Bhakti. The various temples here are thronged by devotees all through the year, especially during the festivals of Holi, Krishna Janmashtami and Radha Ashtami. The Mathura Refinery adds an element of modernisation and industrial growth here, giving it a different dimension altogether. The pede here, special sweets which are a cross-over between ladoos and besan ki barfi, have become synonymous with the name of the town, people travelling specially to buy them for themselves and their loved ones.

With that little lesson in history, you’ll want to go ahead and explore the city for yourself, and soon. So pack your bags and get ready to treat your senses and your spirit to a holiday of a lifetime! You can know more about the city with the best places to visit in Mathura

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