Acheulean, from the French acheuléen, is an archaeological industry of stone tool manufacture characterized by distinctive oval and pear-shaped "hand-axes" associated with Homo erectus and derived species such as Homo heidelbergensis. Acheulean tools were produced during the Lower Palaeolithic era across Africa and much of West Asia, South Asia, Europe, are found with Homo erectus remains, it is thought that Acheulean technologies first developed about 1.76 million years ago, derived from the more primitive Oldowan technology associated with Homo habilis. The Acheulean includes at least the early part of the Middle Paleolithic, its end is not well defined, depending on whether Sangoan is included, it may be taken to last until as late as 130,000 years ago. In Europe and Western Asia, early Neanderthals adopted Achaeulean technology, transitioning to Mousterian by about 160,000 years ago; the type site for the Acheulean is Saint-Acheul, a suburb of Amiens, the capital of the Somme department in Picardy, where artifacts were found in 1859.
John Frere is credited as being the first to suggest a ancient date for Acheulean hand-axes. In 1797, he sent two examples to the Royal Academy in London from Hoxne in Suffolk, he had found them in prehistoric lake deposits along with the bones of extinct animals and concluded that they were made by people "who had not the use of metals" and that they belonged to a "very ancient period indeed beyond the present world". His ideas were, ignored by his contemporaries, who subscribed to a pre-Darwinian view of human evolution. Jacques Boucher de Crèvecœur de Perthes, working between 1836 and 1846, collected further examples of hand-axes and fossilised animal bone from the gravel river terraces of the Somme near Abbeville in northern France. Again, his theories attributing great antiquity to the finds were spurned by his colleagues, until one of de Perthe's main opponents, Dr Marcel Jérôme Rigollot, began finding more tools near Saint Acheul. Following visits to both Abbeville and Saint Acheul by the geologist Joseph Prestwich, the age of the tools was accepted.
In 1872, Louis Laurent Gabriel de Mortillet described the characteristic hand-axe tools as belonging to L'Epoque de St Acheul. The industry was renamed as the Acheulean in 1925. Providing calendrical dates and ordered chronological sequences in the study of early stone tool manufacture is accomplished through one or more geological techniques, such as radiometric dating potassium-argon dating, magnetostratigraphy. From the Konso Formation of Ethiopia, Acheulean hand-axes are dated to about 1.5 million years ago using radiometric dating of deposits containing volcanic ashes. Acheulean tools in South Asia have been found to be dated as far as 1.5 million years ago. However, the earliest accepted examples of the Acheulean known come from the West Turkana region of Kenya and were first described by a French-led archaeology team; these particular Acheulean tools were dated through the method of magnetostratigraphy to about 1.76 million years ago, making them the oldest not only in Africa but the world.
The earliest user of Acheulean tools was Homo ergaster, who first appeared about 1.8 million years ago. Not all researchers use this formal name, instead prefer to call these users early Homo erectus. From geological dating of sedimentary deposits, it appears that the Acheulean originated in Africa and spread to Asian, Middle Eastern, European areas sometime between 1.5 million years ago and about 800 thousand years ago. In individual regions, this dating can be refined; however more recent research demonstrated that hand-axes from Spain were made more than 900,000 years ago. Relative dating techniques suggest that Acheulean tools followed on from earlier, cruder tool-making methods, but there is considerable chronological overlap in early prehistoric stone-working industries, with evidence in some regions that Acheulean tool-using groups were contemporary with other, less sophisticated industries such as the Clactonian and later with the more sophisticated Mousterian, as well, it is therefore important not to see the Acheulean as a neatly defined period or one that happened as part of a clear sequence but as one tool-making technique that flourished well in early prehistory.
The enormous geographic spread of Acheulean techniques makes the name unwieldy as it represents numerous regional variations on a similar theme. The term Acheulean does not represent a common culture in the modern sense, rather it is a basic method for making stone tools, shared across much of the Old World; the earliest Acheulean assemblages contain numerous Oldowan-style flakes and core forms and it is certain that the Acheulean developed from this older industry. These industries are known as the Developed Oldowan and are certainly transitional between the Oldowan and Acheulean. In the four divisions of prehistoric stone-working, Acheulean artefacts are classified as Mode 2, meaning they are more advanced than the Mode 1 tools of the Clactonian or Oldowan/Abbevillian industries but lacking the sophistication of the Mode 3 Middle Palaeolithic technology, exemplified by the Mousterian industry; the Mode 1 industries created rough flake tools by hitting a suitable stone with a hammerstone. The resulting flake that broke off would have a natural sharp edge for cutting and could afterwards be sharpened further by striking another smaller flake from the edge if necessary
Kartikeya known as Murugan, Skanda and Subrahmanya, is the Hindu god of war. He is the son of Parvati and Shiva, brother of Ganesha, a god whose life story has many versions in Hinduism. An important deity around South Asia since ancient times, Kartikeya is popular and predominantly worshipped in South India, Sri Lanka and Malaysia as Murugan. Kartikeya is an ancient god, traceable to the Vedic era. Archaeological evidence from 1st-century CE and earlier, where he is found with Hindu god Agni, suggest that he was a significant deity in early Hinduism, he is found in many medieval temples all over India, such as at the Ellora Caves and Elephanta Caves. The iconography of Kartikeya varies significantly. Most icons show him with one head, but some show him with six heads reflecting the legend surrounding his birth where six mothers symbolizing the six stars of Pleiades cluster who took care of newly born baby Kartikeya, he grows up into a philosopher-warrior, destroys evil in the form of demon Taraka, teaches the pursuit of ethical life and the theology of Shaiva Siddhanta.
He has inspired many poet-saints, such as Arunagirinathar. Kartikeya is found as a primary deity in temples wherever communities of the Tamil people live worldwide in Tamil Nadu state of India, Sri Lanka, Indonesia, Singapore, South Africa and Réunion. Three of the six richest and busiest temples in Tamil Nadu are dedicated to him; the Kataragama temple dedicated to him in Sri Lanka attracts Tamils, Sinhalese people and the Vedda people. He is found in other parts of India, sometimes as Skanda, but in a secondary role along with Ganesha and Shiva. Kartikeya is known by numerous names in medieval texts of the Indian culture. Most common among these are Murugan, Kumara and Subrahmanya. Others include Aaiyyan, Senthil, Vēlaṇ, Swaminatha, śaravaṇabhava, Arumugam or ṣaṇmukha, Guha or Guruguha, Kandhan and Mahasena. In ancient coins where the inscription has survived along with his images, his names appear as Kumara, Brahmanya or Brahmanyadeva. On some ancient Indo-Scythian coins, his names appear in Greek script as Skanda and Vishaka.
In ancient statues, he appears as Mahasena and Vishakha. Skanda is derived from skanḍr-, which means to "spill, leap, attack"; this root is derived from the legend of his unusual birth. The legend, translates Lochtefeld, states "Shiva and Parvati are disturbed while making love, Shiva inadvertently spills his semen on the ground"; this semen incubates in River Ganges, preserved by the heat of god Agni, this fetus is born as baby Kartikeya on the banks of Ganges. The "spill" epithet leads to the name Skanda. Additionally N. Gopala Pillai postulated. Kartikeya means "of the Krittikas"; this epithet is linked to his birth. After he appears on the banks of the River Ganges, he is seen by the six of the seven brightest stars cluster in the night sky called Krittikas in Hindu texts; these six mothers all want to take care of nurse baby Kartikeya. Kartikeya ends the argument by growing five more heads to have a total of six heads so he can look at all six mothers, let them each nurse one. There are ancient references which can be interpreted to be Kartikeya in the Vedic texts, in the works of Pāṇini, in the Mahabhasya of Patanjali and in Kautilya's Arthashastra.
For example, the term Kumara appears in hymn 5,2 of the Rig Veda. The Kumara of verse 5.2.1 can be interpreted as Skanda, or just any "boy". However, the rest of the verses depict the "boy" as bright-colored, hurling weapons and other motifs that have been associated with Skanda; the difficulty with interpreting these to be Skanda is that Indra and Rudra are depicted in similar terms and as warriors. The Skanda-like motifs found in Rig Veda are found in other Vedic texts, such as section 6.1-3 of the Shatapatha Brahmana. In these, the mythology is different for Kumara, as Agni is described to be the Kumara whose mother is Ushas and whose father is Purusha; the section 10.1 of the Taittiriya Aranyaka mentions Sanmukha, while the Baudhayana Dharmasutra mentions a householder's rite of passage that involves prayers to Skanda with his brother Ganapati together. The chapter 7 of the Chandogya Upanishad equates Sanat-Kumara and Skanda, as he teaches sage Narada to discover his own Atman as a means to the ultimate knowledge, true peace and liberation.
According to Fred Clothey, the evidence suggests that Kartikeya mythology had become widespread sometime around 200 BCE or after in north India. The first clear evidence of Kartikeya's importance emerges in the Hindu Epics such as the Ramayana and the Mahabharata where his story is recited. In addition to textual evidence, his importance is affirmed by the archeological, the epigraphical and the numismatic evidence of this period. For example, he is found in numismatic evidence linked to the Yaudheyas, a confederation of warriors in north India who are mentioned by ancient Pāṇini, they ruled an area consisting of modern era Haryana, Punjab and Uttar Pradesh. They struck coins bearing the image of Skanda, these coins are dated to be from before Kushan Empire era started. During the Kushan dynasty era, that included much of northwest
Chamunda known as Chagundi, Chamundeshwari and Rakta Kali is a fearsome form of Chandi, the Hindu Divine Mother and one of the seven Matrikas. She is one of the chief Yoginis, a group of sixty-six or eighty-six Tantric goddesses, who are attendants of the warrior goddess Durga; the name is two monsters whom Chamunda killed. She was invoked by Goddess Chandi to kill demons Munda. Though she is similar to Kali in appearance, she is not associated with Kali. Chamunda is an esoteric aspect of Durga in her Gandi form; the goddess is portrayed as haunting cremation grounds or fig trees. The goddess is worshipped by ritual animal sacrifices along with offerings of wine and in the ancient times, human sacrifices were offered too. A tribal goddess, Chamunda was assimilated in Hinduism and entered the Jain pantheon too. Though in Jainism, the rites of her worship include vegetarian offerings, not the meat and liquor offerings. Ramakrishna Gopal Bhandarkar says that Chamunda was a tribal goddess, worshipped by the tribals of the Vindhya mountains in central India.
These tribes were known to offer goddesses animal as well as human sacrifices along with ritual offerings of liquor. These methods of worship were retained in Tantric worship of Chamunda, after assimilation in Hinduism, he proposes the fierce nature of this goddess is due of her association with Vedic Rudra, identified with fire god Agni at times. Wangu backs the theory of the tribal origins of the goddess. Apart from her popular names like Chamunda, Chamundeshwari and Rakta Kali she is known as Rudira Kali, Chanda Kali, Rudira Mala devi, Rudireshwari, Rakta Chamundi, Vir Kali, Ghalurika, Ugra Chandi, Kalari Devi and Ati bhaya Kali regionally in India and Nepal, she is popularly worshipped as the goddess of patron of martial arts like Kalaripayattu. The black or red coloured Chamunda is described as wearing a garland of severed skulls, she is described as having four, ten or twelve arms, holding a Damaru, sword, a snake, skull-mace, thunderbolt, a severed head and panapatra or skull-cup, filled with blood.
Standing on a corpse of a man or seated on a defeated demon or corpse. Chamunda is depicted adorned by ornaments of bones and serpents, she wears a Yajnopavita of skulls. She wears a jata mukuta, that is, headdress formed of piled, matted hair tied with snakes or skull ornaments. Sometimes, a crescent moon is seen on her head, her eye sockets are described as burning the world with flames. She is accompanied by evil spirits, she is shown to be surrounded by skeletons or ghosts and beasts like jackals, who are shown eating the flesh of the corpse which the goddess sits or stands on. The jackals and her fearsome companions are sometimes depicted as drinking blood from the skull-cup or blood dripping from the severed head, implying that Chamunda drinks the blood of the defeated enemies; this quality of drinking blood is a usual characteristic of all Matrikas, Chamunda in particular. At times, she is depicted seated on her vahana, her banner figures an eagle. These characteristics, a contrast to usual Hindu goddess depiction with full breasts and a beautiful face, are symbols of old age, death and destruction.
Chamunda is said as a form of Kali, representing old age and death. She appears as a frightening old woman, projecting horror. In Hindu scripture Devi Mahatmya, Chamunda emerged as Chandika Jayasundara from an eyebrow of goddess Kaushiki, a goddess created from "sheath" of Durga and was assigned the task of eliminating the demons Chanda and Munda, generals of demon kings Shumbha-Nishumbha, she fought a fierce battle with the demons killing them. According to a episode of the Devi Mahatmya, Durga created Matrikas from herself and with their help slaughtered the demon army of Shumbha-Nisumha. In this version, Kali is described as a Matrika who sucked all the blood of the demon Raktabija, from whose blood drop rose another demon. Kali is given the epithet Chamunda in the text. Thus, the Devi Mahatmya identifies Chamunda with Kali. In the Varaha Purana, the story of Raktabija is retold, but here each of Matrikas appears from the body of another Matrika. Chamunda appears from the foot of the lion-headed goddess Narasimhi.
Here, Chamunda is considered a representation of the vice of tale-telling. The Varaha Purana text mentions two separate goddesses Chamunda and Kali, unlike Devi Mahatmya. According to another legend, Chamunda appeared from the frown of the benign goddess Parvati to kill demons Chanda and Munda. Here, Chamunda is viewed as a form of Parvati; the Matsya Purana tells a different story of Chamunda's origins. She with other matrikas was created by Shiva to help him kill the demon Andhakasura, who has an ability - like Raktabija - to generate from his dripping blood. Chamunda with the other matrikas drinks the blood of the demon helping Shiva kill him. Ratnakara, in his text Haravijaya describes this feat of Chamunda, but credits Chamunda, not the other matrikas of sipping the blood of Andhaka. Having drunk the blood, Chamunda's complexion changed to blood-red; the text further says that Chamunda does a dance of destruction, playing a musical instrument whose shaft is Mount Meru, the spring is the cosmic snake Shesha and gourd is the crescent moon.
She plays the instrument during the deluge. Chamunda is one of the saptamatrika
Hinglajgarh or Hinglaj Fort is an ancient fort situated near village Navali in Bhanpura tehsil of Mandsaur district in Madhya Pradesh. Its coordinates are latitude 25°30' N and Longitude 65°31' E, it is situated 26 km from Bhanpura town in Madhya Pradesh. This fort was at its peak of grandeur during Parmara rule. There are many artistic sculptures of various periods in this fort; the Nandi and Uma-Maheshwar sculptures were sent from there to France and Washington for display in India festivals and left a mark at international levels. The Hinglajgarh was the centre of excellence in craftsmanship of sculptures for about 800 years; the statues recovered from this fort are from the Guptas period to Parmara period. The most ancient statues are from 4th–5th century AD. Hinglajgarh gets name after the goddess Hinglaj Devi, the kuldevi of Kshatriyas & Brahamkshtriya Marwari Khatri Hinglaj Mata temple is situated in the Hinglajgarh. Temple located at Hinglaj is an important Hindu pilgrimage place in Balochistan, Pakistan.
It is situated in Balochistan province about 250 km north-west of Karachi. The Kshatriyas in ancient times had movements between India; the Mauri rulers founded the temple of Hinglaj Mata. This area was known as'Hinglaj Tekri' but the Mauri rulers built a fort here and this came to be known as Hinglajgarh or Hinglaj Fort. Hinglaj Fort became strategic during the Parmara rule and they strengthen it. In 1281 the Hada ruler halu occupied it, it came under Chandrawat rulers. Mention of Haveli of Gopal Singh, a Chandrawat ruler, is found in the patnama of Chandrawats. In 1773 the Holkar Queen Ahilya Bai occupied it; the fort was renovated during Holkar rule along with Hinglaj Mata Temple, Rama Temple, Shiva Temple. Though various dynasties occupied the fort but it was never used as a permanent capital, it was used as a shelter by various rulers. This is the reason; the Hinglaj Fort has four gates namely Patanpol, Surajpol and Mandaleshwaripol. The first three gates are east facing whereas Mandaleshwaripol, is west facing.
There is storage of water in a grand tank known as Surajkund. Local tradition goes that Gotri Bhil was killed here, therefore the smarak built here is worshiped by Bhils. In the southern part of the Hinglaj Fort is situated Hinglaj Mata temple, Rama-Hanuman Temple, Darbar Kaksha, Rani Mahal and Shiva Temple. There is a big Burj here known as Fateh Burj. There are two towers called Tirtham, which used to be used as means of communication with distant places through light
Petroglyphs are images created by removing part of a rock surface by incising, carving, or abrading, as a form of rock art. Outside North America, scholars use terms such as "carving", "engraving", or other descriptions of the technique to refer to such images. Petroglyphs are found worldwide, are associated with prehistoric peoples; the word comes from the Greek prefix petro-, from πέτρα petra meaning "stone", γλύφω glýphō meaning "to carve", was coined in French as pétroglyphe. The term petroglyph should not be confused with petrograph, an image drawn or painted on a rock face. Both types of image belong to the more general category of rock art or parietal art. Petroforms, or patterns and shapes made by many large rocks and boulders over the ground, are quite different. Inuksuit are unique, found only in the Arctic. Another form of petroglyph found in literate cultures, a rock relief or rock-cut relief is a relief sculpture carved on "living rock" such as a cliff, rather than a detached piece of stone.
While these relief carvings are a category of rock art, sometimes found in conjunction with rock-cut architecture, they tend to be omitted in most works on rock art, which concentrate on engravings and paintings by prehistoric or nonliterate cultures. Some of these reliefs exploit the rock's natural properties to define an image. Rock reliefs have been made in many cultures in the ancient Near East. Rock reliefs are fairly large, as they need to be to make an impact in the open air. Most have figures. Stylistically, a culture's rock relief carvings relate to other types of sculpture from period concerned. Except for Hittite and Persian examples, they are discussed as part of the culture's sculptural practice; the vertical relief is most common, but reliefs on horizontal surfaces are found. The term relief excludes relief carvings inside natural or human-made caves, that are common in India. Natural rock formations made into statues or other sculpture in the round, most famously at the Great Sphinx of Giza, are usually excluded.
Reliefs on large boulders left in their natural location, like the Hittite İmamkullu relief, are to be included, but smaller boulders described as stele or carved orthostats. Some petroglyphs might be as old as 40,000 years, petroglyph sites in Australia are estimated to date back 27,000 years. Many petroglyphs are dated to the Neolithic and late Upper Paleolithic boundary, about 10,000 to 12,000 years ago, if not earlier, such as Kamyana Mohyla. Around 7,000 to 9,000 years ago, other precursors of writing systems, such as pictographs and ideograms, began to appear. Petroglyphs were still common though, some cultures continued using them much longer until contact with Western culture was made in the 19th and 20th centuries. Petroglyphs have been found in all parts of the globe except Antarctica, with highest concentrations in parts of Africa, Siberia, southwestern North America, Australia. Many hypotheses explain the purpose of petroglyphs, depending on their location and subject matter; some many be astronomical markers and other forms of symbolic communication, including a form of proto-writing.
Petroglyph maps may show trails, symbols communicating time and distances traveled, as well as the local terrain in the form of rivers and other geographic features. A petroglyph that represents a landform or the surrounding terrain is known as a geocontourglyph, they might have been a by-product of other rituals: sites in India, for example, have been identified as musical instruments or "rock gongs". Some petroglyph images have deep cultural and religious significance for the societies that created them. Many petroglyphs are thought to represent some kind of not-yet-fully understood symbolic or ritual language. Glyphs from the Nordic Bronze Age in Scandinavia seem to refer to some form of territorial boundary between tribes, in addition to possible religious meanings. Petroglyph styles has regional "dialects" from similar or neighboring peoples. Siberian inscriptions loosely resemble an early form of runes, although no direct relationship has been established, they are not yet well understood.
Petrogylphs from different continents show similarities. While people would be inspired by their direct surroundings, it is harder to explain the common styles; this could be mere coincidence, an indication that certain groups of people migrated from some initial common area, or indication of a common origin. In 1853, George Tate presented a paper to the Berwick Naturalists' Club, at which a John Collingwood Bruce agreed that the carvings had "... a common origin, indicate a symbolic meaning, representing some popular thought." In his cataloguing of Scottish rock art, Ronald Morris summarized 104 different theories on their interpretation. More controversial explanations of similarities are grounded in Jungian psychology and the views of Mircea Eliade. According to these theories it is possible that the similarity of petroglyphs from different cultures and continents is a result of the genetically inherited structure of the human brain. Other theories suggest that petroglyphs were carved by spiritual leaders, such as shamans, in an altered state of consciousness induced by the use of natural hallucinogens.
Many of the geometric patterns which recur in petroglyphs and cave paintings have been shown by David Lewis-Williams to be hardwired into the human brain. They frequently
Parshvanatha known as Parshva and Paras, was the 23rd of 24 tirthankaras of Jainism. He is the earliest tirthankara, acknowledged as a historical figure. Parshvanatha's biography is uncertain, with Jain sources placing him between the 9th and 8th centuries BC and historians saying that he lived in the 8th or 7th century BC. Parshvanatha was born 350 years before Mahavira. With Mahavira and Neminatha, Parshvanatha is one of the four tirthankaras most worshiped by Jains, he is popularly seen as a ford-maker, who can save. Parshvanatha died on Mount Sammeta in an important Jain pilgrimage site, his iconography is notable for the serpent hood over his head, his worship includes Dharanendra and Padmavati. According to Jain texts, Parshvanatha was born in India. Renouncing worldly life, he founded an ascetic community. Texts of the two major Jain sects differ on the teachings of Parshvanatha and Mahavira, this is a foundation of the dispute between the two sects; the Digambaras believe that there was no difference between the teachings of Parshvanatha and Mahavira.
According to the Śvētāmbaras, Mahavira expanded Parshvanatha's first four restraints with his ideas on ahimsa and added the fifth monastic vow. Parshvanatha did not require celibacy, allowed monks to wear simple outer garments. Digambaras disagree with Śvētāmbara interpretations. Śvētāmbara texts, such as section 2.15 of the Acharanga Sutra, say that Mahavira's parents were followers of Parshvanatha. Parshvanatha is the earliest Jain tirthankara, acknowledged as a historical figure. According to Paul Dundas, Jain texts such as section 31 of Isibhasiyam provide circumstantial evidence that he lived in ancient India. Historians such as Hermann Jacobi have accepted him as a historical figure because his Chaturyama Dharma is mentioned in Buddhist texts. Despite the accepted historicity, some historical claims have led to different scholarly conclusions, he is claimed in Jain texts to have been 13.5 feet tall. Parshvanatha's biography is legendary, with Jain texts saying that he preceded Mahavira by about 250 years and that he lived 78 years.
Mahavira is dated to c. 599 – c. 527 BC in the Jain tradition, Parshvanatha is dated to c. 850 – c. 772 BC. According to Dundas, historians outside the Jain tradition date Mahavira as contemporaneous with the Buddha in the 5th century BC and, based on the 250-year gap, date Parshvanatha to the 8th or 7th century BC. Doubts about Parshvanatha's historicity are supported by the oldest Jain texts, which present Mahavira with sporadic mentions of ancient ascetics and teachers without specific names; the earliest layer of Jain literature on cosmology and universal history pivots around two jinas: the Adinatha and Mahavira. Stories of Parshvanatha and Neminatha appear in Jain texts, with the Kalpa Sūtra the first known text. However, these texts present the tirthankaras with non-human physical dimensions, their bodies are celestial, like deva. The Kalpa Sūtra is the most ancient known Jain text with the 24 tirthankaras, but it lists 20. Early archaeological finds, such as the statues and reliefs near Mathura, lack iconography such as lions or serpents.
Parshvanatha was the 23rd of 24 tirthankaras in Jain tradition. He was born on the tenth day of the dark half of the Hindu month of Pausha to King Ashwasena and Queen Vamadevi of Benares. Parshvanatha belonged to the Ikshvaku dynasty. Before his birth, Jain texts state that he ruled as the god Indra in the 13th heaven of Jain cosmology. While Parshvanatha was in his mother's womb, gods performed the garbha-kalyana, his mother dreamt fourteen auspicious dreams, an indicator in Jain tradition that a tirthankara was about to be born. According to the Jain texts, the thrones of the Indras shook when he was born and the Indras came down to earth to celebrate his janma-kalyanaka. Parshvanatha was born with blue-black skin. A strong, handsome boy, he played with the gods of water and trees. At age eight, Parshvanatha began practicing the twelve basic duties of the adult Jain householder, he lived as a soldier in Benaras. According to the Digambara school, Parshvanatha never married. Heinrich Zimmer translated a Jain text that sixteen-year-old Parshvanatha refused to marry when his father told him to do so.
At age 30, on the 11th day of the moon's waxing in the month of Pausha, Parshvanatha renounced the world to become a monk. He removed his clothes and hair, began fasting strictly. Parshvanatha meditated for 84 days before he attained omniscience under a dhaataki tree near Benares, his meditation period included strict vows. Parshvanatha's practices included careful movement, measured speech, guarded desires, mental restraint and physical activity, essential in Jain tradition to renounce the eg
Madhya Pradesh is a state in central India. Its capital is Bhopal, the largest city is Indore, with Jabalpur, Gwalior and Sagar being the other major cities. Nicknamed the "Heart of India" due to its geographical location, Madhya Pradesh is the second largest Indian state by area and the fifth largest state by population with over 75 million residents, it borders the states of Uttar Pradesh to the northeast, Chhattisgarh to the southeast, Maharashtra to the south, Gujarat to the west, Rajasthan to the northwest. Its total area is 308,252 km2. Before 2000, when Chhattisgarh was a part of Madhya Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh was the largest state in India and the distance between the two furthest points inside the state and Konta, was 1500 km. Konta is presently in Sukma district of Chhattisgarh state; the area covered by the present-day Madhya Pradesh includes the area of the ancient Avanti Mahajanapada, whose capital Ujjain arose as a major city during the second wave of Indian urbanisation in the sixth century BCE.
Subsequently, the region was ruled by the major dynasties of India. By the early 18th century, the region was divided into several small kingdoms which were captured by the British and incorporated into Central Provinces and Berar and the Central India Agency. After India's independence, Madhya Pradesh state was created with Nagpur as its capital: this state included the southern parts of the present-day Madhya Pradesh and northeastern portion of today's Maharashtra. In 1956, this state was reorganised and its parts were combined with the states of Madhya Bharat, Vindhya Pradesh and Bhopal to form the new Madhya Pradesh state, the Marathi-speaking Vidarbha region was removed and merged with the Bombay State; this state was the largest in India by area until 2000, when its southeastern Chhattisgarh region was made as a separate state. Rich in mineral resources, MP has the largest reserves of copper in India. More than 30% of its area is under forest cover, its tourism industry has seen considerable growth, with the state topping the National Tourism Awards in 2010–11.
In recent years, the state's GDP growth has been above the national average. Isolated remains of Homo erectus found in Hathnora in the Narmada Valley indicate that Madhya Pradesh might have been inhabited in the Middle Pleistocene era. Painted pottery dated to the mesolithic period has been found in the Bhimbetka rock shelters. Chalcolithic sites belonging to Kayatha culture and Malwa culture have been discovered in the western part of the state; the city of Ujjain arose as a major centre in the region, during the second wave of Indian urbanisation in the sixth century BCE. It served as the capital of the Avanti kingdom Tejas. Other kingdoms mentioned in ancient epics—Malava, Karusha and Nishada—have been identified with parts of Madhya Pradesh. Chandragupta Maurya united northern India around 320 BCE, establishing the tejas Mauryan Empire, which included all of modern-day Madhya Pradesh. Ashoka the greatest of Mauryan rulers brought the region under firmer control. After the decline of the Maurya empire, the region was contested among the Sakas, the Kushanas, the Satavahanas, several local dynasties during the 1st to 3rd centuries CE.
Heliodorus, the Greek Ambassador to the court of the Shunga king Bhagabhadra erected the Heliodorus pillar near Vidisha. Ujjain emerged as the predominant commercial centre of western India from the first century BCE, located on the trade routes between the Ganges plain and India's Arabian Sea ports; the Satavahana dynasty of the northern Deccan and the Saka dynasty of the Western Satraps fought for the control of Madhya Pradesh during the 1st to 3rd centuries CE. The Satavahana king Gautamiputra Satakarni inflicted a crushing defeat upon the Saka rulers and conquered parts of Malwa and Gujarat in the 2nd century CE. Subsequently, the region came under the control of the Gupta empire in the 4th and 5th centuries, their southern neighbours, the Vakataka's; the rock-cut temples at Bagh Caves in the Kukshi tehsil of the Dhar district attest to the presence of the Gupta dynasty in the region, supported by the testimony of a Badwani inscription dated to the year of 487 CE. The attacks of the Hephthalites or White Huns brought about the collapse of the Gupta empire, which broke up into smaller states.
The king Yasodharman of Malwa defeated the Huns in 528. Harsha ruled the northern parts of the state. Malwa was ruled by the south Indian Rashtrakuta Dynasty from the late 8th century to the 10th century; when the south Indian Emperor Govinda III of the Rashtrakuta dynasty annexed Malwa, he set up the family of one of his subordinates there, who took the name of Paramara. The Medieval period saw the rise of the Rajput clans, including the Paramaras of Malwa and the Chandelas of Bundelkhand; the Chandellas built the majestic Hindu-Jain temples at Khajuraho, which represent the culmination of Hindu temple architecture in Central India. The Gurjara-Pratihara dynasty held sway in northern and western Madhya Pradesh at this time, it left some monuments of architectural value in Gwalior. Southern parts of Madhya Pradesh like Malwa were several times invaded by the south Indian Western Chalukya Empire which imposed its rule on the Paramara kingdom of Malwa; the Paramara king Bhoja was a renowned polymath.
The small Gond kingdoms emerged in the Mahakoshal regions of the state. Northern Madhya Pradesh was conquered by the Turkic Delhi Sultanate in the 13th century. After the collapse of the Delhi Sultanate at the end of the 14th century, independent regional kingdoms re-emerged, including the Tomara kingdom of Gwalior and the Muslim