Where: Cave 26, Ajanta Caves, Aurangabad district, Maharashtra state of India
When: Summer Solstice Time: Sunrise
About: Observe the summer solstice at the majestic site in India – The Ajanta Caves, where from a solid granite rock mass emerging from a mountainside 76 meters high, 30 caves have been carved out, forming the Buddhist temples and sanctuaries for the ancient peoples that once lived and worshiped at this site, recorded as early as 2nd century BCE. This breathtaking ”horseshoe-shaped escarpment’‘, discovered ”by accident” during a hunting expedition, is set in the beautiful Aurangabad jungle, overlooking the Waghora River.
The Alignment: The Ajanta Caves are known for two very special celestial alignments – the winter and summer solstices.
Below is an excerpt from Belsebuub and Lara Atwood’s book ”The Path of the Spiritual Sun” explaining the cave’s summer solstice alignment:”Cave 26 aligns to the summer solstice sunrise. It contains a statue of Buddha seated within a stupa, which is illuminated by the rays of the rising sun on the summer solstice.
A stupa is a symbolic monument which it is said Buddha uses to ascend and descend.
The stupas for the winter and summer solstice at the Ajanta Caves differ in their design, perhaps for a symbolic reason.
The summer solstice is a time of ascent.
In the cave aligned to the summer solstice Buddha is seated with his feet on a pedestal.
Perhaps this was symbolic of him no longer being on the earth—as ancient Egypt gods were sometimes portrayed upon pedestals to show their heavenly status.” ~ Belsebuub.comVisiting the Caves: Here are some guidelines to keep in mind for visiting the caves. (Page 12)
Below is a video that sheds light on the intriguing history and landscape of the Ajanta Caves and animates the solstice alignments in cave 19 and 26. This is a video from the History Channel which contains some of their own theories and opinions about the site.
A Note About Visiting Ancient Sites:
Please be mindful and respectful of the ancient sites. Treat them with care as to not disturb them, damage them or remove anything from them. Help protect these incredible sites so that they can continue to stand the test of time.
Please note: This event is not run by The Spiritual Sun. Please contact the Archaelogical Survey of India if you would like more details about the site such as opening times, admission tickets, restrictions etc.
Article by Christos Grapsas & Olga Grapsas