In a positive development for tourists and history enthusiasts, Madhya Pradesh will soon get a statue of Adi Shankaracharya. Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan will unveil the massive 108 ft statue of the 8th century Vedic scholar in Omkareshwar, a sacred temple town with one of Lord Shiva's 12 Jyotirlingas. The massive statue will depict Shankaracharya as a 12-year-old boy.
Omkareshwar, located on the Narmada River banks, is about 80 km from Indore. With this statue, it's set to become a global centre for Advaita Vedanta philosophy, promoted by Adi Shankaracharya. This tribute to the esteemed philosopher is called the 'Statue of Oneness' or Ekatmata Ki Pratima.
Omkareshwar, one of the 12 revered jyotirlingas, draws countless pilgrims annually. A 270-foot hanging bridge spans the Narmada River, adding to Omkareshwar's charm. Dominating the landscape is the Gauri Somnath Temple, a three-story marvel designed as a peahen. Together, these elements create a spiritually enriching destination.
Apart from the upcoming statue, Omkareshwar is set to undergo more changes to celebrate its culture and spirituality. The government plans to create Advaita Lok, a museum to preserve and display Advaita Vedanta philosophy. They will also establish an international Vedanta institute for in-depth learning. As a commitment to the environment, they're also working on an "Advaita Forest" covering 36 hectares, adding to the town's beauty and sustainability.
Adi Shankaracharya's life is full of legend and spiritual importance. He began his spiritual journey when he was young and went to Omkareshwar, where he studied under his guru, Govind Bhagwadpad, for four years. At just 12 years old, he left Omkareshwar and travelled across India, sharing the profound teachings of Advaita Vedanta philosophy and enlightening many people.