The Ramayana and Mahabharata have been transmitted across several generations in the form of stories, poems, narratives and various art forms. Each Indian art form, be it Kathakali or Kalamkari painting, has always depicted scenes from the Mahabharata in thorough detail often taking one or two important sequences. Through these art forms, the intricate stories and the philosophy of the Mahabharath has stood the test of time. Ofcourse! one cannot ignore the local legends that have been added to the main storyline. Here are a few stone carvings from temples in India and abroad showing scenes from the Mahabaharat. It would be wonderful to make a tour of these places to see these beautiful sculptures.
The main panel at Mahabalipuram shows the descent of the ganges. On a closer look one can find the meditating cat, the story that was narrated in the Udyoga Parva by Duryodhana comparing its cunningness and hidden agenda to Yudhisthira’s attitude.
The beautiful Amriteswara Temple of the Hoysala Period in Karnataka depicts the comabt between Shiva (dressed as a hunter) and Arjuna after which Arjuna obtained his Pashupatastra. The narrative appears in the Vana Parva-Kirata Parva
A scene from the war depicted in great detail at the Kailasa temple, Ellora. Bhishma on the bed of arrows at Pattadakkal temple, Karnataka.
The fame of the Mahabharat not only spread throughout India but to other parts of the world, especially Cambodia, Indonesia and Thailand. Their dance forms have various scenes from the Mahabharata. Here are some depictions from these places.
Reference Sites: http://mexpostfact.blogspot.com/2015/02/mahabharata.html http://www.kamat.com/kalranga/deccan/hoysala/amriteshwara.htm https://www.flickr.com/photos/uppalapu/galleries/72157649030673531/ https://chandrashekharasandprints.wordpress.com/2010/11/22/my-days-with-the-gods-%E2%80%93-2/ http://www.tripadvisor.com/LocationPhotoDirectLink-g1676035-d498375-i141007891-Halebidu_Temple-Halebid_Karnataka.htmls http://www.cambodia-picturetour.com/moha-phearata-summary/ https://www.pinterest.com/pin/119275090103103266/