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Amalaka at the top of the Lingaraj temple in Bhubaneswar
Banners at the top of the amalaka of the Jagannath Temple in Puri

An Amalaka, is a stone disk, usually with ridges on the rim, that sits atop a temple's main tower (Shikhara). According to one interpretation, the amalaka represents a lotus, and thus the symbolic seat for the deity below. Another interpretation is that it symbolizes the sun, and is thus the gateway to the heavenly world.[1]

According other sources,[2] the shape of the amalaka has been inspired by the fruit of the myrobolan fig tree Phyllanthus emblica (ou Mirobalanus embilica).

The amalaka itself is crowned with a kalasam (finial), from which a temple banner is often hung.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Khajuraho Architecture". 2006-01-12. Retrieved 2012-08-09. 
  2. ^ "Voyages en Inde, architecture des temples en Orissa". Retrieved 2012-08-09. 

External links[edit]