Lewangama Sadanandarama Purana Tampita Viharaya – ලෙවන්ගම සදානන්දාරාම පුරාණ ටැම්පිට විහාරය

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Lewangama Tampita Rajamaha Viharaya

Lewangama Tampita Rajamaha Viharaya
Photo by : Duminda Krishantha

Lewangama Sadanandarama Purana Tampita Viharaya lies hidden away on side of a large paddy field between Karawanella and Warakapola in the Kegalle District. To reach this temple you need to travel 15.5 km from Warakapola towards Ruwanwella or 7 km from Anguruwella Junction in Ruwanwella towards Warakapola. An insignificant narrow concrete by lane through a paddy field will take you this ancient temple. 

The temple has been built by Eheliyagoda Disawe during the Kandyan kingdom about 300 years ago. One of the unique features a visitor could observe at this temple  is the Tampita Viharaya. Tampita Vihara were a popular architectural feature of temples during the Kandyan era. Such temples (image houses) are  built on top of granite stumps with wooden platform laid across the stumps.

The Tampita Viharaya at Lewangama is fairly large compared to other such structures since this is placed at the center of Bana Madua making it part of this structure.  The complete structure is 140 feet (42.672 meters) long and 85 feet wide (25.908 meters) wide.

At the main entrance to the Tampita Viharaya lies two statues of larger than life guardian deities with cobra hoods carrying a pot of plenty. The other statues of guardian deities in the  temple have been crafted with clubs in their hands.

According the report on the Kegalle district of the province of Sabaragamuwa, by then Archaeological Commissioner, HCP Bell published in 1904, he has visited this temple in 1880’s. Based on his report, the outer wall of the temple has been painted with various designs and Jathaka Stories such as Daham Sonda, Maha Kannaka, and Dharmapala Jathakaya. He also reports the paintings of Wrestlers, Hansa Puuttu, creeper designs, Narilatha and Naga Trees on the wall. Unfortunately most of these designs have been painted over during later renovations. However some of these paintings have been restored to some extent by the department of archaeology. There are number of the paintings on this temple showing British influence.  Paintings with British soldiers are the most significant. 

The inner chamber of the image house is dominated by a Buddha statue in the samadhi position. This is 40 feet (12.192 meters) high and 32 feet (10.3632 meters) wide. Two standing Buddha statues lies beside the the main statue. Robes of all three statues have been painted with yellow colour.

Inner walls depict  jathaka stories such as Wessanthara and Maha Kanthaka. A statues of Eheliyagoda Disawe can be seen on the left wall of the image house. Next to it a statue of Vishnu and on the opposite wall is a statue of the deity Saman.

Primary Sources : Pauranika Stana ha Smaraka – Kegalla Distrikkaya by Department of Archaeology
Dayada – July 2016 edition- by Department of Archaeology

Alternate names : Levangama Tampita Viharaya, Levangama Sadanandarama Rajamaha Viharaya, Lewangama Sadanandarama Rajamaha Viharaya

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Map of Lewangama Purana Tampita Viharaya


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Traveling to Lewangama Purana Tampita Viharaya

Route from Awissawella to Lewangama Purana Tampita Viharaya

Distance : 26  km
Travel time : 45  mins
Driving directions : see on google map

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Posted in Heritage, Tampita Viharaya