In Stone Etched Faith: The Story of Lord Ram’s Soaring Idol in Ayodhya & its Sculptor

Meet Arun Yogiraj, the man who carved the stunning Ram Lalla idol that now resides in the Ayodhya Ram Mandir. His journey to sculpting this iconic figure is as remarkable as the idol itself.

Born into a family of sculptors in Karnataka, Arun’s artistic inclinations were evident from a young age. He began assisting his father in the workshop at just 11 years old, learning the intricacies of stone carving. After completing his MBA, Arun even embarked on a brief corporate career. However, the pull of his family legacy and his own passion for sculpting proved too strong to resist. In 2008, he returned to his roots, determined to carry forward the family’s artistic tradition.

The opportunity to carve the Ram Lalla idol for the Ram Mandir was a once-in-a-lifetime honor. Arun, along with two other shortlisted sculptors, was entrusted with creating a 51-inch tall idol of Lord Ram as a child, standing in a majestic pose. He meticulously selected a unique Krishna shila stone from Bujjegoudanapura village in Mysuru district, known for its natural beauty and resilience.

For months, Arun and his team poured their heart and soul into the project. The workshop became a sacred space, filled with the rhythmic sounds of chiseling and the quiet hum of devotion. Every detail, from the gentle curve of Ram’s lips to the intricate folds of his garments, was crafted with utmost care and precision.

Arun’s dedication and talent paid off when his idol was chosen for the Pran Pratishtha ceremony in 22nd January 2024. Witnessing the idol being installed in the sanctum sanctorum of the Ram Mandir was a deeply emotional moment for Arun, a culmination of years of hard work and unwavering faith.

Today, Arun Yogiraj is not just a sculptor; he is an embodiment of devotion and artistic excellence. His story inspires us to follow our passions, no matter the path it may take. The Ram Lalla idol, standing tall in the Ayodhya Ram Mandir, is a testament to his dedication and a reminder that even the most ordinary stone can be transformed into a masterpiece of faith and beauty.

In Ayodhya’s Soul: The Ram Lalla Idol, Embodiment of Faith and Art

Nestled within the spiritual embrace of Ayodhya, where ancient whispers resonate through time, stands a monument to unwavering faith and artistic excellence: the Ram Lalla idol. This captivating figure, sculpted from a single, luminous block of soapstone, transcends mere idol and ascends to the realm of artistic and spiritual masterpiece.

Weighing close to 200 kilograms, the idol embodies a remarkable feat of artistic unity. Its seamless form, devoid of joins or fractures, whispers of divine perfection. Yet, the beauty goes beyond its monolithic grandeur. The gentle opulence of precious stones and gold adorns the figure, adding a layer of exquisite brilliance without diminishing the inherent purity of the soapstone.

Diamonds and emeralds, akin to celestial constellations, twinkle against the stone’s canvas. Their meticulously cut facets capture and play with the light, casting rainbows upon the intricate carvings. Gold accents, reminiscent of celestial rivers, flow gracefully, outlining the delicate curves of Ram’s serene face and embellishing his regal garments. Each glint and shimmer adds a dimension of magnificence, transforming the idol into a dazzling embodiment of divinity.

However, the true treasure of the Ram Lalla idol lies not in its outward adornments, but in the profound dedication and masterful skill that breathed life into the stone. Every stroke of the chisel, every whispered prayer etched upon the surface, speaks volumes about the sculptor’s unwavering devotion. This masterpiece stands as a testament to the powerful fusion of artistry and faith, creating a monument that will inspire and captivate for generations to come.

Beyond its artistic and spiritual significance, the Ram Lalla idol also speaks to a rich cultural heritage. The use of soapstone, indigenous to India, connects the idol to the land and its traditions. The meticulous carving techniques, passed down through generations of artisans, embody the enduring legacy of Indian craftsmanship.

In conclusion, the Ram Lalla idol is more than just a figure of worship; it is a cultural touchstone, a testament to artistic mastery, and a symbol of unwavering faith. It stands as a beacon of hope and unity, reminding us of the transformative power of devotion and the enduring beauty that can be born from stone.

Arun Yogiraj’s story is one that deserves to be shared and celebrated. He is a true artist who has used his talent to create a masterpiece that will inspire generations to come.

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Nishanth Muraleedharan, also known as "Nishani," is an IT engineer who transitioned into entrepreneurship, driven by a profound passion for the textile industry. As the president of Save Handloom Foundation, (SaveHandloom.org) and the Founder & CEO of DMZ International Imports & Exports Pvt Ltd., I am passionate about reviving the Indian handloom industry and empowering the weavers and artisans across the country. With 25+ years of experience in the textile industry, I have developed deep market insights and a rich network of handloom weaving societies, master weavers, and self-help groups, who exclusively make products for our trust.