What's in this photo? 

Kadamba flowers in Mahakuta temple complex, Bagalkot district, North Karnataka.

Kadamba Tree and the tennis ball shaped Kadamba flower

Story of this Photo

On my visit to Mahakuta temple complex in Northern Karnataka, I saw this tree. One thing that attracted me the most was the curious looking, tennis ball shaped flowers. I asked the name of this tree to the local people, however due to my limited Kannada knowledge I couldn't understand them. I wanted to get one of those flowers, however they were high up in the tree and inaccessible. Also it would be inappropriate to pluck flowers from a temple property.  As I came out after prayers in the Virupaksha temple, the lady who sold oil outside the temple was holding one of those flowers. I clicked a few photos of the flower and gave it back to her. Seeing me so curious, she gifted me the flower. I had it in my hand the entire day! Back in Bangalore, I got on with my routine life, but somehow this tree was keep coming back to my mind. I felt a strange urge to find more about it.  I tried Google image based search but there was no results. I posted it's photo in Quora. In a matter of few days got the answer. It was Kadamba tree(Neolamarckia cadamba) - It was worth the effort. 

Kadamba Flower in Indian Mythology

Kadamba is a sacred tree in South India. Kadamba flower is the favorite flower of Lord Krishna. In Bhagavat Purana, it is mentioned that Krishna and Radha romanced under the sweet shade of Kadamba tree. It is also the very tree from which the famous Kadamba dynasty of Karnataka took it's name. According to the legends, the progenitor of Kadamba dynasty - Mayuravarmma - was born under a Kadamba tree. He was a great warrior with three eyes and four arms and he sprang to life from a drop of sweat from Lord Shiva's forehead. He grew up under the thick shade of Kadamba tree, hence giving the name Kadamba to the dynasty he founded.  

I was amused by such a rich history that the tree possess. In a way , I feel that this Kadamba tree wanted me to know about it. Call me crazy but, I feel the universe wants to reveal a few things to us and it will come to us unannounced when the time comes.

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  1. It name is mitragyna parvifolia a var. Of kratom a psychoactive plant active at the mu opioid receptor with its active constitutes https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/7-Hydroxymitragynine https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mitragynine


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