Srikalahasti temple is situated on the eastern bank of the river Swarnamukhi. The town Kalahasti is in the Chittoor District of Andhra Pradesh. The Srikalahasti temple is the most ancient one and history else that king Rajendra Chola had constructed it the 12th century. But the legend of the Srikalahasti temple says that it is a Swayambhoo temple existing from times immemorial. Srikalahasti temple is called Dakshina Kasi having the 4th Vayulinga of the oldest Pancha Bhoota Lingas. There are two lamps here, one is stable and the other is fluttering in the air. The three domes of the temple are very ancient and stand testimony to the ancient Indian architecture. Out of these, the highest Gali Gopuram was constructed during the time of Sri Krishna Devaraya. The big 1000 legged Mandapam is a sight of attraction.
Legend of the Srikalahasti temple
Kalahastiswara is a Swayambhoo Linga and the lamp existing in front of it will be fluttering due to the air generated from the Swayambhoo Linga. The diety existing here is Jnana Prasoonamba, one of the Ambatraya. Here the Siva Linga is in the is in the shape of a square and as per the legend, Bhrama got Jnana here. Stories of Vasista, Spyder, Snake, Elephant, Kannapa, Yadava king and Dhurjati who wrote Sri Kalahastiswara Mahatyam, are weaved around the temple bar associated with the temple. Sri (Spyder), Kala (snake), Hasth(elephant) have prayed the Lord Siva with much devotion and got Mukthi. That is why this placed is called Kalahasthi.
Kannapa is a hunter who is praying the lard Siva daily. To test the Devotion of Kannapa, the Lord shed tears from one eye and blood from another eye. Kannapa is very much perturbed seeing this and plucked one of his eyes and put it and put it to Swamy’s. Then another eye of the Lord also started bleeding. Devote Kannapa without hesitation plucked his other eye and put it to the Lord’s. The Lord appeared to him and gave Moksha.
This ‘Srikalahasti temple’ is very big and there are many colorful drawings on the top. There is one big pavilion called Mani Kundeswarakya. As is being done at Kasi, it is a belief among the devotees that Lord Siva will expound Omkara and Taraka Mantra to those Devotees who die here. There is the idol of Vinayaka in the underground temple. Lord Kannapa temple is there on the hill Visible from here. The main entrance of the Raja Gopuram of this “Srikalahasti temple” is facing southern side and Swamy is looking northern side. Adisankaracharya had installed Sri Chakra near the Swamy. This temple is called other names such as Dakshina Kailasa, Satyam Bhaskara Khsetra, Samjomukthi Kshetra and Sivanandika Ksthera. A great festival with much pomp is performed here on Maha Siva Ratri day. Dhurajati wrote Kalahasthiswara Satakam (book) here.
Srikalahasti temple History
There is a historical reference to this Srikalahasti temple as Dakshina Kassi in the work of Sri Nakki Ran belonging to the dynasty of Tamil Sangamam of 3rd century B.C.The Southern Galigopuram was built in the 1st Kulottunga Chola and 3rd the 1st Kuttottanga Chola constructed the other parts of the Srikalahasti temple. In Veera Narasimharaya of the 12th century had built the domes connecting all the four entrances of the temple. Along with inscription engraved on stones, on 1516 A.D., Sri Krishna Devarava had built a pillared pavilion and the highest Galigopuram which is known as built if in memory of his victory over Gajapathi 1516 A.D. It is stated that Attutharaya had first performed his coronation in this temple and after that performed it in his capital This pavilion was fallen to the ground on May 26, 2010.
This is one of the biggest temples in the country. In this Srikalahasti temple, from the Sanctum of Ammavaaru devotees can see the main domes and this facility is available in only a few temples in India. Rahu – Ketu worship is being done here to avoid ill effects of sins done pujas like Rudrabhishekam, Paccha Karpurabhishekam, Palabhishekam are also performed here.
- Srikalahasti temple Deities on four- sides
There is a specialty in the construction of the Srikalahasti temple. On all the four sides are the deities underground Ganapathi is facing North, Jnana Prasunamba is facing East. Kalahasthiswara is facing West and Dakshina Murthy is facing South. It is believed that Chaturvidha Purushardha Siddhi will be got by visiting this Srikalahasti temple.
- Srikalahasti temple Domes / Towers
There are four domes on four sides and other domes of 120 feet high which are called Raja Gopuram constructed by Sri Krishna Devararaya. Swami’s Bramosthavam will begin from here to reach the Srikalahasti temple, Swamy will come from Bikshala dome. Bickshala is a Devadasi who served the lord and this dome was built by her. The domes of Balajnanambika, Sivayya, Tirumanjana are there on eastern, Northern and Western sides respectively. There are Chandra Pushkarini and Surya Pushkarini on left and right side of Tirumanjuna Gopuram water Abishekam of the Lord and also for cooking purposes is taken from the Surya Puskarini. There is a way to the river Suvarna Mukhi from this Gopuram. From the southern Gopuram, there are ways to the temples of Brahma and Bakta Kannappa.
- Srikalahasti temple Siva Linga’s and Other Attendant Deities
There are several Siva Lingas established by sages or some deities in Srikalahasti temple. There are Arthanariswara Linga, Neela Kanteswara Linga, Manikanteswara Linga Mrutyumjaya Linga established by sages Bhrugu. Agastya, Aatreya and also Vyasa and Markandeya. Further, there are several Lingas established by Sri Rama, Parasurama, Indra and other deities, Sapta Rushies, Yamadarmaraju Chitraguptha, and Dharmaraju.
For rains, Sahasra Lingabhiushekam is done to the Linga of Mruthumjaya. The guard of the Kshetra is Kalabhiraya. Further, there are statues of Ganapathi, Subrahmaneswara, Surya, and Sani in ‘Srikalahasti temple’. There is the idol of Sri Venkateswara, Varadarajan and Veera Raaghava Swamy. Further, there is a standing statue of Kannappa. Spotika Linga established by Sankaracharya and 64 metal idols of Nayanars also there.
Srikalahasti temple Temple of Rahu-Ketu Pooja
This has become famous as Rahu Ketu temple in the Srikalahasti temple. Sage Vasista suffered due to loss of his son, and Siva gave darshan to him as five-faced Naga Linga. Brahma also worshipped this naga Linga. Due to this Naga linga, this place has become famous as Rahu Khetu temple. To relieve one from the sins of harming Snakes, this Swamy is worshipped. The Rahu Ketu pooja also does in Rahu Kalam.
Rahu Ketu Pooja timings
|Pooja types||Pooja Price||Pooja Places||Pooja Tmings|
|Rahu Ketu Pooja||Lowest Price|
|Sri Krishna Devaraya Mandapam||6.00 A.M. - 6.00P.M.|
|Special Kala Sarpa Nivarana Pooja||Medium price|
|Gnanambika Mandapam||6.00 A.M. - 6.00P.M|
|Aaseervachana Rahu Ketu Sarpa Nivarana pooja||Highest pirice|
|Near Dwajasthambam||6.00 A.M. - 6.00P.M|
|Special Aaseervachana Rahu Ketu Sarpa Nivarana pooja||Very Highest price|
|Inside temple, Near Kalyanothsavam Mandap||6.00 A.M. - 6.00P.M|
Srikalahasti temple Services and Poojas
The following services and pujas are performed in “Srikalahasti temple”
- Karpura Harathi
- Astothara Archana
- Sahasra Namarchana
- Trisathi Archana
- Kassi Gangabhishekam
- Rudhra Abhishekam
- Nitya Ditta Abhishekam
- Sri Sareswara Abhishekam
- Friday Amma’s seva
- Vivaha Katnam
- Akhanda Deeparadhana
- Nityosthavam (Morning)
- Pradesha Nandi seva
- Ekantha seva
- Vahana Puja
- Suprabhatha seva
- Saninivarana Jyothi Deepa Katanam
- Taliga Katanam
- Sarpa Dhosha (Rahu-Khetu) Puja
- Unjal seva on Pournami day
- Nandi seva
- Pedda Vendi Simha Vahanam
Pious places to be seen in ‘Srikalahasti temple’
There are 36 Pious places be seen on the premises of the Srikalahasti temple which are
- Sahasra Lingala Teerdham
- Hari Hara Teerdham
- Bharadwaja Teerdham
- Markandeya Teerdham
- Moka Teerdham
- Surya Chandra Pushkarini Teerdham
There is a belief among the devotes if water from the Patalaganga or Moka Teerdham is taken infirmities like Stammering and dumbness will be removed.
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Srikalahasti temple Celebration or Festivities
On the occasion of Maha Siva Ratri Bhahmosthavams will be celebrated for a week with Much Pomp and Paraphernalia. On this occasion, four streets on the town are crowded with devotees. Not only devotes from the nearby villages, but also devotees from the neighboring states of Tamilnadu and Karnataka will attend these celebrations with much devotion and dedication. It is a delightful sight to see the position deities decorated beautifully and sent on a voyage in Narada Pushkarini. This Flote-Festival with Swamy and Amma’s on the beautifully decorated raft is a very special one.
Underground Vinayaka (Pathala Ganapathi Temple Kalahasti) Of Srikalahasti temple
As per the command of the Lord Siva, the sage Agastya, one of Saptha Rishies, came to Srikalahasti temple in Dakshina Kassi. He prayed the Lord Siva for water as there is no water here. As per the orders of the Lord Siva, Bhrama brought Akasaganga to this place. That is Survarna Mukhi river. There are several stories about the Mahatyam of the underground Vinayaka. When the sage Agastya forgot to worship underground Vinayaka, this river Swarna Mukhi dried up once.
Realising his mistake Agasya worshipped the Vinayaka. Science Vinayaka appears to be submerged very deep in the Swarna Mukhi in those days, He is called underground Vinayaka. If we go through the Northern Dome of this temple there will be the Sanctum of the underground Vinayaka. In order to have a darshan of the Lord, we have to get down 20 steps and the Lord is at 35 feet depth. according to the legend of the temple, the underground Vinayaka is to be seen first before having the darshan of the Lord Siva.
Srikalahasti temple timings
Morning 6.00 A.M. to Evening 9.00 P.M.
Srikalahasti temple Address
Sri Kalahasteeswara Swamy Vari Devasthanams,
Srikalahasti temple contact numbers: 08578-222240,221336, 9885974050.
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