Saturday, 29 April 2017

Gavipuram Gangadhareshwara Temple In Banglore

                                                 Gavi Gangadhareshwara Temple

In a little while, as we drove towards Basavangudi, we came across an area with huge monoliths. On inquiring, a passerby said it was part of a cave temple called Gavi Gangadhareshwara. We immediately pulled over the car and decided to explore. A huge trident made of stone was the first thing we noticed on entering the temple premises.The word 'gavi' means a cave or a den in the local language. The temple is dedicated to Gangadhareshwar, which is another name for Lord Shiva. It is known to be one of the oldest temples in Bangalore and with its stunning rock-cut architecture, it is indeed a fine example of an architectural prowess.

 A stone idol of Nandi, Shiva's mount, is placed outside the shrine. A placard near the entrance gave a very interesting information about the architectural planning of the temple that is backed by scientific knowledge. It mentioned that during a specific time of the year, the sunlight passes between the horns of the Nandi and enters the inner sanctum directly illuminating the Shiva Lingam.

This temple has many features that will take you by amazement. Built in the 9th century, this temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva. It is also popular as the Gavipuram Cave temple. Coming to the unique features of this temple, the two huge discs on the foreground of the shrine. The next thing that will attract your attention at the Gavi Gangadhareshwara temple is the idol of Agni deva or the fire god. Here the Agni deva is depicted as the Lord with two heads, seven hands and three legs.

Architecture Of Gavi Gangadhareshwara Temple:-

The Gavipuram Cave Temple is an architectural wonder in itself. The temple was cut out from a natural monolith rock. The inner sanctum of the temple is situated inside a cave carved out in the rock. The main attraction of the temple is the granite pillars situated in the forecourt of the temple. Two of the pillars support huge discs that represent the sun and the moon. The other two pillars have a trident (trishul) and a two-headed drum (damru), representing the two significant possessions of Lord Shiva.

But the main architectural significance associated with the temple is the creation of the cave temple and the placement of the stone discs in such a manner that they allow the sun to illuminate the Shivalinga for just one hour every year.

Old paintings show different scene:-

Several old paintings, including two drawings of the British artists Thomas and William Daniell from 1792 show though somewhat different architecture and disposition of elements of this unique temple two centuries ago.
Paintings show that the area around the temple was barren and devoid of vegetation. Nowadays the view to the east is obscured by trees.
Temple has been supplemented by new walls and enclosures. This has been done with a great skill to change the earlier dates of the illumination to contemporary January 14.
Later there has been added also a bronze pillar - Dhwajasthambha. Also this bronze pillar has unclear function - shadow of this pillar sometimes falls on the vertical mark on one of the discs. It is possible that Dhwajasthambha was installed to mark the entry of the Sun into Cancer.
Further analysis of these old drawings shows that earlier the Sun illuminated the shrine during both the winter solstice and summer solstice.
Mysterious discs in the courtyard most likely were aligned to mark the summer solstice.

History Of Gavipuram Gangadhareshwara Temple:-

Gavi Gangadhareshwara temple is a famous ancient cave temple. The temple is renowned due to a significant and almost magical phenomenon, that occurs in the temple every year, on a particular day in the month of January.  Apart from the wonderful phenomenon, the temple also stands as a glaring example of the marvelous Indian rock-cut architecture.  It is dedicated to the Hindu deity, Lord Shiva. The temple is unique from all other temples of Karnataka,  due to the presence of two huge discs in the foreground of the shrine.
 Another major attraction of the temple, is the presence of a rare idol of Agni, the God of fire. The figure has two heads, seven hands and three legs. It is perhaps the only temple in South India that has such an idol.  The temple has a wonderful sculpture of Nandi (a bull), Shiva’s mount. A beautiful image of Shakti Ganapathi, with 12 hands adorns the left side of the main entrance to the temple.
 The history of the temple dates back to the 9th century. It is believed that the temple was cut out of a rock in the 9th century. It was used by the great sage Gowthama to perform penance. Later in the 16th century, Kempegowda I, the founder of Bangalore, revamped and extended the temple.  According to local legend, Kempegowda was imprisoned by Rama Raya.  He suffered imprisonment for five years. When he was released, he constructed this temple to show his gratitude. Artistic depiction of the temple is found in the painting of the British artist James Hunter in 1792.
 Every year on the 14th of January, a rare and significant phenomenon takes place inside the inner sanctum of the temple. The rays of the setting sun on the western horizon, shoot a beam of light, that passes from under an arch, on the western wall of the temple,  before moving towards the inner sanctum.  It first lights the back of the statue of Nandi and passes over its horns and reaches the feet of the Shivalinga.  Finally the beam of light illuminates the whole of Shivalinga.
 This is a wonderful sight, as the event is marked by continuous ringing of the bells and chanting of mantras by the priests and devotees. The linga is bathed in milk by one of the priests during the entire period of the phenomenon. It seems as if the Sun is showing reverence to the Lord on the auspicious day. A large crowd of thousands of people gather from far and near and wait for hours to witness this magical event every year on the particular day that is also celebrated as Makar Sankranti. It is on this particular day that the dark interiors of the cave and the linga are illuminated by the rays of the bright sun for few moments every year.

Gavi Gangadhareshwara Temple Has Many Demigods in The Same Premises:-

The temple may also stand as an example of how Indian culture may have diluted from a sophistication of thought and expertise in certain faculties of human knowledge to the primitiveness of ritualism and superstition. As such, the temple authorities continue to be reluctant to admit the findings of the research team, probably fearing the loss of the ‘divinity’ of the temple and the ‘fan-following’ they receive for the event of January 14th.
Towards the left of main entry, there is a splendid image of Shakti Ganapathi, which has 12 hands. You will find four monolith pillars at courtyard, which symbolize Damaru, Thrishula as well as two fans.
The temple as well has a rare idol of Agni, the fire god, probably the only one of its kind in the entire South India. The Idol of Agni is two headed, seven handed as well as three legs. It is believed that worshipping this deity will get rid of all eye related problems.
Gavi Gangadhareshwara Temple is one of few temples in Bangalore dedicated to Shiva and it is visited by a large number of devotees during Makara Sankranthi and Maha Shivaratri.

The outer mantapa of the temple features fourteen pillars in Vijaya Nagara style, unique and beautiful granite structure like suryapanas, a trident dhamaruka.
The two Shikaras of the temple are said to have built during the period of Kempegowda, the founder of Bangalore.
There are two idols of Sage Gowthama and Baradwaja here who were said to have performed penance here.

Gavi Gangadhareshwara Temple – Magic Created by the Sun:-
Every year on the 14th of January a rare and significant phenomenon takes place inside the inner sanctum of the temple. The rays of the setting sun on the western horizon shoot a beam of light that passes from under an arch on the western wall of the temple before moving towards the inner sanctum. It first lights the back of the statue of Nandi and passes over its horns and reaches the feet of the Shivalingam. Finally the beam of light illuminates the body of the Shivalingam.
This is a wonderful sight as the event is marked by continuous ringing of the bells and chanting of mantras by the priests and devotees. The lingam is bathed in milk by one of the priests during the entire period of the phenomenon. It seems as if the Sun is showing reverence of the Lord on the auspicious day.

A large crowd of thousands of people gather from far and near and wait for hours to witness this magical event every year on the particular day that is also celebrated as Makar Sankranti. It is on this particular day that the dark interiors of the cave and the lingam are illuminated by the rays of the bright sun for some moments every year.
Beliefs Surrounding the Gavi Gangadhareshwara Temple in Bangalore
There are lots of beliefs and myths associated with the temple. It is believed that anyone who worships the idol of Agni (the God of fire) situated inside the temple will be cured of all eye defects.
Devotees also believe that there are two tunnels that extend from the inner sanctum of the temple. One of them proceeds towards the city of Varanasi in the northern part of India. The other extends up to another temple of Shiva with the same name, the Gangadhareshwara temple, located on the hill of Shivagange, about 10 miles from this temple.

Temple Timings:-

From 7am to 12-30pm and from 5pm to 8.30pm.

Festivals celebrated at the Gavi Gangadhareshwara Temple:-

The Gavi Gangadhareshwara Temple is known for its festivities, which reflect the true colors of South Indian culture and traditions.

Makar Sankranti festival:-

 Celebrated at the month of January, this festival is marked by the presence of thousands of devotees. The crowd is there to check out the amazing phenomenon, where the sunrays at the dusk pass through the horns of the stone idol of Nandi to fall directly on the Shiva Lingum inside the shrine. This phenomenon takes place between 5 pm and 6 pm.

Shivaratri Festival:-

 This is another important festival of the temple. Thousands of pilgrim line up in front of the temple to bathe Lord Shiva with milk at all the four phases of the day. The festival takes place every year in the month of February or March.

Poojas and Rituals at Gavi Gangadhareshwara Temple:-

Devotees can witness unique customs and rituals of worship at the Gavi Gangadhareshwara Temple.
•Besides the daily pooja, devotees can ask for special offerings.
•A curtain guards the passage of the temple during Mangal aarti.

How to Reach:- 

By Road:-

 National Highways NH 4, NH 7, and NH 48 connect Bangalore to some of India's major cities. The Kempegowda Bus Stand is the Central Bus Stand, with buses plying all over Karnataka and other states. Various State Transport Corporations and private bus operators conduct interstate bus services to Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Kerala, Maharashtra, Pondicherry and Goa.

By Rail:-

 Bangalore is well connected to the rest of the country both by meter gauge and broad gauge rail services. It is an important railway station on the southern railway network.

By Air:-

 Regular flights operate from Bangalore to prominent Indian cities. The airport houses booking offices of international airlines and there are direct international flights to Sharjah, Muscat and Singapore.

Thursday, 27 April 2017

Ghati Subramanya Temple In Doddaballapura

                                                      Ghati Subramanya Temple

Ghati Subramanya kannada (ಘಾಟಿ ಸುಬ್ರಮಣ್ಯ )is an ancient Hindu temple, situated on the outskirts of Bangalore near Tubagere, Doddaballapura. It is 60 km from the city and is a popular pilgrimage centre. The uniqueness of this temple is that the prime deity Lord Karthikeya, is found together with Lord Narasimha. According to mythology, both idols are believed to have emerged from the earth. It is also an important centre in South India for snake worship. Special rituals are performed during Brahmarathotsava, i.e., on the day of Pushya shudda Shashti. Narasimha Jayanti is the other major festival celebrated here.

History Ghati Subramanya Temple:-

Subramanya lord is elder son of Shiva and Parvathi. Lord Ganesh is youger brother of lord Subramanya. Subramanya is considered as lord of Snakes. Subramanya is also known as Shanmuka.
Ghati Subramanya temple is considered to be one of the most famous pilgrim centres around Doddaballapur, Bangalore rural district. Ghati Subramanya temple is basically dedicated to Shri Subramanya and Shri Lakshmi Narasimha. Amazing and uniqueness of this temple is both the idols are in one stone, Whereas Sri Subrahmanya is facing east and Sri Lakshmi Narasimha is facing west. Lord Narasimha God can be viewed only in Mirror which is placed behind the Idol. The temple also has idols of Adi Shesha and Vasuki along with main lord Subramanya.
The lord Subramanya is placed on peacock in the main chamber. The mud from Red Ants is collected from main Chamber and distributed among the devotees. There is huge and high Single Pillar is placed right in front of main Temple, which is called as “Garuda Stamba”. Nominal fee is charged for poojas. For Special Darshan there is little extra fees is charged.

Ghati Subramanya temple is dedicated to Lord Subramanya and Lord Lakshmi Narasimha. It is said to be the idol of Lord subrahmanya was self originated, and then the Temple was built later. The peculiar thing about this temple is Lord Subrahmanya is facing east and Lord Lakshmi Narasimha is facing west, both Idols are in a single image. You can get blessings of Lord Lakshmi Narasimha by praying through a mirror placed inside to see both the idols together.

This popular, old temple attracts many visitors throughout Karnataka. There will be special poojas at the time of Special occasions like Brahmarathotsava, on the day of Pushya shudda Shashti.

The very famous, Temple Festival called Narasimha Jayanti is celebrated in grandly. Occasion of Marriage functions are also held in this temple,the delicious free lunch is also provided here daily, for all Lord Subramanya devotees.

Ghati Subramanya Temple(or) The Stala Purana and Kshetra Mahime:-

Ghati Subramanya Temple is situated in Doddaballapura Taluk, Bengaluru Rural District, around 60km from Bengaluru. Presiding deity of this temple is Lord Subramanya & another main Deity is Lord Lakshmi Narayana. An unique feature of the idol is both the Deities are carved onto the same Idol. Lord Subramanya as Seven Hooded Serpent, facing towards the Mahadwara (East) is directly visible as we enter the main temple area.  Lord Lakshmi Narayana facing west is on the opposite side of the Idol and Darshan of the Lord is through a Mirror placed inside the sanctum sanctorum. The head priest of the temple, SN Subba Shastrigalu in one of visits said that the temple is more than 600 years old. We were lucky enough during that visit to hear from him the legend associated to this temple (it was one of those rare less crowded days).
It was during the reign of Ghorpade clan of Sandur that the temple is believed to have been constructed and consecrated. The Ghorpades were very devout, and rulers of great virtues. Their family Deity was Lord Subramanya and the Sandur Kingdom was prosperous and the citizens were rich and happy.

A Betel Leaf trader during his travels from town to town peddling his wares used to regularly stop over in this place where he used to have his bath in Kumaratheertha (now Pushkarni, or the temple pond) have his food along the bank of this pond and used to rest on an idol witha tree above serving as shade for him. He used to hear a voice saying “rise, o rise, you are resting heavily on me” which he dismissed it away since it never appeared in his dream and passed it off as mischief of wind. One of the days the Lord appeared in his dream and tells him that he lives in about 20 Gajas (1 Gaja = 1 yard) and that his devotees live in Sandur. Tomorrow you will meet a learned Scholar, with whom you shall go and inform the king about my presence here. He will them come here and build a Temple and facilitate regular Puja rituals. Saying this the lord vanished away. He wakes up and finds the sun had already risen and goes to Kumaratheertha and after his ablutions, finds a Brahmin Scholar. He approaches him and tells him about the dream. Together they set out to Sandur to inform the king.

They appear before the king and introduces themselves as those coming from Ksheerasagara pura. They also inform him that around 2 miles into the forest from where they hail, Lord Kumaraswamy (Subramanya) has manifested who appeared in the dreams to pass on the message to the King to build a temple and arrange for regular worship. They requested the King to accompany them to this place and do the needful. The King thought that this was too small a task for him to leave all royal duties and travel to a place so far. He promises them enough monetary and other support and asks them to carry out the task themselves whereupon the Trader and Brahmin declines them saying, if we have to achieve this goal, we also have the wherewithal for it and not depend on you for support. Saying thus, they immediately leave the palace and begin their journey back to Ksheerasagarapura. Tired that they were, they decided to stay in a Brahmin house for the night and resume journey the next day.

The Lord then appears in the King’s dream in a Ugra roopa (fiery form) and curses that for dishonoring the instructions, the entire kingdom will now undergo tremendous hardships. The king immediately wakes up, begs pardon and early next morning sends out his guards in search of the trader and the Brahmin. The royal family then accompanies them to Ksheerasagarapura. They reach by around noon and begin searching for the idol in the temple. Specialty of this temple is that every rock and stone appears in the form of snake. After a long unsuccessful search they return back to the camp. The cooks then bring two big and two small rocks to create a stove for cooking. (The big rock now is part of the Main Idol of Lord Subramanya). After a while when the cook opens the lid to check if the ingredients have been cooked, he discovers to his horror that everything inside the container appeared bloodied. He was mortified with fear and rushes to the King to inform him about the same. On closer observation they also find openings of Anthills inside it and It was then decided that this indeed was the abode of Lord Subramanya.

The same evening, they also found amongst the cattle that was herded across this village, a particular cow on its return to its village, used to stand across this anthill and  automatically the udder started releasing milk into the anthill. Until this day, everyone in the village used to suspect the cowherd of having milked the cow and drinking all the milk. It was the same evening when elders of the village also came to test the boy and found this miraculous sight.

After the entourage retired for the night, the Lord appears in the King’s dreams and asks him to remove the anthill which would reveal the Lord along with Lakshmi Narayana. The next morning, they discover Lord Subramanya along with Lakshmi Narayana in the form of an idol. All the families assembled there together donates land and wealth and appoints the Brahmin as the main priest of the temple. Till this date, the main priest is form the same family.

Ghati Subramanya Temple Idol:-

The temple here is dedicated to Lord Subramanya and Lord Lakshmi Narasimha. It is believed that the idol of Shri subrahmanya is self originated. The uniqueness of the temple is, Sri Subrahmanya is facing east and Sri Lakshmi Narasimha is facing west in a single image. One can have darshan of Lord Narasimha through a mirror placed rear side.

This unique and ancient temple attracts many a pilgrims. Special pooja's will be performed the event of Brahmarathotsava, i.e., on the day of Pushya shudda Shashti. Narasimha Jayanti is other major festival celebrated here. Marriage functions are also held here.

It is Lord Murugan's temple and very much in tradition with the "Kukke" subramanya temple. Here you find him in the "Naga" avathar and all the "sarpa (snake) dosha" related poojas are performed here.

t is believed that the idols of the deities at Ghati Subramanya Temple are swayambhu idols, and the naga avatar can be seen of Lord Subramanya. People with sarpa dosha come here to be blessed by the Lord after offering him prayers and anominal fee. Many childless couples since ages have been visiting the temple for granting them their wish to bear children.

Architecture Of Ghati Subramanya Temple:-

As specified above, the style of architecture in this temple is Dravidian. No one knows how long the idols have stood there for, but the Sri Subramanya Temple is believed to be an ancient one. The idol of the Lord is said to be swayambhu, meaning self-originated and not created or sculpted by anyone else. A unique aspect about the temple is that while the sculpture of the Lord Subramanya is positioned towards the East, Lord Lakshmi Narasimha stands at the back of the same idol, facing the West.

The devotees obtain a darshan of Lord Lakshmi Narasimha by way of a strategically placed mirror. The temple is particularly special for those who seek the Lord to bless them with a child.

Sri Subramanya Temple – Religious Significance:-

The Pushya Suddha Shasti is one of the biggest festivals in this temple as this day is believed to be the birthday of Lord Subramanya. The other major festival in the temple is Narasimha Jayanthi. Skanda Shasti is also celebrated with a lot of fanfare as it is a special day for Lord Subramanya and Panghuni Uttiram, the wedding anniversary of the Lord, is also celebrated.

Vaikashi Vishakam is another special day to the presiding deity here. It is believed by the locals that the Lord is benevolent in his blessings to those who come seeking his blessings to find a compatible partner or to have a child.

About The Temple:-

Ghati Subramanya Temple has been built in the Dravidian style of temple architecture. Lord Subramanya is also known as Sanmukha and the elder son of Lord Shiva, and is the God of snakes. Scores of devotees visit the temple each day to get a glimpse of Lord Subramanya sitting on a peacock placed in the temple sanctum. The devotees and visitors can see the idol of Lord Subramanya with a seven-headed cobra made from a single stone. People offer their prayers and milk to a snake mound so as to appease the Gods. Snakes carved onto stones, also called Nagappa, can be seen under a huge Peepal tree and devotees pray for any favors they need at this spot.

Ghati Subramanya Temple Timings: -

Morning pooja at Ghati Subramanya Temple Starts at 7.30 am, if you reach at this time the crowd will be less. If you are interested to do Abisheakam
You should wait up to 10.30 am.


In May:-

Narasimha Jayanthi or Pushya Suddha Sushti:-

This is the most important festival of this temple in celebration of Lord Subramanya’s birthday. Narasimha Jayanthi is the day celebrating the appearance of Lord Narasimha. He is said to have appeared in order to protect his devotee Prahlad from his father Hiranyakashyapu. Special poojas are held when thousands of devotees join in the celebration with drums, trumpets, horns etc. drawing the chariot.

In September - October:-

Brahmarathotsava Festival:-

Devotees come in great numbers to visit the temple during the Brahmarathotsava festival. It is celebrated with great pomp and show, with Lord Subramanya riding the Brahmaratha. It is believed that Lord Bhrama is the originator of this festival; he worshipped Lord Balaji on the banks of the River Pushkarini in Tamil Nadu thanking him for looking after mankind. For nine days during the festival thousands make way for the procession where the chariot is pulled by canes. These canes are a great matter of possession and pride once the Car Festival comes to an end.

In December:-

Cattle Fair:-

The cattle fair held here in December is very famous and ryots from neighboring states of Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Kerala and Maharashtra as well as from many parts of Karnataka participate in it.


* Special puja's will be performed the event of Brahmarathotsava, i.e., on the day of Pushya shudda Shashti. Narasimha Jayanti is other major festival celebrated
Suneel Gudipati in front of Ghati Subramany templeSuneel Gudipati in front of Ghati Subramany temple
Suneel Gudipati in front of Ghati Subramany temple
* Skanda Shashti, Vaikashi Vishakam and Narasimha Jayantiare major festivals celebrated here.
* Marriage functions are also held here.
* Free lunch is provided daily for the devotees.

Nearby Temples:-

Shri Shanimahatma Temple :-

 Shani also known as Shanishwara is considered to be one of the nine planets in Hindu astrology. This temple is located few kilometers away from bangalore in Nelamangala, this temple is dedicated to Lord Shanishwara, one of the planets in Hindu astrology and Shaniswara is an embodiement of Saturn.

Shri Veerabhadra Temple :-

 Located in Ramdurg Taluq of Karnataka, Shri Veerabhadra Temple is positioned in the Belgaum district. The Godachi Jatre which is a fair is held in the reputation of Shri Veerabhadra, the chief deity of the main temple. Veerabhadra was shaped by Lord Shiva to destroy Daksha’s Yagna. The temple is sculpted in a combined style of Vijayanagara and Chalukya architecture. The entrance is constructed in the Chalukyan style and the Garbhagraha or the sanctum replicates the Vijayanagara style of temple building. It is a popular believe that artisans and merchants from nearby village gather in this Godachi Jatre to display and sell their wares.Days of Amavasya and Poornima are of special significance here and thousands of pilgrims and visitors mark their presence in the temple on these ospicious occassions.

How to Reach:-

By Road:-

Ghati Subrahmanya it is about 60 kms from Bengaluru and has to be reached via Doddaballapur. You can reach Doddaballapur from Bengaluru Kempegowda Bus Station (Bengaluru Majestic). Direct buses are available but they are not frequent. Local transportation is available from Doddaballapur to Ghati Subrahmanya.
If you intend to use your own vehicle then, take the road which leads you to Devanahalli (New International airport). From there take a left turn which takes you to Doddaballapur. From Doddaballapur, it is about 10 kms.

By Rail:-

Nearest Railway station: Makali Durga on the Bengaluru - Guntakal line.

By Air:-

Nearest Airport: Devanahalli, Bengaluru.