श्री रामलिङ्गेश्वरस्वामि देवालयम्

IMG_20160925_095912.jpgLocation: Map (17.633879, 78.470714). Sri Ramalingeshwara Temple, Medchal, Secunderabad.

Highlights:

  1. Ancient Swayambhu lingam, believed to be worshipped by Shri Raama.
  2. This is a cave temple on a hillock and is around 1200 years old.
  3. Another ancient cave temple of Ranga-Naayaka-Swaamy (map) is just beside this temple.

Timings: Pujari visits the temple once in a day, but there are some Saadhus who open the doors on request.

Details of the Temple: This temple is on a small hillock. Once needs to ascend around 50 steps to reach the Temple. The garbhalayam is a cave in which Lord appears as Swayambhu lingam. The main mandapam has a beautiful idol of Dakshinamurty. The surroundings are very scenic. On a hillock adjacent to this one, there is an ancient Ranganaayaka Swamy temple.

Logistic Tips (as of 2016): Being an ancient structure, water leaks into the temple during rains and portions are water-logged. Hence best time to visit is during day in summer. Also, the approach to the adjacent Ranganayaka temple (17.633116, 78.470946) is essentially walking on the hillock itself. So it is also difficult to approach it in rainy season. Here’s a video on this temple: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ckn5jKfXM1E.

रामालयम्

img_20160918_195306Location: Map (17.567341, 78.522580). Rama temple (KODANDARAMAALAYAM) in Devarayaamjal (YAMJAL) village, Beyond Kompally, Secunderabad.

Timings: Closed in afternoon (Pujari resides just beside temple.)

Highlights:

  1. Temple from Ramanujacharya era (11th century).
  2. Rare temple where Raama and Lakshmana, BOTH hold Shankham and Chakram.

Details of the Temple: This temple is constructed perfectly as per aagama-shastras and according to the style in Ramanujacharya era. Experts consider this structure to be built in the 11th century. This temple has 28 pillars, which is considered to be particular of Raamaalayams. Seeta-Raama-Lakshmana-Anjaneya give darshan in the Garbhalayam. Interesting here, both Raama and Lakshmana hold Shankha, Chakra, and Kodandam. The main mandapam has naaga-bandha yantram and Kurma yantram in the centre. Swamy’s pushkarini is on the right side. A few locals have seen a very rare sight related to this Pushkarini. In this Pushkarini there is a very long and old Naagam. Some locals saw it during it’s trips to the temple. However, because of the Naaga-bandham, there is no fear from venomous creatures. Here is a video documentary on this temple: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLYCE6I9KEBGsf8ir7CMD0Sni6Syqgz34z .

काशी विश्वेश्वर देवस्थानम्

KASHI VISHWESHWARA TEMPLE.

Location: Map (17.644975,78.065205). Kalpagur village (Kalbagur), Near Manjeera Dam, Sangareddi Mandal, Medak District.

Timings: All Day?

Highlights:

  1. Very ancient temple built in 11th century.
  2. Very rich sculptural architecture, resembling the 1000 pillar temple of Warangal.
  3. This is a Trikutaalayam, i.e., the Garbhalayam houses 3 dieties: Kashi Vishweshwara, Ananta Padmanabha Swamy and Venugopala Swamy.

Details of the Temple: This temple was built in 11th century by Ontimitta Obalayya, the Army commander of Kakatiya king, Prataparudra. The sculpture and architecture of this temple are really outstanding. One gets reminded of the 1000 pillar temple in Warangal on seeing this glorious temple. Just in front of the garbhalayam, there is a mandapam for a huge Nandi. This mandapam also has nicely carved pillars.

On the south side (left while facing the temple) resides Kashi Vishweshara in a great Linga form. In the front (West side) is Anatha Padmanabha swamy in Yoga-nidra on Sesha, performing in-interrupted Shiva-abhishekam. Various our dieties like Lakshmi, Brahma, Dikpalakas, Dashavatarams give darshan along with PadmanabhaSwamy. On the North side (right) Rukmini-Satyabhama-sahita-VenuGopala Swamy resides. He gives darshan with shankham and chakram.

When sunrays touch the murti of PadmanabhaSwamy, the entire temple glows with light! Ganga (Manjeera) flows beneath the Shiva Lingam into the nearby sacred Pushkarini of the Temple!! Here is a video of the temple: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hdpQ0adSzpY

बालाजी देवस्थानम्

IMG_20161015_090252.jpgLocation: Map (17.264695, 78.455589). Balaji temple in Mamidipalli village, Badangpetnagar Panchayati, Saroornagar district, Rangareddi.

Timings: Closes in afternoon.

Highlights:

  1. 500 year old temple.
  2. Nearby there is the original Svayambhu murti on a hill.

Details of the Temple: The original swayambhu murti of the Lord appears on top of a hill opposite the current temple structure (Location: 17.262156, 78.458378). Since ascending the hill top may be difficult for devotees, the Lord wished to appear below also (at the current temple location). The current temple structure was built around 400 years back. It is beautiful and well-maintained. The temple is popular among the surrounding villagers.

Logistic Tips (as of 2016): One needs to ascend around 200 steps to reach the Svayambhu temple on the hill.

चीकटि वेङ्कटेश्वरस्वामि मन्दिरम्

IMG_20161015_100356.jpgLocation: Map (17.090671, 78.432788). 40kms from Hyderabad, in Pulimamidi village, Kandukur mandal.

 

 

 

Timings: Open only on Saturdays 8am-11am (contact Pujari @ 9848238080)

Highlights:

  1. Very ancient temple from times unknown (atleast 500 years old as per historical evidences).
  2. Swayambhu murti on a rock inside a cave beneath the earth.
  3. Current temple structure built by Akkanna and Madanna.

Khetra Purāam:

Details of the Temple: This is an ancient cave temple located below the earth level. The narrow steps leading down into the cave are steep and are very difficult for aged people. However, there are only a few (5-6) such steps. Inside the cave, onto the left there is a rock on which Lord Venkateshwara Swayambhu murti appears. There are few steps one has to ascend to reach this rock. Since the murti is extremely ancient, only the Shankha, Chakra and Tiru-naamams are visible currently.

Additionally, the locals recently installed Venkateshwara murtis in the middle of the same cave. There are also newly installed murtis of Ganesh and Shiva in the premises. Lord Hanuman is the Kshetra Palaka and resides outside the cave in the same premises. The temple is located in the middle of fields and is in a scenic environment. Here is a video on the temple: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5wMAPO6qe7Y .

Logistic Tips (as of 2016): The cave is completely water-logged when it rains. Hence it is better to avoid visiting in rainy season (especially if travelling from far). Please note the odd temple timings mentioned above. It is recommended to call the Pujari to confirm his presence during the visit on a Saturday.

वीराञ्जनेय देवस्थानम्

IMG_20161015_115054.jpgLocation: Map (17.120613, 78.394742) 40kms from Hyderabad. In Gattupalli (Ghatpally) village, in Kandukur.

Timings: Closes in afternoon.

Highlights:

  1. Swayambhu murti of Lord Hanuman.
  2. Around 500 year old temple.

Khetra Purāam: The swayambhu murti of Veeraanjaneya was found by some locals around 500 years back. When they wanted to move the murti to Maheshwaram, a near by well-populated area, and consecrate it, they could not move the murti. Then Lord Hanuman appeared in the dream of the locals and said that He wished to stay in the place as the current temple.

Details of the Temple: The current temple structure is renovated and is well-maintained. The temple attracts huge number of devotees everyday and is quite popular in the surrounding villages. The Swayambhu murti of Veeraanjaneya is very large and is covered with Sindhur. There are new temples of Lord Rama, Shiva and Navagrahas inside the premises. The temple is under endowments department and hence sells archana/pooja and Prasadam (Tamarind rice, laddu) tickets. Here is a video on the temple: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=24ETpSU5oo0IMG_20161015_115054.jpg

चेन्नकेशव भ्रमराम्बामल्लिकार्जुन देवस्थानम्

IMG_20160918_101707.jpgLocation: Map (17.323697, 78.479184) in Hyderabad.

Timings: Closes in afternoon (Pujari resides on the same Keshava hill. contact no.: 9849796057)

Highlights:

1) 5000 year old ancient, and once glorious, temple.

  1. 2) Locality goes by Lord’s name as “Chenna-raayani-gutta”, meaning the hillock of Lord Chennakeshava. Now Chennaraayanigutta is being called as Chandrayangutta.
  2. 3) Temple houses both Vishnu and Shiva in Swayambhu-murti forms, which is quite unique and supports Advaita philosophy.

 

Khetra Purāam: Once a great Rushi performed severe Tapas in a cave on Keshavagiri. Pleased with his Tapas, Lord appeared and accepted to stay on Keshavagiri as a Swayambhu-murti to bless the devotees. This is the ChennaKeshava murti we now see in the main Temple. To the left of the murti, there is the cave passage where the Rushi performed his Tapas. Owing to the Tapas-shakti of the rushi, the waters in the Swami’s Pushkarini has medicinal value and poison cannot harm the living creatures on this Hillock.

Details of the Temple: The current Temple structure is quite old and built as per agama-shastras. It is built around the cave where the Swayambhu-murti appeared. The garbhaalayam also has another consecrated murti of Chennakeshava just in front of the Swayambhu murti. Both the murtis have Lord Chennakeshava with a mustache. Aandal Devi is His consort who is in the left-side mandir whose gates open only on Vaikuntha-Ekadashi. Lord Hanuman is the Kshetra-paalaka of the Temple. Hanuman here appears with four hands, which is quite unique. Swami’s pushkarini (pond) is located almost at the highest point of the Hillock, which the locals have experienced to have medicinal powers. Another interesting feature of this great Kshetram is that it also has a Swayambhu murti of Bhramaraamba-Mallikarjuna Swamy (not to be confused with the new Shiva temple built beside Chennakeshava Temple). It is quite unique that Mallikarjuna appears here in murti form rather than Lingam form. Also, there seems to be a secret cave passage between these two temples. It is also interesting that Lord Ganesha appears here on the branch of the Kshetra-Vruksham, located beside the main sanctum. In the olden days, this was a very glorious temple having huge area of land and directing multiple other temples. Infact, the Temple area was once so big that the four Gates and corresponding Temples (which themselves are quite old) are located kilometres away. Unfortunately, because of the agnostic nature of Hindus, the temple is now barely known even to the locals residing near Keshava-giri. Here are videos related to this temple: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLYCE6I9KEBGvd-1zd4BELkldtjpLaqfK5 .

Logistic Tips (as of 2016): Though the location of the Temple shared above is exact, there are atleast six different ways of reaching the top of Hillock (where Temple is situated). It is unfortunate that many locals are not aware of the greatness of the Temple and will hence not be themselves capable of giving you the best directions. The easiest route is a tar road that reaches the very front entrance of the Temple, starting at the bottom of the hillock in the same direction (front-side of the temple). However, the road is very narrow and can barely allow two cars side-by-side.

 

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