Friday, September 9, 2016

Namakkal Anjaneyar Temple – Legends

Namakkal Anjaneyar Temple – Legends
Hiranyakasipu was troubling the Devas as he got a boon from Brahma that no human can kill him, neither could he be killed in morning, noon or night nor in air, water or ground. His son Prahalada was an ardent devotee of Vishnu against the wishes of his father. He also tried to slay Prahalada at various times, just to be saved by the divine grace of Vishnu. During a heated argument with Prahalada, Hiranyakasipu was asking if Vishnu is present everywhere and went on to break a pillar with his weapon. Vishnu took the avatar of Narasimha and appeared from the pillar.
Narasimha was a human with lion face and slayed Hiranyakasipu on an evening time in a doorway, which was neither land nor air. Ages passed by, While Sri Anjaneya was bathing in River Kandaki in Nepal; He got a stone named Salagrama in the shape of Lord Vishnu. He was carrying it through the sky and passed through this place. He had to take a bath but could not as the Salagrama should not be placed on Earth. He then just found Sri Mahalakshmi performing penance and enquired the reason for her penance. 
Mother told him that she wanted to see the Lord in Narasimha form and hence her penance. Hanuman entrusted the saligrama to her and asked her to hold it until he returns. Lakshmi placed the image at this place, which grew into a mount before Hanuman could return. Narasimha appeared before both of them and set his abode at this place. The Narasimhaswamy temple, located right at the foot hills is also associated with this legend and Hanuman is believed to have worshipped him in standing posture form a distance axial to the temple. Anjaneya also stayed back in this place.
Many attempts have been made to build a shelter over Anjaneya/Hanuman. The legend says that Hanuman rejected a roof and appeared in the dreams of devotees and said, “My supreme master Lord Sri Narasimha lives inside a cave. There is no roof for him as the hill is the natural roof. So I too do not want a roof and would like to be under the open sky and offer my devotions to Lord Narasimha forever.” The Kings of the Pallava dynasty improved the Namakkal Anjaneyar Temple by building many mandapams (halls) and adding compound walls and stone sculptures. They failed to build a roof for Sri Hanuman.