Saturday, October 14, 2017

Kalahasteeswara Swamy Temple, Sri Kalahasthi – Religious Importance

Kalahasteeswara Swamy Temple, Sri Kalahasthi – Religious Importance
The temple is revered as one of the Pancha Bhoota Sthalam where the presiding deity is worshipped as Vayu Linga (air). This temple is considered "Kashi of the South". Saivite saints of the first century sang about this temple. This is the only temple in India which remains open during Solar and lunar eclipses, while, all other temples are closed. This temple is famous for Rahu-Kethu pooja. It is believed that performing this pooja will ward the people from astrological effects of Rahu and Kethu. As per Hindu legend, Kalahasteeswara was worshipped at this place by Brahma during all four Yugas
Arjuna, the Pandava prince during Mahabharata is believed to have worshipped the presiding deity. The legend of Kannappa Nayanar, who was a hunter and turned into an ardent devotee of Shiva accidentally, is associated with the temple. The temple also finds mention in the works of Nakkeerar and the Nalvars, namely, Appar, Sundarar, Sambandar and Manickavasagar in the canonical works of Thirumurai. As the temple is revered in Thevaram, it is classified as Paadal Petra Sthalam, one of the 275 temples that find mention in the Saiva canon.
This temple is celebrated for worshipping Lord Shiva, for him being embodiment of one of the five primary elements in the form of water, fire, earth, space and air. Sri Kalahasti temple is famous for the element air and the other four which are Chidambaram (Space), Kanchipuram (Earth), Tiruvanaikaval (Water) and Tiruvannamalai (Fire). These five Lingas are praised by Muthuswami Dikshitar in his celebrated Panchabhuta Krithis(songs).
This temple is among some of the very famous and honoured religious places of the South. Sri Kalahasti temple commands special respect particularly by the devotees of Lord Shiva. The fervent Purana and the well-off architecture make it a great experience for the devotees. Visiting this sacrosanct religious place, besides giving a heavenly experience also liberates the devotees from fault in their planetary orientations.