Sri Raja Rajeshwara Temple
LocationSri Raja Rajeshwara Temple is a holy place located at Vemulawada, 36km away from district headquarters of Karimnagar. Vemulwada town is named after the famous poet Vemulawada Bheemakavi who lived there during 11thcentury and composed various poetic works in Chaatuvu style. The temple’s presiding deity is Sri Raja Rajeshwara Swamy, an incarnation of Lord Shiva. According to the beliefs of the locality, every God is called here as Rajana. To the left of the presiding deity is the idol of Sri Lakshmi SahithaSiddiVinayaka (LaksmiGanpathi) and to the right is the idol of Sri Raja Rajeshwari Devi. Apart from Lord Shiva, Lord Vishnu is also worshipped here. The complex of this temple is popular by the name of Sri Raja Rajeshwara Swami Temple Complex.
HistoryThis complex comprises of several small temples of various Gods and Goddesses like Goddess Mahalakshmi, Goddess Durga, Lord Ganapathi, Lord PadamanabhaSwamy and Lord Bhimeshwara. Interestingly, there is also a small Muslim Mosque inside the temple which was built as a tribute to a muslim devotee of Lord Shiva who lived for many years in the temple surroundings and breathed his last inside the temple. In real sense, this temple is meeting point of various religious faiths and opinions, irrespective of caste and creed. In the temple premises, there is a holy tank called Dharma Gundam which is used by devotees for taking a dip before proceeding to Darshan of Lord Shiva. There is a historical story related to the origin of how the temple and holy tank was built. Once upon a time a king named Sri Raja Narendra came to this place in search of hunting wild animals. But accidentally, he killed a Brahman boy who was drinking water from the pond. As a result, he got cursed with an incurable disease and to get rid of his wrong deeds, he went on pilgrimage to many holy places and returned back to this place. Then one day, he drank the holy water from Dharma Gundam and slept the night praying the Lord Sri Raja Rajeshwara Swamy. Then Lord Shiva came to his dreams that night and asked him to take Lord’s existence (lingam) from the Dharma Gundam and put it in the temple. Then he cleaned Lord’s lingam and built a temple on the hill to keep the lingam inside it. But while he was sleeping, the holy priests came and established the Lord’s idol inside the temple that night. After knowing this, King got disheartened as he missed the chance of establishing the Shivalingam. Then, the other night, Lord Shiva again comes back into his dreams and promises him that his name will be associated with this place forever. Thereafter, he also got cured from his incurable disease.
ConstructionThe temple is said to be built by Chalukya Kings during 750 AD-975 AD. Neither the exact time of construction of the temple is known nor is the name of the particular king available as constructor of temple. The temple is famous for its Mirror Gallery (AddalaMantap) and a large corridor which consists of various idols of Lord Shiva and Lord Vishnu. The internal decoration with such magnificent architectural carvings is rarely seen in the temples of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh. The Dharma Gundam has the holy water which is believed to have medicinal properties. There are three mandapas on the Dharma Gundam and statue of Lord Eshwara sitting in a meditation posture with five lingas resides in the middle surrounding the holy tank.
Some Interesting FactsThere are many myths and legends related to this temple. One legend said that, once upon a time God Indra after killing Vrithasura went to many holy places and still could not purify his life. Then as per the advice from Bruhaspathi, the guru of Gods, he visited this holy place. Then he visited the temple and took the holy dip in Dharma Gundam and took the blessings of Lord Sri Raja Rajeshwara and hence got purified. By this ancient story, history gives us the evidence of existence of Lord Sri Raja Rajeshwara in all yugas.
Best Time To VisitOctober to March and August
Thousands of Pilgrims from all over the country flock here especially during the auspicious occasion of Mahashivratri and Kalyanotsavam of the deity and also during the SravanaMasa in August.Special darshans and poojas are held to mark this festivity.
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