About Chilkur Balaji Temple
The story of Chilkur Balaji Temple narrates that a renowned devotee of Lord Venkateshwara used to visit Tirupati every year for his pilgrimage. However, due to his health, he could not undertake the journey for one year and felt disappointed. In his dreams that evening, Lord Venkateshwara appeared and conveyed to him that He was nearby and there was no need for the devotee to travel to Tirupati to receive His darshan.
The following morning, the devotee travels to the location he saw in his dream and begins digging a sizable hole. The devotee becomes alarmed as an ant mound starts to ooze blood suddenly. An unheard voice instructed him to pour cow’s milk into the anthill. Following this advice, the devotee receives an idol of Lord Balaji and Sreedevi, and Bhudevi as a surprise. Subsequently, this Lord Venkateshwara idol in Chilkur, a village now home to one of Hyderabad’s oldest temples. People firmly believe that Chilkur Balaji is a different manifestation of Tirupathi’s Lord Venkateshwara.
History Behind the Temple
It is one of Hyderabad’s holiest places, constructed by Bhakta Ramdas’ uncles, Madanna and Akkanna. Various myths and legends claim that a devotee who traveled to Tirupati built the Chilkur Balaji temple annually. Nevertheless, a significant sickness prevented him from doing so on one occasion. Lord Venkateswara, driven by his belief, appeared to him in a dream and gave him the order to locate his idol and the idols of Bhoodevi and Sridevi and build this wonderful temple.
Such events moved the devotee, who discovered a molehill where the Lord had pointed. He then began digging till his axe struck the statue of Lord Balaji. The ground turned red as blood suddenly began to pour from the wounds. Then, a spiritual voice told the devotee to flood the area with milk. As a result, Sridevi and Bhoodevi, together with the idols of Lord Balaji, also emerged from the ground. Then furnishing of these idols took place later. Thus, Sri Venkateswara has been present at Chilkur to bless the devotees who cannot travel to Tirupati for any reason. The temple is located in a forest area and draws hundreds of travelers from all over the world.
Best Time to Visit the Temple
The weather is scorching, with temperatures exceeding 40 degrees Celsius from March to June. While extremely erratic, rainfall from July through October adds humidity and wetness to the air. The best time to visit Andhra is between October and December because the weather is pleasant. Avoid going to Chilkur Balaji on the weekends since crowds of devotees come during the weekend to perform pradakshinas, and there is always a long line.
Main Rituals Performed in the Temple
Devotees perform the customary prayers while visiting the Chilkur Balaji Temple. A vow is then sworn, except for the 11 circumambulations of the inner shrine. The devotee is required to circle the sanctum sanctorum 108 times when his vow gets to be fulfilled. The 108 walks symbolize the followers’ thankfulness and faith, while the 11 laps around the inner shrine signify the creation’s hidden meaning. 11 circumambulations denote “one soul and one body,” 108 denotes “one denotes the existence of Almighty, zero denotes creation, and eight denotes the duration of time the human body has existed in the universe.” The primary reason why devotees visit this temple is for visa-related matters, which explains why it is also known as the Visa Balaji temple.
How Famous is the Temple?
According to various polls, 1 lakh devotees visit the Chilkur Balaji Temple each week. Although there is a good and steady flow of worshippers throughout the year, the temple sees an upsurge in the number of worshippers coming to its grounds during festivals like Anakota, Brahmotsavams, and Pooling. Numerous well-known individuals, including Jagadguru Sri Sankaracharya of the Sringeri Mutt, Jeer of the Sri Ahobila Mutt, and many other distinguished spiritual and religious figures, have also visited the shrine.
How to Reach the Temple?
Chilkur is 42 kilometers from the center of Hyderabad, and it takes around one and a half hours to go there. The Bangalore-Hyderabad highway may travel 83 kilometers to Chilkur from Bangalore. The airport in Hyderabad, Buses, Taxis, and Cabs are available from the nearby airport, which is 20 kilometers from Chilkur.
Chilkur is 0 kilometers from Railway Station Junction at Himayat Nagar. Some regions inside the states are near the station. The closest bus stop is Mehdipatnam, and APSRTC connects significant cities with buses. A bus arrives every 15 minutes; therefore, the bus service is regular. From here to Chilkur, there are connecting buses available. The Bangalore-Hyderabad highway may travel 83 kilometers to Chilkur from Bangalore.
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