Updated May 25, 2023
Sri Rameswaram Temple, Tamil Nadu
Are you planning an exciting vacation this new year? If you are yet to choose one, look no further than Rameswaram Temple. The Pamban bridge, accompanied by a dreamy sea backdrop, leads you to this historic paradise at the tip of the Gulf of Mannar. Located in the heart of Rameshwaram city, the Rameswaram Temple is a paradise for every Hindu devotee. This famous pilgrimage site, with its alluring structural wonders and spiritual aura, is one of the renowned sacred spots in the world.
The only one of the 12 Jyotirlingas situated in the South, this 15-acre spiritual wonder is what awaits you this year.
About Rameswaram Temple
Also popularly known as Sri Ramanathaswamy Temple, it translates to “The Lord of Rama.” Besides being a magnificent Shiva temple, Rameswaram Temple is one of the Char Dhams of Lord Narayana. This majestic pilgrimage site is among the 274 Paadal Petra Sthalams of the Nayanars.
The 17.5m colossal marble statue of Nandi is the renowned landmark that graces this historical heaven.
1. Spiritual Significicance
The story dates back to the Treta Yug of the epic Ramayana. Lord Ram defeated the demon and ardent Shiva devotee Ravana to save his wife, goddess Sita. Since Ravana was Brahman-born, Lord Ram decided to appease Lord Shiva to absolve his sins with the severest Yagya.
Lord Rama asked his ardent follower Hanuman to bring a Shiva linga from Kailash. To ensure that Lord Ram took the auspicious time for the Yagya, Goddess Sita carved a Shiva linga from sand, Ramalingam, as Lord Hanuman was going late. Later, to not disappoint Lord Hanuman, Lord Rama declared that every devotee would first worship Vishwalingam and then Ramalingam. This tradition is still a religious practice in the Rameswaram temple.
2. Dravidian Styled Architecture
The Rameswaram temple is well-known for its finest Dravidian architecture from the Pandya Dynasty. Originally built as a brick and thatch structure in the 12th century, today, it is one of the most striking national pilgrimage centers in India. Its construction culminated in the 18th century with its third corridor, Chokkattan Mandapam, built by Sethupathy kings.
3. Longest Corridor of Asia
This 100-pillared corridor adorned with a unique chessboard structure is the longest in Asia and the world’s third-largest. Supported by 1212 carefully carved giant sandstone pillars, it is an otherwordly site. On the way to Chokkattan Mandapam, one can witness the majestic statues of Setupathy and his two ministers standing proudly at its western entrance.
4. Mighty Gopurams
The Rameshwaram temple’s gopurams, or high compound walls, envelop the site from all four sides. Its intricately carved towers and majestic 875-foot walls are a glorious sight. The beautifully crafted wall paintings of Lord Shiva as Nataraja, Tripurantaka, and Dakshinamurti, in the temple are a source of glory for every devotee of Lord Shiva. They are a treat for the eyes of every tourist.
5. Multi-Shrine Temple
This multi-hall temple has separate shrines for Lord Ramanthaswamy, goddess Shakti, goddess Vishalakshi, Viusdhnu, Subrahmanya, Utsava deities, Perumal, and Sayanigraha. The temple’s sanctum, or garbhagriha, has two lingams: Ramalingam and Vishwalingam. Every year, devotees flock to this holy place to seek the blessings of Lord Ramanatha.
One of the holiest and most beautiful shrines is the Parvathavardhini Amman. Dedicated to Lord Parvati, this shrine witnesses the goddess Parvati’s procession in her gold palanquin to Shukravar Mandap every Friday.
6. Houses 22 Tirthas
Rameshwaram temple is home to 22 holy natural springs, or tirthas, out of the 64 in Tamil Nadu. Any visitor to this divine location who does not wash away their sins in holy water is missing out.
During the months of auspicious festivals, Rameshwaram Temple is the best place on Earth to visit. The grand celebration of Maha Shivratri, the day that marks the wedding of Lord Shiva and Parvati, graces the year in February-March. In June-July, Ramalinga Pratistha Utsav graces the Rameswaram temple and commemorates Ramalingam’s anniversary.
Even today, lakhs of Shaivaites, Smarthas, and Vishwaites reach Rameshwaram temple yearly to offer prayers in this epitome of beauty. Welcome the day with the hymns of the divine, the Palliyarai Deepa Aradhana and Abhishekams. Fall in love with this historic Hindu paradise. Grace your year with holy dips in the tirthas of Rameswaram temple and satiating your soul with its stunning visuals.
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