Day 8/9 | Suryanarayana
Following the Master | East India Pilgrimage 2019
A special moment for today: Guruji did devotee initiations for four people.
Suryanarayana Temple in Arasavalli
In the afternoon, we visited the Suryanarayana temple dedicated to Surya - the god of the Sun. This temple is considered to be one of the oldest sun temples in India.
More about the Temple:
The holy Temple of Bhagavan Suryanarayana Swami is located at Arasavalli in Srikakulam. People believe that the sun god is essentially a god of health and prayers offered to Him would heal their sicknesses.
Balarama is supposed to be the very incarnation of Lord Vishnu. Balarama in Dwapara Yuga brought the river Nagavali along the furrow of his tiller and consecrated a temple on the shores of the river Nagavali. That is the temple of Uma and Rudra Koteswara (Shiva). All the gods, angels and their minions arrived on the shores of Nagavali and paid their obeisance to Lord Rudra. However, Indra, the Lord of Paradise was somehow late. By the time he arrived, it was late in the night, so he tried to force his entry.
At the time, Nandiswara, the great vahana of Rudra was keeping vigil at the gate. He did not allow Indra to go in, as it was time for Lord Rudra to rest with Mata Parvati. Indra was adamant in his demand to enter the temple. Infuriated by his perverse persistence, Nandiswara kicked him violently and sent him flying in the air towards the eastern side. Indra fell unconscious in a painful state. Then, it is said, he offered his prayer to the sun god for relief of his body pains and exhaustion. The sun god took pity on him and touched Lord Indra with his innumerable rays and Indra got back his strength and relief from pain. He was so grateful to the sun god, he begged him to allow him to stay there forever and spend his time. The sun god granted his wish and vanished.
Indra dug with his ‘Vajrayudha’ and formed a pond, which is known as Indrapushkarini. Even today devotees feel that they can attain the Grace of Lord Surya if they offer their prayers after taking a dip in the pushkarini. After taking a holy dip, they turn towards the temple, open their eyes and see Lord Surya’s murti before them in all its great splendour. His Darshan assures fulfilment of all desires in the world. This very temple was conceived and constructed by Vishwakarma, the divine architect. Pingala and Mathara are the doorkeepers of this Temple. Anura is the sun god’s chariot driver. Thirteen more angels lustily cheer Him. Sanaka, Sanandana and other sages offer him Vinjamara seva. Sage Narada and others sing the glory of the God. Devaguru Bruhaspati and others chant Vedas. Thus the sun god was consecrated here in Arasavalli by Lord Indra himself. Such is the glory and greatness of this temple.
Stay tuned for more posts as we ‘Follow the Master’ on a pilgrimage to the Divine!