Amongst the legions of devotees who were blessed by
the Lords in several ways, the Kananappa's life affords an
interesting study; for, more or less his name became
synonymous with this holy place by having a separate shrine
over the nearby hill, besides having his image in the sanctum
This illustrious bhakta was born as a cock in his purvajanma.
He was reared by a hunter, who too was a Siva bhakta of a rare
type. He used to offer very many kinds of edibles to the Lord as
naivedyam including bits of meat. Once the cock ate a piece,
more by accident than by intent. Deeming it as a great sacrilege,
he killed it at once. Since the cock swallowed the naivedyam a
bit, it was born to a hunter king, who was a yaksha in his past life
and was assured by the Lord that he would be redeemed after
the birth of a son. As promised by the Lord, he regained his
original form after the birth of son, whom he called Kanna. So
Kanna was an orphan, but grew up into a youth of exceptional
bravery. His personality too was captivating.
As he grew up, he developed great devotion to the Lord
Siva and was offering worship to the Vayulinga in a characteristic
way - offering bits of meat
every day only after testing by biting each one to find out its eat-worthiness.
Moreover, he was making abhishekam to the Lord with the Swarnamukhi water
brought in his mouth, and pouring it over the Linga.