- Venugopalaswamy Aalayam
The legendary name
of this renowned Hari-Hara kshetra is Marthandapura. Though there are Vaishnava
temples enshrining very many potent archamurthis, this place is primarily a
Saiva kshetra of unprecedented fame. The Ramalingeswaraswamy, popularly known as
Achante swaraswamy has established for himself an unenviable record of name as
Prathyaksha Daivam by lifting duhkhartis at mere call. Yet, the Venugopalaswamy
shrine boasts of a huge number of ardent devotees, who offer regular prayers and
are feeling emancipated by the abundant Karuna of the archamurti.
mulavirat of this Venugopalaswamy Aalaya is differently called as
Kotagopalaswamy, Madanagopalaswamy by devotees. It is said that this powerful
mulavigraha was installed by Narada at the behest of bhaktas. This beautiful
black granite icon is flanked by his consorts Rukmini and Satyabhama on his
sides. They are elegantly chiseled too. Another odd feature that feast the eyes
of the viewers is the existence of two lingas, here called Indraliriga and
Skandalinga. This apparent contradiction Sivalingas in Vaishnava temples only
confirms the belief that both Hara and Hari are one and the same and five in
amity for ever. The temple being ancient is built according to Vastu sastra and
contains all the essential parts. The periodical festival - Kalyanotsav falls in
Chaitra masa and for about a week it is celebrated with great devotional zeal.
lies 20 km off Palakollu in the West Godavari district of Andhra Pradesh,
commanding transport service from several towns nearby.