Thursday, July 3, 2008


Rameshvaram which is considered to be one of the sacred Dhamas, is also one out of of the twelve sacred Jyotir Lingam locations in India . All these 12 locations spread across the Indian sub-continent are the places where it is said that Lord Shiva came to manifest himself in the form of a towering column of fire. In the ancient times , during the era of Lord Rama , the Jyotir Lingam had been worshipped by him to make up for the sin committed by him of killing Ravana. Hanumanji had been sent to bring the Linga from Kailasa so that Lord Rama could worship it , but since it was getting late, Lord Rama went on to worship the Lingam that was made out of sand by Sita Mata.

In fact, this Lingam which had been worshipped by Lord Rama thousands of years ago, is now known as Ramanathar Lingam, and on Hanumanji returning and finding out that his Lord Rama had not used the Lingam that he had brought, he was quite disappointed.. But when Lord Rama came to know of this , he immediately pacified Hanumanji and gave the name of Lingam Kasi Viswanathar to the lingam brought by Hanumanji. And to this day, even thousands of years later, devotees are called upon to first do worship of Kasi Viswanathar before worshipping Ramanathar.

Yet another interesting aspect of this temple is that it is located on the very extreme south eastern point of the Indian peninsula, and it is at this place that the Sethu bridge had been constructed at that point of time so to as to link this land to Sri Lanka so as to enable all the Varnarams to reach over to the other side at Lanka,when they had gone to rescue Sita Mata from the clutches of Ravana.

If you observe the temple, you will also find that the shape of this island temple resembles the Panchajanya (Vishnu's conch) and like the Tamil letter 'OM'.

Interesting part about this temple complex is that it has a total of 51 teerthams, of which 22 are located within the temple itself, and these large number of teerthams has made Rameshwaram very famous. You may only consider your pilgrimage to be complete only once you have taken a bath in the Agni teertham, where the waters are also considered to have medicinal qualities.

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