Srikalahasti Temple is located in Srikalahasti town in Andhra Pradesh state. It is one of the most famous Shiva temples in South India, and is said to be the site where Kannappa was ready to offer both his eyes to cover blood flowing from the Siva linga before the Lord Siva stopped him and granted him mukti.
Srikalahasti temple, situated 36 km away from Tirupati is famous for its Vayu linga, one of the Panchabhoota Sthalams, representing wind. The temple is also regarded as Rahu-Ketu kshetra and Dakshina Kasi. The inner temple was constructed around 5th century and the outer temple was constructed in the 12th century by the Chola kings and the Vijayanagara kings. Lord Shiva in his aspect as Vayu is worshiped as Kalahasteeswara.
History of Srikalahasti Temple
Sri Kalahasti is named after the staunch devotees of Lord Shiva. They were the Spider (Sri), the Serpent (Kala) and the Elephant (Hasti). Appeased with their unflinching devotion, Lord Shiva gave them a boon that their names be merged with the Vayulinga and called as Sri Kalahasteeswara. Parvati gained Shiva-Gnanam and came to be known as Gnana Prasunamba or Gnana. Cursed to became a ghost Ghanakala prayed at Srikalahasti for 15 years and after chanting Bhairava Mantra many times Lord Shiva restored her original form. Mayura, Chandra and Devendra were also freed from their curses after taking bath in the river Swarnamukhi and prayed at Srikalahasti.
Mahasivaratri is an important festival when lakhs of people offer prayers to seek the blessings of the Lord to attain Mukti. To Bhakta Markandeya, Lord Shiva appeared in Sri Kalahasti and preached that a Guru alone could make esoteric teachings and, therefore he is Brahma, Vishnu and Maheswara. Cursed to became a ghost Ghanakala prayed at Srikalahasti for 15 years and after chanting Bhairava Mantra many times Lord Shiva restored her original form Srikalahasti temple is a holy place near Tirupati in the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh.
It is located on the banks of the river Swarnamukhi, a tributary of the river Pennar. Site where Kannappa, one of the 63 Saivite Nayanars, was ready to offer both his eyes to cover blood flowing from the Siva linga before the Lord Siva stopped him and granted mukti.
This temple was constructed in the 12th century by the Chola king, Rajarajendra. Vayu incarnated as Lord Shiva and is worshipped as Kalahasteeswara. This temple`s main idol is the vayu (air) linga.
The temple is also associated with Rahu and Kethu (of the nine grahams or celestial bodies in the Indian astrological scheme). The river Suvarnamukhi takes the northerly course at Sri Kalahasthi almost washing the west wall of the famous Sri Kalahasthi temple in the Chittor district of AP.