Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Talakad - A Land Buried in Sand

Talakad or Talakadu is a desert-like town on the left bank of the Kaveri river 45 km (28 miles) from Mysore and 133 km (82 miles) from Bangalore in Karnataka, India. It once had over 30 temples, most of which now lay buried in sand

Among the temples of Talakad, the Pathaleshwara, Maruleshwara, Arkeshwara, Vaidyanatheshwara and Mallikarjuna temples, the five Lingams believed to represent the five faces of Shiva, form the Pancha pathi and have become famous. In honor of these five Shiva temples, a fair is held once every 12 years called Panchalinga Darshana, last held in 2009.

Talakad is famous by the curse of Talakad - by Alamelamma of the Wodeyar dynasty of Mysore - "Talakadu Maralagi, Malangi Maduvagi, Mysooru Arasarige Makkalagadirali"- the female Alamelamma cursed this way. (translation- "May Talakadu be filled with Sand, Malangi be a Whirlpool and Mysore Kings shall not have offsprings")

Things to See

  1. Vaidyanatheshwara Temple 
  2. Maruleshwara Temple 
  3. Pathaleshwara Temple 
  4. Arkeshwara Temple 
  5. Mallikarjuna Temple
  6. Coracle Boat ride in Kaveri river

Vaidyanatheshwara Temple in talakad

Vaidyanatheshwara Temple, Talakad

Five headed snake and stone chain made of single rock in talakad temple

Five headed snake and stone chain, Vaidyanatheshwara Temple, Talakad

Origin of the name Talakad:

In Skanda purana, the origin of the capital town Talakad is related to two Kirata brothers Tala and Kadu. Somadutta a sage of Kashi, who prayed to Lord Shiva for salvation was directed to go to Siddaranya Kshetra (other name for Talkad). On his way, the wild elephants killed him and his disciples. As they were on elephants during their last moment, they reincarnated as elephants in the next birth. These elephants inhabited the Siddaranya kshetra and flung the lotus petals every day from the nearby pond (towards the Shalmali tree) on the Linga (Lord Siva). The brothers Tala and Kad who were curious at this sight, struck an axe on the Shalmali tree which started bleeding with the blood. Shocked by seeing the blood Tala and Kad prayed Lord Siva who directed the brothers to dress the tree through Ashariravani(voice without body) and the blood disappeared after they did so. And the place was named Tala-kadu, which was translated into Sanskrit as Dala-vana. Two stone images declared to represent the brothers are pointed out in front of the temple of Veerabadra swamy

Vaidyanatheshwara Temple in talakad

Vaidyanatheshwara Temple, Talakad

Kirtinarayana Temple:

According to local legend, Ramanujacharya during his sojourn in Karnataka (also called Melnadu), established five Vishnutemples of Lord Narayana known as Pancha Narayana Kshetrams. Talakad is one of the Pancha Narayana Kshetrams where the Keerthi Narayana temple was established and the presiding Deity in this temple is Keerthi Narayana.

Kirtinarayana temple in talakad is one of the pancha narayana temples

Kirtinarayana temple, Talakad

Mahadwara of Kirtinarayana temple in talakad

Mahadwara of Kirtinarayana temple, Talakad

Pathaleshwara Temple:

The Panchalinga Darshana is held on a new moon day in the month of Karthika when two stars conjoin, the stars of Khuha Yoga and Vishaka. On this day, tradition has it that pilgrims should first bathe in the Gokarna theertham, worship Gokarneswara and Chandikadevi, and then worship Vaidyeshwara, and then bathe in the northern eastern southern and western stretches of the Kaveri and then worship Arkeshwara, Pataleshwara, Maraleshwara and Mallikarjuna, returning to Vaidyeshwara after each worship, finally worship Kirtinarayana and conclude the pilgrimage in one day

Pathaleshwara Temple in talakad

Pathaleshwara Temple, Talakad

Curse of Talakad

             Talkādu Maralaāgi
             Mālingi maduvaāgi
             Mysuru dhorege makkalagade hōgali

In 1610 Tirumala-Raja, sometimes called Sri Ranga Raya, the representative of the Vijayanagar family at Seringapatam (Srirangapatna),being afflicted with an incurable disease, came to Talkad for the purpose of offering sacrifices in the temple of Vaidyesvara. His second wife Alamelamma was left in charge of the Government of Srirangapatanam. But she, hearing that her husband was on the point of death, soon after left for Talkad with the object of seeing him before he died, handing over Srirangapatanam and its dependencies to Raja Wodeyar of Mysore, whose dynasty ever since retained them. It appears that Raja Wodeyar had been desirous of possessing the jewels which was the property of the Rani, and being unable to obtain them, and eager to seize at any pretext, he levied an army and proceeded against the Rani. Rani Alamelamma thereupon went to the banks of the Cauvery, and throwing in the jewel, drowned herself opposite Malangi, at the same time uttering a three-fold curse,-"Let Talakad become sand; let Malangi become a whirlpool; let the Mysore Rajas fail to beget heirs." The latter part continues to affect the royal family.

Sand at Talakad famous for the curse of alamelamma

Sand at Talakad

we can do a coracle ride in the kaveri river. the sand here looks like beech sand

Kaveri river, Talakad

Best Time To Visit Talakad

The best time to visit the Talakad Temple is any time throughout the year.

How to Reach Talakad

Talakad is at a distance of 45 km from Mysore and 133 km from Bangalore.

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