Sri Ramanathaswamy Temple, Sri Rama-Sita Temple - Sri Ramanin Padhayil

Ramanathaswamy Temple is a Hindu temple dedicated to god Shiva located on Rameswaram island in the state of Tamil Nadu, India. It is one of the 275 Paadal Petra Sthalams, where the three of the most revered Nayanars (Saivite saints), Appar, Sundarar and Tirugnana Sambandar, have glorified the temple with their songs. The temple was expanded during the 12th century by Pandya Dynasty, and its principle shrines were renovated by Jeyaveera Cinkaiariyan and his successor Gunaveera Cinkaiariyan of the Jaffna kingdom. The temple has the longest corridor among all Hindu temples in India. The temple is located in Rameswaram, an island town in South India, considered a holy pilgrimage site for Shaivites, Vaishnavites and Smarthas. The temple is also one of the twelve Jyothirlinga temples, where Shiva is worshiped in the form of a Jyotirlingam.

Ramanathaswamy Temple
Ramanathaswamy Temple
Ramanathaswamy Temple
Ramanathaswamy Temple
Ramanathaswamy Temple
Among the temples in India - Badrinath in the North, Puri Jagannath in the East, Dwaraka in the West, Rameswaram in the South are the most famous ones. Rameswaram is an Island. It has been divided by narrow sea from the main land. The Rail bridge built up on the narrow sea connected the Pamban Railway station and Mandapam Railway station. The Road Bridge is also constructed from Pamban to Mandapam.

Rameswaram Temple is more famous than other Hindu temples in India because Sri Rama worshiped Lord Shiva in the form of shiva lingam here. So this Temple is Famous for Saivas and Vaishnavas. So both the branch of Hindus come here and mingle together to worship Ramanatha swamy through out the year.

The baktimarga is one of the telex of Hindu to attain Mukti in life. As for as the Hindus concern pilgrimage is an essential part of their life for worshiping God by undertaking Sthala Yatra.

Among the four important pilgrim center in our country Three situated in the north and other situated in the south is Rameswaram it is the only Siva sthala. Just like among the 12 Jothir lingam in India 11 in the north and only one in the South is in Rameshwaram. God Siva is workshipped in the form of a Jothirlingam meaning "Piller of light". So Rameshwaram is famous for Moorthy, Theertha and Sthala. This temple was under a shed until the 12th century and was maintained by a saint. In course of time this temple was renovated by many persons. The efforts made by our ancestors when there were no means of transport tell us about the priority.

Ramanathaswamy Temple
Ramanathaswamy Temple
Ramanathaswamy Temple
Ramanathaswamy Temple
Ramanathaswamy Temple
The structure of this temple and the famous corridors are well known for Indian architecture. The Third corridor has 1212 pillars and has the length 2250 feet.Their height is about 30 feet from the floor to the center of the roof. It is the longest corridor in the world. The stone carving and the temple structure is a mile stone of Indian architecture.

The main deity is called as holy place of Eswara worshiped by Rama, Ramalinga, Rameshwara, or Ramanatha. According to the Purana advised by the Rishi Agathiya, Rama along with Seetha and Lakshmana installed and worshiped the shivalingam to expel the"brahma hasthiya" sin as Ravana was a brahmin the grandson of Brahma himself. It is said Rama fixed a auspicious time for the installation of shivalingam for Pooja and asked Anjeneya to bring Lingam from mount kailas and Anjeneya could not return in time and Seetha herself made a Lingam of sand and the work ship was over. when Anjeneya return with Lingam from far off Mt.Kailas and Anjenaya was avenged and try to remove the Lingam of sand but could not able to remove. To pacify Anjeneya Rama installed the Lingam brought by Anjeneya on the side of Ramalinga (seetha's Lingam) and named Viswalingam and said here after all the pooja will first performed to Viswalingam brought by Anjeneya.

This temple situated near the sea on the eastern side of the island is renowned for its magnificent prakaras or corridors with massive sculptured pillars on either side. The longest corridor in the world is here and it is 197 metres long from East to West and is 133 metres wide from South-North. The temple has a Gopuram 38.4 metres tall. Different rulers built the temple as it stands today, at different periods from the 12th century A.D. Pooja is performed for an hour early morning daily in between 5.00Am to 6.00Am to the Spadikalingam that was given by the Shankaracharya to this temple.

Sri Ramanathaswamy temple faces east. The seashore, about 100 metres from the main entrance of the temple, is very calm and therefore ideal for bathing. The water at this place is considered sacred and known as Agni theertham. Pilgrims perform poojas in honour of their ancestors at this seashore.

Ramanathaswamy Temple
Ramanathaswamy Temple
There are 22 wells within the temple complex where a bath (water from the well is drawn up by means of a small bucket and poured over the devotees by temple staff. There is no need for the devotees to remove their clothes. Surprisingly, the water is quite warm. It is believed that the taste and temperature of each well is distinctly different from one another. Also, the water is supposed to possess curative powers. For the full ceremony, the devotees need to first take a bath at the Agni Theertham, the seashore closest to the temple and then proceed to the 22 wells inside the Temple. Each of the wells has a special significance ranging from getting rich to ridding oneself of a curse to purification of the heart to being pardoned of all past sins.

Sri Rama-Sita Temple:

Before 2000 years ago, a king from Nepal had come with lots of Saligramam and has built this temple. Beautiful temple. Let us hear the significance of this temple from the temple archak.

Rama-Sita Temple
Rama-Sita Temple
Rama-Sita Temple
Rama-Sita Temple
Rama-Sita Temple
Rama Theertam
In Ramanyanam, it is said that Hanuman who was reciting Rama Rama changed to chat SitaRama SitaRama at this place by accepting Rama-Sita as his Father and Mother. This is the place where he started the SitaRama Japam. Important thing which is told here is that Dasaratha came with Kula Guru Vashistha and his wives during the period of Adi Sethu Madhava. Dasaratha did the Puthra Kameshti Yagam and Chaturvedi Lankeshwaran Ravanan's father had helped in this Yagam. One part of that prasadham obtained during the yagam was given to Anjana devi through Jatayu Pakshi. Hanuman was born because of this. First this kshetram was known as "Lankapuri". Then it was known as "Sethu madhava puram" when Lankeshwaran did pooja with Brahma guru for shivan's shapa nivarthi, requesting him to accept Ganga and they did arpanam of Ganga to Shivan. Agasthiyar had come to Dakshina Bharatham, at that time it was known as "AgasthiyaPuram". This was a small temple at that time. Around 2000 years ago, a king from Nepal had come here when the mughal's invaded. He came with Saligramam from Kandagi and wished to have a temple of Ayodhyapathi in a grand manner. He did the prathistai of the moorthy with the rocks(kandagi Sagar) from the Gandaki river. We are doing kainkaryam for 14 generations and we are following the sevai as told by our elders. There is one Saligrama Murthy too at this place. Murthy is made out from the kandagi Sagar rocks. Here we have Sita, Ramar, Lakshmana, Sugreevan and Anjaneyar known as Sita Ramar Panchayutam.

Dhanushkodi, Gandamathana Parvatham, Rameshwaram - Sri Ramanin Padhayil

Dhanushkodi which is also known as Danushkodi, literally meant "end of the bow". This small town is ghost town in Tamil Nadu. Situated in the southern tip of Pamban Island, this tiny desolated town in South India Dhanushkodi gained special attraction to the visitors for its isolated beauty.

Dhanushkodi is situated to the South-East of Pamban Island or Rameshwaram Island. Danushkodi is about 29 kilometres west of Talaimannar in Sri Lanka. Dhanushkodi railway line is running from Pamban Railway Station, which was destroyed in the 1964 cyclone.

Dhanushkodi is mentioned in the Hindu scriptures and in the Indian epic, Ramayana. It said that Lord Rama built a bridge or causeway, called Ram Setu or "Lord Rama’s bridge". This is the communication cord between the mainland India and Sri Lanka (Ceylon), in order to bring his army across. After Lord Rama won the war against Ravana and crowned a new king of Lanka, Vibhishana, requested Lord Rama to destroy the bridge. Lord Rama broke the bridge with one end of his bow. Hence the name here is Dhanushkodi. It is also said that Lord Rama originally marked the spot for the bridge with one end of his famous bow. The series of rocks and islets currently found in a line between India and Sri Lanka suggests there was indeed a former land connection between India and Sri Lanka.

Dhanushkodi
Dhanushkodi
Dhanushkodi
Dhanushkodi
Dhanushkodi
Dhanushkodi
The name Dhanushkodi is derived from the Sanskrit Dhanus, which means low and kodi in Tamil means tip (i.e.) the tip of the bow. Dhanushkodi is also called Sethu, which means a bridge or causeway.

It is the place where Sri Rama constructed the causeway to reach Lanka. A bath at Dhanushkodi is considered sacred because of Sagara Sangama (i.e.) where two oceans Mahodadhi (Bay of Bengal) and the Ratnakara (Indian Ocean) meet.

Valmiki in his great epic the Ramayana says that Rama when returning from Lanka showed this place to Sita from his pushpaka and said “Here is seen bhanda and worshipped by three worlds. This is extremely holy and destroys great sins.”

The pilgrims take bath here and offer prayers and perform rituals. A bath at the Sethu on the new moon day is considered very sacred.

Gandamathana Parvatham:

It is one of the locations slightly above ground level. So entire island is visible atop this temple. Need to climb around 30 steps - no alternate arrangement for those who cant climb. It is around 6 km from Rameswaram main temple and better to visit during day light. It is believed that Lord Rama and others saw the Srilanka shore from here and strategized on how to reach there. An imprint of Lord Rama's feet is worshiped here.

Gandamathana Parvatham
Gandamathana Parvatham
Gandamathana Parvatham
Gandamathana Parvatham
Gandamathana Parvatham
Gandamathana Parvatham
Gandamathana Parvatham
Gandamathana Parvatham
Gandamathana Parvatham
Gandamathana Parvatham
Also known as “Ramar Padam”, is the highest altitude of Rameshwaram. This temple contains the imprints of Ramar’s Feet. As per Ramayanam, this is point from where Sri Rama had a view of Srilanka.

Samudra Raja's Saranagathi, Pamban Bridge - Sri Ramanin Padhayil

The 32nd episode of Sri Ramanin Padhayil was unfolded with the below verse from the epic Ramayana.

Mithra bhavena sampraptham nathyajeyam kathanjana
Dhosho yathyapi thasya syath satham ethath aharhitham

Meaning: Even if some one seeks my refuge while pretending freindship to Me, I will protect that Saranagathan independent of whatever danger may come My way. I will cast aside his blemishes and protect him and keep My word. My dharmam and vow is to protect anyone, who performed Saranagathi to Me even once. I will guarantee that he will be free from every kind of danger.

These slokas were given by Sri Rama in the beach when Vibeeshana approached him in total surrender. Sri Rama presented these slokas to remove the fears of Surgreeva and others who saw Vibeeshana as the brother of Ravana.

For catching an elephant, people prepare deep pits and cover it over with green leaves and twigs, into which the animal falls, attracted by the greenery and unaware of what lies beneath it. The Lord too falls for even a mere show of bhakti. Some of them adopt the mere outward symbols of a devotee, with a mind filled with thoughts totally out of tune with the external affectations. The Lord is so kindhearted that He is pleased with even such insincere imitations, pretends not to detect the underlying hypocrisy and showers us with all that we seek.

Sri Rama laid on the shores of ocean at Thiruppullani; and wanted the King of oceans to appear and give way for the army of monkeys to cross to reach Lanka. But the Ocean King never appeared and so Sri Rama got angry and called Lakshmana to get His bow so that He would dry up the entire ocean.

Verse from Yuddha Kandam, Sarga 21:

caapam aanaya saumitre sharaamh ca aashii visha upamaan
samudram shoshayishyaami padbhyaam yaantu plavan gamaah

Meaning: "The Ocean is not appearing himself before me on kind words. O, Lakshmana! Bring the bow and the serpentine arrows. I shall dry up this ocean, so that our monkeys can cross it by feet."

Samudra Raja, the King of oceans, hurriedly came with his wife and apologized and suggested a way to cross the ocean. Swami Desika says that Samudra Raja need not have been afraid. He says that Sri Rama could never dry up ocean, as in it were the waters of Sarayu, with which Sri Rama's paduka were washed and being so sacred, nothing could dry them! Such is the greatness of Paduka more than of Sri Rama.

Verse By Swami Koorathaazhwan from Athimaanusha Sthavam:

Tvam dakshiNasya nivasan udadhEstaTEpi
dooraantarOthara payOdhi mahaantarEpE /
daityaan nijaika sara paaraNayan, kim Etaam
lankaam sthitO atra kurushE na kila sma bhasma?

Meaning: Stationed on the shores of the vast seas in the far south, how come you were able to direct a single arrow at the Northernmost seas to feed it with the lives of some demons living there and yet you could not reduce to cinders the city of Lanka that was so near at hand?

When the Ocean king did not heed his prayers to help even after Sri Rama did "pratisayanam", Sri Rama got so mad at the Ocean King that he invoked fire weapon "agni astra" swearing to dry up the waters of the ocean. At that moment, the Ocean King came along with his wives and pleaded to be excused and surrendered to Sri Rama. While Sri Rama was prepared to excuse, he told him that once drawn, his arrow cannot go in vain without hitting a target and asked him where to direct his arrow.

The Ocean king seized on the opportunity and replied that there were quite a few of his enemies who were encroaching his domain in a place called "drumagulyam" in the northernmost corner of Bhaaratavarsha and they were tormenting him along with demons known as "dasyus" and "aabheeras". Sri Rama agreed and directed his arrow towards them and decimated them. Due to the extreme heat of the agni astram, that portion of sea got dried up and became a desert called "marukaantaaram". Sargam 22 of Yuddha Kandam describes this incident and even mentions how a spring called "Vrina Koopam" appeared where from water spouted from the parched ground.

Here, Kuresar says: "Oh Lord without birth! You engaged in Prathisayanam at Thiruppullani and waited for permission from Samudra Rajan to build a dam over him to reach the island of Lanka to engage Ravanan in battle and destroy him. Samudra Rajan ignored You thinking that You are just a human being. You got enraged at the insult of the King of oceans and got ready to send Your fiery arrow to dry up the waters of the oceans. Samudra Raajan was now afraid for his life and appeared with his wives before You and performed Saranagathy and begged to be spared. You informed the king of Oceans that Your arrow was set and can not be withdrawn; You asked him to suggest another target. Samudra Rajan begged You to send Your unfailing arrow at the inhabitants of a remote island in the north, who were abusing him. You obliged and Your arrow destroyed them from an immense distance. If that (Your power) is so profound and far reaching, how can adiyen understand your inaction in not destroying Ravana and his army, which were not far away from your position in Thiruppullani. Sethu Bhandam and the invasion of Lanka look in this context appear like window dressing. You could have reduced to ashes Ravanadhis from the banks of Sethu itself but you chose not to. Why is that?

Pamban Bridge:

The Pamban Bridge is a cantilever bridge on the Palk Strait which connects the town of Rameswaram on Pamban Island to mainland India. The bridge refers to both the road bridge and the cantilever railway bridge, though primarily it means the latter. Opened in 1914, it was India's first sea bridge, and was the longest sea bridge in India till 2010. The rail bridge is for the most part, a conventional bridge resting on concrete piers, but has a double leaf bascule section midway, which can be raised to let ships and barges pass through. On 24 February 2014, the Pamban Bridge marked its 100th anniversary.

Pamban Bridge
Pamban Bridge
Pamban Bridge
Pamban Bridge
Pamban Bridge
Pamban Bridge
Pamban Bridge
Pamban Bridge
Pamban Bridge
Pamban Bridge
Pamban Bridge
The railway bridge is 6,776 ft (2,065 m) long and was opened for traffic in 1914. The railroad bridge is a still-functioning double-leaf bascule bridge section that can be raised to let ships pass under the bridge. The bridge was subsequently restored to working conditions under E. Sreedharan in just 46 days.

The railway bridge historically carried metre-gauge trains on it, but Indian Railways upgraded the bridge to carry broad-gauge trains in a project that finished Aug. 12, 2007. Until recently, the two leaves of the bridge were opened manually using levers by workers. About 10 ships — cargo carriers, coast guard ships, fishing vessels and oil tankers — pass through the bridge every month. From the elevated two-lane road bridge, adjoining islands and the parallel rail bridge below can be viewed.

After completion of bridge metre-gauge lines were laid by them from Mandapam up to Pamban Station, from here the railway lines bifurcated into two directions one towards Rameshwaram about 6.25 miles (10.06 km) up and another branch line of 15 miles (24 km) terminating at Dhanushkodi. The section was opened to traffic in 1914.

The noted boat mail ran on this track between 1915 and 1964 from Madras-Egmore up to Dhanushkodi, from where the passengers were ferried to Talaimannar in Ceylon. The metre-gauge branch line from Pamban Junction to Dhanushkodi was abandoned after it was destroyed in a cyclone in 1964.