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Markandeshwara Temple in Raichur

Markandeshwara Temple in Raichur

The Markandeshwara Temple in Raichur is said to be one of the famous temples in the district. It is said that Krishnadevaraya along with his family of the Vijayanagar Empire used to worship at the six different temples present in this town. History claims that he would never miss out on an opportunity to worship in these temples as he considered it to be one of the most holy and sacred places. Sorting fort and being a devoted individual Krishnadevaraya labelled the marked the temple as one of his very dear places.

Markandeshwara Temple was named after Maharishi Markandeya, one of the most famous devotees of Lord Shiva. Based on his unending and whole hearted devotion to Shiva, the temple in turn was named after him and his dedication. The Markandeshwara temple is said to be beautifully carved and contains polished pillars despite being a very old monument built centuries back.

Location of Markandeshwara Temple

The Markandeshwara Temple is placed in one of the towns within the Kurukshetra district. Present in a town named Shahbad Markanda, which lies on the bank of Markanda river, a tributary of Ghaddar river. Devotees and spiritual followers consider it to be one of their “must go” destinations, where they can perform pujas and sacrifices to gain favour and good luck.

As per the local believes, the river is part of the ancient Saraswati river basin. The name Markanda was given to the river on the bases of several ancient ashrams of the Rishi Markandeya, including the Maharishi Markandeya. This is due to the fact that each of the ashrams can be seen on the bank of the river.

The Story of Maharishi Markandeya

Being one of the rather bright child of his family, it is said that Maharishi was one among the few of sacrificial children who was destined to die at the age of 16 (which was considered a suitable age for sacrifices). On the day of the sacrifice, Maharishi continued to worship Lord Shiva through Shivalingam, to a point where the God of death – Yama was just unable to rid him of his life. Hence it is said that Maharishi’s continuous devotion kept Yama in a puzzle until he finally decided to end the child’s life. But in a fit of confusion, Yama mistaken slathered the child but his noose accidentally landed on the temple. An aggregated Shiva was upset with the Yama and waged into battle with him, after defeating Yama in battle, Shiva revived Maharishi and declared that the young boy would live forever.

Hence the temple “Markandeshwara” was named after the young boy and his dedicated devotion to Lord Shiva, which gave him immortality. The story is one of the most scared ones told in the district of Raichur and carries a certain spiritual connection for people living there. The temples spiritual attributes are covered through this story mainly, bringing in devotees, spiritual leaders, and tourists to this location.

Spiritual Beliefs of the Temple

The place and are that is occupied by the temple, is said to be the exact spot where Markandeya prayed, and devoted his time to seeking favour from Lord Shiva. It is said that the temples was built at the exact spot where the young boy prayed to Lord Shiva to be spared and it is where his destiny took a whole new turn.

The temple is also considered to be the spot where the huge fight took place between Yama and Shiva, and it is the place where Yama was defeated by Shiva. But most importantly, the temple is known for being the grounds on which immortality was passed on from Lord Shiva to the young 16 year old boy Markandeya. The place of a lot of events, carrying a lot history and above all being sacred place of Lord Shiva’s followers.

Explore more about Raichur: A Travel to the Past

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