By G. Priyanka

EAST GODAVARI: Maha Shivaratri is an auspicious day venerating Lord Shiva. It is known to be the most celebrated festival in India. Most of the people plan to visit ‘Pancharamas’ or ‘Pancharama Kshetras’ on the auspicious day of Mahashivratri. Following are the five Hindu temples of Lord Shiva in five different locations of Andhra Pradesh. One Temple is in Guntur district, two in East Godavari districts, and other temples are in West Godavari districts.

According to Hindu Puranas all the five Shiva Lingams at these temples are believed to have been scattered parts of one single Shiva Lingam, and each of these temples was believed to be installed by five different deities Indra, Chandra and Surya, Vishnu and Kartikeya.

Reason For Visiting All Five Temples On The Same Day:

As all of the five temples were built from the scattered parts of one single Shiva Lingam there is a belief that visiting all the five temples on a single day in the holy month of Kartika Masam is very rewarding. Maha Shivaratri is celebrated in all these Pancharamas in a grand manner. Hindus from all over the country come to visit the famous Shiva temples and performs rituals to Lord Shiva, and they stay on fast on Shivaratri day.

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History Behind Pancharama Kshetras :

Kartikeya the son of Lord Shiva’s gets into a battle with a demon, Tarakasura. Kartikeya fails to defeat the demon, as he wears a pendant embedded with a Shiva Lingam. Lord Vishnu supports Kartikeya and advises him to destroy the Shiva Lingam worn by the demon to defeat him. Following which Kartikeya breaks the shivalingam into five parts, and all the five parts fell in different locations. Five Hindu deities then built five Shiva temples and started worshiping Lord Shiva all those temples are now being called as Pancharamas.

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Have a look at all the five Pancharamas:

  1. Amararama: In the Amarama temple the deity was installed by Lord Indra. This temple is in Guntur district, on the bank of Krishna river. The temple has very good road transport connectivity. In this temple Lord Shiva is worshiped along with Bala Chamundeswari, one of the avatar Goddess Parvati. Lord Indra had installed the Shiva Lingam at this temple.
  2. Draksharama: Draksharama temple is in the East Godavari district of Andhra Pradesh. The temple has a unique history as it is believed that Lord Rama,Lord Surya worshiped Lord Shiva at this temple. This temple is under the control of the Archaeological department. In this temple, Lord Shiva is worshiped along with Manikyamaba Devi, one of the avatar Goddess Parvati.
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3. Somarama: This temple is in Bhimavaram city in the West Godavari district of the Andhra Pradesh. Surprisingly, here the Shiva lingam changes its color according to the lunar month (black at the time of Amavasya, white at the time of Pournami). In this temple, Lord Shiva is worshiped along with Sri Rajarajeswari Ammavaru, one of the avatar Goddess Parvati. Lord Chandra had installed the Shiva Lingam at this temple.

4. Ksheerarama: This temple is in Palakollu, towards the West Godavari District of Andhra Pradesh. Lord Vishnu had installed lord Shiva deity here and worshiped him. Lord Shiva is worshiped along with Goddess Parvati. Upamanya Maharshi got boons and milk from Lord Shiva, hence the name Ksheera (milk) Ramalingeswara swami.

5. Kumararama: This temple is located at Samarlakota town in East Godavari district of AP.  Kumara Kartikeya had installed the shivalingam at this temple. In this temple Lord Shiva is worshiped along with Bala Tripurasundari Ammavaru, one of the avatars of Goddess Parvati.

Complete Information On Pancharama Kshetras
Complete Information On Pancharama Kshetras

Also Read : Maha Shivaratri: 7 Things Not To Offer Lord Shiva