bhadrAchalam - ramadAs
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BHADRACHALAM

 

 

Bhadrachalam, in Andhra Pradesh, is the sacred pilgrim centre housing one of the most famous and splendorous temples dedicated to Lord Sri Rama. Bhadrachalam is the most sacred pilgrim centre, helping mankind attain meritorious worlds and ultimately salvation, the goal of human life.

Bhadrachalam is situated on the banks of the sacred and perennial river Godavari, about 70 km from Khammam. It is dedicated to Lord Sri Rama who was dharma personified. Who set lofty ideals for mankind through his impeccable character and who was a matchless warrior foremost in protecting dharma and peace in the world.

This is a place surcharged with the currents of bhakti of innumerable devotees of the lord.The puranas say that Meru, the golden lofty mountain, though endowed with all kinds of wealth and riches was depressed, as he was issueless. He decided to perform severe penance to attain his desire. He retired to the forest along with his wife and practiced austerity to please Lord Brahma. His prayers were answered in due time and the couple was blessed with a son. He was named Bhadra.

Bhadra was handed over to Brahmarshi Vasishta, to master the scriptures and acquire knowledge. Bhadra who was very disciplined and blessed with a sharp wit and tremendous assimilation power mastered all the sciences in a very short duration.

One fine day the crown jewel among devotees, the celestial sage Narada paid a visit to Meru and was introduced to Bhadra. Narada observed that Bhadra was no ordinary being and had a great mission to fulfil. He then described the sublime glory of Lord Sri Rama to Bhadra.

Narada informed that in his previous life Bhadra was a stone in the Dandaka forest near Panchavati where Lord Srihari in the incarnation of Sri Rama took up abode to fulfil the words of his father. Sri Rama frequently rested on the stone. Upon Steeta devi’s enquiry, Sri Rama said that as the stone had served him as a devotee, it would become his abode in its next birth. In Kaliyuga, Bhadra was reborn as a mountain in the Papikonda mountain range. The mountain and the surrounding township came to be known as Bhadrachalam.

Seshateertha, River Sabari, a pond near panchavati and the Lake padma mentioned in Ramayanam are in the vicinity of Bhadrachalam, which give succor to millions of devotees to-date.

In the past a great devotee of Lord Rama, Tammala Dammakka resided in Bhadrachalam. Once Lord Rama appeared in her dream and instructed her to raise a temple there. He assured her assistance from another devotee in good time. Dammakka along with the villagers searched the mountain summit and found the idols of Lord Sri Rama, Seeta Devi and Lakshmana in the bushes therein. She installed the idols with due respect. Soon the place began attracting large number of devotees.

In a hamlet called Nelakondapalli lived a pious couple Kancharla Linganna and Kamamma. They were blessed with a child who was named Gopanna. Such was the devotion of Gopanna for Lord Rama that he soon became famous as Ramadasa. In time Ramadasa was married and blessed with a son. Once the area experienced severe drought.

Ramadasa distributed all his wealth and belongings among the sufferers. The drought abated but Ramadas and his family was reduced to penury and put to severe hardship. Akkanna and Maadanna, ministers at the court of Taneesha, the nawab of Golkonda, were the maternal uncles of Ramadasa and were distressed at the plight of their nephew. They waited for a suitable opportunity to help him out.

With their recommendation Ramadasa was appointed the revenue official at Bhadrachalam. In order to raise a temple for Lord Rama and make ornaments for the idols at Bhadrachalam, Ramadasa used up the royal money. He was therefore imprisoned but his devotion ultimately forced the Lord himself to return the money to the nawab, who recognised the greatness of Ramadasa and liberated him immediately and sought his forgiveness. The story of Damakka and Ramadasa infact proves the glory and compassion of Lord Sri Rama.Every year in the month of Chaitra, Seeta Rama kalyana and Brahmotsava are observed with great devotion.

To reach Bhadrachalam:
Badrachalam
can be reached by train, road or even ferry. Devotees travelling by train should disembark at ‘Bhadrachalam road (Kothagudem) and then proceed to Bhadrachalam. Andhra Pradesh Road Transport Corporation runs many buses from all the major bus depots to Bhadrachalam.

The temple committee has established many choultries etc to cater to the needs of the countless devotees who throng the temple everyday.

athAto "brahma" zignAsA - Then thereafter be inquisitive to enquire about "the Absolute"