Ramanathaswamy Temple

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Ramanathaswamy Temple is a Hindu temple committed to god Shiva situated 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 worshipped Nayanars (Saivite saints), Appar, Sundarar and Tirugnana Sambandar, have glorified the temple with their melodies. The temple was extended amid the twelfth century by Pandya Dynasty, and its main shrines were redesigned 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 found in Rameswaram, an island town in South India, considered a sacred pilgrimage site for Shaivites, Vaishnavites and Smarthas. The temple is likewise one of the twelve Jyothirlinga temples, where Shiva is adored as a Jyotirlingam.

As described in the Ramayana, Rama, the seventh incarnation of god Vishnu, is accepted to have appealed to Shiva here to pardon sin of murdering a brahmana, committed amid his war against the evil king Ravana in Sri Lanka. Rama needed to have the biggest lingam to worship Shiva. He directed Hanuman, the monkey lieutenant in his force, to bring the lingam from Himalayas. Since it took more time to bring the lingam, Sita, the wife of Rama, assembled a little lingam out of the sand accessible in the ocean shore, which is accepted to be the lingam in the sanctum.

The Temple

The main divinity of the temple is Ramanathaswamy (Shiva) as lingam. There are two lingams inside the sanctum – one constructed by Goddess Sita, from sand, living as the primary god, Ramalingam and the one brought by Lord Hanuman from Kailash called Vishwalingam. Rama taught that Vishwalingam should be adored first since it was brought by Lord Hanuman – the convention proceed with even today.

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