India Post Released Stamps on Kavi Muddana, Adikavi Nannaya and Draksharamam Bhimeswara Temple

mudannafdcMuddana (24 January 1870 – 15 February 1901)  was a Kannada poet, writer a Yakshagana poet. He was also known as Mahakavi (“Great kavi muddanna stampPoet”) or Mahakavi Muddana. His birthplace beingNandalike, he is sometimes also known as Nandalike Lakshminaaranappa. His best known works include Ratnavati Kalyaana(Yakshagana), Sri Rama Pattaabhisheka, Adbhuta Ramayana and Sri Ramashwamedha.He coined the word kannadam Kasthuriyanthe, where he heartily compares his beloved language kannada to kasthuri.Suffering poverty and poor health, Muddana died at the age of 31. His literary works have been used extensively in Kannada literary educational books.

Adikavi Nannaya is the earliest known Telugu   author, and the author of the first third of the Andhra Mahabharatam  , a Telugu retelling of theadikavinannanya stamp Mahabharat  . Nannaya is held in high regard as the person who revived the Telugu language  . The first treatise on Telugu grammar, the “Andhra Shabda Chintamani”, was written in  Sanskrit by Nannaya, who was considered first poet and translator of Telugu in the 11th century A.D. There was no grammatical work in Telugu prior to it. He is also known as Adi Kavi in recognition of his great literary work. He also holds the titles Shabda Sasanudu and Vaganu Sasanudu (Law giver of the language) after his Telugu grammar work Andhra Shabdha Chintamani.[

Bhimeswara Temple:It is colloquially known as Draksharama meaning ‘the Abode of Daksha Prajapathi’ – the father-in-law of Lord Shiva and the temple stampbeloved father of ‘Sati’,  the spiritual spouse of Lord Shiva. The history of the sacred temple is exhaustively dealt in the ‘Skanda Purana’ of Shri Vyasa.  To give a brief narration of the same,  the story goes thus.  Once Daksha Prajapathi decided to perform a yagna. In pursuance of the same, he had been to Kailash to invite Gods and Goddesses to sanctify his ‘yagna’ and accept his hospitality.  When he had been there, Lord Shiva was in his court immersed in his spiritual splendour. Daksha Prajapathi out of hisbrochure ego of being the father-in-law of Lord Shiva, mistook the Lord’s trance as indifference towards him. So, he came back without inviting the Lord and his daughter to his yagna. Sati in her womanish nature requested Shiva to permit her to attend, the yagna at her parental home, even though uninvited and have the pleasure of the performance and the association of her kith and kin.   But Shiva explained her the tragic implications that she might have to face at her parental house and let her go at her own wish. But, when she actually stepped into her parental home, none greeted her or even exchanged basic courtesies. Then Sathi felt humiliated amidst her own family and instantly decided to give up her body instead of facing her beloved husband with a fallen face. So, she gave up her body then and there and fell down dead. Shiva having come to know of the tragic end, sent his son ‘Veerabhadra’ to boot down the ego of Daksha. Shiva in his pangs of separation with Sati came down to her dead body , carried the corpse over his shoulders and danced in ‘Pralaya Thandava’.  At this juncture, the Lord Vishnu, the protecting force of Universe, sent his ‘Chakra’ to cut down the body of Sathi and redeem the grief of Lord Shiva.  The Chakra came and cut the body of Sati into eighteen pieces, that  fell in eighteen parts of this ‘Punyabhoomi’ of ours and came to be known as ‘Ashta Dasa Peethas’ and out of these eighteen,  Shri Manikyamba of Draksharama is the Twelfth.

This holy pilgrim centre is one of the rare few, where the God and Goddess are equally important. One is Varanasi in northern India with Viswanatha and Annapurna. Second is Shrisailam in south India with Shri Mallikharjuna and Bramaramba and third is Draksharama with Bhimanatha and Manikyamba.
There are many mythological anecdotes scattered in many of the sacred puranas about the ‘Swayambhu’ aspect of the Lord’s existence here.

One such is that Bhimanatha came down from Kailash and settled here at the request of Parvathi herself who happened to be the daughter of Dakhsa.The historical aspect of the temple goes from the thirteenth century onwards. According to local beliefs, the Shiva Linga at the temple was installed and established by the God Surya. Maha Shivaratri, Devi Navaratri, Karthika month, and Dhanurmasam are the main festivals celebrated at this temple. According to local legend, the temple was built by angels in one night. The construction of the perimeter wall could not be completed before sunrise and still stands incomplete. Several attempts have been made to construct the uncompleted part of the wall but all those efforts have failed with the constructed wall collapsing within a few months.

The temple construction was started in mid  800s  AD and completed somewhere around the 11th century. The construction of the temple is a marvel, consisting of a two-staired mandapa and two walls, one inside the other. The inner temple (Garbhaalaya)  is made of a very profound and cultural work of architecture. Its artistic work is still a library for students of architecture.  The ventilation of the inner temple is impressive. The temple is always full of light and air with very good ventilation. The temple’s two-staired  mandapa is impressive, and the pillars in the temple are skillfully and delicately carved. Many shasanas (official & historical registry chronicles) have been written on the stone walls of the temple from time to time, from legions of Chola & Sathavahanas to Vijayanagra & Reddy kingdoms that ruled over centuries. The scripts are in Dravidian, Tamil, Devanagri, Sanskrit and Telugu languages.

108 Shaivite temples were built after 800 AD around this temple in a radius of 40 kilometers.

The village is called Dakshina Kasi. The Shiva Linga in this temple is said to be one large crystal which is 2.6 meters high. Shiva is accompanied by Dakshayani, who is the first wife of Shiva (also the daughter of Daksha, and therefore named Dakshayani). Shrine for goddess Manikyamba, said to be one part of the 18 pieces of Sati Devi that fell here, is a Shakti Peetha.  It has one of the world’s longest shiva linga.

Legends say that the inner walls of the temple, were once filled with diamonds that provided the required light. When Aurangazeb invaded the temple to plunder the riches, all the diamonds turned to stones. Archakas show the walls adorned with diamond-shaped rocks as proof of this.

There is another small temple within the main temple. One legend says that as ages go by, the height of humans would reduce to such an extent that the current temple would become a huge gigantic structure, and hence another temple was built for the tiny people of the future.  Another legend says that the tiny temple is for the tiny creatures that inhabitate  the land. And some say that it is the prototype of the main temple.

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