Srisailam Temple: A Pilgrimage Site for Hindus

Sri Bhramaramba Mallikarjuna Temple, more commonly known as Srisailam Temple, is a Hindu temple located in the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh. This temple is significant to the Hindu sects of both Shaivism and Shaktism, as it is referred to as one of the twelve Jyotirlingas of Shiva and as one of the eighteen Shakti Peethas, centres of the Hindu Goddess.

The Srisailam Temple is located on the top of the Nallamala hills, on the banks of the River Krishna. The town of Srisailam is one of the oldest Kshetras or regions in India, and the hill is also known by several other names, including Siridhan, Srigiri, Sriparvatha, and Srinagam. The temple is considered one of the most important Saivite pilgrimage sites in India.

Inside the temple, there are two separate temple complexes – one dedicated to Lord Mallikarjuna and the other to Goddess Bhramarambha. The Linga of the presiding deity, Lord Mallikarjuna Swamy, is one of the twelve Jyotirlingas of Lord Shiva, and the deity Goddess Bhramarambha Devi is one of the eighteen Mahashaktis or Shakthi Peethas in India.

The Srisailam Temple is surrounded by walls that are as high as 6 meters, and it is adorned with beautiful and intricate sculpture work. There are four main gateways in four main directions:

  • Tripuranthakam facing eastwards – It is located in the Prakasam district. The presiding deities are God Tripuranthakeswara Swamy and Goddess Tripurasundari.
  • Siddhavatam facing south – It is located in the Kadapa district on the banks of River Penna. God Jyotisideswara Swamy and Goddess Kamakshi are the presiding deities.
  • Alampur facing towards the west – It is located in the Mehboobnagar district on the banks of the River Tungabhadra. The famous Navabrahma Alayas, a group of nine temples, are situated here and were all built in the Chalukya period.
  • Umamaheswaram facing northwards – It is located in the Mehboobnagar district. God Umamaheswara Swamy and Goddess Umamaheswari Devi are the main deities worshipped here.

The main temple complex consists of separate temples for Mallikarjuna and Bhramaramba, several sub shrines, pillared halls, mandapas, and springs. It is fortified by a Prakaram wall of massive stones that contains four Dwaras (principal gates) at the four cardinals, surmounted by Gopuras.

The inner courtyard of the temple contains the Nandimandapa, Veerasiromandapa, the temple of Mallikarjuna, the temple of Bhramaramba, and several other shrines, such as the temple of Vriddha Mallikarjuna, Sahasra Lingeswara, Arthanariswara, Veerabhadra, and Uma Maheswara. There is also a group of five temples known as the Pandava Prathista temples and a row of nine temples called the Navabrahma temples.

In conclusion, the Srisailam Temple is a significant pilgrimage site for Hindus, with a rich history and cultural significance.

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