Thursday, February 17, 2011

Matseyndra Nath in the Southern India

source internet

Origin of the name of Mangalore City 

The name ˜Mangalore is the anglicised version of ˜Mangaluru, the name for the city in the local Kannada language. The Malayalam language variant of the same is ˜Mangalapuram. One of the earliest references to this name is made by Pandya King Chettian, who called the city as ˜Managalapuram in 715 AD. Yet another historical reference is by the 11th century Arabian traveler Ibn Batuta, whose chronicles refer to Mangalore as ˜Manjarur. This variation in spelling is attributed to the pronunciation gap between and Arabic and the local language.
It is believed that the city derived its name from the temple of Goddess Mangaladevi. ˜Mangaluru literally means ˜the city of Mangala. According to legend Matsyendranatha, one of the important propounders of the Nath cult had arrived at Mangalore with the princess of Kerala, Premaladevi. He named her Mangaladevi. It is believed that they could not proceed further as Mangaladevi died after a brief period of illness and a temple was consecrated in her name at Bolar. Later the Mangaladevi was renovated by the Alupa king Kundavarma in 968 AD.

In the native Tulu language, the city is known as ˜Kudla meaning ˜junction as the city is situated at the confluence of the two rivers “ Netharavathi and Phalguni. The Konkani language variant of this ˜Kodial. The region covering Mangalore is known locally as ˜Tulunadu, on account of the predominance of Tulu language.

Yet another name for the city is ˜Mikala, which is the name used by the Muslims of the nearby towns of Manjeshwar and Kasargod to refer to Mangalore. ˜Mikala, in their language means ˜wood charcoal and this is attributed to the earlier practice of producing charcoal from wood on the banks of the river Nethravathi.

Mangalore City is having several places of religious/tourist importance, a few of which could be named as Mangala Devi Temple (city being named by this temple), Kadri Manjunatheswara Temple, Kudroli Gokarnatheshwara Temple, Venkataraman Temple at Carstreet, Ganapathi Temple at Hampankatta, Shreemanthi Bai Memorial Musium at Bejai., Pelikula Nisargdhama, Vamanjoor, Panambur and Surathkal Beach, Tagore Park at light house Hill, Kadri park, St. Aloysius Chapel, Rosario Church, , Milagreese Church, Jumma Masjid Bundar, Idgah Masjid at Lighthousehill, Sulthan Batheri, New Mangalore Port at Panamboor, etc. There is ample scope for tourist Development project.

source Wikipedia

The temple dates back to the ninth century when Kundavarma, the most famous king of Ahepa dynasty, was ruling Tulunadu. During this period there were two holy saints of the Nath cult, Machendranatha and Gorakanatha, who came from Nepal. They reached Mangalapura, crossing the river Nethravathi. The place where they crossed the river came to be known as Gorakdandi. They chose a place near the banks of the Netravathi which was once the centre of activities of sageKapila.

In Tulunadu, Kundavarma, the most famous king of Ahepa dynasty was ruling. At that time there came two holy saints of the natha cult named Machendranatha and Gorakanatha from Nepal. They reached Mangalapura, crossing the river Nethravathi. The place were they crossed the river came to be known as 'Gorakdandi'. They chose a place near the bank of Netravathi which was once the centre of activities of sage Kapila. He had his hermitage there and it was a great center of education.

Hearing about the arrival of the two saints, the king came to meet them. Introducing himself as the king of Tulunadu he paid his respects and offered them patronage. Pleased with the humility and virtues of the king, they informed him that his kingdom needed to be sanctified. They requested him to grant them land so that they could build a hermitage and make it a centre for their religious activities under his protection and patronage.

This ancient history surprised the king. He then came to know that his land was dedicated to mother Mangaladevi. It was from these saints he came to know that once upon a time there existed a temple in his land dedicated to mother Mangaladevi. From their own mother he heard the story of Vihasini and Andasura, Parashurama and the temple built by them. The two saints took the king to the sites where all these historical events had taken place. They asked the king to dig the place and relieve the linga and theDharapatra symbolising Mangaladevi and install them in a shrine along with Nagaraja for providing protection.

Kundavarma carried out the advice of the two sages. A grand shrine of Sri Mangaladevi was built on the hallowed place. The two sages themselves guided and supervised the execution of the work. The temple attained special significance as Mother Mangaladevi granted special favours, especially to maidens, who worshipped the goddess by observing Mangaladharavrata (Swayamvara Parvathi) and got their wish of a suitable husband fulfilled.

Even today the two temples Mangaladevi and Kadri have maintained their connection. The hermits of Kadri Yogirajmutt visit Mangaladevi temple on the first days of Kadri temple festival and offer prayer and silk clothes.

The Goddess Mangaladevi gives the city of Mangalore its name. She is the main deity of the Mangaladevi Temple at Bolar in Mangalore. The temple was built in memory of the princess of Malabar Mangale in the 10th century. The Goddess Mangale is worshipped as Shakti.

Kadri temple being one of the ancient historical temple dating back about 1068 A.D. is very interesting place. The scenic beauty of the Kadri hills, the presence of the pre-historic caves cut into the laterite mounds and the historical and religious importance of the Manjunatha temple lend particular enchantment to this centre. On the Kadri Hill is situated the biggest centre of the Natha Pantha (cult) in South India. The caves of Kadri hill have to be archeologically examined.

The Manjunatha temple, Kadri belongs to the Vijayanagara style of structure. From its present form, it may be inferred that during the 15th or 16th century A.D., it must have been given a solid structure.

Derivation of the name Kadri:

There is considerable surmise on the name Kadri. It is derived from Kadari, meaning plantain and that Kadri was known to have been overgrown with plantain trees. But this could only be a too commonplace meaning. According to the Buddhist enumerator Kadarika means a hillside pastures land.

The earliest reference to this place is in the epigraph dated A.D.968 engraved on the pedestal of the famous Lokeshwara image. In it is mentioned that King Kundavarma of the Alupa Dynasty installed the image in Kadarika Vihara. From this we can know that Kadarika is the earliest form of this place name. Vihara is the name given in Buddhlet settlement while Buddhism flourished here during 10th century A.D.


Earlier to 10th century A.D. Kadri was an important centre of Buddhism. Documents supporting the fact are available in and around Kadri. During 10th century A.D. Buddhism began to loose its grip and new belief viz. Natha Pantha (cult) rooted in Kadri. Natha Pantha is a modified religious practice, which is, came from Vajrayana religious practice of Mahayana branch of Buddhism. In course of time it shined with Shiva beliefs. Local people as Jogis called them. And their monastery is called as Jogimutt.

Buddhist monks who came from northern India made Kadri as their place of Vihara and settled here. In those days it was called as Kadarika Vihara. Subsequently, followers of Natha pantha were also came and settled here. The epigraph of 968 A.D. mentions Mangalore as "Mangalapura" and Kadri as "Kadarika Vihara". In stone epigraph belongs to 12-13th century A.D. available in temple's kitchen which is in Kannada and Malayalam script it is clearly mentioned that the then King with local landlords and other important people of the area contributed a land for construction of the temple. Since earlier portions of epigraph are damaged, the name of the King is unknown. As per the documents available the Alupa Queen Balli Mahadevi (1277-1288) called herself as a devotee of Lord Manjunatha.

The temple was built in 12th century according to Hindu Agama Shastra (architecture rule). In 14-15th century A.D. it was reconstructed with granite stone. The idol of Lord Manjunatha is made of Pancha Loha (mixed metal of five elements). The Jogis of Jogimutt are still residing on the Kadri Hill. As Lord Manjunatha is a form of Lord Shiva, they ardently worship him. The surroundings of the Jogimutt depict its ancient importance. There are caves around the Jogimutt, which are called as Pandava caves. But one can assume Jogis often used these caves for meditation and penance. There are small temples of Boothanatha, Matsyendranath, Gorakanatha and many other Natha protagonists surrounded by existing Jogimutt. Reserving its peacefulness and mystery the Jogimutt still arise feeling of holiness within a visitor. Further research and study on all aspect from archeological department may spotlight the hidden facts about the temple and surrounding monuments.


Kadri has its own story from Puranas (Hindu Mythology) regarding its sanctity and abode of Lord Manjunatha. This story is in Sanskrit and available in "Bharadwaja Samhita". In ancient days Kadarika was a part of Siddhashrama were many sages, saints were often practicing meditation and penance. There was no fear of sin or wrong deed. Once a discussion regarding Lord Manjunatha's sanctity and greatness were held between two great sages viz. sage Brigu and sage Kapila. Sage Bharadwaja heard this discussion and told the same to one of his follower viz. Sumanthu. Hence this called as Bharadwaja Samhita.
The story is as follows:

Lord Parashurama who is an incarnation of Lord Vishnu destroyed egoistic Kshatriya kings and donated the confiscated land to sage Kashyapa. Thinking of that taking a shelter in donated land is not virtue, Parashurama made rigorous penance and meditation of Lord Shiva on Sahyadri Mountain region seeking a new land for his shelter. Lord appeared before him and told that he will incarnate as Manjunatha for a good of mankind and suggested to meditate upon him at Kadalivana (today's Kadri). Parashurama gazed at Kadalivana, which was ten-yojana distance from Sahyadri Mountain and also was occupied by ocean.

He asked Ocean King to leave that Kadalivana for him. But Ocean King did not granted his wish. Becoming angry upon this act of Ocean King, Parashurama took his axe (weapon) and roared upon Ocean King. Frightened King left behind by giving land and Parashurama got his shelter. As per the order of Lord Shiva Parashurama visited the new land and found there a Kadalivana (plantain field) and one Rasakoopa (well). In that Rasakoopa Lord Shiva appeared before Parashurama and ordered to construct a temple there with a help of Vishwakarma (a divine sculptor). Accordingly Vishwakarma constructed a temple and town. In course of time various scholars, sages, saints, philosophers came here and took shelter.

Later Goddess Parvathi, wife of Lord Shiva decided to settle here. As per the Order of Lord Shiva, Saptakoti Mantras (seven crore holy enchants) settled here as Sapta Teerthas (seven ponds).


After incarnating as Manjunatha, Lord Shiva decided to incarnate as Navanathas in order to fulfill the wishes of his devotees. He himself incarnated as first Adinath of Natha cult. From his Yogic power he obtained Matsyendranath as his first son. Lord Shiva also playfully incarnated as Kandalanath, Chowranginatha, Gorakshanatha, Ravalanatha, Ananganatha, Jalandharanatha, Bhujaganatha and Arunachalanatha. Later Lord Shiva erected new Pantha (cult) called Natha Pantha (cult).

This is a concise form of Mythological story in Baradhwaja Samhita. But while comparing history with mythology we find that Natha Pantha came into existence after Buddhism.

Temple Circumstances:

Generally ponds and lagoons exist below the level of temple. But in Kadri we find that seven ponds exist around 20 feet above ground level of the temple. Above in front of the temple, attached to hillside there exists one Lord Ganapathi Shrine. From Cow's mouth (cavern) like form just below the feet of Lord Ganapathi an incessant crystal like water stream flows to the small pond below. This is called Gomukha Bhageerati Teertha (holy water). Till date no one could solve the mystery of finding out the source of this flow. Devotees have strong belief that this holy water is none other than a stream of Holy Ganga River flows from Kashi Kshetra (Varanasi) of North India. The main sanctum of Kadri is different from those shrines of districts. The square shaped sanctum surrounded by three feet wide inner circle pathway and two rooms in front side. North side of Teerthamantapa, there exists a ten feet height pole at the top of which erected an idol in meditating gesture. This pole is considered as relic of Buddhism period. Describing all about the temple briefly will not serve the purpose. Visiting here once will help in understanding Kadris sanctity.

How to reach temple:

Situated just 4 km distance from the heart of the Mangalore City, a convenient public transport facility is available to reach temple. There are frequent bus facility and auto rickshaws at reasonable fare available. For new visitors these auto rickshaws (three wheeler motor vehicles) are convenient mean of transport.

Postal Correspondence Address of the temple:
Kadri Shri Manjunatha Temple,
Mangalore - 575 002.
Phone: 91-824-214176 (office) 

source internet