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> Pilgrimages of Rama
Pilgrimages of Rama
- Ayodhya (Where Sri Rama was born) - Uttar Pradesh
- Chitrakoota (Where Sri Rama stayed during forest exile) (From Valmiki Ramayana) - Uttar Pradesh & Madhya Pradesh border
- Dandakaranya (Where Sri Rama wandered & visited various ashramas of sages during forest exile) (From Valmiki Ramayana) - Uttar Pradesh, Madhya Pradesh etc.
- Panchavati (Where Sri Rama stayed during forest exile) (From Valmiki Ramayana) - Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh
- Triprayar Rama (Famous pilgrimage of Rama) - Kerala
- Rameshwaram (Where Sri Rama worshipped Lord Shiva) - Tamil Nadu
- Mukti Puri: Ayodhya is one of the 7 Mukti Puris.
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(Sapta Mukti Puris are: Mathura, Ayodhya, Mayapuri, Kashi, Kanchi, Avantika, Dwarka)
- Divya Desam: Ayodhya is one of the 108 Divya Desams known as Thiru Ayodhi Divya Desam.
(Refer to the list of Divya Desams)
- Birthplace of Sri Rama: Ayodhya is the birthplace of Sri Rama.
- Kingdom of Sri Rama: Ayodhya is the kingdom of Sri Rama.
- Ayodhya is located in the Faizabad district of Uttar Pradesh.
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Sri Rama & Chitrakoota Mountain:
1. Sri Rama hears about the Chitrakoota mountain from sage Bharadwaja. (Valmiki Ramayana 2.54 - 2.55)
2. Sri Rama visits the hermitage of sage Valmiki at Chitrakoota mountain (Valmiki Ramayana 2.56)
3. Sri Rama builds a Parna Shala (Leaf Hut) at Chitrakoota mountain during forest exile and lives there. The river Malyavati was flowing there. (Valmiki Ramayana 2.56)
4. Sri Rama describes the beauty of the Chitrakoota mountain to Devi Sita. (Valmiki Ramayana 2.94)
5. Sri Rama describes the beauty of river Mandakini to Devi Sita. (Valmiki Ramayana 2.95)
6. Sri Rama gives His paduka to Bharata at Chitrakoota. (Valmiki Ramayana 2.112)
7. Sri Rama visits the hermitage of sage Atri while leaving Chitrakoota (Valmiki Ramayana 2.117)
Chitrakoota is spread across Uttar Pradesh (Chitrakoot district) and Madhya Pradesh (Satna district).
1. Kamadgiri Hill: Kamadgiri Hill in Chitrakoot is the place where Sri Rama, Lakshmana and Devi Sita is believed to have stayed during forest exile. It has the famous temple of Lord Kamtanath.
2. Sphatik Shila: Sphatik Shila are two huge reddish rocks in Chitrakoot hills which is believed to be the place from where Sri Rama and Devi Sita used to enjoy the beauty of Chitrakoot.
3. Lakshman Pahari: Lakshman Pahari is the place where Lakshmana is said to have stood guard to protect Rama and Sita.
4. Sita Rasoi: Sita Rasoi is the place where Devi Sita is believed to have cooked food.
5. Ram Ghat: Ram Ghat is the main bathing ghat of Chitrakoot on the bank of river Mandakini where Sri Rama is believed to have bathed.
6. Janki Kund: Janki Kund on the bank of river Payaswini is believed to be the bathing place of Devi Sita.
7. Raghav Prayag Ghat: Raghav Prayag Ghat near Ram Ghat on the bank of river Payaswini is believed to be the place where Sri Rama performed Pitri Tarpana during forest exile. It is also said to be the invisible confluence of rivers Mandakini, Payaswini and Gayatri or Savitri.
8. Bharat Milap temple: Bharat Milap temple is said to be the place where Bharata met Sri Rama and persuaded him to return to Ayodhya. Bharat Koop is a well where Bharata is believed to have poured waters of all the Tirthas which he has brought for Rama's coronation. It is around 20 km from Chitrakoot near Bharatpur village.
9. Hanuman Dhara: Hanuman Dhara is a cascade of waters falling from a natural spring over a natural rock image of Hanuman inside a cave.
10. Gupta Godavari: Gupta Godavari is a cave from where river Godavari emerges as a stream and then flowing down inside another cave disappears in the mountain.
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Sri Rama & Dandakaranya Forest:
Sri Rama enters the Dandakaranya forest and sees hermitages of sages who were engaged in penance. (Valmiki Ramayana 3.1). The subsequent events at various places till Sri Rama settles at Panchavati are:
1. Sri Rama encounters demon Viradha in, kills him, thereby releases him from a curse of Kubera. (Valmiki Ramayana 3.2 - 3.5)
2. Sri Rama visits the hermitage of sage Sharabhanga. (Valmiki Ramayana 3.5)
3. Sri Rama visits the hermitage of sage Suteekshna. (Valmiki Ramayana 3.7 - 3.8)
4. Sri Rama visits the Pancha Apsara lake and hears the story of sage Mandakarni. (Valmiki Ramayana 3.11)
5. Sri Rama stays in various hermitages and ten years gradually elapses. (Valmiki Ramayana 3.11)
6. Sri Rama revisits the hermitage of sage Suteekshna. (Valmiki Ramayana 3.11)
7. Sri Rama visits the hermitage of sage Agastya. (Valmiki Ramayana 3.12)
8. Sri Rama builds a Parna Shala (Leaf-Hut) at Panchavati and stays there. (Valmiki Ramayana 3.15)
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Sri Rama & Panchavati Forest:
1. Sri Rama hears about the Panchavati forest from sage Agastya located on the banks river Godavari. (Valmiki Ramayana 3.13)
2. Sri Rama builds a Parna Shala (Leaf Hut) at Panchavati forest and lives there during forest exile. The river Godavari was flowing there. (Valmiki Ramayana 3.15)
3. Sri Rama hears the description of Hemanta Ritu from Lakshmana at Panchavati. (Valmiki Ramayana 3.16)
4. Sri Rama punishes demoness Surpanakha at Panchavati. (Valmiki Ramayana 3.17 - 3.18)
5. Sri Rama kills demons Khara and Dushana along with their army at Panchavati. (Valmiki Ramayana 3.20 - 3.30)
6. Sri Rama runs after the golden deer in the Panchavati forest. (Valmiki Ramayana 3.45)
Panchavati is on the northern part of Nashik district of Maharashtra on the bank of river Godavari.
1. Five Banyan Trees: The area of Panchavati has Five Banyan Trees and hence the name Panchavati.
2. Sita Gumpha: It is believed that Devi Sita lived in this cave and worshipped the Shiva Linga. It is also said that Devi Sita was abducted by Ravana from this place.
3. Ramkund: Ramkund is the holy bathing ghat of Panchavati on river Godavari. It is believed that Sri Rama bathed here during forest exile. It is also the place for performing rituals and devotional contemplation.
4. Tapovan: Tapovan is the area in Panchavati at the confluence of rivers Godavari and Kapila. It is said that in ancient times the sages meditated in this place. It is also the place hwere Lakshmana is said to have cut off the nose of demoness Shurpanakha.
5. Kalaram Mandir: Near the Sita Gumpha is the Kalaram Mandir, which is the famous Ram temple of Panchavati.
- Famous pilgrimage of Sri Rama: Triprayar Rama is associated with the legend of Vakkey Kaimal. According to this legend, Vakkey Kaimal, a local chieftain and an ardent devotee once had a dream in which a person indicated that four idols had been washed ashore in the nearby sea, and each of them are to be consecrated at alloted places. Kaimal went to the seashore early in the morning and found the four idols lying there - of Rama, Bharata, Lakshmana and Satrughna. He duly installed them in four temples whose locations were directed in the dream - Rama at Triprayar, Bharata at Kutalmanikyam (Irinjalakuda), Lakshmana at Moozhikulam and Satrughna at Payammal.
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- During the preparation of installation of the Rama temple at Triprayar, an unknown voice told that the idol should be installed in the place above which a peacock would fly in the sky. On the auspicious day however, there was no sign of the peacock. When a devotee appeared holding a bunch of peacock feathers, it was taken as a sign of peacock itself and the pratistha was performed. Later on however, the peacock appeared in the sky and below it the balikkal or altar was installed. The altar kept moving round and round. One day Naronathu Bhranthan, a yogi came there and knowing the cause of the movement, fixed a nail on the balikkal. The movement stopped after that. The place where the nail was fixed can be seen even today.
- The image of Rama has four hands holding Sankha, Chakra, Kodanda (Bow) and Mala (Garland). There are idols of Sridevi and Bhumi Devi said to be installed by Vilwamangal Swamiyar after he had a vision of the Devis offering prayers to the Lord.
- Festivals: The two famous festivals are Ekadasi in Vrischikam (Nov - Dec) and Pooram in Meenam (Mar - Apr). On the Ekadasi festival Sri Rama is taken out in procession. Many elephants are taken out in this procession. The Pooram festival is celebrated for seven days starting on Makiram asterism in meenam (Mar - Apr) and ending on the Pooram asterism.
- Triprayar Rama temple is located in the Thrissur district of Kerala.
The Rameshwaram Jyotirlinga is situated in the southern sea shore. Sri Rama worshipped Lord Shiva here to get his blessings before crossing the ocean and waging war against Ravana. Lord Shiva appeared before Rama and granted the boon of victory.
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(from Shiva Purana, Koti-Rudra Samhita - Ch 31)
The Rameshwaram Jyotirlinga is identified with the Rameshwaram temple by the sea-side (Bay of Bengal) on the Ramanathapuram district of Tamil Nadu. There are 22 Tirthas within the temple complex where the pilgrims bathe.
For more details refer to Rameshwaram Jyotirlinga from Shiva Purana.
Bharatavarsha - The Land of Gods and Sages:
1. Stotras by Deity:
Initial: Ganesha -
Tridevas: Brahma - (Vishnu -
Tridevis: Saraswati -
(Lakshmi - Tulasi - Bhoomi) -
Others: Murugan -
Final: Vedas -
2. Pilgrimages by Deity:
Tridevas: Brahma - (Vishnu -
Tridevis: Saraswati -
(Parvati - Shakambari)
3. Sadhana: Sadhana - Hermitages - Penances
4. Saints: Ramakrishna - Vivekananda - Ramana - Saints
5. Sacred Geography:
7. Religious Life:
8. Other Aspects:
Sanskrit - Arts - Music - Dance - Medicine - Architecture - Astronomy