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Anga Ashrama

(Ref: Valmiki Ramayana - Bala Kanda - 23 to 24)

Sri Rama with VishwamitraMeditation: I meditate on Lord Shiva burning Kamadeva at Anga at the confluence of rivers Ganga and Sarayu and making him Ananga (bodiless); where sages who were disciples of Shiva performed asceticism for thousands of years, and where Sri Rama visited while travelling with sage Vishwamitra.

Sri Rama reaches the confluence of rivers Ganga and Sarayu: While Sri Rama and Lakshmana were travelling with sage Vishwamitra along the bank of river Sarayu, they came to the confluence of rivers Ganga and Sarayu. There they saw hermitages of sages who were practicing penance for many thousands of years.

Sri Rama hears the legend of Shiva burning Kamadeva: When Sri Rama enquired about the hermitages, sage Vishwamitra told about the legend of Shiva burning Kamadeva in that place. When Lord Shiva was meditating there, Kamadeva disturbed his meditation. Shiva in anger burnt Kamadeva to ashes with the fire of his third eye. Since Kamadeva became bodiless he came to be known as Ananga (meaning bodiless), and the place came to be known as Anga. The hermitages belonged to the disciples of Shiva who have become sinless (by their long penance).

Sri Rama spends a night in the hermitage at Anga: Sri Rama spent that night in a hermitage at Anga. The sages welcomed them (Sage Vishwamitra, Rama and Lakshmana) cordially.

Sri Rama crosses river at Ganga - Sarayu sangama: Next morning, Sri Rama, Lakshmana and sage Vishwamitra boarded a boat and started crossing the river. In the mid-stream was heard a loud sound of clashing waters. Sage Vishwamitra told that the sound was due to river Sarayu merging with river Ganga. Vishwamitra also told that river Sarayu originates from Lake Manasa in Mount Kailasha, hence it is a holy river. Sri Rama and Lakshmana offered salutations to both these holy rivers.

Pilgrimage: Kameshwar Dham, Ballia district, Uttar Pradesh Anga Ashrama is identified with Kameshwar Dham in the Ballia district of Uttar Pradesh.

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Last updated on Sep-2021

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