The famous Mookambika Temple is located in Kollur town, Kundapur Taluq, Udupi District, Karnataka.
Mookambika Devi Temple – Overview
The Kollur Mookambika Temple is one of the most famous pilgrimage centers in India. This temple is dedicated mainly to Parvati Devi or Shakthi, and also the Female Trinity, Mahashakthi, Mahalakshmi, and Saraswathi. This temple shrine has a Jyotirlinga that is considered to em the male and female Trinities.
The right half stands for the Static Conscious Principle as represented by Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva. The left half stands of the Creative Energy Principle as represented By Parvati, Lakshmi and Saraswathi. The Mookambika Temple in Kollur is considered one of the Seven Mukthisthalas in Karnataka.
Mookambika Temple – History
The Traditional Origin of the Shrine
Once, Sage Kola Maharishi was performing Tapas here when he was persistently troubled by a demon. This Demon had also been praying to Lord Shiva to get powers that would make him invincible and let him do whatever he wanted. Knowing the evil mind of this demon, Devi Shakthi made him Mooka (Dumb). So, when Lord Shiva appeared before him, he was unable to ask for any boon. Enraged by this, the Demon began to harass Kola Maharishi, who was also praying to the Lord. Kola Maharishi appealed to the Divine Mother for help. So, Devi Shakthi came down and vanquished the Demon, Mookasura.
Henceforth, in this region, she came to be known as Mookambika. Lord Shiva also appeared before the sage. Maharishi Kola asked that the Lord with His Consort should remain here forever. To grant his wish, a Jyotirlinga appeared, with a Swarnarekha (golden line) in the middle. Thus, one half of this Linga stands for the conscious principle as embodied by Shiva, Vishnu and Brahma, while the other stood for the Creative Principle in the form of Parvati, Lakshmi and Saraswathi.
Adi Shankaracharya was meditating on the Kodachadri Hills near here, when he had a Vision of Goddess Mookambika. He expressed a desire to install an idol of the Devi in a place in Kerala. The Goddess agreed, on one condition. She said that she would follow Sri Shankara, but that He should trust Her and not look back. He agreed, and proceeded on his way, assured by the sound of her anklets that She was following him. Suddenly, the anklets stopped tinkling. Surprised, Sri Shankara looked back to see if the Devi was indeed following him. She was right behind him, but as per the condition, she would not follow him any further. So, he installed a beautiful metal Idol of the Devi here behind the Jyotirlinga. In those days, Kollur was a part of Kerala.
Mookambika Temple – Facts
The Idols and Ornaments
This temple has two processional idols in gold. One was donated by Kittur Rani Chennamma during the period when the original idol was missing. Later, the original idol was also recovered.
The temple has several beautiful ornaments donated by various devotees. There is a famous emerald jewel for the Devi in this temple. Emerald signifies knowledge.
The former Chief Minister of Tamilnadu, M.G. Ramachandran gave a beautiful 2.5 feet long golden sword as an offering to the temple. The former Chief Minister of Karnataka offered a similar sword made of Silver.
The golden face mask of the Devi was offered by the Vijayanagara rulers. There is also a similar golden face mask for the Jyotirlinga.
Beside the Jyotirlinga and Devi Mookambika, there are other shrines here for:
Shri Panchamukha Ganapathi
Shri Thulasi Gopalakrishna
Navaratri or Dussera celebrations
Sri Krishna Janmashtami
The famous singer K.J. Yesudas has been visiting this temple for the past 30 years and singing Keerthans on Devi Saraswathi. To mark his sixtieth birthday, a music festival was started here in 2000. This nine day Music Festival is held in January of each year. This is a good time to visit the town.
How to Get to Get to Mookambika Temple
Kollur Mookambika Temple is a famous pilgrimage spot. It is easy to get buses from Mangalore, Udupi and the nearby Kundapur. Kundapur also has a railway station which is on the Konkan Railway route.