District: Dakshina Kannada
Temple: Shree Panchalingeshwara Temple
If visiting temples that have ancient origins is something that you love doing, then Dakshina Kannada is the place for you. There are a number of temples and places worth visiting and the Shree Panchalingeshwara Temple is an important one among these.
Shree Panchalingeshwara Temple – Overview
You can find the name of the Panchalingeshwara temple in many ancient books and scriptures and it’s a very popular temple of the Vittla region. There are about sixteen villages in Vittla. The temple is prominently situated off the Bangalore-Hosur highway. It gained a lot of popularity when the Chola dynasty ruled the place and is a rare structure that depicts creativity and magnificence.
Shree Panchalingeshwara Temple – Architecture
This beautiful temple has rare architectural beauty and magnificence. It consists of a three tiered roof and the shape is like that of a back of an elephant. The Hoysala style is clearly reflected in the temple architecture and the credit for sculpting this goes to none other than Ruvari Mallitamma. The Gopuras of the temple vary in their design, size and shape.
The Panchalingeshwara temple has been built directly without the pedestal and this is clearly visible. The temple was built in such a manner that it faces the East and care has been taken to ensure that every kuta faces the direction of the sun rising. The beautifully crafted Nandi is situated at the entrance. The Garbha Griha houses various gods and goddesses like Ganesha at the entrance, and Shiva, Parvati and Subramanya. You can see the beautifully carved Dashavatara along the wall and pillars of the temple once you start the “Pradakshina” the temple. The Hoysala temples are the only temples where you can come across the dancing Saraswath, which is definitely a rare sight.
The temple underwent some major renovation in the year 2007. The Garbhanyasa and the Nidhukumba were major areas of renovation wherein stones like kumudha, galapadi, jagathi and paduka were used.
Shree Panchalingeshwara Temple – History and Mythology
The Vamadeva, Thatpurusha, Aghora, Sadyojatha and Ishana are the five lingas present in the temple. Lord Shiva is the embodiment of all these pancha (five) features. Historians have researched and found out that the credit of creating the temple goes to the Pandavas.
The Hegde dynasty worships the Panchalingeshwara and it is supposed to be the kuladeva (chief deity) of the Hegdes. The temple dates back to as early as 7-8 AD and it is presumed that it has undergone many levels of renovation, without making any major changes to the architectural heritage and beauty.
Shree Panchalingeshwara Temple – Religious Significance
There are a number of religious rituals that are conducted by the pujaris and every Barkurean worships the deity. The annual festival, Rathotsav, is celebrated with great pomp and splendor by both Hindus and Muslims.
The Okuliyata is yet another function that is performed on the next day of the Rathotsav and the function takes place very early in the morning.
How to Get to Panchalingeshwara Temple
The Panchalingeshwara temple is located near Govindanahalli and is about one hundred and sixty eight kilometers from Bangalore. The place can be reached either by road, rail or air. There are a number of Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation buses that ply between Hassan, Bangalore and Mangalore. The nearest railway station close to this place is the one in Narsipur and Hassan. The Bangalore Airport is close to this place and depending on your convenience; you can select a mode of transport.