Tuesday, September 17, 2013

எதற்கு சதுரகிரி தரிசனம்?

Why Darshan of Sathuragiri Hills?

On dreams I get advices / instructions from my Protector the Karuppu in the form of Marulali. That have shapened my lifepath and it keeps continuing. In line with it, on an one very fine morning I was told that I would be receiving 'Siva Deekshai' on a remote place that too in the precicnt of the Lord Himself. And also was instructed not to cut hair (head & face) till I receive the secret sacred words.

I myself know, I am not that much blessed to receive 'Siva Deekshai'. Hence I thought that was a wild dream. Though I didn't pay attention to the said dream, I started growing hair because I never disobeyed my Master. My family started diiging at me for not shaving.

The days were passing but no further commands from Master. A month has flown.

One day I had a restless sleep. Some peculiar disturbances. Got up from bed, gone to Puja-Shelf, looked at Master and prayed for sound sleep. And back to bed.

I feel spine-chilling air brushing me. And I am wading through a waist-deep running water on barefoot. On climbing a rock, I see a huge tree and a stone look alike the upper portion of a Lingam. Slanding position like Pisa Tower. Then I look around and spot a Nandhi. I sit behind it and start chanting "Om NamaSivaya". I meditate.

On routine, woke up next morning. I used to dream Lingams but this is peculiar, a slanding Lingam in tilted position. While I was surfing for the slanding Lingam, from the Google Images I got into the slanding Sundara MahaLingam picture.

On analysing, it was confirmed that the slanding MahaLingam is on the Sathuragiri Hills. I was told that unless I catchhold of somebody who is well aware of the Hill & surrounding, it would not be possible to trek alone.

I started scanning for a good soul who can help me to reach the Lingam atop the hill. Ten days vanished in this process. Again I was going through the Sathuragiri vocabulary on the web. A name of the town, Vathirairuppu, has attracted my attention. On vague I could recollect that a relative of my wife hails from this place. On verification with my wife, it has been confirmed that my wife's elder brother's wife is a native of this town.

For past three four years, Kumar, my wife's elder bro's son, is in close contact with us. He is a Civil Engineer, doing construction business and living in Madurai. I spoke to him and requested him whether he can find any reliable source who can help me to visit the Hill. What a plesant shock was that he himself volunteered to accompany me to the Hill since he is a regular goer to the Hill-Temple. He said that he would also invite his family friend who is also a native of Vathirairuppu and a regular visitor to the Hill. To get confirmation from that friend, another five days gone.

The D-Day has been set. Train tickets booked for me to go to Madurai and back to Bangalore. Just three hours before the departure time, my ticket got confirmed. Breathed a sigh of relief. Heavy rain lashed while starting.

At Madurai, at Kumar's home. A Civil Engineer's dream-dwelling. At 7 in the evening, we three left for Vathirairuppu by a cab. Reached the Agraharam around 10 in the night. The Welcome-Sign was the powercut. One-and-half hours in the dark, with no air. A battalion of mosquitoes had their field day. Sitting on a wodden bench and fighting with flying-attackers have rekindled my olden-day memoirs during 1960s at Bikshandarkovil Agraharam. Then fan started grinding and had a semi-sleep.

4.30 am, woke up. Morning routines. Hot cup of coffee by Kumar's friend. Left agraharam at 5.30 with barefoot. Instructed by Kumar, who is now my Guru for Sathuragiri Darshan, that since the Hill itself Lord Shiva and moreover innumerous formless Siddha Maha Purushas would be doing their penance right fron the very bottom of the Hill to the toppest tip of the Hill, it would be advisable not to wear footwear as a mark of respect to them.

Since the mini bus that goes to the Thanniparai, from where we have to climb the Holy Hill, didn't turn up, we took a share-auto at 6. The road, for the name-sake only otherwise it is nothing but mini mounds & ruts. But onething, it is better than Bangalore potholes roads. After a 25-minutes off 4KMs Hurdles, with grinding exercise to all the bones from tip to toe, reached the starting point. The very great solace is the nice early morning unpolluted gentle breeze that gave the spiritual spirits to the soul.

சுந்தர மகாலிங்கமாக, சந்தன மகாலிங்கமாக, சிவபெருமான் அருள் பாலிக்கும் மலை சதுரகிரி.

தென்னாடுடைய சிவன் எந்நாட்டவர்க்கும் இறைவன் ஈசன் மகாலிங்கமாக வாசம் புரியும் மலை சதுரகிரி.

சித்தர்களின் தலைமைப்பீடம் சதுரகிரி.

வேதங்கள் போற்றும் இறைவன் பரமேஸ்வரன், சுந்தரலிங்கம் மகாலிங்கம் இராசலிங்கம் சந்தனலிங்கம் என்னும் நான்கு திருமேனிகளைக் கொண்டு இச்சதுரகிரி மலையில் எழுந்தருளியிருக்கிறார்.

மகரிஷிகளும், சித்தர்களும் இன்றும் அருவுருவாக வாழ்ந்தும் அருள் வழங்கும் வண்ணம் சதுரகியில் வீற்றிருக்கிறார்கள்.

With the blessings of the Remover of all the obstacles, the Family Deity, the Family Protector, the MahaLingaSwamy and the SiddhaPurushas, and with the lead by Guru KumarJi, started walking. At 6.30 in the morning.

For few yards, the path is easily walkable with barefoot. Only rough sand. Then it is not walking, it is trekking. The pathway is only 4-5 feet wide madeup of steep rocks, sharpedged cutstones, waist-deep small streams, mini waterfalls, mysterious caves, quiet lot of medicinal plants, and what not. Thus to climb 12-13 KMs to cross seven hills.

The added attractions are variety of monkeys (almost of bunches of 20s) and peculiar strange animal noises through thick canopies on either side of the path. On the other route that comes from Theni, one can come across all kinds of wild animals except lion. Except forest rangers, none seems to be taking risks to attempt this route.

Just before the rocky pathway starts, there are shrines for Ganapathi, RajaKali Amman, Petchi Amma & KaruppuSwamy. The Hill-Puranam says that the Petchi Amma & the KaruppuSwamy are installed by the Great Siddhars to guard and to protect the southern side of the Hill.

After 3 hours of trek, reached "Eratai Lingam" shrine. Two Lingams with two Nandhis in a sanctum. The History says that it is Sankara Narayana Lingams. ஆனந்த சுந்தரம் என்னும் வணிகனுக்கும் அவனது துணைவி ஆண்டாள் அம்மாளுக்கும் சங்கரநாராயணராகக் காட்சி தந்து எழுந்தருளும் பொருட்டு அருள் வடிவாய் விளங்கும் மூர்த்தி இரட்டைலிங்கர்.

Exhausted and femished, and so made myself flat on shrine itself.

I was told that before this "Twin Lingams", there are two Lingams in two separate caves called Gorakkar Gugai. On studying my climbing pattern, my GuruJi skipped that.

சலசலத்து பாறையின் ஊடே ஓடும் ஓடை, கானகத்தின் குளிர்ச்சி ஒரு புத்துணர்ச்சி கொடுக்கிறது. சுற்றிலும் நாலாபுறமும் மலைகள்தான். மலைகளின் மேல், மனிதர்களுக்கு ஆயுளும், ஆரோக்கியமும் தரும் அற்புதமான பல மூலிகைகளும், மருத்துவ குணம் நிறைந்த மரம் செடி கொடிகள். அம்மலைகளுக்கு நடுவில் பயணம் தொடர்ந்தது. போகிற பாதை வலது பக்கம் திரும்புதல், இடது பக்கம் திரும்புதல், மேடு, பள்ளம் என நீண்டு கொண்டுதான் இருந்ததே தவிர, மலை உச்சி வந்த பாடிலில்லை.

Another One-and-Half hour trek. Reached VanaDurga Amman temple and Pillavadi Karuppu & Kali temple. The soul got energised after worshipping Karuppu. It's widely believed that the Great Siddhars of the SathuraGiri have consecrated these three Guardian-Gods to protect and safeguard the entire Hills & MahaLingam temples from evil forces.

Another an hour of strenuous climbing. Touched the first-step of Sri Sundara MahaLinga Swamy temple. At 12noon. Since the Puja schedule is at 1pm, a complete rest. Normally Guru KumarJi & his friend used to take 3 hours to climb. Because of me, they have altered their rhythm and paced with me for 5.1/2 hours. My humble salutations to them.

At the start of the temple, there is a sanctum for SundaraMurthy Swamigal. After crossing 70-steps, the Sanctum for Sri Sundara MahaLingam Swamy. A serene chill calm atmosphere. The very first glance of the Lingam pierced my heart and an air of bloodcurdling swiped me. What I saw in my dream is picture-perfect in the Sanctum.

தென்னாடுடைய சிவன் எந்நாட்டவர்க்கும் இறைவன் ஈசன், சுந்தர மகாலிங்கமாக அருள் பாலிக்கும் அரிய காட்சி. பொதிகை மலையிலிருந்து மூலிகை வளம் காண வந்த அகத்தியரால் பிரதிஷ்டை செய்யப்பட்டு பூசிக்கப்பட்டு, தமது திருமணக் காட்சியை அவருக்குத் தந்தருளிய சுந்தரமகாலிங்க ஸ்வாமிகள் அருள் பாலிக்கும் காட்சி.

பச்சைமால் என்னும் ஆயர்குல முதல்வனுக்காகக் காட்சி தந்து லிங்கவடிவாய் எழுந்தருயிருப்பவர் சுந்தர மகாலிங்கர். எண்ணற்ற மகரிஷிகளும், சித்தர்களும் இன்றும் அருவுருவாக வந்து துதிக்கும் மகாலிங்க ஸ்வாமிகள்.

ஓம் சுந்தரமகாலிங்க ஸ்வாமிக்கு அரோஹரா! சதுரகிரிமலையானுக்கு அரோகரா!

Had a peaceful Darshan of Sri Sundara MahaLingam Swamy. Emptied the tanked unsharable sorrows & grievances at HIS Lotus Feet and sincerely prayed to HIM to wipe them off.

Ganesha is sitting nearby HIS Father. The Lingam is "Suyambu" - Self projection from the earth but the Ganesha idol might have been installed recently, may be 30/40 years back. When I looked at the eyes of Ganesha, I sensed that the Divinity is missing in the idol. நடப்பதெல்லாம் ஈசன் செயல். ஆத்மபூர்வமாக அறிந்தவனுக்கு அடுத்தவனிடமிருந்து ஆதாரம் எதற்கு? There is no traditional temple or sanctum sanctorum, only a wooden shed covered by walls.

Just behind this temple, there is a huge hall and in its centrepoint the formless Anandavalli Amma is seen. The Legend says that only during Navarathiri period She takes a form.

Though free-lunch is being served at the temple, we had Pongal brought from Vathirairuppu. After a brief rest, walk towards Santhana MahaLingam temple. To climb steep 200-steps. Well-laid. No proper temple, only a four-wall structure for Lingam.

The beautiful Lingam was consecrated by the Divine Mother Uma Devi Herself by sandalwood paste. SHE did severe penance for which Maheswara offered left-portion of HIS body to HER. And thus "Ardhanareeswara" formed. The stream, the Aagaya Gangai, created by HER is still flowing beneath this temple. The water is crystal clear and very sweet.

உமையொரு பாகராக அர்த்த நாரீஸ்வரர் என்னும் பெயரில் எழுந்தருளும் பொருட்டு உமையவளால் சந்தனக்குழம்பால் பிரதிஷ்டை செய்யப்பட்டு பூசிக்கப்பட்ட சந்தன மகாலிங்கர்.

And also there are separate sanctums for 18 Siddhars, Lord Ganesha, Lord Muruga, Navagrahas, Santhana Mahadevi (Sakthi). Thsee might have been installed recently.

There is a cave where the Sage Sattanadha Muni did penance. When I was there, I really felt the Divine Vibrations. Just allowed to sit there for few seconds only.

Had half-an-hour rest near Agaya Gangai.

When enquired about the "Thavasi Parai", the people who live there to maintain the two temples say that it is very dangerous to climb there and being a dense forest all kinds of wild animals are freely moving around. Also they clearly pointing out that the Great Siddhars including Agasthya Maharishi assemble there incognito to perform puja to a small SivaLingam somewhere deep inside a cave. Though these people are there for many years, they have not attempted to climb the area. Also understood from my Guru KumarJi and his friend that they have never gone beyond these two temples though they visit these temples for more than 40years.

At 3 pm, the clouds started gathering. Since there is no electricity and no sunlight, we have to reach the Thanniparai before the night peeps in.

ஏறுவதில் ஒரு வகை சிரமம். இறங்குவதிலும், வேறு வகை சிரமம்.
Climbing down is doubly tough than going up. Highly exhausted. Every 15-20 minutes, I had to sit. To keep me moving, my Guru KumarJi & his friend were always out of my sight. I noticed an unusual happening. Whenever I left completly alone, there was a red dog leading me and a white dog following me. At one stage, I was completely drained and simply stretched myslef on a steep rock. I don't know how long I was lying like that.

Hallucination. ஏதோ காட்சி தேரிவது போன்ற தோற்றம். பிரமை.
A big red dog looks at me, and then looks at the rock next to me. I look that rock. Someone has drawn the SivaLingam on chalkpiece. I look back the dog. That dog looks at a huge rock on the other side of the path. I look that area. I see five 5-lettered Tamil words side by side. I am able to read and understand the first word. But I could not understand the other four words. The beauty is the same 5 letters in the first word are seen in the remaining four words but not in a chronicle order. All are juggling algorithms.

I faintly heard KumarJi's shouting noise. I got up and moved. I was able to keep going only for 10 minutes. I could not move my legs at all. Here came the Saviour. Guru KumarJi friend has asked me to hold his shoulders. Then both started moving. For two-and-half-hours I kept moving by holding his shoulders. Just imagine. He is climbing down the steep rocks with my both the hands on his shoulders. He has just seen me the previous night only. What kind of human gesture he exhibited. No doubt at all, He is none but the God in the human form. Even if I take 'Erazhu Janma' this indebtedness cannot be nullified.

இத்திருத்தலத்திற்கு ஒரு முறை வருகை தந்து சுவாமி தரிசனம் செய்தால் பல நூறு ஆண்டுகள் ஆரோக்கியமாக வாழலாம் என்பது சித்தர்களின் வாக்கு.

சிவ நாமம், சிவ தரிசனம், சிவத் தொண்டு -
இம்மூன்றும் ஒரு மனிதனின் வாழ்வில் கிடைத்தற்கரியவை. இவை கிடைத்துவிட்டால் அதுவே கடைசிப் பிறவியாக அமையும். இதுவே முக்தி.

At last, at 7 pm we touched the plains. Guru KumarJi did a very wonderful thing. He arranged the Hyundai Verna to pick up us at the foothill itself. After spending sometime at Vathirairuppu, we reached Madurai around 10 in the night. Straight to the bed. Kumar put on both airconditioner and fan. Flat. When woke up, it was 9 in the morning. Could not move my legs at all. Somehow reached the downstairs. Kumar's 'SivaLinga' abishekam & puja. Again sleep upto 5 in the evening. Then an affectionate goodbye to Kumar and his family.
Madurai Junction, Train, sleep, Bangalore City. It took 45 minutes to reach Majestic from platform 6. Breeze @ Oasis.

As usual Marulali on the dreams in the night. He asks me,
" Naai padara padu enru solluvanga, aana oru Naai padam nadathi eruke? SivaLingam pakathula paduthundu anjuezhuthe anju thara sonniya? "

Aaha! SivaDeekshai. சிவகடாட்சம்.
சர்வமும் சிவமயம், சகலமும் சிவனருள். நடப்பதெல்லாம் ஈசன் செயல்.
எங்கும் இருக்கும் எதிலும் நிறையும் பரமேஸ்வரன் இதில் இல்லாமல் போவானா?

"வான்வாழி வானையளி மாதவரும் வாழி
கோன்வாழிகுரு வாழிகுவலயத்தோர் வாழி
ஆன் வாழி அமரர் முத லிருடி சித்தர் வாழி
நான் நீ யென லகற்று நாதாக்கள் வாழியவே".


  1. Excellent , Sundara Mahalinga swamy saranam

  2. Thanks for the blog
    Nicely written

  3. Hi ..
    I heard some hallcuniation places are there in middle or top of the hills..
    is it true..
    if we go enter..we cant come back again..
    we need more will power then only it possible to come back again..
    kindly reply as soon as possible

  4. Superb story of a Holy Trek.
    Thanks for sharing.