The Vedas are a large body of religious texts originating in ancient India. Composed in Vedic Sanskrit, the texts constitute the oldest layer of Sanskrit literature and the oldest scriptures of Hinduism. Hindus consider the Vedas to be apauruṣeya, which means "not of a man, superhuman" and "impersonal, authorless". Vedas are called śruti literature, distinguishing them from other religious texts, which are called smṛti; the Veda, for orthodox Indian theologians, are considered revelations seen by ancient sages after intense meditation, texts that have been more preserved since ancient times. In the Hindu Epic the Mahabharata, the creation of Vedas is credited to Brahma; the Vedic hymns themselves assert that they were skillfully created by Rishis, after inspired creativity, just as a carpenter builds a chariot. According to tradition, Vyasa is the compiler of the Vedas, who arranged the four kinds of mantras into four Samhitas. There are four Vedas: the Yajurveda, the Samaveda and the Atharvaveda.
Each Veda has been subclassified into four major text types – the Samhitas, the Aranyakas, the Brahmanas, the Upanishads. Some scholars add a fifth category – the Upasanas; the various Indian philosophies and denominations have taken differing positions on the Vedas. Schools of Indian philosophy which cite the Vedas as their scriptural authority are classified as "orthodox". Other śramaṇa traditions, such as Lokayata, Ajivika and Jainism, which did not regard the Vedas as authorities, are referred to as "heterodox" or "non-orthodox" schools. Despite their differences, just like the texts of the śramaṇa traditions, the layers of texts in the Vedas discuss similar ideas and concepts; the Sanskrit word véda "knowledge, wisdom" is derived from the root vid- "to know". This is reconstructed as being derived from the Proto-Indo-European root *u̯eid-, meaning "see" or "know", cognate to Greek εἶδος "aspect", "form"; this is not to be confused is the homonymous 1st and 3rd person singular perfect tense véda, cognate to Greek οἶδα oida "I know".
Root cognates are English wit, etc.. Latin videō "I see", etc; the Sanskrit term veda as a common noun means "knowledge". The term in some contexts, such as hymn 10.93.11 of the Rigveda, means "obtaining or finding wealth, property", while in some others it means "a bunch of grass together" as in a broom or for ritual fire. A related word Vedena appears in hymn 8.19.5 of the Rigveda. It was translated by Ralph T. H. Griffith as "ritual lore", as "studying the Veda" by the 14th-century Indian scholar Sayana, as "bundle of grass" by Max Müller, as "with the Veda" by H. H. Wilson. Vedas are called Vaymoli in parts of South India. Marai means "hidden, a secret, mystery", but Tamil Naanmarai mentioned in Tholkappiam isn't Sanskrit Vedas. In some south Indian communities such as Iyengars, the word Veda includes the Tamil writings of the Alvar saints, such as Divya Prabandham, for example Tiruvaymoli; the Vedas are among the oldest sacred texts. The Samhitas date to 1700–1100 BCE, the "circum-Vedic" texts, as well as the redaction of the Samhitas, date to c.
1000–500 BCE, resulting in a Vedic period, spanning the mid 2nd to mid 1st millennium BCE, or the Late Bronze Age and the Iron Age. The Vedic period reaches its peak only after the composition of the mantra texts, with the establishment of the various shakhas all over Northern India which annotated the mantra samhitas with Brahmana discussions of their meaning, reaches its end in the age of Buddha and Panini and the rise of the Mahajanapadas. Michael Witzel gives a time span of c. 1500 to c. 500–400 BCE. Witzel makes special reference to the Near Eastern Mitanni material of the 14th century BCE, the only epigraphic record of Indo-Aryan contemporary to the Rigvedic period, he gives 150 BCE as a terminus ante quem for all Vedic Sanskrit literature, 1200 BCE as terminus post quem for the Atharvaveda. Transmission of texts in the Vedic period was by oral tradition, preserved with precision with the help of elaborate mnemonic techniques. A literary tradition is traceable in post-Vedic times, after the rise of Buddhism in the Maurya period earliest in the Kanva recension of the Yajurveda about the 1st century BCE.
Witzel suggests the possibility of written Vedic texts towards the end of 1st millennium BCE. Some scholars such as Jack Goody state that "the Vedas are not the product of an oral society", basing this view by comparing inconsistencies in the transmitted versions of literature from various oral societies such as the Greek and other cultures noting that the Vedic literature is too consistent and vast to have been composed and transmitted orally across generations, without being written down. However, adds Goody, the Vedic texts involved both a written and oral tradition, calling it a "parallel products of a literate society". Due to the ephemeral nature of the manuscript material, surviving manuscripts surpass an age of a few hundred years; the Sampurnanand Sanskrit University has a Rigveda manuscript from the 14th century. The Vedas, Vedic rituals and its ancillary sciences called the Vedangas, were part of the curriculum at ancient universities such as at Ta
In Hinduism, Shesha known as Sheshanaga or Adishesha, is the nagaraja or king of all nāgas and one of the primal beings of creation. In the Puranas, Shesha is said to hold all the planets of the universe on his hoods and to sing the glories of the God Vishnu from all his mouths, he is sometimes referred to as Ananta Shesha, which translates as endless-Shesha or Adishesha "first Shesha". It is said that creation takes place, he is described in Buddhism as Vasuki. Vishnu is depicted as resting on Shesha. Shesha is considered a manifestation of Vishnu, he is said to have descended to avatars: Lakshmana, brother of Rama. "Shesha" in Sanskrit texts those relating to mathematical calculation, implies the "remainder"—that which remains when all else ceases to exist. Shesha is depicted with a massive form that floats coiled in space, or on the ocean of bliss, to form the bed on which Vishnu lies. Sometimes he is shown as five-headed or seven-headed, but more as a many thousand-headed serpent, sometimes with each head wearing an ornate crown.
His name means "that which remains", from the Sanskrit root śiṣ, because when the world is destroyed at the end of the kalpa, Shesha remains as he is. In the Bhagavadgita of Chapter 10, verse 29, Shri Krishna while describing 75 of his common manifestations, declares, "anantaś ca asmi nāgānāṁ": Of the nagas, I am Ananta; as per the Mahabharata, Shesha was born to his wife Kadru. Kadru gave birth to a thousand snakes. After Shesha, Vasuki and Takshaka were born, in order. A lot of Shesha's brothers were bent upon inflicting harm on others, they were unkind to Garuda, Kashyapa's son through Vinatha, sister of Kadru.. Shesha, disgusted by the cruel acts of his brothers, left his mother and kin, took to austere penances, he lived on air and meditated in places including Gandhamadhana, Gokarna and Himalayas. His penances were so severe that his flesh and muscles dried up and merged with his frame. Brahma, convinced of his Shesha's will, asked Shesha to request a boon. Shesha asked that he be able to keep his mind under control so that he could continue to perform ascetic penances.
Brahma gladly accepted the request. Brahma asked a favour of Shesha: to go beneath the unstable earth and stabilize it. Shesha went to the netherworld and stabilized her with his hood, he is known to support her today, thus making Patala his perennial residence. Shesha is depicted as floating in the ocean of the changing world, forming the bed of Maha Vishnu. Since he is known as Adishesha and because he is Anantashesha or Ananta. In the Bhagavata Purana Shesha is named Sankarshana, the tamasic energy of Lord Narayana himself, is said to live deep within the inner layers of patala, where there are many serpents with gems on their heads and where Sankarshana is the ruler, he is said to live since before the creation of the universe. When the universe is towards its end, he creates 11 Rudras from Them to destroy the universe for a new one to be created. Sankarshana is one of the four vyuha forms of Vishnu or Krishna, the other three being Vāsudeva and Aniruddha. Sankarshana expands himself as Garbhodakshayi-Vishnu in the beginning of the universe to create Brahma.
In other words, Lord Sankarshana is Lord Narayana himself. In previous chapters of the Purana it is said that Lord Sankarshana spoke the Bhagavata to the Four Kumaras, who in their turn passed this message of the Bhagavata. At some point the message was passed to sage Maitreya. Lakshmana and Balarama are considered avatara of Sheshanaga, it is considered in Vaishnavism, that Lord Balarama is the first manifestation from Lord Krishna, that Lord Balarama incarnates into Sesha to serve Krishna as Vishnu. In a story from the Puranas, Shesha's younger brother Vasuki loosens Mount Mandara, to enable it to be used in the churning of the ocean by the devas and asuras. According to the Mahabharata, his father was his mother Kadru; the city of Thiruvananthapuram is named after him as the "City of Lord Anantapadmanabha." "The foremost manifestation of Lord Vishnu is Sankarṣana, known as Ananta. He is the origin of all incarnations within this material world. Previous to the appearance of Lord Shri Krishna, this original Sankarsana will appear as Baladeva, just to please the Supreme Lord Shri Krishna in His transcendental pastimes."
Bhāgavata Purāṇa 10.1.24 "Sri Anantadeva has thousands of faces and is independent. Always ready to serve the Supreme Personality of Godhead, He waits upon him constantly. Sankarsana is the first expansion of Vasudeva and because he appears by his own will, He is called svarat independent, he is therefore transcendental to all limits of time and space. He Himself appears as the thousand-headed Shesha." Srila Jiva Gosvami, in his Krishna-Sandarbha "Sankarsana of the quadruple form descends with Lord Shri Rama as Lakshmana. When Lord Shri Rama disappears, Shesha again separates himself from the personality of Lakshmana. Shesha returns to his own abode in the Patala regions and Lakshmana returns to His abode in Vaikuntha." A. C. Bhaktivedanta Swami Prabhupada In the Bhagavad-Gita, when in the middle of the battlefield Kurukshetra, Shri Krishna explaining his omnipresence
Prithu is a sovereign, named in the Vedic scriptures of ancient India. According to Hindu mythology, he is an Avatar of the preserver god—Vishnu, he is called Pruthu and Prithu Vainya Prithu — the son of Vena. Prithu is "celebrated as the first consecrated king, from whom the earth received her name Prithvi." He is associated with the legend of his chasing the earth goddess, who fled in the form of a cow and agreed to yield her milk as the world's grain and vegetation. The epic Mahabharata and text Vishnu Purana describes him as a part Avatar of Vishnu; the birth of Prithu is without female intervention. Thus being a ayonija, Prithu is untouched by desire and ego and can thus control his senses to rule dutifully upholding Dharma; the Mahabharata traces Prithu's lineage from Vishnu. The Almighty Vishnu created a human named Virajas to bring order to the Humans. Virajas became an ascetic. Virajas' son was Krittimat. Krittimat's son was Kardama. Kardama's son was Ananga and Ananga's son was Atibala. Atibala called Anga, conquered the earth and ruled well.
Atibala married Mrityu's daughter and had a son named Vena. Vena's son would be Prithu; the Bhagavata Purana and Vishnu Purana tells the story of Prithu: King Vena, from the lineage of the pious Dhruva, was an evil king, who neglected Vedic rituals. Thus the rishis killed him, leaving the kingdom without an heir and in famine due to the anarchy of Vena. So, the sages churned Vena's body, out of which first appeared a dark dwarf hunter, a symbol of Vena's evil. Since the sins of Vena had gone away as the dwarf, the body was now pure. On further churning, Prithu emerged from right arm of the corpse. To end the famine by slaying the earth and getting her fruits, Prithu chased the earth who fled as a cow. Cornered by Prithu, the earth states that killing her would mean the end of his subjects too. So Prithu reasoned with the earth and promised her to be her guardian. Prithu milked her using Manu as a calf, received all vegetation and grain as her milk, in his hands for welfare of humanity. Before Prithu's reign, there was "no cultivation, no pasture, no agriculture, no highway for merchants", all civilization emerged in Prithu's rule.
By granting life to the earth and being her protector, Prithu became the Earth's father and she accepted the patronymic name "Prithvi". However, the Manu Smriti considers Prithvi as Prithu's wife and not his daughter, thus suggests the name "Prithvi" is named after her husband, Prithu; the Vayu Purana records that when born, Prithu stood with a bow, arrows and an armour, ready to destroy the earth, devoid of Vedic rituals. Terrified, the earth fled in form of a cow and submitted to Prithu's demands, earning him the title chakravartin. Prithu is the first king, recorded to earn the title; the creator-god Brahma is described to have recognized Prithu as an avatar of Vishnu, as one of Prithu's birthmark was Vishnu's chakram on his hand and thus Prithu was "numbered amongst the human gods". According to Oldham, the title Chakravarti may be derived from this birthmark, may not be indicative of universal dominion. Prithu was worshipped as an incarnation of Vishnu in his lifetime and now is considered a Nāga demi-god.
Shatapatha Brahmana calls him the first anointed king and Vayu Purana calls him adiraja. The epic Mahabharata states that Vishnu crowned Prithu as the sovereign and entered the latter's body so that everyone bows to the king as to god Vishnu. Now, the king was "endowed with Vishnu's greatness on earth". Further, Dharma and Artha established themselves in Prithu. Prithu became the first true king, he became a Kshatriya after he healed the Brahmanas of their wounds, inflicted by Prithu's tyrannical father, Vena. After acquiring many presents from the gods, Prithu conquered and ruled the earth as well as the Devas, Yakshas and Nagas in all glory, it was. Prithu liberated his father Vena, from the hell called Pūt, hence all sons are called Putras. Practicing detachment, Prithu ruled according to the Dandaneeti, his capital is believed to be somewhere in modern-day Haryana. Prithu used his Kshatriya power to make the earth yield its riches. Hence the earth is called daughter of Prithu. Prithu, by mere fiat of will, created millions of men, elephants and horses.
During his reign, there was no decreptitude, no calamity, no famine, no disease, no agriculture and no mining. Prithu enjoyed popularity amongst his subjects, hence all kings are called Rajas. Cows yielded buckets of rich milk. Trees and lotuses always had honey in them. People had no fear of thieves or wild animals. Nobody died of accidents. Kusha grass was golden in colour. Fruits were always sweet and ripe and nobody went hungry. People lived in caves or trees or wherever they liked. For the first time and commerce came into existence. Prithu himself made the earth even, he had divine powers of disappearing any mundane object with his mental power. His chariot could travel over land and air with complete ease. Mountains made way for Prithu on his chariot and his flagstaff was never entangled when Prithu trave
Alwar, located 150 km south of Delhi and 150 km north of Jaipur, is a city in India's National Capital Region and the administrative headquarters of Alwar District in the state of Rajasthan. Alwar is a hub of tourism with several forts, heritage havelis and nature reserves, including the Bhangarh Fort, the Sariska Tiger Reserve and Siliserh lake. Alwar was a part of one of the sixteen ancient Mahājanapadas; the history of Alwar dates back to 1000 CE. The king of Amer ruled the area in the eleventh century and his territory extended up to the present-day city of Alwar, he founded the city of Alpur in 1106 Vikrami samvat under his own name, which became Alwar. From time to time, a different Rajput sub-clan came to rule Alwar. Examples include the Khanzada Rajputs, the Nikumbh Rajputs, the Badgujjar Rajputs, the Naruka Rajputs who took the control over this area. Bhadanakas clan of Gurjar, The Maratha Empire and Jats of Bharatpur State ruled this region for a short period. A Rajput, Partap Singh, took the Alwar Fort from the Jat Raja of Bharatpur and laid down the foundation for modern day Alwar.
The Hindu King Hemchandra Vikramaditya, born into a Brahmin family in Machari, a village in Alwar, was a Hindu emperor of North India during the 16th century. This was a period when the Afghans were vying for power in the region. Hemu acceded to the throne of Delhi on 7 October 1556 after defeating Akbar's Mughal forces in the Battle of Delhi in the Tughlakabad area in Delhi, became the de facto king, he became the last Hindu emperor of India. Alwar State, a princely state established in 1770, was established by a Kachwaha Rajput named Pratap Singh, earlier a jagirdar of "Dhai Gaon" near Machari, his successor "Bakhtawar Singh Kachwaha" was defeated after launching an armed incursion into neighbouring Jaipur State and being forced to accept the consequent treaty mediated by East India Company prohibiting him from political relations with other states without the consent of the colonial British. According to the "Gazetteer of Ulwar" published by the British raj, Alwar State was subdivided into four regions: Rath region: current Behror and Neemrana, was ruled by Lah Chauhan rajput zamindar who had descended from Prithviraj Chauhan.
Sahesh Mal was a son of Raja Sangat Singh Chauhan. Sangat was the great grandson of Chahir Deo Chauhan, brother of famous rajput king Prithviraj Chauhan. In accordance with the pledge by the raja Sangat Singh Chauhan to his younger queen for marrying her in his old age, her two sons from him were bestowed the Rath area and its headquarter of Mandhan near Neemrana. King Sangat Singh Chauhan's 19 sons from the older queen set out to seek their fortunes. Of the 19 brothers, Harsh Dev Chauhan and Sahesh Mal Chauhan arrived in the Gurgaon district. Lah Chauhan, the ruler of Rath, was a son of raja Sangat Singh Chauhan by the younger Rani whose two sons became inheritors of Raja Sangat Singh’s territory of Rath with its headquarter at Mandhan when other 19 sons from the other wives were required to quit the kingdom as per the promise of Raja Sangat. Wai region: current Bansur and Thana Ghazi, was ruled by Shekhawat rajput zamindars. Narukhand region: current Rajgarh and Laxmangarh, was ruled by Naruka sub-branch of Kachwaha rajputs who were from the same branch as the ruling kings of the Alwar State Mewat region: current Palwal and Nuh districts, had the highest population of the Meo Muslims.
Alwar acceded to the dominion of India following the independence of India in 1947. On 18 March 1948, the state merged with three neighbouring princely states to form the Matsya Union. On 15 May 1949, it was united with neighbouring princely states and the territory of Ajmer to form the present-day Indian state of Rajasthan. Alwar was designated as part of the National Capital Region, resulting in additional development projects including rapid-rail to Delhi and drinking water improvements; the military cantonment of Itarana lies on the outskirts of Alwar. Alwar is the first major city; the city's heritage, apart from being a draw for tourists, has been an attraction for Bollywood film shoots including Shakespeare Wallah, Karan Arjun at Sariska palace and dadigarh fort and Bhangarh, Saajan Chale Sasural at Sariska palace, Talaash: The Hunt Begins... and Trip to Bhangarh. The Mega Alwar trade fair is held at Dusshera ground every year. Alwar is known for its hand-made Papier-mâché; the Fairy Queen, a national treasure of India and the world's oldest working locomotive engine, operates as a tourist luxury train between Delhi and Alwar.
Bala Qila known as Alwar Fort, is a fort 300 meters above the city, founded by the 15th-century Khanzada Rajput ruler Hasan Khan Mewati and built on the foundations of a 10th-century mud fort. Situated on the Aravalli Range, the fort is 5 kilometres long and about 1.5 kilometres wide with turrets, a large gate, a temple, a residential area. The City Palace known as Vinay Vilas Mahal, built in 1793 CE by Raja Bakhtawar Singh, blends the Rajputana and Islamic architectural styles and has marble pavilions on lotus-shaped bases in its courtyard; the palace houses a state museum with a collection of manuscripts, including one depicting Emperor Babur’s life, Ragamala paintings and miniatures, historic swords that once belonged to Muhammad Ghori, Emperor Akbar and Aurangzeb. This palace that once belonged to the Maharaja has now been convert
Vithoba known as Vitthal and Panduranga, is a Hindu deity predominantly worshipped in the Indian state of Maharashtra. He is considered a manifestation of the god Vishnu or his avatar, Krishna. Vithoba is depicted as a dark young boy, standing arms akimbo on a brick, sometimes accompanied by his main consort Rakhumai. Vithoba is the focus of an monotheistic, non-ritualistic bhakti-driven Varkari faith of Maharashtra and the Haridasa faith. Vitthal Temple, Pandharpur is his main temple. Vithoba legends revolve around his devotee Pundalik, credited with bringing the deity to Pandharpur, around Vithoba's role as a saviour to the poet-saints of the Varkari faith; the Varkari poet-saints are known for their unique genre of devotional lyric, the abhang, dedicated to Vithoba and composed in Marathi. Other devotional literature dedicated to Vithoba includes the hymns of the Haridasa and the Marathi versions of the generic aarti songs associated with rituals of offering light to the deity; the most important festivals of Vithoba are held on Shayani Ekadashi in the month of Ashadha, Prabodhini Ekadashi in the month of Kartik.
The historiography of Vithoba and his cult is an area of continuing debate regarding his name. Various Indologists have proposed a prehistory for Vithoba worship where he was previously: a hero stone, a pastoral deity, a manifestation of Shiva, a Jain saint, or all of these at various times for various devotees. Though the origins of both his cult and his main temple are debated, there is clear evidence that they existed by the 13th century. Vithoba is known by many names, including: Vitthala, Pandharinath and Narayan. There are several theories about the meanings of these names. Varkari tradition suggests that the name Vitthala is composed of two Sanskrit-Marathi words: viṭ, which means'brick'. Thus, Vitthala would mean'one standing on a brick'. William Crooke, supported this explanation; the prescribed iconography of Vithoba stipulates that he be shown standing arms-akimbo upon a brick, associated with the legend of the devotee Pundalik. However, the Varkari poet-saint Tukaram proposed a different etymology—that Vitthala is composed of the words vittha and la, thus meaning'one who accepts innocent people who are devoid of knowledge'.
Historian Ramakrishna Gopal Bhandarkar offers yet another possibility—that Vitthu is a Kannada corruption of the name Vishnu adopted in Marathi. The suffixes -la and -ba were appended for reverence, producing the names Vitthala and Vithoba; this corruption of Vishnu to Vitthu could have been due to the tendency of Marathi and Kannada people to pronounce the Sanskrit ṣṇ as ṭṭh, attested since the 8th century. According to research scholar M. S. Mate of the Deccan College, Pundalik—who is assumed to be a historical figure—was instrumental in persuading the Hoysala king Vishnuvardhana alias Bittidev to build the Pandharpur temple dedicated to Vishnu; the deity was subsequently named as a derivative of Bittidev, by the builder-king. Other variants of the name include Viṭhurāyā, Viṭhāī; the people of Gujarat add the suffix - nath to Vitthala. The additional honorific suffix -ji may be added, giving the name Vitthalnathji; this name is used in the Pushtimarg sect. Panduranga spelt as Pandurang and Pandaranga, is another popular epithet for Vithoba, which means'the white god' in Sanskrit.
The Jain author-saint Hemachandra notes it is used as an epithet for the god Rudra-Shiva. Though Vithoba is depicted with dark complexion, he is called a "white god". Bhandarkar explains this paradox, proposing that Panduranga may be an epithet for the form of Shiva worshipped in Pandharpur, whose temple still stands. With the increasing popularity of Vithoba's cult, this was transferred to Vithoba. Another theory suggests that Vithoba may have been a Shaiva god, only identified with Vishnu, thus explaining the usage of Panduranga for Vithoba. Crooke, proposed that Panduranga is a Sanskritised form of Pandaraga, referring to the old name of Pandharpur. Another name, Pandharinath refers to Vithoba as the lord of Pandhari. Vithoba is addressed by the names of Vishnu like Hari and Narayana, in the Vaishnava sect. Reconstruction of the historical development of Vithoba worship has been much debated. In particular, several alternative theories have been proposed regarding the earliest stages, as well as the point at which he came to be recognised as a distinct deity.
The Pandurangashtakam stotra, a hymn attributed to Adi Shankaracharya of the 8th century, indicates that Vithoba worship might have existed at an early date. According to Richard Maxwell Eaton, author of A Social History of the Deccan, Vithoba was first worshipped as a pastoral god as early as the 6th century. Vithoba's arms-akimbo iconography is similar to Bir Kuar, the cattle-god of the Ahirs of Bihar, now associated with Krishna. Vithoba was later assimilated into the Shaiva pantheon and identified with the god Shiva, like most other pastoral gods; this is backed by the facts that the temple at Pandharpur is surrounded by Shaiva temples (most notably of the dev
Thirumohoor Kalamegaperumal temple
Thirumohoor Kalamegaperumal Temple is a hindu temple near Melur, Madurai district in the South Indian state of Tamil Nadu, is dedicated to the Hindu god Vishnu. Constructed in the Dravidian style of architecture, the temple is glorified in the Divya Prabandha, the early medieval Tamil canon of the Azhwar saints from the 6th–9th centuries AD, it is one of the 108 Divyadesam dedicated to Vishnu, worshipped as Neelamegha Perumal and his consort Lakshmi as Tirukannapura Nayagi. As per Hindu legend, the presiding deity is believed to have appeared as a female Mohini to lure the asuras to support Devas, the celestial deities; the temple is known as Mohanapuram and Mohanakshetram. A granite wall surrounds the temple, enclosing all its shrines and three of its four bodies of water; the temple has a five-tiered rajagopuram, the temple's gateway tower and a huge temple tank in front of it. The temple is believed to have been built by the Pandyas, with additions from the Madurai Nayaks. Six daily rituals and three yearly festivals are held at the temple, of which the Brahmotsavam, celebrated during the Tamil month of Vaikasi, being the most prominent.
The temple is maintained and administered by the Hindu Religious and Endowment Board of the Government of Tamil Nadu. As per Hindu legend, once a demon by name Bhasmasura did penance. Shiva granted him a boon. Bhasmasura wanted to touch the head of Shiva. A bewildered Shiva ran to seek the favour of Vishnu, she made Bhasmasura touch his head with his hand. The demon Bhasmasura was thus defeated; the place where Mohini lured came to be known as Thirumohur. According to another legend, there was a fight between the Devas and Asuras during the churning of the Ocean of Milk for Amrita. Asuras were able to overpower Devas and the Devas sought Vishnu's help. Vishnu gave them empty pot, it is believed. Sangam literature details about this place being prosperous during the time; the documentation from Ptolemy makes reference to this place. Inscription from the temple - South Outer wall's inside - Archaeological report on Epigraphy - 330 of 1918 - and Tamil Nadu State Archaeology's Madurai District Inscriptions - Vol.
I - page no. 229 - Sl. no. 141 of 2003 - identifies the builder of the temple as sri Kaala Maegam alias Kaangaeyan during the reign of Sadaiya Varman Sundhara Pandiyan in his regnal year 7 + 1, identified as AD 1259. This inscription besides identifying the above speaks of an endowment of ponds and adjoining areas duly specifying the boundaries of the land; the current structure is believed to have been built by the Madurai Nayaks. During the part, there were additions made by the Marudu brothers, whose images are housed in the temple. Thirumohur was an impregnable fort during the period of British. During the Carnatic Wars, there was an attempt made by a Muslim general, but it was repulsed by the local devotees; the inscriptions from the period of Nayaks have been recorded by the Archaeological survey. The temple is situated on a 2.5-acre land area, has a 5 tier rajagopuram. The temple is more than 2000 years old and has been referred to in akanaṉūṟu, maduraikanchi and in one of the five great epics of Tamil literature, silappatikaram.
There are four prakarams inside the temple. The main deity is Kalamegaperumal in panchayudha kolam and in a standing posture, Thayar - Mogavalli, Utsavar - Thirumogur Aabthan, Theertham - Kshirabtha Pushkarini, Thala Viruksham - Vilvam and Vimanam - Kethaki Vimanam; the Prathanasayana appearance of the main deity is not found anywhere in 108 divya desam temples. The temple has a five-tiered rajagopuram. There are columned pillars in the hall leading to the Garuda hall, which has a small gopuram; the sanctum houses the shrine of Kalamegha and has the images of Bhoodevi and Sridevi. The major feature is that the unlike other temples, the Devis do not touch the feet of the presiding deity. A separate shrine accommodates the image of Anantasayi Vishnu; the consort of the presiding deity, Tirumohurvalli is housed in a separate shrine. The front of the Sudarshana Chakra is Chakrathazhvar and the back side is Narasingha Perumal, situated amidst 48 fairies and inside the six circles there are 16 aayuthams with 154 letters.
The letters are believed to be text from Bhijakshara Mantra. Perumal is depicted with three eyes glowing like fire; the image of Chakrathazwhar in the temple is depicted with sixteen hands each holding different weapons. On the reverse side of the image, Narsimha is depicted; the temple priests perform the pooja during festivals and on a daily basis based on pancharatra Agama. As at other Vishnu temples of Tamil Nadu, the priests belong to the Vaishnavaite community, a Brahmin sub-caste; the temple rituals are performed six times a day: Ushathkalam at 7 a.m. Kalasanthi at 8:00 a.m. Uchikalam at 12:00 p.m. Sayarakshai at 6:00 p.m. Irandamkalam at 7:00 p.m. and Ardha Jamam at 10:00 p.m. Each ritual has three steps: alangaram and deepa aradanai for both Kalamega Perumal and Mohanavalli. During the last step of worship and tavil are played, religious instructions in the Vedas are recited by priests, worshippers prostrate them
The Upanishads, a part of the Vedas, are ancient Sanskrit texts that contain some of the central philosophical concepts and ideas of Hinduism, some of which are shared with religious traditions like Buddhism and Jainism. Among the most important literature in the history of Indian religions and culture, the Upanishads played an important role in the development of spiritual ideas in ancient India, marking a transition from Vedic ritualism to new ideas and institutions. Of all Vedic literature, the Upanishads alone are known, their central ideas are at the spiritual core of Hindus; the Upanishads are referred to as Vedānta. Vedanta has been interpreted as the "last chapters, parts of the Veda" and alternatively as "object, the highest purpose of the Veda"; the concepts of Brahman and Ātman are central ideas in all of the Upanishads, "know that you are the Ātman" is their thematic focus. Along with the Bhagavad Gita and the Brahmasutra, the mukhya Upanishads provide a foundation for the several schools of Vedanta, among them, two influential monistic schools of Hinduism.
More than 200 Upanishads are known, of which the first dozen or so are the oldest and most important and are referred to as the principal or main Upanishads. The mukhya Upanishads are found in the concluding part of the Brahmanas and Aranyakas and were, for centuries, memorized by each generation and passed down orally; the early Upanishads all predate the Common Era, five of them in all likelihood pre-Buddhist, down to the Maurya period. Of the remainder, 95 Upanishads are part of the Muktika canon, composed from about the last centuries of 1st-millennium BCE through about 15th-century CE. New Upanishads, beyond the 108 in the Muktika canon, continued to be composed through the early modern and modern era, though dealing with subjects which are unconnected to the Vedas. With the translation of the Upanishads in the early 19th century they started to attract attention from a western audience. Arthur Schopenhauer was impressed by the Upanishads and called it "the production of the highest human wisdom".
Modern era Indologists have discussed the similarities between the fundamental concepts in the Upanishads and major western philosophers. The Sanskrit term Upaniṣad translates to "sitting down near", referring to the student sitting down near the teacher while receiving spiritual knowledge. Other dictionary meanings include "esoteric doctrine" and "secret doctrine". Monier-Williams' Sanskrit Dictionary notes – "According to native authorities, Upanishad means setting to rest ignorance by revealing the knowledge of the supreme spirit."Adi Shankaracharya explains in his commentary on the Kaṭha and Brihadaranyaka Upanishad that the word means Ātmavidyā, that is, "knowledge of the self", or Brahmavidyā "knowledge of Brahma". The word appears in the verses of many Upanishads, such as the fourth verse of the 13th volume in first chapter of the Chandogya Upanishad. Max Müller as well as Paul Deussen translate the word Upanishad in these verses as "secret doctrine", Robert Hume translates it as "mystic meaning", while Patrick Olivelle translates it as "hidden connections".
The authorship of most Upanishads is unknown. Radhakrishnan states, "almost all the early literature of India was anonymous, we do not know the names of the authors of the Upanishads"; the ancient Upanishads are embedded in the Vedas, the oldest of Hinduism's religious scriptures, which some traditionally consider to be apauruṣeya, which means "not of a man, superhuman" and "impersonal, authorless". The Vedic texts assert that they were skillfully created by Rishis, after inspired creativity, just as a carpenter builds a chariot; the various philosophical theories in the early Upanishads have been attributed to famous sages such as Yajnavalkya, Uddalaka Aruni, Shandilya, Balaki and Sanatkumara. Women, such as Maitreyi and Gargi participate in the dialogues and are credited in the early Upanishads. There are some exceptions to the anonymous tradition of the Upanishads; the Shvetashvatara Upanishad, for example, includes closing credits to sage Shvetashvatara, he is considered the author of the Upanishad.
Many scholars believe that early Upanishads were expanded over time. There are differences within manuscripts of the same Upanishad discovered in different parts of South Asia, differences in non-Sanskrit version of the texts that have survived, differences within each text in terms of meter, style and structure; the existing texts are believed to be the work of many authors. Scholars are uncertain about; the chronology of the early Upanishads is difficult to resolve, states philosopher and Sanskritist Stephen Phillips, because all opinions rest on scanty evidence and analysis of archaism and repetitions across texts, are driven by assumptions about evolution of ideas, presumptions about which philosophy might have influenced which other Indian philosophies. Indologist Patrick Olivelle says that "in spite of claims made by some, in reality, any dating of these documents that attempts a precision closer than a few centuries is as stable as a house of cards"; some scholars have tried to analyse similarities between Hindu Upanishads and Buddhist literature to establish chronology for the Upanishads.
Patrick Olivelle gives the following chronology for the early Upanishads called the Principal Upanishads: The Brhadaranyaka and the Chandogya are the two earliest Upanishads. They are edited texts; the two texts are pre-B