Suryanarayana Temple




 Video - In and Around Suryanarayana Temple
Suryanarayana Temple, Arasavalli- Sri Kakulam was built during the 7th century by the Kalinga rulers of Orissa. Arasavalli is situated at Srikakulam near Vishakapatnam which is in the state of Andhra Pradesh. The temple enshrines the great Sun God. The idol has been carved from black granite, 5 feet in height holding lotus buds, surrounded by his consorts Padma, Usha and Chhaaya. The idol is depicted as riding on a chariot driven by seven horses. The gate keepers Pingala and Danda and the saints Sanaka and Sananda are portrayed on the base of the idol. Aruna (Anoora), Lord Surya's charioteer is also portrayed in the image.

Srikakulam, India Weather Forecast
The Eastern Kalinga rulers who were dominated by the Kalinga region from the 4th to the 14th century constructed Suryanarayana Temple, Arasavalli- Sri Kakulam. The inscriptions on the great temple reflect the fact that the grants given by the descendants of Kalinga rulers like Aditya Vishnu Sarma and Bhanu Sarma has been utilized to maintain the temple. The temple we see at present is due to the renovations done during the 18th century.

The temple is said to be called panchayatana temple, with five deities, Aditya in the center, with Ganesha, Shiva, Parvati and Vishnu in four corners. The magnificent idol of Indra lies in the center of Suryanarayana Temple, Arasavalli- Sri Kakulam. One of the major celebrations of the temple is the Maha Sourayagam,organized for the welfare of the humanity at large. People from far off places come to receive the grace of Lord as it is believed that people suffering with skin diseases, blindness and barrenness are cured remarkably, if they worship at the temple.

Significance of the Temple
Entrance - Suryanarayana Temple
Legend has it that Balarama, brother of Lord Krishna (said to be the incarnation of Lord Vishnu) dug Earth with His Chakra and brought the river Nagavalli along with him and consecrated many temples on Earth. One such temple built in Srikakulam was Sri Umarudrakoteswara Swami (Lord Shiva) temple where all the Gods from heaven used to come and worship.

One day Lord Indra, the Lord of Heaven, also descended to Earth to worship Lord Shiva. But, as Lord Indra was entering at odd time he was stopped at the entrance by Nandi, who stood as the dwarapalaka of Lord Shiva. When He tried to enter forcibly, Nandi kicked Lord Indra who fell unconscious about two miles from the place. When He was unconscious, Lord Indra had a dream, where Surya Deva Himself said that He would be cured of His pain in the chest if He builds a temple of the Sun God at that place.

After Lord Indra regained his consciousness, He followed every word told by Surya Deva and picked up handful of Earth three times from the place where He feel and he found this beautiful idol of Sun God with his three consorts Usha, Chaya and Padmini. He installed the idol of God at the very place where He fell and also built a beautiful temple. The temple was designed by Vishwakarma who is the chief architect of the Gods. Thus the temple of Lord Surya Narayana came into existence in this place.

One epigraph found from an Eastern Kalinga king, whose dynasty ruled over Kalinga continuously from the 4th to the 14th century reveals that Aditya Vishnu Sarman and Bhanu Sarman, the two brothers were the sons of Narayana and Bhattu who are greatly attached to Lord Surya at Arasavalli. Another inscription found in the temple states that a General of the king Srikarana had donated five acres of land to the Sun God. This land was donated with an intention to run a school and a hostel for the education of pupils studying Sanskrit in those days.

Suryanarayana Deva - Sun God - Suryanarayana Temple
Here Indra dug with his 'Vajrayudha' and formed a pond, which is known as Indrapushkarini. Even today devotees feel that they can attain the Grace of Lord Surya if they offer their prayers after taking a dip in the pushkarini. After taking a holy dip in the pushkarni, they turn towards the temple and open their eyes and what do they see! Lord Surya's idol before then in all its great splendor-and clad in golden colored angavastra. Crown studded with rare diamonds, hands with 'Abhaya Mudra' wide open eyes filled with karuna, ear-rings, studded with diamonds, grave and but graceful face.

His very darshan assures fulfillment of all desires in the world. The very temple was conceived and constructed by Viswakarma, the divine architect. Pingala and Mathara are the doorkeepers of this August Temple. Anura is the Sun God's chariot driver. Thirteen more angels lustily cheer the Sun god. Sanaka, Sanandana and other sages offer him Vinjamara seva. Sage Narada and others sing the glory of the God. Devaguru Bruhaspati and others chant Vedas. Thus the Sun God was consecrated here in Arasavalli by Lord Indra himself. Such is the glory and greatness of this temple.

According to Padmapuranam, Sage Kasyapa installed the Idol of Surya at Arasavalli for the welfare of mankind.Therefore,Surya is of Kasyapasa Gotra. He is also termed as planetary King .

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Horsley Hills

The Sthalapuranam of the temple narrates that lord Devendra had founded this temple and installed the existing idol of the Sun God commonly known as Lord suryanarayana Swamy Varu.

How to reach the Temple and Accomodation
  • Through Airways: Through Airways, the Visakhapatnam air port is the nearest airport to Srikaulam district. Kingfisher and Air Deccan operate flights from Vishakhapatnam airport to Hyderabad, Chennai, Kolkata and Tirupathi. Visakapatnam is nearly 100 kms from Srikakulam.

  • Through Railways: Through railways, Srikakulam is the big railway station in Srikakulam district on the Chennai -Kolkata line. Trains are available which run to Hyderabad Chennai, Howrah, Vijayawada, Nellore, Tirupathi, Secunderabad and other places. Konark express, Howrah mail, Visakha express, Coramandel express are the trains which pass through this place.

  • Through Roadways: Arasavalli is at a distance of 3 km from Srikakulam and 733 km from Hyderabad. It is an important pilgrim centre and large crowds visit the Sun God's temple during Sundays. Shri Suryanarayana Swamy temple located here is the only Sun temple in the whole of Andhra Pradesh.