Ramayana Temples
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Ramayana Temples

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Item Code: NAZ529
Author: Sitharam Gurumurthi
Publisher: Vikas Publishing House Pvt. Ltd.
Language: English
Edition: 2003
ISBN: 9788125914389
Pages: 182 (Throughout Color Illustrations)
Other Details 10.00 X 7.50 inch
Weight 760 gm
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Ayodhya is one of the seven Mokshapuris. There is no doubt that the incarnation of Dasaratha’s son Sri Rama took place at Ayodhya. Sri Rama had traversed all the way from Ayodhya up to Sri Lanka.

We are happy to learn that Dr. Sitharam Gurumurthi, after doing certain amount of research regarding the route taken by Sri Rama from Ayodhya to Sri Lanka on the basis of the names of the places, available historical evidence and the events which are reported to have taken place, has brought out the book Ramayana Temples along with a number of photographs. The story of Sri Rama is like an ocean. As it is not possible to fathom all the nature and nuances of the ocean, it is equally not possible to bring out the ocean of Ramayana in full. We give our blessings to the continued success of this endeavour.


The Ramayana is not history or biography. It is a part of Hindu mythology. We cannot understand Greek life and Greek civilisation without knowing all about Zeus, Apollo, Hercules, Venus, Hector, Priam, Achilles, Ulysses and others. So also one cannot understand Hindu dharma unless one knows Rama and Seeta, Bharata, Lakshmana, Ravana, Kumbhakarna and Hanuman. Mythology cannot be dispensed with. Philosophy alone or rituals alone or mythology alone cannot be sufficient. These are the three stands of all ancient religions. The attitude towards things spiritual which belongs to a particular people cannot be grasped or preserved or conveyed unless we have all these three. Even an iconoclast like Bernard Shaw has acknowledged the essentiality of myths.

The inspiration to write this book came when, in the early eighties, I served as the Collector of the composite Ramanathapuram district in Tamilnadu comprising the present day districts of Virudhunagar, Sivagangai and Ramanathapuram. I was struck by noticing that several ancient temples and monuments associated with Ramayana are located in various parts of the present day districts of Ramanathapuram and Sivagangai. When I once went to Devipattinam, a small town near Ramanathapuram for selecting a site for a noon meal centre, I had the opportunity of visiting Navapashanam where the Navagrahaas well within the sea waters had been worshipped by Rama before starting constructing a bridge across the sea to Sri Lanka. Further research by way of enquiries and some reading made me realize that there are several ancient temples spread over the states of Andhra Pradesh, Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu (other districts) and Uttar Pradesh as well as the countries of Nepal and Sri Lanka and the locations of these temples roughly correspond to the route which possibly could have been taken by Rama from Ayodhya to Lanka. The very existence of these temples in highly remote areas like Bhadrachalam in Andhra Pradesh which are not easily accessible even today and the age of these temples bear eloquent testimony to the fact that the story of Rama could not have been a myth and that it should have some historical basis.

While a great deal of research has gone into this subject and there are several theories about the location of various places mentioned in Ramayana, my intention is not to either confirm or contradict any of these theories. While the great poet Kalidasa refers to several places while describing the return journey of Rama from Sri Lanka to Ayodhya in his Raghu Vamsam as if he had actually seen them, in a well-researched book Ramayana and Lanka published in 1940, Mr. Paramasiva Iyer held that Ceylon (Sri Lanka) could not have possibly been the Lanka of the Ramayana and he preferred locating Lanka on the Indrana hill situated fifteen miles north of Jabalpore in Madhya Pradesh. In his view, "Ceylon was faked into Lanka and Adam’s bridge into Nalasethu during the period (1000-1100) of unquestioned Chola supremacy in South India. As the book was published in 1940 and copies of the book are not easily available, I have added the Preface to Ramayana and Lanka as Appendix.

This book is a humble effort on my part to present under one roof, details of temples and. places associated with Ramayana starting from Ayodhya in the state of Uttar Pradesh to Sri Lanka in order to appreciate the fact that notwithstanding the mythological and theological associations with the hero of the epic, Ramayana, Rama should have been a real life character who led an exemplary life and whom the posterity has tried to preserve, protect and immortalize by building temples in the route traversed by him from one end of the sub-continent to the other.

In all humility, I would like to point out that this is no original piece of work on my part but just a collection of details of various temples spread across the length and breadth of India as well as a few neighbouring countries like Nepal and Sri Lanka. It would not have been possible to complete the book without the active cooperation of several individuals and institutions. The names of all those individuals and institutions who have assisted me and made completion of this book possible have been given in Appendix III. I am highly grateful to the most respected Jagatguru Shri Jayendra Saraswathi Sankaracharya Swamigal and Jagatguru Shri Vijayendra Saraswathi Sankaracharya Swamigal of Shri Kanchi Kamakoti Peetam and His Excellency Mr. R. Venkataraman, former President of India for their advice and guidance in this endeavour. I have also drawn guidance from the research of Professor G.B. Kanuga on a related subject as detailed in his book, Immortal Love of RAMA.

In writing this book, it has not been my objective to establish that Rama did visit all the locations mentioned in the following pages as I have neither undertaken the type of research by the late Paramasiva Iyer nor was ever my intention to do so. At best, this book could be expected to serve as source material for further research in this area. In writing this book, I have tried to give details of locations of the temples to help those interested in visiting them. Though I have tried to give the photographs of the temples, it has not been possible to secure the photos for several of them. It is also likely that I might have missed several of the temples associated with Ramayana. | request the readers to kindly write to me about such omissions. Similarly, if some of the readers could help me with photographs of some of those temples about which only mention has been made, I would only be too happy to incorporate all those in a subsequent edition. The readers may appreciate the fact that it has taken me more than nineteen years to complete this book.

I am highly grateful to Dr. J Jayalalithaa, Honourable Chief Minister of Tamil Nadu for all the encouragement and support for this project and giving me permission under the All India Services Conduct Rules to publish the book. I wish to express my profound sense of gratitude to Shri Chandrasekarendra Saraswathi Viswa Maha Vidyalaya (Deemed University), Enathur, Kancheepuram District for sponsoring this book.

I would like to thank Shri PSanthadurai, Shrimathi V.Mala and Shrimathi N.Prabavathi, who have been of great help in sifting the material and bringing out this book in its present shape.

**Sample Pages**

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