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Kadiri Lakshminarayana

The town got its name from Khadri, in Sanskrit, meaning Indian mulberry. It is believed that Lord Shri Khadri Lakshmi Narasimha Swamy came out of this tree. The main deity in Kadiri Laksmi Narasimha Swamy temple is Ashta Bahu Shri Narasimha who has eight hands clawing open the body of Hiranyakashipu. This was one of the ten avatars or reincarnations of Lord Vishnu. The specialty of this temple is that after the daily obeisance known as Abhishekam is performed; the Lord Narasimha is seen to be sweating despite being wiped clean by the temple priests.

Narasimha means ‘Man Lion’ as that was the form taken by Lord Vishnu to kill Hiranyakashipu who could not be killed otherwise. This incarnation has been mentioned in the Puranas, Upanishads and the other religious text books of the Hindus. It is merely a mention on how truth can overcome evil despite the difficulties. He is envisioned as a half man with the torso and lower body and the face and hands, that of a lion.

Thousands of Hindu devotees throng this temple during festivals which is otherwise known as the Laksminarayana Temple. The legendary aspect of this temple dates back to Thretha yuga, one of the four Yugas which are measured by the number of years. The four Yugas are:

Satya Yuga: 1728000 years

Tretha Yuga: 1296000 years

Dwapara Yuga: 864000 years and

Kali Yuga: 432000

The scriptures say that Lord Vishnu, in one of his incarnations as Lord Narasimha , in his rage descended down on to earth as Ugrarupa to kill Hiranyakashipu, who wanted to avenge the death of his brother Hiranyaksha . Hiranyaksha was killed by one reincarnation of Lord Vishnu as Varaha. He took the people to task and tortured the sages and the common people for praying to Lord Vishnu. The sages appeared before Lord Vishnu to end this terror. In the meanwhile Hiranyakashipu got a boon from Lord Brahma after praying fervently for a favour. The boon was that it would be impossible for any human to kill him. Ultimately, Lord Vishnu had to reincarnate as Narasimha to kill Hiranyakashipu, as he was about to kill his own son for showing allegiance to Lord Vishnu.

It is said that Lord Narasimha emerged from the Khadri tree to act his part in killing Hiranyakashipu at this place. The temple was built by one Ranganayudu, a Palegar of Pathariapattanam.

The Rangamantapam has been ornately carved with scenes from the Ramayana and further down, the Lakshmi mantapa has depictions of the Mahabharatha. There are inscriptions on what the rulers have given to the temple. The carvings and scriptures have started fading due to the vagaries of climate and weather.

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