Mangaldevi Temple

20 December 2006

The place name Mangalapura ( now Mangalore) owes its origin to the temple of Mangaladevi. Situated in Bolar about 3 kms from Hampankatta ( the heart of the city), the temple has its roots into the ninth century. The ardent devotees even today believe that the worship of Mangaldevi brings them prosperity and happiness.
In Tulunadu, Kundavarma, the most famous king of Ahepa dynasty was ruling. At that time there came two holy saints of the natha cult named Machendranatha and Gorakanatha from Nepal. They reached Mangalapura, crossing the river Nethravathi. The place were they crossed the river came to be known as 'Gorakdandi'.
They chose a place near the bank of Netravathi which was once the center of activities of sage Kapila. He had his hermitage there and it was a great center of education.
Hearing about the arrival of the two saints the king came to meet them. Introducing himself as the king of Tulunadu he pid them his respects and offered them all help and patronage. Pleased with the humility and virtues of the king they bought tohis knowledge that his kingdom was a hollowed place and it was sanctified by the activities of holy saints abd sages in the past. They requested him to grant them land so that they could build teir hermitage and make it a center if their religous activities under his protection and patronage.
For Kundavarma it was really a surprise to know that his land had such a hoary history. It was from these saints he came to know that once upon a time there existe a temple in his land dedicated to mother Mangaladevi. From their own mother he heard the story of Vihasini and Andasura, Parashurama and the temple built by them. The two saints took the king to the olaces where all these historical events had taken place. They asked the king to dig the place and relieve the linga and the Dharapatra symbolising Mangaladevi and install them in a shrine along with Nagaraja for the protection.
Kundavarma carried out the advice of the two sages. A grand shrine of Sri Mangaldevi stood on the hallowed place. The two sages themselves guided and supervised the execution of the work. The temple attained special significance as Mother Mangaladevi granted special favours, especially on maidens, pious maidens who worship the goddess observing Mangaladharavrata (Swayamvara Parvathi) will have their wishes fulfilled. They get husbands most suited for them.
Even today the two temples Mangaladevi and Kadri have maintained their connection. The hermits of Kadri Yogirajmutt visit Mangaladevi temple on the first days of Kadri temple festival and offer prayer and silk clothes.
Various pujas and rituals are performed by vedic brahmins on a regular basis. During Navarathri (dussera) special pujas are performed on all the nine days. On the seventh day, Godess Mangaladevi is worshipped as Sharadamba and on the eight day the goddess is worshipped as Maarikamba. On this day Aayuda puja is performed. All the weapons and tools are worshipped as the day marks the slaying of the cruel demons by the goddess Durga. On the ninth day also known as Mahanavami, a large number of devotees participate in the Rathothsava. The decorated godess in mounted on the grand chariot and pulled with thick ropes. the procession goes to Marnamikattte where the goddess is worshipped.
The temple is easily accessible by city buses, autorikshaws and taxis. To get there take the City Bus No. 27, 27A, 29A.


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