Seshachalam Hills, hilly ranges of the Eastern Ghats, are in the southern part of India in Andhra Pradesh state. They are bounded by the Rayalaseema uplands in the west and northwest and the Nandyal Valley (formed by the Kunderu River) in the northeast.
Tirupati is one of the famous places situated in Seshachalam. The abode of Lord Sri Venkateswara is in Tirumala. He is known famously as Lord of seven hills “Saptagirinivasa”.
Ahobilam is near Nandyal (about 60 kms.) which is located in Kurnool district of Andhra Pradesh in the hills known as Garudadri of the Eastern Ghats and is about 250 KM northwest of Tirupati. There are nine temples for Lord Nrishimha in this hill range. There is also a temple for Lord Narasimha known as Sri Prahalada Varadhan in the base of the hill. [more about Ahobilam]
Tirupati and Ahobilam are part of Eastern Ghats. It is believed that the Eastern Ghats forms a picturesque divinity of great serpent, Sri Adisesha, with its hood at Tirumala, its middle at Ahobilam and its tail - end portion - at Srisailam. Therefore all these three places are considered most sacred and in Tirumala we have abode of Sri Venkateswara, at Ahobilam that of Lord Nava Narasimha and at Srisailam Lord Maligarjuna.
Tirumala Hills are part of Seshachalam Hills range. The hills are 853 meters above sea level. The Hills comprises seven peaks, representing the seven hoods of Adisesha. Lord’s abode is located in the seventh peak namely Venkatadri, hence Lord is known by the name Sri Venkateswara. The seven hills, also called Saptagiri, represent the Saptarishi (seven sages). Hence the Lord is named Saptagirinivasa. The seven hills are 1. Vrushabhadri – Hill of Nandi, (the vahana of Lord Shiva), 2. Anjanadri – Hill of Anjana Devi mother of Lord Hanuman, birth place of lord Hanuman, 3. Neeladri – Bill of Neela Devi – It is because of boon granted by Lord Venkateswara to Neela Devi. It is believed that hair offered by the devotees is accepted by Neela Devi, 4. Garudadri or Garudachalam – Hill of Garuda, the vahana of Lord Vishnu, 5. Seshadri or Seshachalam – Hill of Sesha, the dasa of Lord Vishnu, 6. Naraynadri– Hill of Narada Muni, 7. Venkatadri – Hill of Lord Venkateswara
The apsara named Punjikastala made fun of Sri Mathanga Maharshi who was doing penance sitting in a peculiar posture. The posture reminded Punjikastala of a monkey hence she made fun of the Maharshi. Perturbed Maharshi cursed her to be born as monkey. When Punjikastala apologised for her action, Maharshi said to redeem off the curse she has to born as monkey and make penance towards Lord Siva and bore a child to help the cause of Sri Rama avatar.
She was reborn as a monkey and got married to the king of monkey by name Sri Kesari. According to Valmiki Ramayana, Kesari is from Malyavan Mountain and migrated to another mountain called Gokarna. As per the wishes of seers, Kesari the great monkey killed the demon named Shambasadana near sea-shore [Gokarna].
As told by Sri Mathanga Maharshi, Anjana Devi undertakes penance at a peaceful place in the Seshachalam Hills range. Presently the hill is known by the name Anjanadri and one of the peaks of Seshachalam. As per the words of Sri Hanuman in Srimad Valmiki Ramayana, Sri Anjaneya was born in the womb of the wife of that great monkey Kesari [Sri Anjana Devi], by the grace of the wind-god [Marut-Vayu]. He also adds he got the name Hanuman in this world by his activity.
The hill where Sri Anjana Devi had made penance presently known as Anjanadri and is seen Tirumala. We had in one of the article on “Sri Jabali Anjaneya” elaborated the relation of Sri Anjaneya and this mountain Anjanadri. Devotees may kindly see that article for more details about “Sri Jabali Maharshi” and his penance at this hill.
All these had happened during the period of Sri Ramayana, let us come to kali yuga and Anjanadri Hill.
Sri Periya Tirumalai Nambi the great and humble srivaishnavite was doing theertha kainkaryam to Lord Venkateswara at Tirumalai. He also happens to be maternal uncle of Sri Ramanuja. He is an exponent in Srimad Ramayana. Swamy Alavandar had instructed Sri Periya Tirumalai Nambi to pass on the sampradayic knowledge of Sri Ramayanam to Sri Ramanuja. Therefore, he forwarded instructions to Ramanuja to go to Tirumala to receive the treasure from Sri Nambi.
Sri Ramanuja who himself is considered as incarnation of Sri Adisesha, claimed the hill on his knees in order to avoid putting his foot on the hill. Sri Periya Tirumalai Nambi after finishing his theertha kainkaryam at the temple came down with the prasadam of Lord to receive Sri Ramanuja. Seeing Sri Nambi at this ripe age coming to meet him Sri Ramanuja told him that he could have sent anybody younger (or, lesser) with instructions. Sri Nambi replied that since he could not find anyone who is lesser than him, he himself had come. Seeing Sri Ramanuja on his knees, he convinced that if he claims the hill in this manner, then ordinary devotees will not be able to brave to do the pilgrimage,and requested him to consider the same as bhagavat kainkaryam. Such is piousness and simpleness of this great scholar.
As stated earlier, Periya Thirumalai Nambi was performing threetha kaikaryam to Lord Venkateswara by bringing water from Papavinasanam falls for the daily morning pooja of the Lord. Even during his advanced age, the swamiji was doing the service to Lord Venkateswara by bringing water from Papavinasanam falls. The Lord out of mercy took the form of a fowler and stood before the acharya begging for water to quench his thirst, the swamiji refused to give the fowler as the water is to be offered at the feet of Lord Venkateswara's pooja. As the swamiji was moving with the water pot the fowler shot an arrow at the pot for making a hole and drank the water. Acharya, Periya Thirumalai Nambi, felt sad for the act of the fowler and started going back to bring the water from Papavinasanam. Then, the fowler addressed the acharya "Thaathaa! Don’t worry". I will make a place nearer to the temple to bring water from another new falls." ("Thatha" = Grandfather). He struck the spot in the Anjanaadri hill with His arrow and sacred water gushed out from the hillock. The fowler appeared in the form of Lord Venkateswara and told acharya Tirumalai Nambi to bring sacred water for His aradhanam from Akashaganga only. The acharya was happy and did the kainkaryam every day till his last breath. Even today the descendants of Acharya Periya Thirumalai Nambi are doing the theertha kainkaryam in memory of this Acharya. Acharya Periya Tirumalai Nambi then on came to be known as thathachrya so also his descendants.
Thus by the sheer devotion and dedication of Sri Periya Tirumalai Nambi towards Lord today we have the sacred theertham, Akasa Ganga.
The penance done by Sri Anjana Devi in this hill had made the Lord to choose this particular hill to bring out Akasa Ganga.
A small temple with the deities of Sri Anjana Devi and Sri Anjaneya was in existence near Akasha Ganga. It was stated in a note by TTD as: According to temple legendary, the holy waters from the Akasha Ganga were brought every day for Abhishekam and other rituals at the Srivari Temple at Tirumala. The ancient texts also mention that this location is also named as Anjanadri as it was here that Anjanadevi meditated and begot Anjaneya as her son.
In the year 2014, the same temple had been renovated and Maha Samprokshanam was performed.
The temple has Garbhagraham only. Since built on the hill there is small path for making circumbulation of the deity. The temple vimanam has stucco figures of Sri Anjaneya on all the four sides. On the enterence side is Yoga Anjaneya, left side Abhaya Anjaneya, back side Sanjeeva Anjaneya and on the right side Baktha Anjaneya.
Devotees can have prokshanam [प्रोक्षण] with Akasha Ganga water so as to clean away the sins accrued so far. Have dharshan of Sri Anjana Devi the great mother of Sri Anjaneya and the mighty Sri Bala Anjaneya who gained the name as Hanuman.
Have dharshan of Sri Anjana Devi and Sri Anjaneya the Hanuman in this serene atmosphere, feel the blessings of this greats sheath you – nothing more in the world is greater.
Ed: January 2021
Welcome to the pages on Son of Wind God Vayu Lord Anjaneya Swami -Vayusuthan.
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SRI HANUMAN THINKS DIFFERENTLY, THINKS FAST, THINKS AHEAD AND ACTS FOR SURE.
Our salutations to this Hanuman who always brings subham - everything that is good - for His devotees and eliminates the bad and the evil. He removes even the traces of bad thoughts and deeds from His devotees. i.e He makes them pure in words, thought and deed.