Lord Aprameya Swamy Temple at Doddamalur

There are many temples devoted to Lord Krishna and the temple of Lord Aprameya at Doddamalur near Channapatna is devoted to crawling Krishna (Ambegal Krishna).

Lord Aprameya Swamy Temple at Doddamalur
Lord Aprameya Swamy Temple at Doddamalur

The ancient temple of Lord Aprameya dates back to 3,000 years. There is a written document preserved to date, which says about lighting lamps to Lord Aprameya in 980 A.D. Records say that the temple was built and expanded by Chola king Rajendra Simha.

The speciality of the temple lies in the very basis of the building, as it is standing on sand and not on any solid foundation.
Legends say that Goddess Mahalakshmi was born in a lotus flower in Vishnu Teertham, which is to the North-West of the temple, and was known as Aravindavalli. Aravindavalli is the presiding Goddess in the temple.

The idol of Sri Aprameya is carved out of Saligrama stone. The idol is in the posture of Abhayahastha. Lord’s two upper hands are holding Shanka (Conch shell) and Chakra (disc) and the lower arms are holding Gadha (mace) and Hastha (Asdsuring hand).

There is a small replica of the main idol, which is taken on a procession in the chariot during festivals, is placed on a sandalwood pedestal. The idols of Sridevi and Bhoodevi accompany the Lord along with the idol of saint Ramanujacharya.

It is believed that sage Vyasa installed the statue of Lord Navaneeta in the temple. The idol flaunts several ornaments, and a pendant of tiger claws is prominent among them. Priests say that the Lord wears it to avoid bad eyes from his many devotees ogling at his boundless beauty.

It is said that Purandaradasa composed his popular song — “Jagadoddharana Aadisidalu Yashode…” after seeing the beauty of Lord Navaneeta in the temple. Purandaradasa Mantapam in front of the Rajagopuram of the temple is a tribute to the great poet for immortalising his ecstasy on seeing Navaneeta Krishna here.

Ambegalu Krishna
Ambegalu Krishna

Legends say that about 130 years ago, the then Maharaja of Mysore came to have the darshan of Lord Aprameya, Aravindavalli and Krishna at Malur. He was so attracted to the lovely idol of Lord Krishna that he took it to his palace. The same night he had a dream in which Lord Krishna ordered him to return the idol to the temple at Doddamalur, failing which great harm would befall on him. The Raja did not obey the words of the Lord and as a result, a part of his palace was consumed by fire. Then the Raja was forced to restore the idol back at the temple.

Legends also say that Lord Rama stayed here, in Dakshina Ayodhya, for several years and worshipped Lord Aprameya. So Lord Aprameya is also called as Sriramaprameya. Lord Rama performed several homas and rituals in the temple, and there are remnants of the structures where he conducted yajnas and homas.

Lord Navaneeta temple has several silver and wooden cradles offered to the Lord by devotees desirous of getting a child.

The Brahmotsava of Lord Aprameya falls in April/May of every year. The architecture of the temple is such that Sun rays fall directly on the sanctum sanctorum of Lord Aprameya during April/May.

Legends also mention that Lord Aprameya was worshipped by King Vijayapala in Krutha Yuga, sage Kanva in Thretha Yuga, sage Lambha Shrava in Dwapara Yuga and Vigyanaeshwara in Kali Yuga. Sage Kapila spread the message of Lord Aprameya. It is believed that even today, sage Kapila, sage Kanva stay here and worship Lord Aprameya. Once the temple is locked by priest in the night, people say that they hear the sound of door opening in the sanctum sanctorum and temple bells ringing, which indicates the Amara Jeevi sages praying Lord Aprameya.

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