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The Chamundi Hills(Kannada: ಚಾಮುಂಡಿ ಬೆಟ್ಟ) are located in South India, close to the palace city of Mysore, Karnataka. These are among the eight most sacred hills of South India. The average elevation of these hills is around 1,000 meters.
According to legend, the demon Mahishasura, king of the area that is currently Mysore, was killed by the Goddess Chamundeswari (also Chamundi) after a fierce battle. The hills are named after the goddess, and a temple honors her in the hills. The temple has a beautiful idol of the Goddess Chamundeswari.
The temple has always been patronised by the rulers of Mysore. In earlier days, the Maharajas of Mysore would decorate the ceremonial Dasara elephant during the annual Dasara festival; since the seventies, the idol of Goddess Chamundi is taken on an elephant.
Chamundi's main hill features a long stone stairway leading to the top of the hill. There are 1,008 steps in all, with the first 600 steps being steeper than those higher up. En route to the top, the steps pass the large statue of Nandi the bull; the statue is about 16 feet high and 25 feet in length. Nandi is the vahana (vehicle) of Lord Shiva. Local monarch Dodda Devaraja Wodeyar directed the steps' creation in 1664 and the installation of the statue of Nandi.
Transportation by bus is provided from Mysore's central bus station to Chamundi Hills. The buses are administered on a regular basis. Other options to Chamundi Hills are by taxi or your own car, where you are able to drive right up to the main temple and parking is free. The Nandi or Bull Temple are both located on different roads from the main hill road.
The top of the hill has a few attractions - the Mahishasura Statue, the Chamundeswari Temple, and a few other temples nearby. The Rajendra Vilas palace was previously a popular hotel, but it is now closed to the public. The palace is now being renovated and provides a panoramic view of Chamundi Hill, Chamundi Temple, and the city of Mysore.
The main Chamundi Hill is about three kilometers east of Mysore and there is a 12 km road leading to the top of the hill. The height of the hill is about 3489 feet above sea level.
There are two ancient temples on the hill, the Mahabaleshvara and the Chamundeshvari. It is a place of pilgrimage.
According to mythology, this rocky hill was known as Mahabalachala and the Mahabaleshvara temple in the hill is an older one.
The hill takes its name from the goddess Chamundeshwari. It was the family deity of the royal family. This temple was renovated and the beautiful tall tower was built during the time of Krishnaraja Wodeyar III in 1827. The temple is a fine quadrangular structure. This goddess is also called Mahishasura Mardini. The car festival and teppotsava held on the hill attracts a number of devotees.
A statue of Mahishasura with a sword in his right hand and cobra in the left is an attraction here worth seeing.
The main idol of goddess inside the sanctum sanctorium is serene and beautiful. Try to concentrate on the full idol instead of concentrating upon the face only, the way most of us usually do. The goddess sits in a posture wherein the right heel of her pious foot is pressing the lowest chakra of the seven chakras. This is the posture Lord Shiva sits in. This is also a powerful yogic posture which, if mastered,enables one to have a third dimensional view of the universe which is mastered by the couple Shiv and Shiva, also known by the name 'trikaldarshi'.
The Chamundi Hills are near Rajendra Vilas, formerly the summer palace of the former royal family, now a hotel. (Source: Karnataka State Gazetteer 1983)
City Bus Stand Palace Hardinge Circle Gandhi Vana. Police Parade Ground Zoo Race Course. Mall of Mysore Administrative Training Instt SDM IMD Chamundi Hill
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