|Ksheera Ramalingeswara Swamy Temple|
Temple Complex as seen from the Main temple tower
Ksheerarama is one of the five Pancharama Kshetras that are sacred to the Hindu god Shiva. The temple is located in Palakollu of West Godavari in the Indian state of Andhra Pradesh. Lord Shiva is known locally as Ksheera Ramalingeswara Swamy. The Sivalinga was established by Lord Vishnu. It is believed that staying one day in Kshirarama is equivalent to staying one year in Varanasi.[clarification needed] It is one of the centrally protected monuments of national importance.
It is one of the five powerful Shiva temples in Southern India that form the Pancharama Kshetram. The remaining four are Somarama Temple in Bhimavaram; Draksharama Temple in Draksharamam; Kumararama Temple in Samalkota; and Amararama Temple in Amaravati, state of Andhra Pradesh.
The tower is one of the tallest among the temple towers in Andhra Pradesh. The height of the temple is 120 ft and 9 floors and was constructed during the Chalukya period (9th century) during the reign of Chalukya Bheema.
The Shivaling is a unique milky white in colour and the tallest. There are 72 pillars made of black stone in the temple mandapa. Inside, the garbhalaya, Gokarneshwara and Vigneshwara alayas are at the left. Kshiralingam is in the center. To the right are Subramanya Swamy and Janardhana Swamy alayas; Nandi is at the centre.
The Gostani River flows through Palakollu and there is a sangam (confluence) near Narsapur with the Godavari River. From here the river empties into the sea at Antarvedi. The Moola Virat (lingam), can be seen from the windows of the Garbha Gudiall on all four sides.
The temple complex has many shrines, including the Sun God (Kashi Vishweshwara), Goddess Parvathi, Goddess Lakshmi, Nagareshwara Lingam, Dundi Vigneshwara, Veera Bhadra, Sapta Matruka, Kanaka Durga, Brahma, Saraswathi, Kumara Swamy, Kartikeya, Mahishasura Mardhini, Kala Bhairava, Naga sarpa, Nataraja, Dattatreya, Nageshwara, Shaneeshwara, Radha Krishna, and Shankara.
The Prakara was designed by Sri Velupathi during the 10th century. The construction technique resembles those built during the Chalukya period. Gopuram was constructed under the rule of Musunuri Nayaks who had their bases at Warangal and Rajamundry during the 14th and 15th centuries. During the 17th century, Kalyana mantapam (choultry) and Ashtha Bhuja Lakshmi Narayanaswamy alaya were constructed.
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- "Centrally Protected Monuments". Archeological Survey of India. Retrieved 27 May 2017.