The PrahladhaVaradan is dedicated to Lord Vishnu and is situated in the town of Ahobilam at Lower Ahobilam. The temple represents the nine forms of Lord Narasimha depicting ferociously tearing the demon apart and then getting to the calm stage again. This is believed as the fourth incarnation of Lord Vishnu, who took the form to kill Hiranyakashyapu. Here Narasimha means the body that is half man and half lion!
The temple consists of a seven-tiered Raja Gopuram and three Prakaras facing east. The temple overall displays South Indian architecture having certain sculptures in the walls and pillars. Lakshmi Narasimha is the prime deity with Goddess Laxmi sitting on his lap as his beloved. God is also called PrahaladhaVaradhan, as they have their grace on Prahaladha, the son of Hiranyakashyapu.
Many idols are placed in the temple, including the Prahlada Varada, Pavana Narasimha, and Jwala Narasimha, who has ten hands. Sreedevi and Bhoodevi reside on either side.
Since major build happened during the Vijayanagar dynasty, the architecture majorly depicts the Vijayanagar style. There is a shrine dedicated to Sri Venkateswara that faces South-West of the temple.
There is a large complex residing the BhashyakaraSannidhi with Sri PrahladaVaradanSannidhi attached. Opposite that, Temple Pushkarini is located. There is also a small idol of Lord Hanuman at the end of the sannidhi street in front of Sri PrahladaVaradanSannidhi.
The Legend Behind the Incarnation
Hiranyakashyapu was an Asura and the king of Daityas. Once Lord Vishnu, in the avatar of Varaha, killed his elder brother Hiranyaksha for spreading chaos in the world. Hiranyakashyapu then vowed to seek revenge against Vishnu, and he went for meditation to impress Brahma.
When Brahma appeared, the demon asked for immortality by putting certain conditions such as:
Nor a man, neither a woman, can kill him.
No Devata or any celestial body can kill him.
He can’t be killed inside or outside a house.
He can’t be killed in the sky, on earth, or in water.
He can’t be killed by man, Deva, animal, or Asura.
He can’t be killed during daytime or night time.
Brahma granted him the boon, and Hiranyakashyapu was now the immortal being unscared to anyone. Everyone became powerless as no one could kill the demon. That is why when he went against his child Prahlada who was a vigorous devotee of Lord Vishnu, the Lord came in the form of Narasimha.
Satiating all the conditions that Hiranyakashyapu put to be killed, he tore apart the demon and saved humanity once again from the cruelty.
Several Vishnu festivals are celebrated in the temple throughout the year. Vaikunta Ekadasi , however, always attracts the major crowd; it happens in February every year, and it is celebrated grandly. Swati festival that is celebrated every month on the Swati Nakshatram day is another very popular event in this temple. Swati is considered to be the birth star of Lord Narasimhan, and hence the celebration happens.
There are two temples: on the foot and top of the hill with a distance of 10 km. However, during the evening hours, the devotees have to take security measures because of the wild animals. The route lies vertically that becomes tough to trek; all the devotees have to return before 6 pm.
It is common to worship the PrahladaVarada Narasimha (the Narasimha who gave boons to Prahladha) in lower Ahobila before worshiping Yeguva (Upper) Ahobila Narasimha, situated at about 8 Kms away on a hilltop inside a cave. After worshipping the Lord, it is another practice to visit Nava Narasimhas (Nine Narasimhas).
Those who pray at this shrine with devotion would obtain the grace of the Lord and the Goddess.
The temple can be reached via the Diguva Ahobilam Bus Stop, about 500 meters from the stop. It can be reached via several railway stations, such as the Allagadda railways station, about 27 Kms from the temple. From Hyderabad airport, it is about 335 Kms; you can choose the transportation as per your convenience and budget.
To reach the town of Ahobilam, one can catch a bus from Nandyal, Kurnool, and Hyderabad. However, the place is not connected by the railway network, so from the nearest railways stations like Gazulapalli, Koilakuntla, and Nandyal, you have to arrange another transportation like a taxi or shared vehicle.
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Submitted 67 day(s) ago by astroved