Rameshwaram- journey through southern peninsular India by VK Ravi

Rama Setu/Adam’s bridge is ancient than 3500 years; 30 km bridge between India and Sri Lanka through sea was built with floating stones.

Rameshawaram- journey through southern peninsular India by VK Ravi

Read Malayalam version of this article here…

Rama Setu was first mentioned in the ancient Sanskrit epic Ramayana of Valmiki. Rama Setu become a wonder of history to western world through a popular book “historical works in the 9th century” by Ibn Khordadbeh.

Rama Setu was a disputed history for some time until NASA satellites had proof from their satellite images that the bridge indeed existed and traces to which are submerged under sea. Rama’s bridge is holy for Hindus since the builder of such a wonder is none other than lord Sri Rama. The significance of such a bridge increases when we discover that it was built using floating stones.

My journey to discover wonders of this bridge led me to the point it all started – Rameshwaram.

Rameshwaram is one of the main 4 holy shrines of India and situated at the southern peninsula of India between Indian Ocean and Bay of Bengal reachable through rail or road by Madura Ramanathapuram route of Tamil Nadu state. At this temple, lord Shiva is worshiped at two separate shrines very near at the same temple. As per legend, one shrine is created by Sita Devi and another by Bakhth hanuman. Both are in the presence of Sri Ram and Lakshmana after they defeated and destroyed the demon king of Lanka at the Ramayana war. Other three main holy shrines of India are Kashi, Kethar and Badhari all situated at North India

Rameshwaram is an island separated by ocean at park bay. There is a 3 tier railway /road bridge connecting Indian main land to Rameshwaram to rail and road. It is also possible to open this bridge to bigger ships for passing through balk bay. Dhanush kodi is at the end of Indian main land near to Cylon.

Here Sreeram with the help of hanuman and vanara sena made ocean bridge to Srilanka for marching of Vanara sena to srilanka as per legend goes.

Rameshwaram temple even though first made concerted by Sri Ram, is continuously renovated and expanded by many kingdoms who ruled this part of peninsula Southern India.

Temple main corridors, thus built are gigantic and very ornamental granite stone structure. They are comparable to such types of monolithic constructions all over the world. The total length of these temple corridors is about 4000 ft with breadth of 17 feet supported by more than 1250 giant ornamental granite pillars decorate with very intricate beautiful carvings.

Inside the temple a gigantic bull Nandikeshwaran structure is built with lime and stone mix. The overall size is 22 X 12 X 17 feet. There is a tall flag mast coated with gold nearby.

A specialty inside the temple premises are 22  sweet water wells even though Rameshwaram is surrounded by sea water all along. These wells and water are holy and believed to be medicated. There are another 31 sweet water theerthams(holy water) outside the temple court yard also. In front of the eastern gopuram which is the main entrance to temple , one can take holy bath at the calm ocean water. Left side is Indian Ocean and right Bay of Bengal. Sea bathing is supposed to be holy.

The ocean bridge built by Sree Rama was broken by Sree Rama himself after the Ramayana war was over, with the end of his bow and hence this place is called “Dhanush kodi”. It was told that this stone bridge was constructed with stones that were able to float on the ocean water. Samples few such stones are preserved in a small temple near “Dhanush kodi”. One can clearly see these stones floating water tank being preserved for worship. There are two very tall gopurams one each at the eastern side and western side of RT. Sea shore and bathing gath is at the front of Eastern gopuram where devotees takes sea bath before temple darshan. As a whole rameshawaram island a quench ( shankhu) , entrance main land is at  “mandapam” and enterance to rameswaram island ”pamban” .

There was also railway line from where Sree Ram has built the sea bridge for his army to pass to Lanka to the main land to Dahnush kodi. But due to high sea erosion this line gets damaged often and hence they are now disregarded.

This temple island surrounded by park bay ( south side) bay Bengal (western side ) and Indian ocean at east. One reach can read dhanush kodi by road.

External References

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