Recently I visited the famous Srikanteswara Temple in Nanjangud ,25 km from Mysore Karnataka.
The Srikanteshwara Temple at Nanjangud is dedicated to the Hindu God Shiva, also called Sri Nanjundeshwara, “The God who drank poison” to save the earth. In Hindu mythology, the Gods and demons churned the ocean in search of the ambrosia. During this churning, poison emanated first, followed by ambrosia. To prevent the poison from spreading across the universe and to destroy it, Shiva came to the rescue and drank it up. His wifeParvati then held his throat tightly to prevent the poison from spreading to the rest of his body and killing him. Narada held his mouth so that he did not vomit it out. The poison remained in his throat, making it blue in colour. For this reason, Shiva is also called Neelakantha, or “the blue-throated one”. Nanjanagud literally means “the place where Nanjundeshwara resides.”
Lord Siva, who is the presiding Deity here is believed to cure diseases.
Tippu Sultan is reported to have prayed Lord Siva to cure his horse going blind and his horse was cured and as a token of his respect he is repoted to have gifted the temple with a necklace of Sapphire with a pendant,
The Lord here is worshiped as ‘Hakim Nanjunda’
I was pained to note that the pujas are not being performed properly, if at all they are performed.
I chose an Ekadasi(11th day of the waxing/waning Moon),which is auspicious for Lord Siva for Siva is associated with Ekadasa Rudras and Rudra chanted on this day gives best results.
During my visit, I noticed that no archanas being performed neither to the Deity at the sanctum sanctorum nor to the Utsava murthy.
No naivedyas, no offering whatsoever, including vertrilai paaku thengai(Coconut) .
For the noon abisheka, the screen was drawn for about five minutes before being opened.
No abisheka with Sri Rudra,.
People were breaking the coconuts outside the temple and carrying them inside and it was not even shown to the Deity.
Worse is that no Vibhuti prasadam was distributed.
This is being distributed, along with naivedyam in packets(which does not seem to have been offered to the Lord) outside the sanctum sanctorum by people who do not e seem to have taken bath.
Bilva leaves were strewn all over the place.
However huge buildings are coming up to make the pilgrims stay comfortable.
But the very essence of temple, that of Mantras and naivedyams,Abishekas are absent.
The Brahmins who are supposedly in the temple should know that they should discharge their duty as Brahmins and should not bring disrepute to the community.
May be they should visit temples in Kerala and Tamil Nadu to know how poojas are to be performed.
I am sad to say this,Nanjangud temple is an example of how a temple should not be.