Sri Santhana Sampada Venkateswara Swamy
Sri Padmavathi Ammavaru(Lakshmi Devi)
Sri Goda Devi (Andal)
Sri Garuda Alwar (King of Birds)
Garuda is a divine eagle-like sun bird and the king of birds. A Garutman is mentioned in the Rigveda who is described as a celestial deva with wings.The Satapatha Brahmana embedded inside the Yajurveda text mentions Garuda as the personification of courage. In the Mahabharata, Garutman is stated to be same as Garuda, then described as the one who is fast, who can shapeshift into any form and enter anywhere.He is a powerful creature in the epics, whose wing flapping can stop the spinning of heaven, earth and hell. He is described to be the vehicle mount of the Hindu god Vishnu, and typically they are shown together.He is younger brother of Aruna. Aruna is the charioteer of the sun god .
Garuda is a metaphor in the Vedic literature for Rik (rhythms), Saman (sounds), Yajna (sacrifices), and the atman (Self, deepest level of consciousness). In the Puranas, states Williams, Garuda becomes a literal embodiment of the idea, and the Self who attached to and inseparable from the Supreme Self (Vishnu).Though Garuda is an essential part of the Vaishnavism mythology, he also features prominently in Shaivism mythology, Shaiva texts such as the Garuda Tantra and Kirana Tantra, and Shiva temples as a bird and as a metaphor of atman
The gates to the inner sanctum sanctorum are guarded by two rather frightening individuals, the dwarapalakas. They are required to guard access to the resident deity and keep all but the most important from disturbing their rest. Dwarapalakas are two sentinels whose jobs are to stand at the entrance and keep watch. One should get the permission mentally from Dwarapalakas, before entering the temple. If their names are known, one should spell the name and say ‘Namonamah’ one by one. The names depend on the Agama Sastra which is followed. The dwarapalakas at Vishnu’s temples have had an especially interesting history.
The Story Goes:
Brahma had four sons, Sanaka, Sanatana, Sanandana and Sanatkumara, who embodied all the goodness and knowledge in the world. The devas came to them and said,” O sons of Brahma, why don’t you go to earth and teach all you know to the human race? They will greatly benefit from it.” The four Brahma putras refused to do so. But upon the devas pleading with them, they decided to go to Vishnu and get his counsel. As they were about to enter Vishnu’s abode, the dwarapalakas, Jaya and Vijaya, blocked their entry. “You may not enter,” said one of the dwarapalakas. “Our lord is sleeping.” “O, dwarapalakas do not block our way. We have something important to discuss with Lord Vishnu.” said the four brothers. At that the dwarapalakas said, “We bow to no one and listen to no one other than Vishnu. You may not enter to see him now.” The Brahma putras got very angry and cursed the dwarapalakas saying they would be born as mortals. At this point, Vishnu intervened and said,” Please forgive them. They were only carrying out my commands and did not know who they were talking to.”
Sanaka, then said, “The dwarapalakas can choose two ways to live out their curse. Either they will be born as rakshasas thrice and lead short lives or they can be born as humans and lead very long lives on earth.” The two dwarapalakas choose to be born as rakshasas and lead short lives. Vishnu also blesses them saying, “I will deliver you from your mortal bodies. During each birth as a rakshasa, you both will die only at my hands and can then resume your rightful place as my guardians.”
Thus, the dwarapalakas are born as the rakshasa brothers Hiranyaksha and Hiranyakashipu and are slain by Vishnu in the varaha and Narasimha avatars. They are then born as Ravana and Kumbhakarna. In the Ramayana, They are the only two demons who die at the hands of Rama himself, another avatar of Lord Vishnu. Finally, the dwarapalakas are born as Shishupala and Dantavaktra, part of the few who are directly killed by Krishna. And so the guards receive moksha at the hands of Vishnu and return to guard the doors to Vishnu’s abode once more.
Archaka (Priest) should get permission from Dwarapalaka while opening the respective gate. Bali (prasada neivadyam) should be offered to Dwarapalakas along with other parivara devatas after main deities. Arghyam, Padyam, Achamanam, etc. are also to be done to Dwarapalakas.
Vimana Venkateswara Swamy
During the time of Sri Krishnadevaraya, Vyasateertha was in his court. (16th century CE). Vyasateertha was an accomplished great Madhva Saint and scholar of a very high calibre. Once he sat on king’s throne for few days to remove bad omen for the king and was called Vyasaraya. Once, Krishnadeva Raya visited Tirumala and found that 9 priests were wearing jewelery that belong to Lord Venkateswara. King was angry and he killed those 9 priests in the temple itself.
Vyasa Raya tried to clear that sin of killing 9 persons in a temple. He shutdown the temple for 12 years and did everything possible to clean the area and also clear the king of this sin.
Lord Venkateswara appeared in Vyasaraya’s dream and asked him worship replica of his main idol outside, so that devotees can identify it easily and worship it while the temple was closed. Just because it is inside first floor of a vimanam of ananda nilayam, it is called Vimana Venkateswara Swamy.
The similar replica was carved on the Gopuram of Santhana Sampada Venkateswara Swamy temple. Make sure to worship the lord when you visit the temple next time.
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