Thursday, 19 February 2015

Katarmal Sun Temple

Katarmal Sun Temple

The sun temple at Katarmal is believed to be the most ancient temple dedicated to Sun God. 

Its existence goes back to the end of Satyayuga.

The establishment of SUN GOD is related to the great Demon Kalanemi, who lived in Patal loka (Neither Land).

 It is said that Kalanemi was a great warrior. He had gone through severe penance and was awarded many boons from Shree Bhrmah ji.

In Tretayuga, he was deputed by Demon King Ravana to stop Shree Hanuman and prevent him to bring Sanjivani herb which would cure Rama Younger Brother Laxman. 

Kalanemi went to the place before Dronagiri Mountain in Himalayas (Now in Uttranchal) to stop Shree Hanuman. 

There he disguised as a Sadhu but Shree Hanuman understood the plot, wrapped Kalanemi in his tail and flung him into sky. Kalanemi was thrown with great force that he flew all over from Dronagiri Mountains in Uttranchal and fell in Lanka at Ravana’s Fort. This gives one visual of Shree Hanuman’s great powers.

Later Kalanemi was killed by Shree Hari Vishnu. He still reincarnated as Kansa in Dwaparyuga and was again killed by avatar of Shree Hari, Shree Krishna. 

Folk tales say that in Satyuga, Sun GOD was worshipped and was placed in Hills which now fall in Uttranchal. The Sun GOD was summoned through mantras and was established in a piece of Banyan tree {Butt Vriksh} wood.

 This was done to empower nature to help the killing of Demon Kalanemi. As per folk tales, the structure was rebuild using stone in 15000 BC. [Scholars believe that it was re build in about 3200 BC].

With SUN GOD, other temples were also constructed.

 About 44 temples surround the main temple of SUN GOD which called as Burhadita or Vriddh aditya. (Aged or Old Sun [surya])

 Other deities like Shiva-Parvati, Lakshmi-Narayana etc. are also established in this temple complex.

Also an idol of Stone dedicated to Surya (Sun GOD) was placed in the temple for public view and worship. 

This idol shows SUN GOD in sitting position, which is also different of other idols of SUN GOD as they show SUN GOD in standing position. The original Wood piece is also there.

The temple is East facing. It is built in such a way that the first ray of the sun falls on the Shiva lingam enshrined in the temple. 

The walls of the temples are made of stones, and the pillars are adorned with beautiful carvings.

The huge pieces of rocks were cut and transported over to the mountainous region. 

The temple was constructed by using metal grips to hold huge piece of rocks. 

The stones weighing up to 400 tons are used in temple construction and are clamped with I and H shaped iron clamps.

Still later, in Kaliyuga, in 9th centaury AD, Kataramalla, a king from Katyur Dynasty repaired the temple structure keeping the old material intact. 

Later, many idols were stolen from the temple; the doors were removed and are kept in national museum   in Delhi.  Now the temple has been declared as national property and is being protected and looked after by government archeological department.  
Katarmal is situated in Uttranchal, Almora District. It is about in an elevation of 2116 m above sea level.

Being the oldest temple dedicated to SUN GOD, it is worth seeing. The people from surroundings still go to temple to worship. 

The sitting idol of SUN GOD is different and will be seen in Katarmal only.