A temple of lessons on nature

 “I am a treasure house of oxygen!” says a tree in this ‘Garden of God’. The immediate notion of a temple is one of mud and stone, with a tall gopura, sculptures on the walls of the building and an idol in the sanctum.
Here is no doubt a temple: A temple of the usual stone, concrete and paint. But the surroundings still challenge the conventional notion of a temple.

The Panchamukhi Anjaneyaswamy Temple stands on a site about four acres big, about three km down the Madanapalli road near Enumarepalli in Srinivaspur taluk, Kolar district.

And the visitors are indeed welcomed with the usual board that declares it to be such a place.But as they enter the premises, they find that in place of a long stretch of empty land of mud or stone, however, a vast expanse of green surrounds the Temple. 

It is seemingly difficult to find the Temple in the midst of all the foliage. One has to pass through a long line of such greenery before one reaches anywhere near the sanctum to have a glance of the deity of the Temple.

A ‘queue’ of flowers from plants and trees of several dozen varieties often joins hands with the breeze that is present at most times, to make the visit all the more pleasant. 

Right at the entrance – the nagarakatte or compound wall of sorts, stands a peepal tree that carries the list of messages related to the importance of nature and conservation of the environment.

In contrast to the withered look of the trees and plants in most places of the district, struggling to deal with every summer it faces, the plants and trees on the temple premises are thriving with life. And therefore, giving a message on why it is important to save them, if we are to survive.

The main hand in this venture is that of Shivappa and his son Manjunath, who constructed the Temple. Their love of nature and greenery reflects in the look of the temple premises. The staff – Srinivas, Saraswathamma, Siddaiah, Soumya and Harish, who work at the Temple ensure the trees are not deprived of any affection needed for survival. 

There is a certain implicit sense of discipline too, in the manner in which the trees and plants are grown in the Temple premises. The staff, for instance, unfailingly water the trees on a daily basis, using water from the borewells nearby.

The devotees, who come here find that, in comparison to all the flourish of nature, the Temple and even the idol of Panchamukhi Anjaneyaswamy in the sanctum are beautiful but pretty simple in structure.

There is, still, every Saturday, a special round of prayer for the deity and a variety of rituals on occasions like Ram Navami. Yet, the real standout feature, and what is indeed memorable about the Temple for all who visit, is the beauty of the deity called nature.