Where serenity meets divinity

Where serenity meets divinity
Kalale, which means tender bamboo in Kannada, is the name of a nondescript village in Nanjangud taluk of Mysuru district. Surrounded by lush greenery, the place has a rich historical and mythological background. A beautiful lake bordering the village is located alongside a canal that irrigates nearby fields. The village has many places of worship such as Revanna Siddeswara Temple, Anjaneya Temple and Someshwara Temple. But the Dravidian-style Vishnu Temple, located in the heart of the village, stands apart. Lord Lakshmikanta Swamy, the presiding deity, is resplendent with divine glory.

According to legends, King Janamejaya, in the course of his hunt along River Kapila and River Koundinya, came across the village, and was stunned to see the peaceful co-living of cows and tigers. He accidentally spotted an idol of Mahavishnu in a bamboo bush and built a temple there. Hence, the name Kalale to the village.

It is said that while Lord Brahma worshipped this idol, Sage Kapila also stayed here for sometime worshipping the lord. As a result, the village also came to be known as Kapilashrama. Later, it came under the control of Dalavais of Mysuru until the mid-19th century. It was during the reign of Yadu dynasty that Kalale saw more development and attained prominence.

The gopuram in front of the Vishnu Temple has five levels with a spacious inner yard where the sannidhis (enclosures) of goddesses Andal and Aravinda Nayaki are placed on both sides of the main deity. In the prakara circumventing the inner yard, there are nine separate sannidhis for Pattabhirama, Rajagopalaswamy, Lakshmi Narayana, Varadaraja Swamy, Keshava, Rajamannar Krishnaswamy, Venkataramana Swamy, Cheluvanarayana (Melkote) and Kodandarama. Also, special sannidhis for saints can be seen as one enters through the main entrance. Right above the step leading to the main sanctum sanctorum is a Ranganathaswamy idol in the reclining posture over a serpent.

The annual car festival is held in March or April when the entire village wears a festive look. On the same night, theradi utsava, said to be equivalent in grandeur to Melkote Vairamudi, is held. The visual marvel of the procession with a grandly decorated utsava murthy attracts devotees from far and near. Devout villagers who have settled in different parts of the country and even abroad converge in Kalale to partake in the annual festivity, making the event a get together of sorts. The enchanting beauty of the village and the temple is such that it is a favourite spot for the film industry too.

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