I have uploaded the Durga Stuti from the Mahabharata in Kannada, Devanagari and English scripts on the mantras page.
Just before the Mahabharata war, Sri Krishna instructs Arjuna to pray to Lord Durga in order to ensure victory over the Kauravas, led by the mighty Bhishma. Arjuna does so and Lord Durga appears before him and grants him a boon that Pandavas will be victorious. This chanting of Arjuna is known as the Durga Stuti. This is another one of those hundreds of Stotras and Stutis which are part of the Mahabharata epic.
This Durga Stuti is to be chanted for overcoming disease, enemies and other obstacles.
Within Tulu Nadu itself, one of the most fascinating regions, especially when it comes to Temples, is the Karkala taluk of Udupi district. Just along the Padubidri – Karkala stretch, there are tens of ancient and fascinating temples. In my earlier visits to the region, I had covered a few like Palimaru, Mundkur, Inna and others. This time, I visited another of the beautiful temples in this stretch – the Belmannu Durga Parameshwari Temple.
Belmannu is a small village that lies almost exactly midway between Padubidri and Karkala. It is about 12-15 kms from Padubidri after turning right on the Mangalore – Udupi highway at Padubidri. Belmannu has a Durga Parameshwari Temple. The temple is located at the village Belmannu and one has to turn right at the village and travel a short distance to reach the temple. The most fascinating part of the temple is its location. When I was driving to the temple, I almost felt as if I was in the middle of a thick jungle. The amount of greenery surrounding the temple is unbelievable. As a matter of fact, the Durga Devi of Belmannu is known as “Vana Durga” or the “Durga of the Forest”!
Along with Sri Durga Parameshwari, the temple also has the idol of Sri Ganapati. The temple has an amazing serenity about itself that is quite unique. The temple structure itself, looks to have been renovated a few years ago and looks very good. The Prangana is very huge and is fairly well maintained. The priests of the temple are always from the Bhargava Gotra.
Information about the temple and its history was not easy to accumulate, partly due to the absence of the temple administrators during my visit, but I hope to obtain the same some other time. The main Bhuta at the temple is Rakteshwari. In addition, there are also many other Rajan Daivas at the temple.
The annual festival happens around March-April and is held for 5 days. It starts on the day Sun enters Aries (Mesha Sankramana)
Name: Sri Durga Parameshwari Temple
Location: Belmann, Karkala Taluk, Udupi District
Main deities: Durga Parameshwari, Ganapati
Bhutas: Rakteshwari, many others
Address: Belmannu Sri Durgaparameshwari Temple, Belmannu Village, Padubidri Karkala Road, Karkala Taluk, Udupi District, Karnataka
Contact: Sri B M Krishna Bhat, Managing Trustee, Ph: 9241943581
Along the river Shambhavi in Dakshina Kannada, an unbelievable number of ancient and beautiful temples exist. Most of these are thousands of years old and carry an amazing amount of historical significance. There are mainly a lot of Shiva and Durga temples along this line. Even after dedicating myself to just this stretch every time I visit Tulu Nadu, I have not yet managed to cover even half of them.
Sri Mundkur Durga Parameshwari Temple is another such wonderful temple. It is along the Shambhavi river coast and can be reached if one takes the Belmann-Moodabidri road from Udupi. Along with Inna-Muddanu, this temple also was established by Sage Bharadwaja Bhargava. In fact, this temple along with Inna is the Kula Devata temple for many people in Tulu Nadu who have Bhargava Gotra. On the day I visited this temple, a special alankara with Sandal paste was made to the main idol and Devi was looking resplendent in a golden hue.
The Ganapathi idol in the temple is fully covered with silver and looks very auspicious. This temple has a history of more than 1200 years old. The priest of the temple took me to the well used to draw water for the rituals. The rings of the well have not been changed over the years and stand as archaeological proof for the age of the temple. There are deep grooves on all the rings which stand as testimony to the fact that this temple has been in existence for thousands of years.
This temple, over the years, had been patronised by the rulers of Moodabidri. In fact, legend has it that the King and Queen of Moodabidri, when visiting the temple praying in front of the idol, the ear rings of the Queen dropped down. The Queen gave it as an offering to the idol. The ear rings are used to decorate the idol of Durga even today. Two wooden pillars were also carved on behalf of the King in memory of this event.
From one of the books available at the temple, I managed to obtain a photo of the idol without any decoration. It is an amazing carving!
The annual festival in the temple starts from the 22nd day of Makara (Feb) and is held for 8 days. It is considered very auspicious to offer ‘Jaji’ and ‘Mallige’ flowers to Durga here. Hence, a lot of devotees visit this temple carrying these flowers.
Name: Sri Durga Parameshwari Temple
Location: Mundkur, Udupi District
Main deities: Durga, Ganapathi
Bhutas: Doomavathy, Varahi, Pili chamundi, Rakteshwari
Address: Sri Durga Parameshwari Temple, Mundkur, Karkala Taluk, Udupi district – 576121
Contact: by snail mail
How to get there: From Udupi, take the Karkala road via Padubidri. A few kilometres later, take the deviation to Belmann. Mundkur lies on this stretch.
Specialities: Mundkur is surrounded by the river Shambhavi on three sides (East, South and West). Around Mundkur, four Shiva temples are located – Posaral towards South-East, Inna-Muddanu towards North-East, Ulepadi towards South-West and Bola towards North-West.
Muchur is a small little village located close to Mudabidri. It is located 6 kms off the Kinnigoli – Mudabidri road. The village is famous for its Durga Parameshwari Temple. The temple is magnificent and large and has been renovated a few years ago.
The temple has a very close link to the Nellitheertha Somanatheshwara Temple. Local legend has it that when sage Jabali performed a penance at the Nellitheertha Cave, Lord Durga appeared there and assured him that the demon Arunasura would be killed (at Kateel). She then blessed the region to have three temples in close proximity. Thus the Nellitheertha, Muchur and Kompadavu (Vishnu) temples came into existence.
Specialities: The temple Bhutas here do not have any Bhuta Kolas done to them. Instead, the Maisandaya Bhuta which stays nearby in a chieftain’s house is brought to the temple during its annual festival and is treated as the main Bhuta and Kola is offered.
Address: Sri Durga Parameshwari Devasthana, Muchur, Neerude Post, Mangalore Taluk, Dakshina Kannada – 574163.
Contact: By snail mail.
How to get there: From Mangalore, take the Mudabidri Road, cross Gurupura, Kaikamba and Ganjimatha. Turn left towards Muchur as you near Yedapadavu. Muchur is 8kms from here.