Visiting Tirumakudalu Narasipur

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There are a number of other temples in T Narasipur, the most important of which is the Gunja Narasimhaswamy Temple on the right bank of the River Kapila. Dedicated to Narasimha, the man-lion avatar of Vishnu, this is a large structure built in Dravidian style and features a tall entrance tower (gopura) and four-pillared main hall.

Inside the temple is a large idol of Narasimha carrying a weighing balance with a seed from a Gunja plant (Abrus precatorius), which apparently signifies that this area is holier than Varanasi itself.

According to the legend associated with the temple, Narasimha appeared in the dream of a laundryman telling him that his idol lay beneath the stone on which he washed clothes every day. When the deity told him to build a temple for him, the laundryman told him he couldn’t afford to do this. So Narasimha told him to look for gold coins beneath his washing stone that could be used for funding its construction.

After the temple was built, the laundryman expressed his wish to go on a pilgrimage to Varanasi. Narasimha told him that the weight of the blessing he’d earned by building the temple was one Gunja tree seed heavier than any blessing he would receive by visiting the holy city.

The Gunja Narasimhaswamy Temple is about 500 years old and has inscriptions dating back to the reign of the Vijayanagara Emperor Krishnadevaraya. It has recently undergone major renovations, and every year holds an important chariot festival.

T Narasipur is also home to a sacred fig tree that is 2,000 year old, which people pray to in the hope of being granted children. Surrounding the village are a number of archaeological sites dating back to the Neolithic period showing that humans have inhabited this fertile area ever since the first half of the second millennium BC.

Coordinates
T Narasipur is located about half way between Talakad and Somanathapur. The road is poor and badly signposted; so be prepared ask for directions to the various sights in the village.

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Accommodation
The best place to stay for a trip to T Narasipur is in Mysore, where there is a wide choice of hotels to suit any budget.

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