Impressive Chamundeswari Temple, Chamundi Hills, Mysore

Chamundeswari temple, Mysore
Chamundeswari temple, Mysore,
The Chamundi temple on the  1000 (3500 feet) meter tall Chamundi hills,  about 13 km from the heritage city of  Mysore, is one of the important  Shakti Peetams  and the Mysore rulers  - the Wodeyar dynasty have always been ardent devotees and patrons of Goddess  Chamundeswari for centuries.  It was in 1659 Dodda Devaraja Wodeyar built 1,008 steps  to comfortably access  the temple and  installed a huge bull - Nandi, lord Shiva's vahana or mount. It is in the midway of the hill - about 700 steps This giant Nandi is one of the  few largest ones in India, measuring  16 ft. (4.8 meters) tall in the front and 25 ft. (7.5 meters) in length. The astonishing feature of this bull is  its pendent bells around its neckline  which are exquisitely carved The other big stone nandis are located at Veerabadraswami temple, La Pakshi, Andhra and Briehadeshwara temple (big temple), Thanjavur, Tamil Nadu. The latter being more than 1000 years old. 
Shiva's vahana bull - NandiHinduPad
The  40 meter-seven story tall beautiful gopuram - tower  was rebuilt by Sri Krishnaraja Wodeyar III  in 1827 after carrying out some major repairs. The entrance gopuram has  gold finials  and in 1843 he gifted Simhavahana (lion mount) to the temple to be used during temple festival procession of the deity. Close to the  Chamundi temple are Lakshmi Narayana Swamy and Mahabaleswara temple; the latter is dedicated to  Lord Shiva. Believed to be the oldest temple on the hill here, Shiva is in the form of a lingam  and it was built prior to the Hoysala rule. Inscriptions in the temple point out that this area (used to be known as  Mabhala or Mabbala theertha) was ruled by Hoysala King Vishnuvardhana  who  made donations to the temple in 1128 A.D. Since the early days of the Maharajahs of Mysore, it has been a tradition to carry the idol of goddess Chamundi on a decorated elephant as part of the celebrations in the famous annual Dusshera festival.

Almost every Hindu temple has a legend about the origin of the deity and this famous temple is not an exception. Mysore was once ruled by a  demon-king Mahishasura who was known for his buffalo-head; hence the name Mahisha meaning buffalo, asura meaning demon. Consequently, this place was called Mahishuru, the town of demon Mahisha. Being powerful and fearsome, he terrorized the saints, sages and the celestial and one stage his atrocities became unbearable. The celestial, Demi gods and others sought the help of  Goddess Parvathi (consort of Lord Siva), to do away with this demon. They prayed to her intensively. Upon their long prayer Goddess Parvati  took birth as Chamundeshwari and, at last, killed the  demon. After getting rid of the Assura, the goddess
Presiding deity Chamundeswari, Chamundi temple. MyBusTickets Blog
 remained on the hill as Chamundeswari. Her other name is  Mahishasura Mardini a she had slain  Mahishasura. 

01. The statue of Mahishasura  was built in 1659 by Dodda Devaraja Wodeyar. 

02. One can have a clear  panoramic view of Lalitha Mahal palace, Mysore Palace, Karanji and Kukkarahalli lakes.

03. During the Dusshera festival this temple wears a festive look and lots of people visit the temple for prayer and to get blessed by the deity.