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Sarada Temple, Sringeri

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While on a trip to Sringeri, travellers 'must visit' Sarada Temple that is popularly known as Sharadamba Temple. Dedicated to Sharadamba, the Goddess of learning and wisdom, Dakshinamnaya Peetham was built by Acharya Sri Shankara Bhagavatpada in the 7th century. As per legends, during the 14th century the ancient sandalwood statue of the presiding deity was substituted with the gold and stone figure.

There is a lingam that is said to be presented by Lord Shiva to Shankaracharya. The temple was in a ruined state due to a fire, but it was rebuilt in the South Indian architecture style later. There is a maha mandapam inside the temple that houses carved figures of Dwarapalakas, Goddess Durga and Goddess Raja Rajeshwari.

Tourists can also see the images of Ashta Lakshmi, along with eight panels on the doorway covered with gold. The sculptures of the temple are engraved, keeping in mind the Shilpa Sastras that is practised in Tamil Nadu.

Festivals like Navaratri and a special puja of Chaitra Shukla Poornima are celebrated in this temple. Locals celebrate Deepotsava on Karthika Poornima, Lalitha Panchami on Magha Shukla Panchami and Sri Sharadamba Rathotsava, on Magha Tritiya at this pilgrimage site. Tourists can view Sri Shakti Ganapati that is situated on the South West side of the temple.

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