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India is a holu place where there are follow-ers of different religions. Still there is unity amongthem. Our Culture is rich one. One can very wellunderstand the attitude of Indians through thesereligions. Even foreigners are also amazed to lookat this fantastic culture.
Karnataka is 8th largest state in the nation. There are mumber of holy places here. Pilgrims used to come and visit theseholy places from far offplaces. These religioussentiments have gonedeep into hearts of everyIndian. Dakshin kannada dis- trict is known for religious centres. One can find here temples of Hindus. Chris- tians, and muslimes. Indi- ans are respecting and lov- ing their religion and in the same manner, they have the  ame feelings about other religions. This shows the vast minderdness.
Sri Kshetra is a famous holy place in Dakshina kannada district. It is believed that it is a creation of parashurama and one among seven great holy places. The place is on malnad border and comes in Sullia Taluk, towards east. Once it was a capital place, but today it is a very small village. Somesay that there were more than a lakh houses in early days.
Srikshetra was formerly known as ‘kukke’ town. It is learnt that as mentioned in ‘shankar- vijay’ by Anandgiri, Sri macchankar Bhagavat padachar stayed here for some time for Digwijaya, Here subrahmanya, Narasimha, and uma Mahesh war idols are worshipped. Old records says that it was exhisted in 8th Centuary, The temple is situvated on the slope of moun­tain sheshaparvat and kumar parvata. If we go ahed two kilometers from this place, there we see river kumar dhara. Here we can see mam­moth car. Which is one and half Centuary old. Here subrahmanya is worshipped in the form of snake. Every year in the month of Novem- ber-December fair takes place.
Subrahmanya was formerly known as kukke pattan. It is also believed that once shankracharya stayed here, when he was on digvijya tour. This is mentioned in ‘shankar vijay’. Shankaracharya in his book subrahmanya Bhujang prayata stotram said this place as ‘Bhaje kukke Lingam’ Evidences are available to sup­port this statement. The most reliable proof is, sringerimath, which is on the north of this temple. This is a Dwaith system math.
(madhvacharya). It is evident that many sages have installed here shivlingams. It is learnt that vasuki also installed a phallus of lord shiva in cave.
In Sanskrit kukshi means cave. This word itself is corrupted and began to use by the lay men as ‘kukke’. (Raghuvansh sarga-2-38).
It is learnt from another source that, it is be­cause of dwelling of skandswami (kukkut dhwaja), the town is known as kukke-pattana, Ac­cording to localites the custom of worshipping the phalli in baskets (kukke) resulted in naming the place as kukke.
Once it was a glorious town having more than thousands of houses. Today we may not be able enjoy that beauty but the town is rich with nature beauty. One may enjoy the greenish envi­ronment, wherever we see. The thick forest and chirping of birds is cooling our eyes. Coorg and Hassan are border districts.
For the voncience of pilgrims, there are num­ber of buses frona all parts of this state. Rail and Air facility is satisfactory. Even private buses are also providing good service.
Those who come from Mercara may come via Galibeedu, which is just 30 kilometre.
Pilgrims coming from Dharmsthal may come via Ujire, Guruvayankere. The distance is 90 K.M. pilgrims coming from Bangalore Mangalore high­way upto Uppinangady. or may come, upto Gundya. Threrefore they may reach with in few minutes. The distance is only is only 16 km from Gundy.
From Mangalore via puttur and Bellare the distance is 112km. On mysore Mangaloie high­way, they may get down at kumbra, village. Here they have to turn to left. The distance from this place is only 50km.
From Mangalore via puttur. Kaneyoor, the distance is only 108 km. Fro Mangalore via uppinangdy and kadaba the distance is 105 km.
It you travel by rail, by meter gauge (Ban- galore-mangalore) you have to getdown in subrahmany road station, which is just 12km away. Just near by the station, there is Nettan a small village, which is Just 12km from here. Nubmer of buses are available to pilgrims. Be­cause of this vehicale convience, every year there is increase in number of visitors.
The history of this holy place based on purana is really wonderful. This holy place is on the bank of river Dhara. This is originatiing in the kumar mountain and flows towards west­ern sea. This is known as kumardhara-river. It is belived that lord shanmukha created this place with an intention to stay here. Also believed that he washed his weapon ‘shakti’ here after slaying Tarakasur. Knowing the importance of this place kumarswami decided to stay here with vasuku. (King of serpants).
In Dwapayuga saamba son of srikrishna and Jumbavati, regained his beauty, which he had-lost earliear. During his stay in Ashram i leged that he is held responsible for the roman- tic mood of the wives of Munis. Hence he wascursed to be an ugly man and suffer leprosy disease. He wanted to come out of this curse,and met sri Naarad. He  adviseed him to take bath in kumar dhara and apply ‘muruttike’ on his body. When he did the same he re-gained his beauty; and was free from curse. This is nothing but  iracle of  kshetra.
Even in kaliyug, kanaka varsha worshipp ed swami and was blessed with knowledge, wealth, and sons.
Later his son became a chakravarti, (empror).
The story of sage kashyapa and his wife Aditi is very interesting to note. Once Aditi was engaged and enjoying the activities of her chil­dren. The charming activities attracted her much and the was one with them. Meantime, holy sage Ashita came to hermitage to see Indra. But as Aditi was engaged too much in children’s ac­tivities, she did not look at sage, who is at her doorstep. As Ashita was not welcomed by Aaditi, got agreed and cursed her. He said, you have failed in your duty. You have not honoured your guest. You have totally neglected me. So you must be punished. Now you will become Rakhsashi (Female-demon). Now Aaditi was awakened and realised her mistake. It was not delibrately made. She prayd him humbly not to punish, as she is innocent. The love of my off-springs made me to neglect you. My intention is not , to insult you. She convienced a lot and prayed hubly but in vain.
Ashit then said, curse, once given, can not be taken back. Hereafter, you will born as demonnamed ‘Pishitashini and marry the demon ‘Thama’. This person will be slained by Hari under matsyavatar. You will be wandring in the forest Here you will bathe and have darshan of srisubbraahmanya. Mere hisss darshan will bring you alll happiness that you old statuss that you had lost, you experince
experience your old statusss and leave de­mon from and there will berenion with your husband Kashyapa will receive you, and God will bless you. future was full o f dark to Aditi. she was in sad mood, not knowing what to do next she explained all the story that hap­pened to her husband.He tried to consol her as nothing can be done at this juncture. We cannot \^go agaist ouuuuur fate. It is of no use to grievey
And soon we will rejoin. A day willcome for the disappearance of curse shortly n. Thus kashyapa said her. Soon she descented to the earth in the orm of demon known as ‘pishitashini ‘and later she married Thamasur. Thama was a great cruel man. He had having a boon granted by brahma, and because of this he was harassing the people. His aim was to capture lord Vishnu. He learnt that Vishnu is fed by the Brahmin’s sacrifices that the vedas are the strong hold of Brahmins. Hence he wanted to suppress lord Hari. Somehow. He wanted to get the Vedas, and so he hid himself in the bowels of the ocean.
Now, in order to save the vedas, Thama was killed by Narayan, when he was in the form of matsya (fish). Thama’s wife pishitashi was in great griet and began to move aimlesslu. She wondered and wondered, and at last reached the bank of Dhara. As Soon as She stepped into the holy kshetra. She remembered her past life and bathed in the river. The power of holy water made her instantly the disappearance of demon life and original appearance was seen. The very moment she thrilled and thanked God. She ex­pressed her feeling of gratification and wor­shipped. After performing Pooja she came to meet her husband she said, I have visited lot of places.When I was in the form of Rakshashi, but not seen such a holy place. The moment I stepped into this place. I was thrilled. I don’t know what fro all this. Vasuki the king of nagas living in l this place is also wonderful. She wanted to know. rom her husband, as to the importance of the kshetra and as to the residing of Kumar swami in this place.
Sage Kashypa replied to his wife Aditi. In the kritayaga holy sages attained ‘sidhi’ in their penance by resorting to this place. In Tretaguga parashuram who exterminated the race of kshatriyas, bathed in holy dhara river and absolced himself of the sin of matricide. In Dwapar, samba, son of krishna, was cursed as he enhanted women folk by his beauty. He lost his beauty and suffered leprosy.
Saamba was much hurtened by this incident. He was in great grief. As he was not in good mood sage Narad pitied him and advised him to go to kumar kshetra and bathe in Dhara theerth and apply holy mruttike (mud) on the body. Further he said and after applying, to roll on the orts of Brahmins meals and from Dhara River upto sannidhi of Lord subrahmanya.The mere darshan of lord kumar swami with vasuki, your leprosy will disappear. Saamba did as sage Narada said, When he performed ‘Agni pradaxinaseva’ he was free from his ugly dis­ease. He regained his original beauty. He fed lakhs of Brahmins and rolled on orts. As a re­sult, he was blessed by Nagaraja.
Ever since this incidence occured, its populartiy spread and devotees who ere suffering from incurable diseases visited and got cured. Remedy is sure those who believe in \God. There are many examples to show in kalijug also. Raja kanakavar.sha worshipped Subrahmanya and blessed with brave son who become an empror.
We have no words to write about the impor­tance of kshetra.
Assurance of non-fear by Garud.
Here the presence of vasuki (nagaraja) and assurance of non-fear of garud is explained interestirgly.
“Daataram sarva kaamanam |
Netaram Divya Bhoginaam” |
“Pataram sarva lokanaam |
Traataram vasukim bhaje”
Once in samvartaka kalpa, a difference of opinion arised between the two wives of kashyapa kadru and vinata, as to the colour of a horse. Kadra was holding the opinion that the horse is black, but vinata said it was white. The hot discussion went seriously and there were no signs of compromise. At last they came to con­clusion that. Who ever defteats should become the maid servant of the winner. Kadra wanted to prove that she is right in her saying. So she asked her children, the serpants, to bite the horse, so that it may turn black by the effect of poison. But they were not ready to obey this order. Straight way they denied the proposal. This made her to get angry and soon she cursed own off­springs with extinction of the whole race. In or­der to save their life, some of the snakes hid in Vjhe caves, some of the snakes were sacrificed by king janamejaya in his sarpayaga and some oth­ers were eaten up by Garud. Some hid in ant­hills and paatala.
One day Garud came in search of serpants. Meanwhile, he saw vasuki hiding in a cave near by with the helf of his steel claws, wanted to make several pieces. But his plan was failed as vasukis’s greatness was too much As the fight­ing between these two was very serious, mean­time kashyap appeared before them and asked Guard not to kill vasuki, as is devotee of shiva. Because of his blessing, you can not win over him. The fight is meaningless. Now the Garud was trembling before the holy sage and informed that it is badly in need of food. Then kashyapa asked to go to Ramanaka islands where, plenty of serpants are available. Here among the kiratas you will find a depraved Brahmin in love with huntress while eating him up, you will feel burningn setisation in your throat. You spare his life and vommit him out. Act right now only, he said. Then he consoled vasuki and asked him to go to kumar kshetra. Here after you have no fear of Garud. Thus he got assurance of nopfear by Garud.
Vasuvi. decided to under go severe penance and hence came to kumar kshera with the whole family. He thenked shiva, then shiva replied, there is no need to under take severe penance. 1 am pleased by you. I Remember your sevice. When you played the art of my bowstring dur­ ing the destruction of Tripura. And the role of becoming a rope for churnign the sea of milk. This act has made to secure nector for Gods. Your worship and penance has pleased me very much. You are model to others.
He also told about the arrival of his son shanmukha, in the next kalpa. He will kill Taraka. When all these incidents will come to an end. Indra will celebrate the marriage of his daughter with subrahmanya. You will be receiv­ing blessings from subrahmanya you will be receiving blessings from Subrahmanya, and live the kshetra itself. You will be worshippped by human beings in this holy place and you will bless them all. Their prayers will be fulfilled. Hereafter Garud will not trouble you. After giv­ing this assurance he was disappeared. Since then, vasuki began to live in this holy place, which is known as “Moola Subrahmanya’.
Further the ineresting story continued. Aditi was eagorons to listen the story. Once a Rakshasha by name Asurendra, desired to war against Indra. But Indra was able to defeat him with the help of lord Narayana. At any cost Asur wanted to achieve his goal and hence for the protection of life went to patala. Here he met a beautiful woman by name Maya, daughter of Mangalkeshani. He asked her to meet sage kashyapa and to win his heart. He wanted to conquer Indra, and used maya, as instrument for his goal.
So to ahieve the goal. Maya entered the her- mitage of sage kashyapa, and with her own tricks with the help of her enchanting beauty, won the heart of sage. As a result, she gave —.birth to four war-I rior ons. They are, suhrapadma, simhavaktra, Gajasya and  Taraka.
She came back to paatala with her sons and Asurendra wel- comed them. He trained these war- rior sons for war. He asked these children the wage war against Indra.
To learn the teachnique of war and skill in archery he sent theim to shukracharya, who was the Guru of his race. Shukrachary tought them all the skills of the war. He initiatied themvatadwipa to propitiate shiva by penance. These youths underwent severe penance and got blessed by shiva. Shiva gave them a boon not to be killed by any one except his soon shankukha. Shiva granted the boon and disap-peared.
As they were blessed by the boon given by shiva there were very proud and began to trouble. Their atrocities were limitless. Their aim was to conquer Indra and capturing swarg. They defeated Indra very easily and established their own rule. They acquered wealth and lead a luxu­rious lige. As their atrocities were beyond the limit, all prayed to Brahma, then he said, none can do anything Taaraka, except shanmukha the body in the Dakshayaga and Shiva performs penance on the Himalayas. Satidevi is born there as the daugter of Himavan. But the lord was practising self retraint from cornal pleasure, but parvati failed to win Shiva. Now that was pos­sible only by manmath. (cupid). As the union was to be performed, to achieve this purpose. Manmath was sent.
So, Manmath came to Himayas to meet Shiva, in his hermitage. Seeing his appearance, he was little bit afraid of Meantime, Bhavani too entered. He saw her and blessed her to get worthy hus­band. Parvati offered him rosary of lotus bead, which lord accepted. Meantime, cupid shot his floral arrow (sammmohanastra). But Shiva re­gained his self -restraint for a time and beheld manmatha aiming at him. But lord was angry at this and opened his third fiery eye, which in­stantly burned his third fiery eye. Which instantly burned him. The tragic incident made everyone disheartened. Bhavani went to Gouri theerth to please Shiva; After some time, lord agreed to marry her, Marriage took plae in capital oshadhipura, on the mountain very grandly.
Further, wher he was sent to fcire God Agni who appeared as a dove in th bed chamber of lord. Realising his motive, Shiva gave him a part of his energy. Finding the charge unbearable, Agni gave it in turn to Ganga who too felt its burning, effects soon and she place it on bam­boo shrub. Here it took the form of a male child with six faces. Hearing its cry the six kritika nymphus came there and put the child to their breasts. As it drank the milk by six months the baby was called shanmukha (Ref-K-S-Temple’s book).
This boy was named sas Agneya. Gangasuta, Shraravanabhava, kartikeya, parvatinandan, shanmukha, skanda, and subrahmany. When he was grown up, they tougth him the skills of archer. Mother parvati gave him a weapon “Shakti Later he was directed to kill Taarakasura. To assist in this task, nine other heroes were sent. He defeeatede Taaraka in a grreat battle. Gahasya, and simhavaktra were killed easly but shoorpadma torubled a olt. As he was blessed byu the boon. Whenever he was killed, again he regained his life. Kumar swami himself got down from the cvhariot and made him to two pieces, one of which he trrned into a peacock for his conveyance and the other into a cock to be placed on his banner.
Now Kumarswami returned kumar geri, He was accomapnied by his brothers Ganeshl eerbahu, and others. Other divine beings and vasuki arrived there to welcome kumarswami. Here his marriage took place with Devasena, daughter of Mahendra. He said who ever worthips me, their desires will be fulfilled. Dhara river is holy one and having capacity of remov­ing the sins. His marriage took place on maragashira shukla shasti. This is known as skanda shasti’. This is celebrated through out the world. It is specially famous in this kumar kshetra. Shiva, parvati, and vasuki all are resid­ing in this kshetra. Thus sage kashyapa said in detail to his wife Aaditi.