When it comes to archaeological wonder, India left everyone behind as it has several wonders which always remains a mystery for the scientist to resolve and we locals have just one reason of these wonders i.e, our mighty God and stories associated with them. Another hidden wonder is the growing idol of Lord Nandi in Yaganti temple.
Around 300km from Hyderabad lies this temple which has spectacular views around it. I headed to Yaganti from Kurnool and it was a very smooth drive through the lush green field, rocky hills, and small villages. It took around 2 hours to reach the temple, I reached there by 8, as I started by 6 mornings I enjoyed the sunrise in my route. I did not expect the awe-inspiring view of the temple until I reached for it. The hill near temple seems to immerse immediately as if they are hidden from nearby cities. I first decided to visit the caves nearby temple. There is three caves – Agastya Cave, Venkateswara Cave, Veera Brahmam cave – the path to caves is lead by stairs, stairs are quite steep and uneven, so avoid carrying to much luggage or small child.
This is the easiest cave to climb having 102 stairs, the stairs are wide and even, but as you enter the cave mind your head since entry gate to main deity is low in height.This is the cave where Saint Sree Potuluri Veera Brahmendra Swamy wrote some of his Kala Gynanam (prophecy).
This one was more dangerous, steep steps and less wide stairs but in comparison to Agastya, it is easy to climb as you have proper side support in the middle of stairs. Here damaged idol of Lord Venkateswara is present. As per old story the idol of Lord Venkateshwara is damaged near the foot and thus it could not be worshipped. Veera Brahmam has written in his Kala Gynanam that this place can stand as an alternative to Tirupati.
This is the last cave that we trek having 120 steep steps, the stairs to this cave are uneven and quite steep. These caves get natural light through an opening in the middle. The belief is that Agastya performed his penance here for Lord Shiva. Currently an idol to Devi is installed here for worship.
After caves we headed towards the temple complex, at the entry there is Pushkarini, a bathing pond or pool, I saw lots of people having bath in that, but the way people were treating the pool was pathetic, they were using soap to bath, washing their clothes, you can see shampoo sachet, hair, oil floating on water surface. This prevented me from having a bath in the holy pool and I headed towards main temple complex. The gopuram of the temple is built in similar south Indian style, there is an entry ticket to the temple for darshan of the main deity. The garbhgriha houses the idol of Shiva & Parvathi (Ardhanareeswara) carved out of a single stone rather than the usual shiv linga. and outside the main shrine, there is a monolithic Nandi statue which is believed to be growing. After the darshan of main deity, we visited the nearby diety in the temple complex and return back. We did not found any good place to eat, there are small shops for shopping and most of them have beautiful jhoomars, you will only get snacks shop to cool down your hunger and the shopkeeper sells everything at high cost.
Facts and wonders of the temple
1. The ‘Pushkarini’, a place to take a holy bath before visiting the deity, source of water is not known. No one is able to figure out the reason behind the water flow in it all throughout the year.
2. It is a belief that crows do not fly in Yaganti because Kakasura, king of crows, disturbed Sage Agastya during his meditation and, in turn, Agastya cursed the crows not to enter the premises. Associated with it is another myth that since crow is the vehicle of Lord Shani thus he can also not enter the temple.
3. The most famous and archaeological wonder associated with the temple is about the growing size of the Nandi idol. It is belived that the size of Nandi grows by 1 inch in every 20 years. It is also confirmed by the Archaeological Survey of India. As per science rock of nandi has some composition that makes the growth possible.