Nanded is one of the oldest cities in Bharat and is of historical importance situated on the north bank of River Godavari. In the 5th and 4th centuries BCE, Nanded was ruled by the Nanda dynasty. In the 3rd century BCE (about 272 to 231 BCE), it was part of the Maurya Empire under Ashoka and in the 1st Century CE Nanded was ruled by Satavahana Kings.
Dattatreya’s birth place
Around 125 kms from Nanded (Maharashtra), in the village Mahur, there is a temple for Dattatreya. This place is the birthplace of Dattatreya. This temple is located on a small hillock. Bhagwan Vishnu, Brahma and Shiva are said to be descended to the earth in the form of Dattatreya.
Dattatreya is born to the saint couple Atri Muni and Anasuya. The four dogs that accompany Dattatreya are considered to be the symbol of four Vedas. The Gomata (cow) behind Dattatreya is said to be the incarnation of Bhoomata (Earth). The shloka –
“Guru Brahma, Guru Vishnu, Guru devo Maheshwara,
Guru sakshat, param Brahma, tasmai shri guravay namah”
Is in praise of Dattatreya who is an incarnation of the Trimurthis- Bhagwan Vishnu, Bhagwan Brahma and Bhagwan Shiva. Dattatreya says everyone has 24 Masters in the form of- pancha bhootas (earth, water, fire, air and ether), 5 jnanendriyas (eyes, ears, skin, tongue and nose), 5 karmendriyas (mouth, hands, legs and two body parts of excreta), 5 tanmatras (sound, touch, form, taste and smell) and 4 antakaranas (heart, mind, memory and ego).
There are two small hillocks on both sides to the hillock of Dattatreya’s temple where the temples of Anasuya Devi and Renuka Mata are located. Renuka Mata is the wife of Saint Jamadagni and mother of Parashurama. It is believed that Renuka Mata took birth in this place.
Ekaveera Devi Temple
20 kms from Mahur in Hiyur village there is a temple for Ekaveera devi. This temple is located amidst the fields near the road and it is one of the 18 Shakti Peethas. It is believed that when Goddess Sati’s (Dakshayani) body parts were cut into 51 pieces after her immolation at Daksha Yagna by Lord Vishnu with his Sudarshana Chakra, her right hand fell at this place.
Takht Sri Hazur Sahib is the famous Gurudwara in Nanded. This is one of the five sacred places for Sikhs. The other four places are – Akal Takht at Amrutsar, Punjab; Takht Shree Keshgarh Sahib at Anandpur, Punjab; Takht Shree Patna Sahib at Patna, Bihar; Takht Shree Damdama Sahib at Bhatinda, Punjab.
The tenth and the last Sikh Guru Guru Gobind Singh breathed his last in Nanded. Guru Gobind Singh (22 December 1666- 7 October 1708) was not only a spiritual leader but also a great warrior, poet and philosopher. He established the sacred text, the Guru Granth Sahib as an eternal “living” leader. Guru Granth Sahib is the religious scripture of Sikhism, regarded by Sikhs as the final, sovereign, and eternal living Guru following the lineage of the ten human Gurus of the Sikh religion.
The Nanded Gurudwara was built by Maharaja Ranjit Singh during 1832-1837. This Gurudwara is also worshiped as Sachkhand Abchalnagar Sahib. Lakhs of pilgrims visit this place every year. Free food is provided to the devotees throughout at the Langar in this Gurudwara.
This Gurudwara is very large and built of marble. The Trust of Gurudwara undertakes many social welfare activities for the people in Nanded. There are trains running from Amrutsar to Nanded. Nanded is a sacred place for the people who follow the Hindu and Sikh faiths.
(Featured image source)
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