Bheemarama , Samarlakota

Bhimaramam is located at Samalkot near Kakinada and it constitutes one of the five Pancharama Shiva shrines of Andhra Pradesh. The five pancharama temples are Draksharama, Kumararama, Ksheerarama and Bheemarama and Amararama. By some accounts Bhimaramam at Samalkot is also known as Kumararamam. It is believed that when Subramanya killed the demon Tarakasura, the Shivalingam in the demon's throat broke and fell in five different spots, which became the Panchaarama kshetras. The foremost of these is Amareswara at Amaravati where Indra and the Devas are believed to have worshipped Shiva. The others are Draksharama, Somarama at Kotipalli, Bheemarama at Kakinada and Ksheerarama or Palakollu. Legend has it that the Shivalingam here was installed by Skanda and hence the name Kumararamam. There are puranic references to Kumararamam in the Skanda Puranam. Parvati here is referred to as Bala Tripurasundari. As with the other shrines in this group, the Shivalingam is a large one, and it is housed in a three storeyed sanctum, and worship services are performed in the upper level. The temple received royal patronage from the Chalukyas (especially the ruler Bhima Chalukya). The sculptural wealth of the temple is worthy of mention. Such is the intricacy of stone work here that a black granite swing actually sways when rocked.

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