Shivri Narayan Temple, which comes in the Champa-Janjgir district of Chhattisgarh state, is also known as Gupta Tirtha Sthal because the Narayani form of Lord Neel madhav resides here secretly. The story behind it is also very interesting about the origin of Lord Neel madhav. In ancient times Shivrinarayan was the area of Srisindur Giri, where there were dense forests, and the Shabar caste used to rule this area.
Death of Lord Krishna
It is believed that after the end of the war between Kauravas and Pandavas in the last phase of Dwaparayuga, Lord Krishna was resting under a tree. Krishna was cursed by the arrow of a Shabar named Jara, due to which he died. Shri Krishna was cremated according to Vedic rituals, but his dead body was not burnt.
Dead body of Lord Krishna
For this reason, his dead body was taken out from the pyre and flowed into the sea. Here, when Shabar, who was burning in the fire of repentance, got the news of Krishna’s dead body flowing into the sea, he immediately went and brought the body out of the sea.
In this Srisindurgiri area, by placing him under a bamboo tree on the bank of a water source, he starts worshiping him and doing Tantra Sadhana. His dead body later became famous as Neel Madhav. On the other hand, a Tantrik named Indrabhuti takes away the idol of Neelmadhav from there and takes it to the cave of Sambhal Hill, and starts practicing tantra.
Neel madhav’s boon
Here, Zara Shabar cries profusely for not getting his Neelmadhav and stops eating and drinking. Pleased with her devotion, Neelmadhav gives a boon to sit here secretly by giving darshan of his Narayani form. Since then Lord Narayan is enshrined in this temple, and the devotees visit Lord Narayan every year on Maghapurnima. He attains salvation and goes to heaven.
How Neel Madhav becomes Jagannath ?
After Dwapar, Lord Krishna started residing in Puri and became the Nath of the world i.e. Jagannath. Lord Jagannath resides here with their elder brother Balabhadra and sister Subhadra. Let us know the story of Lord Neel Madhav which is related to Jagannathpuri. Here the narration appears in many ways or says in different ways.
Tale of King Indradyumna
In ancient times there was a king named Indradyumna in the Malwa region. Whose father’s name was Bharat and whose mother was Sumati. The king was the supreme devotee of Vishnuji. One night Lord Vishnu appeared to him in a dream and said that there is an idol of mine in a cave of Nilanchal mountain, it is called Neelmadhav. Build a temple and install this idol of mine in it.
After this dream, the king did penance, then Hanumanji appeared and told him about the location of the temple and its form and said if you start building the temple first, I will help you with this. The king did the same and built a grand temple of God on the beach of Puri, in which he had to face many difficulties.
After the construction of the temple, when the time came to install the idol in it, Lord Sri Hari again gave a dream and indicated that you should send some people to find my holy deity. After duly worshiping, the king sent all the people including his brother Vidyapati in different directions to find the deity of Sri Hari in the best Muhurta.
Search of Neel madhav idol
In the direction in which Vidyapati went with the lotus flower, there were dense Amrakanan forests and chains of mountains around the Nilanchal mountain. Vidyapati went to a place where people of a tribal caste named Sabar lived. The head of the clan used to worship Lord Neel Madhav by going to a secret place where the Deity of Neel Madhav was kept. He did not allow anyone to come there. The chieftain of the clan had a beautiful girl who saved Vidyapati from wild animals who had been injured.
The girl brought Vidyapati to her home and the clan chieftain named Vishvavasu was her father. The girl told the father the whole story that this person had wandered in the forest and the animals had injured it, so I brought it here. Vishwavasu also gave shelter to Vidyapati and treated the injured Vidyapati. Vidyapati did not tell both of them for what purpose I have come here because Vidyapati had come to know that only Vishvavasu and his caste people worship the deity of Lord Nila Madhav and now I want to know where that deity is kept.
Vidyapati impresses Vishvavasu
Staying there for many days, Vidyapati mingled with the people of the clan and one day he got married to the daughter of Vishvavasu, the head of the clan. Then one day Vidyapati expressed his desire to his father-in-law to see Neel Madhav. Father-in-law Vishwavasu put a condition that I will take you there blindfolded. Vidyapati said the father as you think is appropriate.
While going there, the clever Vidyapati tied mustard seeds in a bundle in his dhoti and when he was taken blindfolded, he scattered those mustard seeds on the way all the way. Finally, in a cave on a hill, when his blindfold was opened, there was a deity of Lord Shri Neel Madhav in front of him, from which bright light was emanating. Seeing whom Vidyapati became very happy.
Then when he returned after visiting, after some time when the mustard seeds turned into plants, Vidyapati found a way to reach there. Then one-day Vidyapati got up early in the morning and started going on that route, his wife worshiped where are you going so early in the morning? Vidyapati said I am going to collect flowers so that I can offer them to God and make Vaini for you. The wife was pleased to hear this.
Vidyapati steals the idol
Then Vidyapati went straight from there to her cave on Nilanchal mountain. On being suspicious, his wife also followed him and when she saw that Vidyapati was stealing the idol of Lord Neel Madhav, she felt very sad. Vidyapati told the whole story to his wife that my brother is King Indradyumna and he has built a grand temple in which he wants to install this deity by the will of the Lord. Vidyapati’s wife said I will be forced to stop you and you leave here before my father comes here. You have cheated on us, but you are my husband, so let me say something else, let him go from here first. Vidyapati leaves there disappointed.
Vishwavasu was deeply saddened by the theft of the idol of his deity. He thought that my daughter had also helped Vidyapati in this theft, so he expelled his daughter from the clan. His daughter was pregnant at that time. She left there and started living in a cave.
Neel madhav go backs
On the other hand, Vidyapati returned to his brother King Indradyumna with the Deity. The king was pleased to see him and when he placed the Deity in his palace, he was even more pleased to see it but Sri Hari was not pleased because his Deity was stolen. Then he told the king in a dream now you make my idol with some best sculptor. The king said who would be such a sculptor who could make your idol? God said that you bring a big piece of a tree floating in the sea to make my idol, which is coming to Puri by swimming in the sea from Dwarka.
The king’s servants found the piece of that tree, but all the people together could not lift that tree. Then the king understood that the help of Vishvavasu, the head of the Sabar clan, who was an exclusive devotee of Nilamadhav, would have to be taken. Everyone was surprised when Vishwavasu lifted the heavy wood and brought it to the temple.
Carving of Lord Jagannath
Now it was the turn to carve the idol of God out of wood. The king’s artisans tried a million times but no one could even apply a chisel to the wood. Then Lord Vishwakarma, the master craftsman of the three worlds, appeared in the form of an old man. He told the king that he could make the idol of Nilamadhav, but at the same time, he put his conditioned that he would make the idol in 21 days and make it alone. No one can see them being made. His condition was accepted. People kept hearing the sound of saws, chisels, and hammers.
King Indradyumna’s queen Gundicha could not restrain herself. When she went near the door, she did not hear any sound. She panicked. He thought the old artisan was dead. He informed the king about this. No sound was heard from inside, so the king also felt the same. Bypassing all the conditions and warnings, the king ordered the door of the room to be opened.
As soon as the room was opened, the old man was missing and 3 incomplete idols were found lying in it. Lord Nilamadhav and his brother had small hands made, but not their legs, while Subhadra’s hands and feet were not made at all. The king installed these incomplete idols considering it as the will of God. Since then till today all three brothers and sisters are present in this form.
The present temple was built in the 7th century. Although this temple was also built in BC 2. The temple located here has been broken three times. It was renovated by Odisha ruler Ananga Bhimdev in 1174 AD. About 30 small and big temples are established around the main temple. According to the Brahma and Skanda Puranas, Lord Vishnu incarnated here as Purushottam Nilamadhav and became the supreme deity of the Sabar tribe.