Sri Vasavi Kanyaka Parameswari Temple, Penugonda.
Sri Vasavi Kanyaka Parameswari Temple is situated in Penugonda, West Godavari District, Andhra Pradesh. The Main Deity here is Sri Vasavi Kanyaka Parameswari who is the Incarnation of Goddess Parvathi. There are two other deities Nageswara Swamy and Mahishasuramardhini. The idol looks adorable. The seven storied tower (gopuram) at the entrace depicts the beauty of the temple architecture. The Penugonda Kshetram is considered as Kasi of Vysyas and a holy place for Vysyas.
The history behind this temple is
There was a King named Kusuma Shreshty who ruled Vanga Kingdom during 10th and 11th Century A.D.He and his wife Kusumamba used to pray Lord Nageswara Swamy. With a lack of Successor for his kingdom Kusuma Shreshty asked Bhaskaracharya for a remedy to have children. He advised to perform Putrakameshty Yagam. On performing the Yagam they got Prasadam from God Agni. With that Kusumamba gave birth to twins, one male and the other female. The male child was named as Virupaksha and the female as Vasavamba.
Once King Vishnu Vardhana visited Penugonda and there he saw Vasavamba. He want to marry Vasamamba and asked Kusuma Shreshty. Kusuma Shreshty asked Vasamamba and she said she remain unmarried for life time. Vishnu Vardhana got angry on rejecting his plea and preparing for a war against Kusuma shreshty.
Kusuma shreshty asked for the support of all people of 714 gotras. Of them only 102 Gotra people supported the king.As they are preparing for a war Vasamamba asked the king to solve the problem with non-violence and self-sarifice.
As per the instruction of Vasavi on the banks of Godavari River 103 fire pits were arranged for self-sacrfice.
With the expectation of people around Vasavi revelaed her true self indicating she is an incarnation of God. All the 102 Gotras people, Vasavi and Kusuma Shreshty, Kusumaba all sacrifices their life by entering into the fire pits and all the people got salvation
Vishnu Vardhana came to Penugonda and on hearing the news about the Self Sacrifice he too dies there. Virupaksha the son of Kusuma shreshty went on pilgrimage and visited many temples like Kasi , Gaya. On his back he installed 101 Sivalingams for each Gotra in Penugonda.
Kusuma Shreshty was a great saint in his previous birth. Goddess Parvathi came to earth as the daughter of Kusuma shreshty and became the Goddess for Vysyas as Vasavi Kanyaka Parameswari.
A beautiful temple to visit in Andhra Pradesh.