The Kalikadevi Temple in the distance (from a nearby hill)
Sirsangi now, was something that Vijayanand Swami had never told us. When we visited this place, the person who was taking us around had donated an acre of land to Anand Ashram just above this temple area on the descent of the hill next to the temple. This was donated for the making of an ashram for Baba Nityananda, which Swamiji named this place as "Tapovan". Swamiji wanted this person to take us to visit this place and it was only now that he revealed that we were going there by walk. The entire area of unpolluted nature had beautiful vibrations and i knew somewhere that there could not be an ideal place like this! When we reached the open land, we both chose a place to sit and when i looked around, i was pleasantly surprised to see everything there. There was cactus, there was bilva patra trees and there were the real tulsi plant. The leaves when chewed relished a very pure and strong taste of the original tusli leaves. If these holy trees and plants grew here, what more indication would one need of the presence of the Divine himself? We sat here for a long time while Shri. Annigeri, Mallikarjun and their worker went to different locations doing certain inspections. Frankly speaking, after sitting here, i was not feeling to get and leave from here. The sky was bright, yet the breeze was cool and everything looked green around and in the near distance could be seen the powerful
. A divine place! Very fortunate to be here and i was only exclaiming again and again to him that this is a wonderful place. He said, Swamiji wanted to know this through us and thus he was waiting for our inputs. He looked very happy to have given this land for this noble and divine work. He also revealed that Swamiji had lived around in this place doing sadhana for two years. Then coming back to the cab, we left back to him home, where his family loving served us a rich satvik Karnataka meal. As we sat resting for a while, three cute little calves tied in a distance took our attention often. Finally, thanking him for everything we took leave of the entire family. temple of Kalikadevi
Site for Baba Nityanand Tapovan for seekers
On the way, as we passed through high stony hills, Mallikarjun pointed out to me the Bhaskaracharya Hill. This was the hill on which Bhaskaracharya, who was a Surya Tapasvi, did his sadhana. He was born in a village in Bijapur (around 160 kms from here). It is said that it was here that with his tapobal, Bhaskaracharyaji he had made the Sun stop for 9 hours. He was the first to discover gravity 500 years before Sir Isaac Newton (read more about him). Note: These are all verbal information and need more research
Now we were heading towards Sogal, around, 40 kms from here, travelling through the stony hills and green land. All the while i was noticing only one thing when i looked out, the Malaprabha reservoir. This water, also known as Renukasagar reservoir i was seeing from Anand Ashram itself which is very close to the Ashram and the place where Maharishi Sumedha did tapas and took samadhi. All these areas that we traveled, the reservoir was visible, which showed that all these holy lands were situated on it's banks.
Click for larger image
Lord Dattatreya had walked these divine places of North Karnataka before he was last seen at Ganagapura, North Karnataka, which is only 275 kms from here. Ganagapura. Even Baba Nityanand is well taken as the incarnation of Lord Dattatreya and these areas so much signify the presence of all incarnations mentioned in the song "Jai Jai Aarti Nityananda...." It contains the lines:
Prathama Datta Rupa Gheshi (First you took the form of Lord Dattatreya)
Dwitiya Shripada Hoshi (secondly you incarnated as Shripad Vallabh)
Tritiya Narahari Hoshi (thirdly you incarnated as Narasimha Saraswati)
Ganagapuri Lilaa Daavishi (You did leelas in Ganagapuri)
Even Swami Samarth was in Akkalkot, which is 75 km further up which is and Maanik Prabhu was 100 km further north in Bidar, North Karnataka. Further the aarti also narrates of:
Maanik Prabhu Tu Hoshi (You are Manik Prabhu)
Akkalkot Swami Hoshi (You are Akkalkot Swami)
Shiradi Sai Nath Hoshi (You are Shiradi's Sai Baba)
Kali Yugi Nityananda Banashi (In Kali yuga you became Nityananda)
On the way to Sogal, we were in for a little more surprise as Mallikarjun asked the car to be deviated to a small road to the left and halted at what looked like a small house. As we got out, he said that this was a Nityanand Ashram, known as Mullur Ashram and this was where Swami Vijayanand lived for more than two years doing his sadhana around here and in the rocky caves of Sogal. This house had just one big room and looked like a normal house, but the moment we entered we could sense the divinity of this place.
A look at the large photo of Baba Nityananda only brought so much of peace and love; his presence was so strong all around in these areas and especially in this little hall. Along with padukas on the altar, there were pictures of many saints and siddhas who lived around. It also had a statue of Sogal ajja, who lived and did sadhana in caves in Sogal where he had taken samadhi. This is where we were heading to, and had now stopped to visit this little divine place. After meditating for sometime here, we got back into the cab to head further. i called up Mohan Swami's ashram to see if he was there and fortunately he was there. Then we went to Sogal Hill and met him and returned back to the ashram.