“People who indulge in mere nama-sankirtan or offer prayers to Arunachaleswara even from distant places”, Gautama Maharshi told Parvathi Devi “will have salvation conferred on them. (“Kirtito janardooraihi Shonadririti muktidaha”). Gifts, havans, homas, japa and all types of thapas in the mountainous region will bring infinite benefits. Long ago, in order to enlighten Brahma and Maha Vishnu, Sadashiva manifested Himself in the form of a fiery linga without visible ends shedding profound light in all directions. In response to their prayers, He withdrew His fiery state and emerged as Arunachaleswara. However, the Paramatman’s secret form of thejo-linga is constantly being worshipped by the music of divine instruments, dance of celestial nymphs and an incessant rain of flowers”.
Open the third eye :
“According to Arunachaleswara himself, sins of the body, mind and speech will be thrown out of the human system by a mere darshan of Lord and also from pradakshinam, prostration, prayer and puja. While the darshan of the peak of Arunachala ennobles human life, at the same time it opens the third eye of enlightenment”.
“Whoever takes a dip in Arunachala theerthams, (sacred tanks) performs ablutions, offers puja with devotion and silently undertakes pradakshinams will attain great purity, according to the Lord.”
Once Maha Vishnu of a certain Kalpa did not wake up from His yoga–nidra long after the period of deluge even when the job of creation was over. When he approached Maheshwara with profound sorrow and apology, the Lord suggested to him the simple remedy of Arunachala darshan in Bhu-loka.
Arunachaleshwara said to him, “Although my radiant and fiery form is unmanifest but dazzling in the glory of its countless qualities and attributes, it generates peace and tranquility for protection of the world. All rivers, canals and even rain waters of the mountain region vanish into the veritable incandescence of the inner jyothi. I stay permanently in Arunachala as the bestower of boons”.
Sri Maha Vishnu proceeded to Arunachala and performed thapas contemplating on thejo-linga. When he saw that several thejasvis had occupied many parts of the mountain region which was virtually a forest, he created several ashrams at the foot of the mountain. Then he bathed in Brahma pushkara and completed giri pradakshinam. He got the lordship of all the worlds and then it was then that he was joined by Maha Lakshmi.
Recovery of sight
It is very well known that Sukracharya lost his eye when once he came to obstruct Bali’s gift of a piece of land to Maha Vishnu. Then he migrated to Arunachala to perform rigorous thapas to regain his sight. Arunachaleshwara has the reputation of rescuing the blind and other handicapped persons.
Radius of radiation
For a radius of a few miles from the mountain, the whole area is very dear to Shiva. Those who breathe their last in the region will be absolved from rebirth.
Bhaskara stays in the east of mountain, Varuna is in the west, the presiding diety of Shiva’s trisulam in the North and Viswamithra in the South. All the four are constantly worshipping Arunachaleshwara standing majestically in the form of the mountain.
Sadashiva in disguise :
Arunachaleshwara stays on the mountain in disguise:
“Asyotharasmin shikare drishayate vatabhuruha,
Siddhaveshaha saadaivaaste yasyamoole Maheswaraha” (Skanda)
There is a mysterious but sacred banyan tree on the Northern peak of the mountain. At its root, Maheswara always stays disguised as a siddha. The shade of the tree is itself very mystical conforming to a ‘mandala’ and the devatas and the great ones watch it with veneration and expectation. The Vatavriksha is very dear to Vrishabhadwaja Arunachaleshwara as it is very well known to be dear to Dakshinamurthy, the jnana guru form of Sadashiva.
All theerthas of Bhu-loka are to be found in Arunachala, Ganga stays at the bottom of the great mountain, Yamuna at the middle, and Narmada at the top. They all have been worshipping Arunachaleshwara. The confluence and merger of all the holy waters is said to take place at the time of puja and offerings of the Lord.
A darshan of Arunachaleshwara is equivalent to all the vratas, pilgrimages, thapas of all types, Vedic studies, yagnas and a host of other sacrifices of disciplines.