Mahaperiyava has said that since the time of the Sun and Moon, men of the vast Sri Muthannaval lineage have been performing yagnas. Hailing from this great lineage is Sri Sri Vittaldas Maharaj, fondly known as Sri Anna by his devotees. Born
the year 1963, Sri Anna recieved Vedic and Dharmic tutelage from his father Sri Rama Dikshithar.
While developing a deep knowledge of Sanskrit, Vedas and Shastras, Sri Anna started accompanying his father to various cities for Pravachans and Upanyasams. Growing up in the family of great stalwarts like Sri Anantharama Dikshithar and Sri Narayana Dikshithar, it did not come as a surprise that Sri Anna too started giving discourses on Srimad Bhagwatham and Srimad Ramayanam from a very young age.
While Paranur Mahatma Sri Sri Krishna Premi Maharaj is Sri Anna's Adhyatmika Guru, it was under Haridas Giri Maharaj's direction that Sri Anna gained the knowledge of Bhajana Sampradaya. Sri Anna's unique way of involving the general public in Nama Sankeertanam is the reason behind his grand success.
While Sri Anna is known for his famous Nama Saagar, Divyanamam and Bhakthi filled discourses, the Vittal Rukmini Mandir is Sri Anna's biggest achievement. Sri Vittal and Sri Rukmini entered Sri Anna's life in the year 1994.
Originally from Pandharpur, they lived with Sri Anna in Vadagudi, their ancestral village, for 4 years. Later in 1998, a Bhajanashram was established in Govindapuram and Sri Vittal and Sri Rukmini settled in a Balalayam there (lovingly called as pazhaya sannidhi now). In 2003, Sri Anna was dawned with the idea of building the world's largest temple of Sri Vittal and Sri Rukmini.
With the blessings and guidance of His gurus, Sri Vittaldas Maharaj started the construction of this mega project. Each brick of this temple was earned through Nama Sankeetanam and 8 years later, on 15 July 2011, the auspicious day of Guru Purnima, Sri Vittal and Sri Rukmini were grandly consecrated in this temple.
With beautiful fibre glass paintings and enormous statues adorning the temple, the Gopuram stands tall at 150 feet high. Standing in this Maharashtrian wonder Sri Vittal and Sri Rukmini grace all those who walk through the grand doors of the temple.
The temple with its grand Prakaram, is housed on 32,000 sq ft of land area.
The temple has two floors, of which the upper floor, houses Sri Vittal Rukmini's Garbha Griham (sanctom sanctorum), Ardha Mandapam, Maha Mandapam and Vasantha Mandapam. The temple stands tall with a 150 ft high Gopuram (temple tower).
The temple stands on a whopping 24,000 sq ft of land area and has been completely built and beautified by skilled Maharashtrian sculptors.
The sacnctom sanctorum of Sri Vittal and Sri Rukmini is an astonishing 1000 sqft of
land area. Our Swami and Thaayaar stand beneath a rich wooden Mandapam and above a room that holds
300 crores of Nama Pathram. Vittal Nama was written by various devotees specifically for this purpose.
The hall before the Sannidhi , where bhaktas stand and offer their prayers to the dieties. The
entire Mandapam is decorated with fibreglass paintings.
Also sometimes called the Shayana Mandapam, it houses the exquisite Palli Arai of our Swami
and Thaayaar, this Mandapam is a feast for the eyes with its 35 ft high circular ceiling. The domed ceiling is
adorned with sculptors of the great saints like Tukaram, Ekanath, Janabai and more. The vibe of this place
is so powerful that one starts chanting Vittal Nama on entering.
A 6000 sqft pillarless hall, this Mandapam is also completely adorned with fibreglass
paintings and built for the sole purpose of Nama Vaibhavam. Over 20,000 Bhagwathas have sung abhangs
and kirtans for Sri Vittal and Sri Rukmini from this very place.
27 massive steps lead to the breath taking entrance to the temple adorned on either sides by
Namadev and Tukaram. Adding to this cosmic beauty are 3 Neerazhi Mandapams above the Maha Dwaar.
All entrances are adorned with majestic wooden doors, each pair 16 ft in height. The Maha Dwaar doors are carved with floral designs. The Vasantha Mandapam doors are carved with portraits of great saints and seers, who graced this world 300 years ago. The Maha Mandapam doors are carved with portraits of great saints and seers who graced our world within the last 300 years.
The entire Mandir from the Garbha Griham to the Maha Dwaar is fully air conditioned.
To enable Swami Darshan for the differently abled and old bhaktas, an electric lift is installed.
The lower floor houses the Madapalli (Kitchen to cook Swami Prasadam), Alankaram Room (Room for decorating our Swami during temple festivals), Vaahana Mandapam (Place where all the floats or vaahanam of our Swami are placed, which are also used during temple festivals), Temple Rooms and a library.