Aalandi is a small village but that doesn’t stop it from being popular. Its connection with Sant Dnyaneshwar is the major reason why it is thronged throughout the year by devotees, many of them belonging to the Varkari sect. It is around 20-30 minutes away from the Pune city.
Dnyaneshwar was a 13th century saint, poet, philosopher and guru from Maharashtra. He is known the most for authoring a commentary on the Bhagavad Gita from Sanskrit to Marathi and titled it Dnyaneshwari. His translated work of the ancient text helped a lot of people who didn’t know Sanskrit from the state to acquire its knowledge.
Dnyaneshwar’s another famous work is Amurtanubhav, which he wrote on the advice of his guru Nivruttinath. (Read more about Sant Dnyaneshwar by clicking HERE.)
Alandi is the place where Dnyaneshwar attained Samadhi (Nirvana) at Siddheshwar temple. A temple complex was built over there later which is thronged by pilgrims ever since, especially on Ekadashi.
The temple offers plenty of serenity. As soon as I entered, I was welcomed with positive vibes. It is also a treat to see the passion of the devotees. It is their simplicity that impresses you, especially their clothing. The compound of the temple is also used to simply sit and take in the experience. You might find people reading devotional texts over there.
Alandi is also known for its renowned temple of another saint Jalaram Bapa. This is his second most prominent place of worship after his birth place in Virpur in Gujarat.
Alandi is like any other small village of Maharashtra. There has been a lot of construction over here in the last decade or more. This wasn’t the case when I used to visit it during my childhood in the 1990s. Nevertheless, it still provides relaxation.
River Indrayani is the major reason for this. It is a peaceful river surrounded by nicely built steps. The scene is somewhat similar to Varanasi. There are a number of shops selling devotional items, literature and food. If you are in Alandi, it is a must to savour its spicy Misal with Pav.
By: Keyur Seta