GOA, INDIA, May 27, 2019 (Inditales by Anuradha Goyal): Mallikarjuna temple in Goa is located in the far south of the state in the Canacona district. It almost borders the state of Karnataka. Like most temples in Goa, it is also a unique temple, with a history full of stories. The ritual Shisha Ranni, when I first heard about, I could not believe, so I had to see them with my own eyes to believe. So, a few days after Holi when most of the Goan villages are busy celebrating the colorful Shigmotsava, I headed southwards to see Shisha Ranni — the unique festival of Mallikarjuna in Canacona.
The name Mallikarjuna comes from a legend from Mahabharata. An asura named Malla was fighting the Pandava Arjuna. Shiva took the shape of a hunter and helped Arjuna kill Malla, hence earning the name – Mallikarjuna. Mallikarjuna Temple is situated in a beautifully named village called – Shristhal, that would make it a place of the Sri or Lakshmi. It is believed to be one of the oldest temples in Goa. Locally the Deity is called Adavat Sinhasanadhishwar Mahapati. It should mean someone seated on a lion which would mean again a Devi. Mahapati could mean her consort. The current structure belongs to late 18th CE, so you see a similarity in architecture with the rest of the temples in Goa. It is much older, some say 16th CE while others put it even farther back.
Much more of this travel blog, including several beautiful photos and a short video, at “source”.