April 23, 2008

What's the Best Distance?

(Nandikesvara tells Markandeya)

"There is in the Southern Region, O ascetic, in the land of Dravidas, a great sacred place named Aruna associated with the Lord with the crescent-moon for his crest-jewel.

It extends to three Yojanas. It is worthy of being adored by Sivayogins. Know it to be the heart of the earth, attractive and thrilling to Siva.

There the Lord Sambhu himself has assumed the form of a mountain. He has the name Arunachala. He is conducive to the welfare of the worlds."

[Chapter 4, The Greatness of Arunachala
Skanda Purana -- I.iii(U).4.12-23]

Siva said:
"I ordain that residence within a radius of three Yojanas of this Hill shall be itself suffice to burn off all defects and effect union with the Supreme."
[Skanda Purana]

A yojana is a Vedic measure of distance used in ancient India. The exact measurement is disputed amongst scholars with distances generally being given in the order of 7-8 kilometres.

The etymology of the word ‘yojana’ is derived from the same root that gives us both the English word ‘yoke’ and the Indian term ‘yoga’. It is thought that ‘yojana’ initially meant ‘being yoked’, and that it was used as a unit of measure to indicate the approximate distance that a cow could pull a cart to which it was yoked.

The yojana is used extensively in ancient descriptions of Buddhist cosmology (and, presumably, Hindu cosmology as well). The size of layers of the Earth, the heights of mountains, and the depths of seas are all described using yojanas.


In earlier postings I have explained the reason why land has become so expensive at Arunachala. Nowadays it is very difficult indeed to find land within two kilometres of the Hill sold at any price other than by the square foot. Devotees eager to buy land are shocked to hear prices such as Rupees Twenty Lakhs (i.e. one Lakh is U.S. $2,500) an acre. But even these prices are dwarfed by land prices near the Hill of up to Rupees One Hundred Lakhs an acre. Such prices are not meant for ordinary purchasers -- they reflect the value of land to property developers and speculators, who after purchase will partition the land into plots of around 40' by 60' to be sold at between Rs.500-Rs.1000 a square foot. Incidentally, I have not heard of any land within a couple of kilometres of Arunachala that is being sold by the square foot, at a price less than Rs.200 a square foot.

Experts say that land at Chennai and Bangalore (closest urban city areas) are overpriced and will eventually come down - that may be so, however Tiruvannamalai is not the same as these other places, probably because land until two years ago was seriously undervalued. Even now with the mind-numbing prices mentioned above, land at Tiruvannamalai is priced at a tiny fraction in comparison to other tourist/famous areas in South India.

Yes, three to five years ago it was possible to buy very nice land within one kilometre of Arunachala at the shocking bargain prices of Rs.One Lakh an acre. Not anymore. Those bargain basement days are gone never to return.

In my opinion close to the Hill, is not the place to set up a new Ashram, commune, facility, organic farm, or residential community (even if finances permit) as frankly areas around the Hill are getting noisy, congested and dirty and remember this it WILL ONLY GET WORSE.

If you are determined to get land close to Arunachala then make sure the seller is willing to sell at an acre rate, that there is plenty of water, that the proposed multi-lane ringroad isn't scheduled to go through the land in a couple of years, and also that there are natural buffers like a water reservoir or hills protecting the land from encroaching development. In this respect I have already mentioned very nice land that fits into such a category -- you can get more information about such land at this link and here.

SO HERES THE GREAT NEWS. It is still possible to buy beautiful land, silent, pristine, undeveloped and countrified close to Arunachala and at AFFORDABLE PRICES.

This website, Arunachala Land will be posting information of beautiful land all within 30 kms of Arunachala that would be perfect for an ashram, farm, country living, community or animal facility. Today we are posting information about two such great parcels of land. The first within ten kilometres of Arunachala with a beautiful view of the Hill and comprising up to thirty acres of pristine land. The second parcel of land is approximately twenty five kilometres from Arunachala and comprises up to ninety acres of immaculate land with impeccable water supply. In both cases it is not necessary to buy the whole parcel.

At the beginning of this post I quote from the definitive scriptural work 'Skanda Purana' about the area of power radiating from Arunachala as being three Yojanas (approximately 30 kilometres). So heres the best thing of all, YOU CAN AFFORD to live in a large, unspoilt environment and also be in the ambit of Arunachala's Grace.


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

It so beautiful just a short distance away from the Hill - the houses finish, and its all fields, fields, fields, lovely.