Thiru Kottaram Temple, Nannilam, Thiruvarore.  

Posted by Shamala Krishnan in , , , , , , , , , ,

Thiru Kottaram:

This place is One of 275 Devara Sthalam. The place Velangkudi is on the way between Kariakkal and Mailaduthurai. Thiru Kottaram is about a kilometer from Velangkudi.

The Raja Gopuram is of three tiers.

Main Deity is small Swayambu Lingam known as Iravadeeswarar and his consort known as Vandavar Kuzali Amman. She is seen in standing posture.

Sthala Vruksham is Parijatham and Teertham is Vanjiaru and Soorya Teertham. Previously the River was known as Kottaru and now it is known as Vanjiaru.

As we enter we find Dwajasthambam and Dwara Ganapathy. In front of this we see a mandapam, with sculpture of Lord Siva as Kailasanadhar To left we see Bala Ganapthy.

In this mandapam, we see pillars and the roof is in arch shape. Nandi is seen here facing the main sanctum of Iravadeeswarar.

Here in this mandapam to the right, we see Artha mandapam and Ambal sannidhi. From here we enter into Maha mandapam, were we see Natarajar and Sivakami Ammai, Lord Murugan, and Somaskandar. Next we enter into Artha Mandapam were, we see Boga Sakthy as Urchava Idoi to North West corner. Ganapathy and Nagarajar sculptures, is seen to either side of the entrance, which leads to main sanctum of Iravadeeswarar.

As we go around the temple we see other Deities like Ganapathy, Thirumaal, Kailasa nadhar, Nalwar, Paravai Nachiar, Subaka Maharishi, Nagarajar Subramanyar, Gaja Lakshmi, and Chandikeeswarar.

Due to the curse of Durvasa Muni, Iravadham lost its control and hit the clouds with its tusk. Rain started pouring down and water started flowing like a River. Iravadham worshiped Lord Siva with this water. Hence Lord Siva is known as Iravadeeswarar and the place as Kottaru which changed as Kottaram over a Period.

Purana says Agasthya Muni and Subhaka Maharishi worshiped Lord Iravadeswarar here. One day Subha Rishi was late in visiting the temple, by the time the door was closed. He took the form of Honey Bee and worshiped Lord Iravadeeswarar. Honeycomb is seen in front of the sanctum. In this temple once in a year, honey is collected from the homeycomb seen in the temple, which is used for the Abishekam of Siva Lingam.

There is a separate sanctum for Kumara Bhuneswarar and Siva lingam which was installed and worshiped by Agasthya Maharishi and Subhaka Muni.

Sambandhar sang Hymns on Iravadeeswarar.

The temple was built by Kulothunga Cholan in the year 1253AD. Stone inscriptions in the temple refer to the King as Maduranthagan Kulothunga Cholan.

Melai Thirumanajcherry, Nagapatinam.  

Posted by Shamala Krishnan in , , , , , , ,

Melai Thirumanajcheri / Edirkolpadi temple:

The temple is about 6kms from Kuthalam. The place Kuthalam is on the way to Mailaduthurai from Kumbakonam.

This is one of 275 Siva Devara Sthalam. Sundarar sang Hymns on Iravadeeswarar of this temple.

The temple Raja Gopuram is of five tiers.

Main Deity here, in this temple is Swayambu Lingam known as Iravadeeswarar and his concert Known as Sugandha Kunthalambikai.

As we enter in side we see Dwajsthambam and Lord Ganeshais seen at the bottom.

Sthala vruksham of the temple is Utthala Maram. Purana says this vruksham is seen only in this place.

As we enter in there is a small sanctum for Lord Ganesha, and we see Balipeetam behind.

Next we seeNandi Devarin small sanctum.

Within the temple we see Subramanyar, Gaja Lakshmi, Kala Bairavar and Saneeswarar sanctums. As we go around we see Bala Ganapathy, Natrajar, Dakshina Moorthy, Ligothbavar, Brahma, Raghu, Durgai, and Ganga Visarjanar as Kostha moortams.

This is Gopuram view of main sanctum from one side.

Meenakshi Sundareswar, marriage ceremony sculptures seen to one side of the Gopuram.

To one side Guru Dakshina Moorthy, sculpture is seen on top of the gopuram.

Dakshina Moorthy sanctumseen as we go around the main sanctum.

There is a small sanctum for Saraswathy Devi.

We see Ambal Sugandha Kunthalambikai in separate sanctum. She is seen in sitting posture, known as Sukhaasana posture. Ambal deity is small in size in this temple.

Sthala purana says Iravadham worshiped Lord Siva here hence he is known as Iravadewarar. Durvasa muni, once gifted a lotus garland to Indra, which was given to him byLord Siva. Indra took the garland and placed it on his elephant Iravadham,which did not know the value of the garland, and threw it down and stamped. Muni was unable to control his anger and he cursed Indra and Iravath. Indra realised his mistake and asked him to excuse and to let him know the way to get rid of his curse.

Iravath came down to earth and worshiped Lord Siva in many temples. When it came to this place and worshiped, Iravath got rid of its curse and was blessed. Indra also worshiped Lord Siva of this place and he was blessed.

Sthala purana also says Baratha Muni who belong to Thirumananjchery, was the one who performedLord Siva and Parvathy marriage at Vaelvikudi. After the ceremony was finished he invited new couple Lord Siva and Parvathy to visit his place. Lord Siva agreed to do so. When Lord Siva and Prvathy came to this place Thirumanajcheri, Baratha muni went forward to welcome newly married couple Lord Siva and Parvathy.

So the place is known as Edirkolpadi which means going forward to welcome. Now the place is known as Melakoil.

By worshiping Lord Siva here marriages are settled. One who has lost their wealth and jobs also worship Lord Siva,and they are blessed by him like Indra who worshiped and got back his wealth and post.

Arulmigu Kottai Marriamman and Sri Lakshmi Narayanar Temple, Salem Town.  

Posted by Shamala Krishnan in , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

  1. Arulmigu Kottai Mrrimmn:

    The temple is near old bus station of Salem. This is oldest temple in Salem. Kottai Marrimman is known as Malarmari. During pre British period she is supposed to be guardian deity of Salem fort

    The temple is situated on the banks of River Manimuttharu. Chera kings have contributed lot, for the development of the temple.

    The main Raja Gopuram is of seven tiers. We find pillars with beautiful carvings. There are about eight Mrriamman temples; around Salem, out of which Kottai Mari Amman is eldest deity.

    Any problem relating to Eyes and Stomach get cured by worshipping Mariamman here in this temple.

  2. Sri Lakshmi Narayanar Temple.

    Sri Lakshmi Narayanar Temple is about 2 kms from Salem Bus stand. The temple is located in 2nd Agrahara Street.

    The temple has a Raja Gopuram of three tiers. There is a stone pillar seen, as we enter inside.

    Lakshmi Narayanar is seen in sitting posture with Lakshmi Devi on his lap. Other deities seen in the temple are Sri Chakkratazhwar, Sri Vishvaksenar, Sri Nagaraja Ganapathy, Sri Ramanujar, Sri Danvanthri, Sri Andal, Sri Vishnu Durgai, Sri Lakshmi Haygreevar and Sri Hanuman.

    Stone inscriptions are there in the temple. Chera, Chola and Pandya Kings have worshiped Sri Lakshmi Narayanar here and they have contributed wealth to the temple.

Sri. Sukavaneswarar temple & Raja Ganapathy temple, Salem Town.  

Posted by Shamala Krishnan in , , , , , , , , ,

  1. Sri Sukavaneswarar Temple:

    Sri Sukavaneswarar temple is in Salem Town. It is about 2kms from bus stand. The temple is as old as thousand years.

    Main Deity is Lord Siva in Lingam form known a Sukavaneswarar and his consort known as Sri Swarnambikai Amman. In this temple, Lingam portion is little slanting and there is a cut on the top of Lingam. Swarnambikai Amman in standing posture is seen in separate sanctum.

    Sukahabrahma Rishi worshiped Lord Siva of this place in the form of a parrot and he was blessed hence, Lord Siva is known as Sukavaneswarar here. There is a metal urchava Vigraham of Sukavaneswarar in the main temple of Lord Siva near Natarajar..

    Other deities seen in the temple are Irrattai Vinaykar, in separate sanctum. Purana says Ovvayaar worshiped Vinayakar of this temple and left for Kailayam. We see Ovular idol in the sanctum.

    Sthala Vruksham is Padri.

    There is a separate sanctum for Subramanyar.We see sculptures of Arupadai veedu Murugan on outer wall.

    Other deities like Duragai, Dakshina Moorthy, Chandikeswarar and Navagraham are seen in the temple. We see Somaskandar utsava vigraham on Rishba Vahan mounted to temple chariot,which is kept in a room closed with shutter. They open the shutter only during Aarthi time during pooja hour. They close with a screen and shutter is dropped.

    Though we were just few steps away from the shutter we missed the darshan of Somaskandar on Rishba vahanam. As we are alien to this place we never knew the shutter will be kept open for neyvedyam and Aarthy.
    We were fortunate enough to have the darshan of Somaskandar on our next day visit to temple.

    There is a small sanctum for Bairavar to the corner of the temple. They temple premises is kept clean and neat. We came to know they perform pooja, four times in a day. The temple was crowded with devotees.

    We find Raghu and Chandaran have changed their place in the Navagraha sanctum which is unusual. By worshiping Navagraha here, one is blessed with good job and good life partner.

    Sthala purana :

    Once Brahma was describing about the difference in each of his creations. Sukha Muni,who heard this, conveyed it to Saraswathy. Brahma cursed Sukha muni to become a parrot. Sukar had to worship Lord Sivaand get rid of his curse. Sukar worshiped Lord Siva in this place with a group of parrots.

    One day a hunter came to this place and drew them away which took shelter in the Anthill (Puttru). Hunter demolished the ant hill, all the parrots died, except Sukar who was in the form of parrot. The parrot kept its wing open and seated on the Lingam portion to protect. Hunter saw this and he attacked the parrot which died and the blood started oozing out of the lingam.

    Hunter realized his mistake and he sacrificed his life there. Sukar got rid of his curse by Lord Siva who blessed him Sukar requested Lord Siva to stay back in this place as Sukavaneswarar and bless mankind.

    Arunagirinadhar has sung Thirupugazh on Lord Subramanaya of this temple.

  2. Raja Ganapthy Temple:

    The temple is about 2 kms distance from bus stand and it is nearer to Sukvaneswarar Temple, Salem Town. The temple is about 400 years old.

    Raja Ganapathy temple is in busy street, the temple is one of the popular temples of Salem Town. Temple is small one but noted for its glory. Ganesha in the sanctum is of medium size and everyday he is seen withRaja Alankaram, hence he is known as Raja Ganapthy.

    Devotees pray to Raja Ganapathy, who inturn fulfill their wishes. We find the temple is always crowded. Couples pray for child and students pray for knowledge which is showered on them by Lord Raja Ganapathy who is residing here in this sanctum.

Sri Durga Malleswara Swamy Temple, Vijayawada, AP.  

Posted by Shamala Krishnan in , , , , , , , ,

Sri Durga Malleswara Swamy Temple:

The temple is situated on a hillock know as Indrakeeladri, on the banks of River Krishna at Vijayawada.

Main shrine here is Sri Kanaka Durga. This is one of the 51 Sakthi peetam. Other deities seen in the premises are Lord SriGanapathy, Lord Sri Nataraja and Sivakami ammai.. We have to walk little further to have darshan of Lord Malleswara from Sri Kanaka Durga shrine. On our way out from the temple, to north side we see few steps that lead us to Lord Subramanya shrine. In front of the shrine we see lot of Nagar idols installed.

Purana says once a Yaksha by name, Keela penance about Goddess Durga, who was pleased with him, and she told she would fulfill his desire. Keela requested her to be in his heart always. She asked him to stay back in this place near River Krishna as a hillock, and one day she will reside on this hillock as Durga.

In Kritha yugam, Goddess Durga, after her fight with Mahisha suran, stayed back on this mountain Keela as Mahishasura Mardhini and fulfilled his wishes. Indra worshiped Goddess here, as Kanaka Durga so the hillock, is known as Indra Keeladri from then.

Brahma performed Sata Aswameda Yaga with devotion, by which Lord Siva was pleased and rested on this hillock as Jyothir Linga. Brahma worshiped Lord Siva with Jasmine flowers, so he is known as Mallikeswarar.

Purana says in Dwapara Yugam, Arjuna penanced about Lord Siva to obtain Pasupadastram, which is a powerul weapon. Lord Siva disguised himself as kiratha and fought with Arjuna to test his valour before, blessing him with Pasupadastra. Hence the place is also known as Phalguna Teertha.

His Holiness Sri Jagadguru Adi Sankarar visited the temple. He has installed Sri Chakkram at the feet of Goddess.

The temple was managed by Mogalaya Ruler Taanisha with the assistance of his ministers Akkanna and Madhanna.

Sri Lakshmi Narashimar Temple, Mangalagiri.  

Posted by Shamala Krishnan in , , , , , ,

  1. Mangalagiri:

    This place is one of Pancha Narashima Kshetram.

    Mangalagiri is in existence from the beginning of all Four Yuga. It was known as Anjanadri in Krutha Yugam, Totadri in Tretha Yugam, Mukthadri in Dwapara Yugam and Mangalagiri in Kali Yugam.

    Sri Narashima Swamy destroyed the demon known as Namuchi in Kritha Yugam. He stayed back as Swayambu Moorthy in this place. Devas were unable to with stand Lord’s Ugra Swaroopam, and they tried to cool him by offering Amrutham in Krutha yugam, in Tretha yugam he was offered Cow’s Ghee, in Dwapara yugam he was offered Cow’s Milk and in Kaliyugam he is offered Panakam.

    Anjaneyar is Kshetra palakar in this place.

    We see an arch near the entrance of road leading to Panakala Narashima Swamy temple on hill top.

    The hill looks like an elephant. Prince Harsva srungi visited all holy places and came to Mangalagiri and stayed back doing penance in praise of Lord Vishnu. One day when his father visited this holy place, to take his son back to kingdom Harsva srungi took the shape of an Elephant to become the abode of Lord Vishnu, who is known as Panakala Narashima Swamy. This is the legend about the hill of this place.

    To reach the top of hill we have steps as well as road. We reach the Panakala Narashima swamy temple, mid way to the hill top. There are many shops selling pooja items.

    We see Dwajasthambam.

    We enter into a sanctum where to the left we have darshan of Sri Hanuman and we proceed further in a line to have darshan of Sri Panakala Narashima swamy.

    We see a cut in the rock to which the face of Narashima Swamy kavacham with wide opened mouth is kept. This is the place where Panakam (Panakam is made of Water and Jaggery) is offered to God.

    We climb few steps to see Hanuman sculpture to the wall.

    Further few steps lead us to Thayar Sannidhi, which is behind Sri Narashimar sanctum.

    There is a small cave outside next to Sri Lakshmi temple,which is believed to lead to Vundavalli caves on the bank of River Krishna. The Sages used to use that way to have their bath in River Krishna.

    Sri Lakshmi Narashima swamy temple view from top of the hill

  2. Lakshmi Narashima Swamy temple:

    The main Raja Gopuram of nine tiers facing east. .

    As we enter in we see Dwajasthambam in front of the main mandapam of Lakshmi Narashimar temple.

    When we go around the temple we see Sanctum for Sri Rama to the left. West gopuram is un finished. We see Rajalakshmi Thayar Sannidhi to right side of main Sanctum.

    We climb few steps to enter inside the main mandapam where we see Garudazhwar sanctum.

    This is the main sanctum door of Sri Lakshmi Narashima Swamy Temple.

    Tanjavoore painting of Sri Lakshmi Narashimar and Sri Rajayalakshmi Thayar is seen on mandapam wall inside.

    Charriot of Sri Lakshmi Narashimar Swamy Temple.

Azhagirinadhar Temple, Salem Town.  

Posted by Shamala Krishnan in , , , , , ,

Azhagiri Nadhar Temple:

The temple is near Salem bus stand. It is on the banks of River Manimuttharu

Main Deity of this temple is Arulmigu Azhagiri Nadhar seen in standing posture.
His consort known as Sundaravalli Thayar is seen in Yoga Padmasan.
There is a separate sanctum for Sri Adi Venugoplan.

There is a Dwajasthambam, and Garudazwar seen in front of the main sanctum. Sundaravalli Thayar. Other deities like Chakkrathazwar, Santhana Gopalan, Hanuman and Nagar are seen in temple premises.

Purana says Hanuman worshiped Lord here to get Brahma pattam. When Sri Rama was going in search of Sita, Hanuman had a dip in the River Manimuttharu and worshiped Perumal Azhagiri Nadhar. He was stunned by beauty of Lord Azhagiri Nadhar.

When marriage alliance is fixed, both the party meet in temple and with Lord Azhagirindhar as witness they finalize here in this temple. This temple in this place is considered as “Thirumana sthalam”.

Sthala Purana: Once when Brugu Muni visited Vaikundam, he saw Lord Vishnu and Mahalakshmi together. They did not notice him, Muni in anger tried to kick Lord Vishnu. Mahalakshmi did not like his act and she left Vaikundam. Lord Vishnu wanted to bring down his ego. He asked Brugu Muni to sit and started pressing his legs, as he was doing he pressed the eye which was at the bottom of muni’s foot. The movement it happened the muni realized his mistake and asked him to pardon.

Lord Vishnu asked him to do tapas regarding Lakshmi Devi who has left the place in anger. In due course he will be blessed.

Brugu Muni came to this place Salem and started his meditation. One day he heard the cry of child under Vilva Maram. The child was alone, so he lifted the child and named the child as Sundaravalli. As she grew up Muni thought, only Lord Vishnu, can be a good match for his daughter. He prayed for Lord Vishnu to marry his daughter and bless him.
Lord Vishnu, known as Azhagirinadhar, married Soundaravalli. He told Brugu Muni that the child which was brought up by him was Lakshmi Devi. Lord Azagirinadhar and Soundaravalli Thayar blessed him together. Brugu muni requested them to stay back here in this place and bless devotees who visit this place. Hence the place is known as Thirumana Sthalam.

Couples worship Lord Santhana Gopalan under the Punnai Vruksham, to bless them with child. Persons who are waiting to get married worship Azhagirinadhar. Marriage will get finalized for person, who participate in Andaal Kalyana utsavam says purana.

Sthala purana says the temple was renovated by Pandya kings and Rajakesari Varman.

Thiru Chengkodu Temple, Erode.  

Posted by Shamala Krishnan in , , , , , , ,

Thiruchengkodu: Ardhanareeswarar Temple.

We traveled from Bhavani to Thiruchengkodu temple. The distance is about 25 kms. The hill is red in colour.

We find an arch at the entrance, with a road leading up for vehicles and steps, for pedestrians to climb. One has to climb 1200 steps to reach the temple door.

This is One of 275 Devara Sthalam of lord Siva.

Ardhanareeswarar is one of 64 manifestation of Lord Siva, representing the unity of Sakthi and Siva. This is the one of the temple dedicated for Ardhanareeswarar as main deity. Normally Lord Siva is seen in Lingam form but here He is in human form.

The Hill is in the Lingam form, and it looks like the union of Lord Siva and Sakthi as one.

The main Raja gopuram is of five tiers.

As we enter the main door we find Dwajasthambam. There is a mandapam with pillars having sculptures of various deities.

From here, we enter into to Murugan sannidhi, who is known as Thiru Chengkottu velavar. Chengkottu Velvar is as popular as Lord Ardhanareeswarar. Arunagirinadhar has contributed songs for Velavar of this temple in his Thirupugazh.

Main Deity is Swayambu Navabashana Ardhanareeswarar and Ambaal here, known as Bagampiriyaal. Ardhanareeswarar is a combination of Lord Siva and Parvathy. Right side of the deity is Lord Siva and the left side Ambaal. During Aarthi time, poojari will show near the leg where we can have darshan of four legs of Lord Siva and Ambaal Parvathy.

Teertham is known as Deva teertham which flows under the feet of Ardhanareeswarar.

Sthala Vruksham: Iluppai Maram.

We find beautiful sculptures to the side walls of temple when we go around the temple.

Sthala Purana: Bringy Muni, was great devotee of Lord Siva and used to worship only Lord Siva. One day when Lord Siva and Parvathy Devi was together, Bringi Muni came to worship Siva; he took the form of BEE, and worshiped only Lord Siva and ignored Sakthi who was next to Lord Siva. Parvathy got agitated with Bringi, for his ignorance of not knowing power of Goddess Sakthi. She cursed him to loose his power for neglecting Her.

Lord Siva showed Bringui muni, his original form of Ardhanareeswarar, which is the form of Siva and Parvathy as one. There is a sculpture of Bringi Muni in the temple.

Importance: The Hill is in red colour. Once, “Adi seshan and Vayu Bhagawan” wanted to test who is powerful among the two. The condition was, “Adiseshan” should hold the mountain tight with his head and “Vayu” should release himself from the grip. When Adiseshn holded Vayu with his hood. Vayu blew fiercly and the mountain pieces fell at many places. The hill is known as Thiruchengkodu. The hill is in red colour, because of the blood that oozed when Adiseshan pressed Vayu bagwan, with his hood. The hill is also known as Nagagiri and Vayu malai.

Inside the temple premises we see a small sanctum for Adiseshan

We see these pillars, as we go around.

As we go around the temple there is a separate shrine of Adi Kesava Perumal with dwajasthambam in front.

We see other deities like Vinayakar, Viswanadhar and Visalakshi, Natarajar and Sivakami ammai, Siddhi Vinayakar, Adi seshan, Sooryan, Bairavar, and Navagraha.

Thiru Gyana Sambandhar sang Hymns on Lord Siva.