Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Sarangapani temple - Kumbhakonam , Tamil Nadu

 This is  an important divya desam of Vishnu and is also known as Tiru Kudanthai. This is one of the  Pancha Ranga Khestras ;  Other four are  temple of  Sri Ranganatha; Sri Rangam,  ( near Trichy)  Appakudathan temple, Tirukoviladi- Trichy ,  Parimala Ranganathar at Tiru Indalur ( near Kumbakonam) and Sri Ranganatha Swamy temple at Srirangapatanam in Karnataka. I shall be writing on the remaining temples too.

Sarangapani temple is the biggest Vishnu temple in Kumbakonam and  it belongs to 13th century. The Moolavar is Sarangan ,and the thayar is Ranganayaki. The temple sanctum is designed like a chariot with wheels and is drawn by horses and elephants.

Lord's consort also known  as Kamala Valli Thayar has a separate sannidhi and there are Lord's paduka's(foot prints) in the outside prakaram where devotees offer worship. Opposite to that, there is a shrine for Patala  Srinivasa Perumal. Here one has to  climb down a few steps to reach the shrine .

The  main temple has a beautiful mandapam in front of the temple. The sanctum has  two entrances. One is known as the Uttarayana dwara and other one the Dakshinayana dwara as is in Tiruvellarai. The dakshinaya dwaram remains open from the Tamil month of Aadi to Marghazi ( mid August to mid January ) and the other door remains open from ( Mid January- mid July) Thai -Aani. This is in accordance with the movement of the Sun's path.

Temple timings are 6 am - 12 noon , 4 pm.8 pm.

How to reach: Kumbakonam is well connected by express trains from Chennai.Tamilnadu has excellent road transport systems and one  can easily get buses to all parts of Tamilnadu from Kumbakonam.The nearest airport is Trichy.
Accommodation: Good hotels suiting to all sections of society are available in Kumbakonam


39 comments:

  1. I wanted to be first for comments so quickly added.

    Can you explain more on North and South gate and why/how it is related to Sun's movement?

    ReplyDelete
  2. beautiful pictures
    was not aware about this system of two doors.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Nice pictures. You explain all the details so well.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Lovely pictures chitra, even I had been to kumbakonam for temple visit love the detailed discription:)

    ReplyDelete
  5. I had recently visited the temple.You brought back memories of the temple visit.I am beholden to you for bringing out this temple series and look forward to other four of pancharanga kshetrams.

    ReplyDelete
  6. A, thanks for the comment.
    The answer to your query:
    All the temple sanctum are planned in such a way the deity faces the rising Sun. So most temples have deities facing East (in most of the Vishnu temples). During Uttarayana as per the astronomy the Sun's movement is towards North of the Equator and like wise during Dakshinayana the movement is towards South. So as per the Sun's movement some temples have these doors .
    This is what I feel and if I get some further input shall let you know.

    ReplyDelete
  7. sm, thanks.This is also available in Trichy Tiruvellarai temple

    ReplyDelete
  8. Sushma,
    thanks.. This would have been a nice reminder for you.

    ReplyDelete
  9. KP, thanks for the comment. I have already written about Sri Rangam and only 3 more are left. Shall be writing about them.

    ReplyDelete
  10. I am fascinated by the color schemes in the pictures you post. And what is the chariot for? Is it still functional?

    ReplyDelete
  11. Mridula
    Chariot is not functional. It is a permanent structure enshrining the deity modelled like a chariot

    ReplyDelete
  12. Wonderful captures! It was interesting to know a bit of info on the doors. And the sanctum architecture is so very unique and beautiful..

    ReplyDelete
  13. This looks so amazing - god, all these details! And the photos came out very well to capture the magic of the place! xx

    ReplyDelete
  14. Have been here..its so huge and the Lord is so charming ..would love to visit again

    ReplyDelete
  15. Chitra,
    Thanks for this post. I especially like the chariot-shaped temple and the carving on the wheels.

    The Blogger had shut down for some time, so couldn't comment earlier.

    ReplyDelete
  16. thanks all. Many of the comments are missing here.
    A, I think you could read the reply I made to your query. I had replied to each and everyone and all that has vanished:(

    ReplyDelete
  17. Wonderful temple that I visited twice during my Kumbakonam trip..! Good to visit it again thru your post chitra!

    ReplyDelete
  18. Sridharan, Thanks, I remember vividly all the pics you had put. The chariot pics you had posted were really beautiful.

    ReplyDelete
  19. oh, I did'nt visit this temple.

    like the panch bhoota temples of shiva, this seems to be pancha rangam. never knew about this pancha rangam though.

    good info and as always.....

    ReplyDelete
  20. Asha, thanks a lot.
    But I saw a few more temples of Vishnu in sayana kolam and I wonder why only 5 temples are designated as Pancha ranga kshetras .

    ReplyDelete
  21. I have been to Kumbhakonam several times and liked the beautiful temples. You have taken wonderful pictures. One of your best post.

    ReplyDelete
  22. I actually enjoyed reading through this posting.Many thanks.
    Hotels in Kumbakonam

    ReplyDelete
  23. As always a wonderful post. Would it be possible to have more information on picture 6 though - those wonderfully coloured wheels have me intrigued.

    ReplyDelete
  24. Hi Chitra! Am staying at home today, feeling not so well - and so enjoy a short visit to India with you! Have a lovely day!

    ReplyDelete
  25. chitra ji nice to hear u r travelling a lot and enjoying...keep the cheers...great post as usuall..wonder y my comments dont get regd...google tricks:)

    ReplyDelete
  26. PW,
    It is the chariot base that is used during the annual festival of the temple. That time the chariot will be decorated with colouful cloth and other festoons. The height of the chariot will increase manifold.In that chariot, the Lord will go around the temple streets to visit and bless his devotees. The chariot and the minute carvings on it will get polished, prior to the festival. The colour on the wheels are only a decoration.

    ReplyDelete
  27. Martina,take care and get well soon.

    ReplyDelete
  28. Ramesh, yes, many comments vanished from my blog too. :( tc.

    ReplyDelete
  29. Chitra,

    I had read the reply.

    ReplyDelete
  30. Petty Witter,
    In addition to what Chitra said, the ochre coloured inner design on the wheels symbolise full-blown lotus flowers, while the white design in the outer ring symbolises a ring of conch shells.

    This is a Vishnu temple and it's Vishnu who goes around in the chariot on festival days. Vishnu holds a lotus and a conch shell in his two arms and a mace and a wheel weapon in his third and fourth arms.

    Hence, these designs on the wheels symbolising lotus and conch show that this is a chariot for Vishnu, whose two attributes adorn the wheels of the chariot.

    ReplyDelete
  31. Archana, you are really knowledgeable. Never knew all this.

    ReplyDelete
  32. My cousin recommended this blog and she was totally right keep up the fantastic work!
    Hotels in Trichy

    ReplyDelete
  33. It cannot be 13th Century. The lord is called Dravida Veda Dhrishiti sagara meaning the lord who gave Dravida veda. For this you should read the story of Nadamunigal. This temple should be atleast before 9th Century AD.

    ReplyDelete
  34. thanks Baskar. I do not have much knowledge of these. Cannot read Tamil too hence not going deep into it. Whole idea is to share my pilgrimage and some pictures with others.Most information, I collect is from the temple guides and priests and many a time i do not find any information also.

    ReplyDelete
  35. In this temple got ramar god and also mettu srinivasan. His face will be so pleasing

    ReplyDelete

Friends ,Thanks for Leaving your comment .I have enabled comment moderation.
This website is not for posting free advertisements.