Sunday, May 22, 2011

Thiru Anbil Soundar Raja Perumal Or Vadivazhagiya Nambi temple- Tamil nadu

 Thiru Anbil, is the fourth Divyadesam of Vishnu.( one of the 108 Vishnu desams) The temple was built by the Cholas.

 This temple is situated on the banks of river Kaveri at Kollidam ( Coleroon) and has Ranganathar as the presiding deity known here as Thiru Vadivazhagiya Nambi in a reclining posture   and Soundaraja Perumal as the Utsavar. The idol, as the name mentions is of  exquisite beauty and  His consort is Azhagiya valli Nachiyar. Aandal is in the outside prakaram and Garudalwar is facing the sannidhi of the Lord. This temple  is believed to be  6000 years old and is considered to be the birth place of the poet saint Valmiki.

There are many inscriptions in this temple describing the history of those times.

 How to reach: Well connected. Airport is at Trichy . This temple is at a distance of 20 Kms from the town on the Tiruchi- Kumbakonam route.
The temple is just 5 kms.from the Lalgudi railway station.
Accommodation- Good hotels are available in Trichy .

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

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Adi Kumbeshwar temple - Kumbakonam,TamilNadu

Kumbakonam, is a pretty little town in Tanjavur district and is situated at a distance of 40 kms from Tanjore which is famous for its  'Big temple' .  Kumbakonam is known as the "temple town" as there are about  60 odd  temples  in and around .There is a constant flow of pilgrims to this town as many famous and ancient temples are  here with in a radius of few kilometers . It is a one stop destination to visit many of  the ancient monuments and heritage sites as this region was under the Chola dynasty.Many villagers here are agriculturists as the land is made fertile by the Ganges of South , river Kaveri and the town is famous for brass vessels and the famous degree coffee.

This time, I am taking you to the famous and oldest temple of Adi Kumbeshwara .  Kumbha means a pot and it is believed that  an Amrit Kumbha ( Pot of nectar) with seeds of creation was set afloat by Lord Shiva during the Maha Pralaya ( floods) and it  landed  at this place . The divine nectar flowed out and it became the Mahamaham tank and every12 years, pilgrims from all over the globe converge here to participate in the great Mahamaham festival; the Kumbhmela of South and  to have a holy dip in the famous tank  to get rid of all their sins.

 The town also derives its name from this' Kumbha' legend.The temple of Adi Kumbeshwara swamy is right at the centre of the town and the temple is connected to the main gate by a long corridor which is lined with shops selling souvenirs and trinkets.

The presiding deity is  Adi Kumbeshwara  ( Shiva) and the Amman here is Mangalambigai. As we enter inner prakaram of the the temple, on to the left there is a shrine for the  Lord Vinayagar. There are also shrines for Durga, Shanmugha (Muruga) and Lord Nataraja and Kiratha moorthy ( another form Of Shiva) The Idol of Durga and Mangalambigai are of exquisite beauty.
 How to reach- 
Nearest airport is Trichy . Kumbakonam has a railway station with express trains connecting Bangalore, Chennai etc. Bus services are  excellent inTamil Nadu and one can reach any part of Tamil Nadu using this service.
Good hotels are available in Kumbakonam to suit the tastes of all sections of the society.