Sunday, December 29, 2013

Kampahareshwara temple Thribuvanam- a padal petra sthalam

This is one of the mammoth contributions of the Cholas in this region like Darasuram, Gangaikonda cholapuram and Tribhuvanam . After this temple cholas started reducing the  garbhagruha and increasing the vimana size.. The temple is built like a chariot on wheels
How to reach:
The temple is 8 kms away from kumbakonam towards mayavaram and is just off the main road
History and legends
The temple was built by Tribhuvana chola to commemorate his victories and is dedicated to shiva as Kampahareshwarar destroyer of all fears. Kampa means cold shivers etc
The temple houses the rare image of Shiva as sarabheshwaraa half bird , animal, man an avatar of fearsomeness. When Narasimha swallowed the blood of hiranyakashyappu so that it would not spill and sprout asuras he devoloped problems hence shiva took this avatar with the face of a yali eight limbs, body of a lion,Prathyankara and Kali manifested as his wings and helped him relieve narasimha by divesting the asura blood from his bodyIMG_0099
The temple is a huge complex with three praharams
there is a huge painted corridor seen above housing the Dwajasthambam. The walls all have wonderful carvings IMG_0075 IMG_0077
The next praharam houses the Nandi and had exquisite door posts

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The main Shivan sanidhi has a huge 15 foot hall beyond which is the Shivan a majestic Lingam
The Outer walls of this praharam has the usual kosta vigrahasIMG_0092 IMG_0082 IMG_0083 IMG_0084 IMG_0085 IMG_0086 IMG_0087
the second praharam has the sannidhi for Sarabeshwara and ambal
It has been sung about by the saints Appar, Sundarar, Gnanasambhandar and  in their compositions

Sri Soundararaja perumal temple Nagapattinam – A divya desam

Very close to the Neelayadakshi temple and close to the old bus stand we find this huge temple a divyadesam.
Dhruva prayed to the lord here and the perumal gave a darsan as Sundararaja perumal. .
Adi seshan bathed in sara pushkarini  and was taken up by perumal as his bed here
The lord Neelamegha perumal with Gada is in a majestic standing posture blessing devotees. The idol is more than 5 feet tall.
The utsavar is the beautiful soundara raja perumal.
Along with this there is a small krishna idol in a cradle is given to devotees to rock as mukundashtakam is chanted for realisation of our dreams and also to beget progeny
The exquisite ashta bhuja narasimha with one hand on Prahalada and another showing abhaya hasta is a rare idol found here
Soundarya valli thayar is found in a separate enclosure by the side of the main sanctum complex in the outer praharam


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There is a separate shrine for mahalakshmi and also a sanctum for Ranganathar with adiseshan as his bed.

Neelayadakshi Kayarohaneshwarar temple Nagapattinam- A padal petra sthalam and Shakthi peetam

There is no dearth of Shiva temples in Nagapattinam district and this is one such ancient temple which has been sung about by Appar, Sundarar and Thirugnanasambandar. Though it is a siva temple it is more famous as neelayadakshi temple.
How to reach:
It is very easy to find in Nagapattinam as all roads go around this temple only.It is close to the sea.IMG_0036
The lord is present here as a maragadha lingam kept here by Mujukundha chakravarthy a ruler who assisted Indra to defeat the devas and obtained a boon for this idol. The Lord also is present as Thyagaraja in the sanctum.
Pundarika maharishi did penance to the lord to attain salvation with his physical body and was embraced by the lord here hence he is also called kayarohaneshwarar
The naga king used to worship the lord here. He had a daughter born with three breasts. As per blessings the third breast fell off when her suitor king Shalisuhan appeared in the court.
As you enter you see the Ganapathy at the gate the Vishwaroopa vinayakarIMG_0037
Here to the left we find the statue of Pundarika maharishiIMG_0039
Entrance to the second praharamIMG_0040
The dwajastambam and sivan sannidhi behind

The inner praharam around the main sannidhiIMG_0047 IMG_0044  IMG_0046

The entrance to the ambal sannidhiIMG_0053

The ambal is very enthraling with blue eyes hence called Neelayadakshi. She has a separate sannidhi facing south and a Nandi guarding the entrance. The nandi is so exquisite with one eye on the Shivan and another eye on the GoddessIMG_0051
It is a very ancient and peaceful temple

Engan murugan temple near Tiruvarur

This temple is part of the triology of murugan temples with same sculptor carving the three vigrahams in Sikkil, Ettukudi and engan.
The three murugan idols of sikkil,,Engan and Ettukudi are exquisite and carved by the same shilpi. When he carved the idol with every detail of the 6 faces of the lord with separate ear ring holes, fingers and toes with nails 12  hands  with separate weapons and  balanced on the single leg of the peacock with space below the claw  the king wanted to prevent any other replica so he obtained the thumbs of the shilpi as a guarantee. Even with this lack of thumbs the shilpi sculpted a replica at Ettukudi for this the king removed the eyes of the sculptor. The Sculptor was directed by a divine voice to sculpt a more detailed singaravelan at Engan when he received both his thumbs and vision.
How to reach:
The temple is 12 kms before tiruvarur on the kumbakonam tiruvarur road before the Sikkil temple. You need to take a 2 km diversion from the main road
The temple is a Kasi viswanatha Visalakshi temple with Singaravelan in the middle
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The utsava murthy of murugan is an exquisite replica of the main idol and is a treat to watch at close quarters for the sheer brilliance of the sculpting

Kasi Vishwanatha Temple near Mahamaham tank- A padal petra sthalam

This ancient temple on the banks of the mahamaham tank is very ancient as described by Thirunavukkarasar and Gnanasambandar.
It is right on the banks of the mahamaham kulam IMG_0187 IMG_0107
The legends of the temple;
The nine rivers of India prayed to Shiva that since they were washing the sins of people they were getting dirty so to be cleansed Shiva directed them to come here once in 12 years to be purified
Rama was directed here by Agasthiya rishi before his journey to Lanka. Since Rama was a maryada purusha he lacked the Roudram or anger to fight a battle, he learnt it from the Sthala lingam  called Mahalingam in the temple which is nestled under the neem tree
The main sannidhi has sivan as a small lingam with Visalakshi in the south facing sannidhi. both found in the main complex seen aboveIMG_0109
Ambal sannidhi seen above
The Maha lingam under the neem tree where Rama learnt Roudram.
The saptha kannika mandabam with the idols for each river IMG_0118 IMG_0115IMG_0114

Nageshwara Temple Kumbakonam –A padal petra sthalam

This is probably the oldest temple in Kumbakonam. It was built by Parantaka Chola I and Adithya chola. The temple is in the form of Chariots with wheels and is dedicated to Lord Nataraja as Nageshwara,
How to reach:
The temple is right in the cenre of the town near the old bus stand
Legends of the temple:
Lord adisesha was getting tired due to the weight of the world he was carrying hence he worshipped shiva and parvathy here who lessened his burden and blessed him
When the Kumbham of cration fell and broke this was the place where the bhilva leaves fell.
Surya bhagawan worships the lord directly in Chitthirai month
Saint Thirugnana sambandar has sung devaram about this temple
There is a vinayaka here who is called Gangai vinayakar who was brought here from the gangetic plain later by Rajendra chola and installed here
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The main sanctum has a shivalingam . The outer walls have various vigrahas  of worshippers with unique gods like Ardhanari and a Jwara vinayagar  IMG_0133 IMG_0135IMG_0134
The ambal sanidhi is outside the main sannidhi complex after the natarajar sannidhi .
IMG_0132There is also a sanidhi for Kali right in front of the Natarajar sannidhi
The Nataraja mandapam is sculpted as a chariot with wheels 
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