Friday, April 27, 2012

Kothandarama Temple Ayodhyapattanam




















Rama is seen in a Pattabhisheka Kolam
Located about 10kms East of Salem on the Tiruppattur / Athur – Vriddachalam highway is the 17th Century AD Tirumala Nayak period Kothandarama Temple in Ayodhyapattanam.

The Story

The story goes that at the conclusion of the battle with Lankan king Ravana, Rama came here and stayed along with Sita for a day. On the request of Vibheeshana, he is believed to have provided darshan in a Pattabhisheka Posture as a result of which Sita is seen to the left of Rama at this temple. Vibheeshana is seen standing opposite Rama and Sita offering his prayers to them and in a posture of invoking their blessings.

A unique feature at this temple is that Rama is seen in a sitting posture with his left leg placed on his right thigh.

Alongside Rama and Sita inside the sanctum are Lakshmana, Bharata, Shatrugana and Anjaneya.

Architecture
Located on a 1 ½ acre area, the temple was built during the rule of Tirumala Nayak in the 17th Century AD. On the Eastern entrance is a 5 tier 150 feet high Raja Gopuram. As one enters the only prakara of the temple, there is a spacious Maha Mandapa where one finds pillars of good workmanship. One finds several artistic sculptures inside the temple that dates back to the Nayak Period.
 



















On the North Eastern corner of the mandapa are three musical pillars. Cornices and Horse Pillars are reminiscent of the Madura Style of Tirumala Nayak period. On a single pillar on the Eastern corner are Dasavathara carvings.

Four figures carved in the Maha Mandapa are believed to represent Tirumala Nayaka, his wife and two sons. On the upper wall of the Maha Mandapa are several Mooligai Paintings.
 














Festivals
10day Rama Navami and Hanuman Jayanthi are celebrated in a grand way at this temple.












 In centuries gone by, the temple had Vahanas of Anjaneya, Horse and Elephant as well as a palanquin. The 20feet high wooden chariot is currently in a dilapidated condition.

Quick Facts
Moolavar         : Rama in a Pattabhisheka Kolam with Sita to his left
Utsavar            : Kothandarama
Time                : 7am-12noon and 5pm-830pm
Contact            : Raja Bhattar @98948 70206





















How to reach
Train No. 1603 Chennai Egmore- Salem Express stops at Ayodhyapattanam Railway Station (530am).  From Salem Junction, auto will cost Rs. 200-250(one way). Direct buses every 15minutes to the temple from the Salem Old bus stand. One can also take Tirupattur and Athur/ Vriddachalam bound buses to reach Ayodhyappattam ( will take 45minutes from Salem New Bus Stand).

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Kasthuri Ranganatha Perumal Erode


1000 Year Old Ranganatha Temple in the heart of Erode
 Inscriptions date back to 10th Century AD

Located about 2kms from the bus stand is over 1000years old Kasthuri Ranganatha Perumal temple in Erode, a temple that dates back to the rule of Paranthaka Chola.
 












  

The Dwarapalakas who were cursed by an angry Sage Durvasa are seen at the feet of Lord Ranganatha offering their service. Lord Kasthuri Ranganatha is seen with his right hand on Sage Durvasa in a posture of cooling the normally angry sage.

Inscriptions















10th Century AD Inscription in Tamil records the construction of a Nilai ( Door Jamb) and mentions the name of the God as Pallikonda Devar

On the Western Wall, an inscription relating to the rule of Raja Kesarivarma mentions the temple of Pallikonda Perumal

Festivals
Chitra Pournami
Brahmotsavam in Puratasi
Garuda Sevai in Panguni, Maasi and Thai

Quick Facts
Moolavar: Kasthuri Ranganatha in a Sayana Kolam
Goddess: Kamalavalli Thaayar
Utsavar : Varadaraja Perumal                                                               
Time : 6am-12noon and 430pm-830pm
Contact: Sriram Bhattar @ 98652 24745 / Nagarajan @ 94439 51121

How to reach
Auto from bus stand will cost Rs. 40 / from the railway station will cost Rs. 50/-




Friday, April 20, 2012

Kodumudi Veera Narayana Perumal


Lord Veera Narayana Perumal prevented floods by turning the Cauvery into an Easterly direction from North 
Parikara Sthalam for different kinds of dosham

Located 40kms off Erode on the Karur Highway in Kodumdi is the Trimurthi Abhimana Sthalam where Lord Shiva is seen in the form of Magudeswara, Vishnu in a sleeping posture as Veera Narayana Perumal and Brahmma beneath a 2000year old Vanni tree.

This Trimurthi sthalam is a very important Parikara temple believed to liberate one from different kinds of dosham. There is a separate tower at the Eastern Entrance for each of the Tri Murthies, with Vishnu being in the middle.

Veera Narayana Perumal turns Cauvery’s direction 

Located 40kms off Erode on the Karur Highway in Kodumdi is an Abhimana Sthalam dedicated to the Trimurthies, one where Lord Shiva is seen in the form of a Swayambu lingam, Vishnu in a sleeping posture as Veera Narayana Perumal and  Brahmma beneath a 2000year old Vanni tree. This Trimurthi sthalam is a very important Parikara temple believed to liberate one from different kinds of dosham.

This is one of the four Paadal Petra Sthalams in the Coimbatore District. Thirugnana Sambandar, Thirunavukkarasar and Sundarar visited and composed one Thevaram each about this temple.

There is a separate tower at the Eastern Entrance for each of the Tri Murthies, with the smaller tower for Vishnu being in the middle.

The Story
A fight broke out between Adhisesha and Vaayu to test their powers. Adhisesha coiled around Mount Meru. In retaliation, Vaayu dashed against it and blew it to pieces. Five big clips of Mount Meru fell in different places as five precious stones and each of these became a famous hill sthalam.

Diamond stone became Kodumudi hills, with Lord of Kodumudi alone designing himself as a lingam. In centuries gone by, Shiva was referred to as Thirupandi Kodumudi Mahadeva

Veera Narayana Perumal turns Cauvery’s direction
The story goes that Sage Agastya undertook penance here holding the sacred water of the Ganges in his Kamandala. Indra who had descended in the Chola Kingdom of Sirkazhi undertook pooja invoking the blessings of Shiva to save the people from a famine.

Shiva directed Vinayaka to appear in the form of a white crow and spill the sacred water at this place causing floods around Kodumudi.  Lord Veera Narayana Perumal is believed to come here and turned the direction of this sacred water (River Cauvery) away from the town of Kodumudi. Hence, while the Cauvery is seen in a North South direction till here, interestingly it takes an Easterly turn from North at this place. This incident is commemorated on a rock known as Agastya Paarai. Vinayaka is referred to as Cauvery Kanda Vinayaka.

Another story goes that Bharadwaja rishi took bath here on the Cauvery river banks and worshipped Magudeswara. Pleased with his prayers, Lord Shiva provided darshan in a dance posture accompanied by a Grand Orchestra. Hence this place is also referred to as Bharadwaja Kshetram.

Alongside Veera Narayana Perumal inside the sanctum of Vishnu are Garuda, Anjaneya, Narada, Brahmma, Vasudeva and Vibheeshana.

Sun’s rays of Lord Shiva
Sun’s rays falls on Lord Shiva and Amman on four days in Panguni and Avani indicating offering of pooja by the Sun God to Shiva.

Construction of Mandapas and Pagodas
Pleased with the growth of thumb of his son, which was originally defective, Malayadwaja Pandya constructed three Pagodas, Mandapas and also established a mutt and a choultry at this place.  He also gifted a big and beautiful temple car, endowed villages and made jewellery for the deities in a thanking gesture to the Trimurthies.

Ramayana Story
Ramayana Story relating to Vishwamitra’s Yagna, killing of Thaadagai, liberation of Ahalya’s curse and Rama Pattabhishekam is seen on the upper walls in the mandapa in front of the sanctum in the form of beautiful mini sculptures.

On the third pillar of the prakara, one finds a special type of Vinayaka- Vinayaka’s Swaroopa, Sakthi’s Hamsam and Tiger’s legs.

Pandya kings are believed to have undertaken renovation of the temple, in recognition of which one finds the Pandyan Kondai in front of the Garuda Sannidhi.

Parikara Sthalam

This is an important Parikara Sthalam for liberation from all kinds of Dosham. Unmarried people are believed to find their spouse after they perform parikara pooja at this temple. This is also a parikara sthalam for improvement in business and career prospects. Worshipping Shiva during Pradhosham days is very sacred at this temple.

Devotees carrying Kaavadi to Palani have bath here at Cauvery before proceeding to Palani.

Specifically this is a temple for liberation from Avittam star dosham.

Inscriptions
7th Century Inscriptions indicate renovation of the temple by Narasimma Pallava. There are two lion faced stone pillars as a testimony to his contribution. An 8th Century inscription indicates donation by Thermaaran of gold coins, jewels and ornaments to the temple. Malayathu Pandya donated villages towards the upkeep of the temple. Komara Varma gifted things towards Thirumanjana on Thiruvathirai Star

11th Century AD stone inscription on the Cauvery banks in Tamil refers to a gift of gold for food offerings.

On the Northern wall is a record of tax free gift of villages fixing income from same in gold and paddy to God to meet expenses of offerings, worship and celebrating star of the king and Maasi Magam

13th Century AD inscriptions indicate gifting of land by Sundara Pandya Kesarivarma

On the back of the Ardha Mandapa in front of Amman Shrine refers to the setting up images of Ilaya Pillayar (Subramanya) an d Garuda and a grant of 5pon to meet expenses of worship.

 Festivals
Aadi Perukku is a special occasion when devotees have sacred bath at the Cauvery
Aani Jeshtabhishekam- Once in a year Moolavar Thirumanjana with Sandalwood oil paste
Horse Vahana procession in Puratasi
3day Utsavam in Margazhi
11day Brahmotsavam in Chitrai including Chariot Festival in Hastham

Quick Facts

Deity                : Veera Narayana Perumal East Facing Sayana Kolam
Goddess           : Veera Lakshmi/ Thirumangai Nachiyar
Temple Time     : 6am-12noon and 330pm-8pm
Contact            : Sridhar Bhattar @94881 43403/93605 01970.04204 222020

How to reach
6107 Chennai Mangalore Express Stops at Kodumudi (7am)
From Erode, One can reach Kodumudi in one hour by bus and within 45minutes by bus from Karur.