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Sri Aananda valli Sametha Agatheeswarar Temple – Pozhichalur

June 9, 2012 Leave a comment
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Sri Dhenupureeswarar, Madambakkam

January 30, 2011 Leave a comment

This ancient temple dedicated to Lord Shiva, is located in the suburb of Chennai called Madambakkam, near Tambaram.

This temple is over 1000 years old (956-973 AD), which is said to have been built during the reign of Parantaka Chola II or Sundara Chola, father of Rajaraja Chola 1 (who constructed Brihadeeswarar Temple in Thanjavur). The temple is believed to be rebuilt of stone during the reign of Kulothunga Chola1.

According to legend, there was a rishi called “Kapila” who was performing penance towards Lord Shiva to attain Mukthi. He had a Shiva Linga for which he was performing pooja everyday. One day during his pooja, he was holding the Shiva Linga on his left hand and started doing Abhishekam with the milk on his right hand. He was caught with a Dhosha as he held the idol on his left hand, which is a sin, result of which he cannot attain Moksha. Because of the Dhosha, he had to take another birth as a cow and live the entire life praying the God, to attain Moksha. He took birth as a cow in a village (Sitreri) and was gazing near a lake in South of India. One day, the master of the cow saw the cow pouring its milk on a small stone buried in the ground. He angrily hit the cow for having wasted its milk. Unable to bear the pain, the cow tapped it’s leg on the ground where it hit the stone. The stone started bleeding. The man got frightened and called all the villagers who dug the ground and saw that it’s a Shiva Linga. The master of the cow prayed the God to forgive him.

Lord Shiva appeared and said that it was his act for the sake of Kapila Rishi, who was born as the cow. Kapila Rishi also apologized to Lord Shiva for having kicked on the head of the Linga. Lord Shiva forgave him and Kapila attained Moksha.

The people went and informed the king who was coming downside of Sitreri. The king arranged to construct a temple for Lord Shiva there and the God was then known as Sitrerinadhar and Goddess, Nampirattiyar.

The place where people met the king downside the lake is today’s Rajakizhpakkam. And the village Sitreri (means small lake) is now called as Madambakkam.

The presiding deity is called Lord Dhenupureeswarar (facing the east) and the Goddess, Dhenukambal. Unlike most temples, where the sanctum is either square or rectangle, this is apsidal in shape which is called as Gaja Brishta Vimana (Shaped like elephant’s back) in Sanskrit. This type of feature is found in few other Chola temples in and around Chennai.

Even today we can see a scar on the Shiva Lingam, caused by the Cow (Kapila) while it kicked the ground because of the pain when it was beaten up by its master.

Lot of contributions have been made to this temple by Vijayanagara rulers. Many sculptures in the walls of this temple, stand testimony to the subsidies given to this temple in the form of lands, livestock, jewels etc.,

There is a large tank adjacent to this temple filled with water. This also serves as water source for the people living around the temple.

Saint Arunagirinathar (15th Century A.D.), has composed a hymn on this temple.

This ancient village, now called Madambakkam, was also known as Ulaguyyavanda Chola Chaturvedimangalam in the past.

Festivals like Pradhosham and Panguni Uthiram are celebrated with pomp here.

Another rare feature of this temple is, it houses Lord Sarabeswarar on one of the pillars in it. Lord Sarabeswarar is another form of Lord Shiva who took form to bring down the anger and furiousness of Lord Narasimha. Lord Sarabeswarar took the form of Yazhi bird with human body and eagle’s wings having Godess Durga and Godess Maha Prathyangira Devi each of his wings.

Poojas are performed here to Sri Sarabeswarar on Sundays during Rahu Kalam timings, which attracts hundreds of devotees here.

Both Saiva and Vaishnava sculptures and carvings on the pillars and walls, beautify this temple.

The temple now is under the control of Archeological Society of India.

The temple is situated between Tambaram and Medawakkam near Rajakizhpakkam.

There is also another rare temple nearby, housing 18 Siddhars, Sri Seshadri Swamigal and Maha Meru (Lalitha Parameshwari) which together with Dhenupureeswarar temple gives divinity to the whole village and every visitor entering there.

Article in Hindu Sri Dhenupureeswarar, Madambakkama

Dhandeeswaram, Velachery

January 30, 2011 Leave a comment

Vedasreni Sri Dhandeeswarar

Legend


During Threthayugam, an Asura by name Somugasura stole away all the 4 Vedas and kept them under his custody, for which Lord Vishnu took Matsyavatar and killed the demon and retrieved the Vedas and handed them over to Brahma.

As the Vedas were under the Asura’s custody, there were caught by Asura Dhosha. As per Brahma’s advice all 4 Vedas came to this Kshethra, installed the Murthy of Lord Shiva and worshipped Him.

As 4 Vedas worshipped here the place here came to be known as Vedasreni, which is today’s Velachery. It is also beleived that, as these Vedas and many other sages performed Yagnas (Velvi in Tamil) here, the place got it’s name as Velvichery which turned out to be Velachery today.

According to another legend, in Dwaparayugam, lived Markandeya, son of Sage Mrigandu and an ardent Shiva Bhaktha.

As Markandeya’s life span was determined to be 16 years, Yama came to him on time to take his life away. Frightened young boy hugged the Shiva Linga surrendering to Lord Shiva. Yama threw his rope (Paasakkayiru in Thamizh) on Markandeya which fell on him as well as Lord Shiva’s idol.

By this act of his, Lord Shiva got angry with Yama and took off his Dhanda (Yama’s weapon). Yama, as per Sage Naradha’s advice came to Vedasreni and formed a Theertham (Pond) and worshipped Lord Shiva here.

Hence, the temple pond here is known as Yama Theertham.

As Yama worshipped to get back his weapon (Dhanda), Lord Shiva here is called as Dhandeeswarar.

The temple is believed to be built during the 11th century. Many inscriptions of Chola Dynasty during 11th Century are seen here.

This ancient temple is located on the Velachery Road. Godess is Karunambigai. Yoga Dhakshinamurthy is present here in unusual posture. Other deities are Sri Chandrasekarar, Sri Mahalakshmi, Sri Saraswarthi, Sri Subramanyar, Sri Brahma, Godess Durga, Mahavishnu, Lord Sokkanathar and Meenakshi, Sri Vaitheeswarar and Sri Mahavishnu.

Pradhosham days are celebrated well in this temple. Though along the main road, the temple has a very calm ambience and one can feel the divine vibrations here.

Marundeeswarar Temple, Thiruvanmiyur

January 30, 2011 1 comment

Marundeeswarar Temple is a legendary temple located in the breezy area of Thiruvanmiyur, Chennai adjacent to the beach of Bay of Bengal. This is the biggest temple in Thiruvanmiyur. This is a magnificent temple built for Lord Shiva, in his incarnation of Lord Marundeeswarar. Lord Marundeeswarar is said to have the power to heal. This is one of the great Shiva Temples of Tamil Nadu.

Marundeeswarar

Marundeeswarar

Mythology
Lord Marundeeswarar is known so because he taught sage Agastya about some magical medicine. Since then The Marundeeswarar temple has been a place of worship for people with diseases and various problems with their health. It is said that even The Sage Valmiki, who wrote The Ramayana, came here to The Marundeeswarar temple to worship The Lord. Sage Valmiki was said to be blessed here. After this incident, this place was to be known as Thiruvalmikiyur, after a long period of time, the name gradually changed to Thiruvanmiyur. There is a place present in Thiruvanmiyur called Valmiki Nagar in his honour. There is also a temple built for Sage Valmiki in the middle of the East Coast Road. The temple is built very close to the Marundeeswarar temple. It came as a surprise that the builders of the ECR (East Coast Road) had even considered demolition of the temple of Sage Valmiki in order to complete the project (of building the ECR). The high court of Tamil Nadu then directed that the temple be in its place and not to disturb it.

The lingam for which Lord Hanuman performed pooja, The lingam(meenakshisundareswarar) that cured the curse of Lord Indra, the Lingam for which Saint Bharadwaja performed pooja are present here. Markandeyar performed a penance and prayed to lord Shiva here, Lord Brahma is believed to have conducted a festival here for lord Shiva.

Even lot of people from far away places like Orissa frequently come to this place.

The Temple History
Marundeeswarar temple belongs to the Chola period and occupies an area of about 1-acre (4,000 m2). The temple is believed to be built somewhere in the 7th century A.D.Tirugnanasambandar and Tirunavukkarasar the Saint Saivite Poets have visited and sung the praises of this temple, testifying its existence during their life time – about a 1200 years ago. Arunagirinathar has visited this temple and has sung praises of Subramanya here. Stone inscriptions dating back to the 11th century AD are found in abundance in this temple. The origins and antiquity of this temple is corroborated by the inscriptions found in other temples in the city namely Kapaleeswarar Temple, Virupaksheeswarar Temple etc. which bear testimony to Tiruvanmiyur�s exalted existence aeons back. This temple held an exalted position for centuries and it gradually fell in repair. Temple renovations started from the beginning of the 20th century. A new life has been put into this ancient worshipping place , first in the year 1903 and then in 1970’s.

The Temple
Located in the southern part of chennai city this famous temple is a Paadal Petra Sthalam with Thirugnanasambandhar and Thirunavukkarasar having delivered Paasurams here.

Theertham

Theertham

The Architecture
The temple has two entrances, one from East Coast Road and the other from West Tank Street. The Entrance from the West Tank Street has got three gates whereas the entrance from the East Coast Road has only one gate.
The Shrines

The temple has smaller Shrines for Lord Ganesha, Lord Murugan, Lord Shiva, which has the idols of Lord Shiva in his three forms, Lord Theyagaraja, Lord Marundeeswarar, and Lord Nataraja. Lord Nataraja is supposed to be Lord Shiva in his dancing form. Lord Theyagaraja and Lord Nataraja are the only forms of Lord Shiva in which he is not in the Lingam form. The last shrine is for Lord Marundeeswarar’s consort, Goddess Thirupurasundari, who is actually Goddess Parvati. (The order of shrines given is the order which is supposed to be followed while worshipping the idols). The sculpture of the temple is accurate, and has a lot of detail in it.
The Deities

The Primary deity, The Marundeeswarar Lingam is said to be formed naturally and has not been sculpted by anyone. This formation is known as Idumbu in Tamil. In the Mahamandapam where The deity resides, there are 108 lingams, and the replicas of the five lingams of the five elements. The divine cow Kamadhenu is believed to be delivering milk to the lingam daily and the lingam is hence white. For this reason, the lingam here is also called ‘Paalvannanathar’ (in Tamil, ‘Paal’ means milk, ‘Vanna’ means colour). And hence, Paalvannanathar means ‘one whose colour is that of milk’. Other names of the Lord here are Oushadheeswarar, Marundheesar, Vedapureeswarar. The Goddess is also known as Thirupurasundari, Chokkanayagi and Sundaranayagi.

Holy Tree of the Shrine – Vanni

Theertham
Jenmanasini, Kamanasini, Pavanasini, Gnanadhayini, Motchadhayini are the five therthams here.