Saturday, July 1, 2017

Sri Tripurasundari sametha Panchanadheshwarar koil-A padal petra sthalam at Thiruandar koil near Pondicherry

Thiruvandar Koil is a sleepy hamlet between Pondy and Villupuram. This a an ancient temple of about 800 AD under the control of the ASI which has many exquisite sculptures, I found some rare ones too.


The temple is on the state highway 332 about 17 kms from Pondy and 20 kms from Villupuram . there is a small board indicating this small but peaceful temple.


A few dilapidated  structures at the entrance



There was an asura called Vandasuran who was vanquished by Shiva as Bhairava form and the place came to be called as Thiruvandar koil.

It is also the place that brahma’s fifth head was removed by Shiva Shiva became Bhikshandar here and brahma prayed here to absolve himself of the sins of lying.

The temple has been sung about by Sri Gnanasambandar and Arunagirinathar


There is no Dwajasthambam only bali peetamm


The main temple is a simple structure with a slightly inclined Shivalingam facing east.

The Ambal Tripurasundari is in her own sannidhi facing south

The outer praharam has unique Koshta vigrahas




The Dakshinamurthy here is famous  and helps clear marriage obstacles




A rare panel of Shiva Parvathi and murugan as hunters carrying Bow and arrows




Vishnu Durga


A rare Pradosha murthy Shiva and Parvathy as a couple


other sannidhis

Ganapathy sannidhiDSC06219

Murugan Sannidhi


Bhairava on the left, Navagraha in the far left behind and Shanishwarar in front of murugan


This place is famous for the Bhairava and special prayers to him to help vanquish difficult times are performed here

A small neatly maintained ancient temple with rare sculptures

Sri Marundeshwarar koil at Kandamangalam /Navamal Marudhur near Pondicherry-An ancient temple renovated recently

About 15 years ago an elderly relative urged me to visit this temple which was in a dilapidated stage and he told me it wont last long. I could not find more details. Today I could recollect the place and could visit the same when I visited Pondicherry.

Though I could not get more information of this temple I found that new construction has been done.


The temple is situated 15 kms from Pondy on the Villupuram road in a village called Marudhur . The winding narrow village road leads us to the temple and locals are eager to guide you. Sadly at 10 AM there were not many people around and the temple is being looked after by an elderly oduvar.I heard from him that Sri. Thirunavukkarasar has visited this temple.I read somewhere that records from 1056 AD  in the Karandhai temple in Tanjore district there were 66 acres of land allotted to this temple by Raja Raja Chola.

It is very famous as a parihara sthalam with the Bhairava being very powerful. The Oduvar said if you pray to this lord I predict you will see results in 15 days!! such was his confidence

A placid natural uncared for pond in front of the temple


View of the temple from the pond. The Huge Nandi guards the temple entrance where in a huge Shivalingam rests in the main sannidhi facing SOUTH as is the Marudhambigai sannidhi  a very rare feature. Shiva was manifested in a Marudha tree here (Arjun tree) hence marudhur. Both Shiva and Parvathi are equal in height . The whole temple was built with black granite  which was available about 70 kms away ( all this data from Sri. Sathiya   Narayanan on Google maps and from the Oduvar in the temple my gratitude to both of them and all credit to these two people for all the  info regarding this temple)

The temple was consecrated by sri Parakesi munivar it seems

To the right you can see the Marudhambigai sannidhi


Marudhambigai sannidhi


Murugan and Vinayaka sannidhi can be seen behind the main sannidhis.

I front of the Ambal sannidhi facing north are the sannidhis  for Suryan, Chandran ,Kala Bhairava and the Navagrahas


Sunday, June 25, 2017

Sri Maragadhavalli sametha Sri Margasahayeshwarar and Sri KarunakaraPerumal temple Maduravoyal,Chennai

Another Gem of an ancient temple came to my notice recently as I was travelling on the busy Poonamalle high road. A recently put up sign board drew my attention to this ancient temple and I could visit it today. The temple has been taken up by the Archeological survey of India and is being re built.You would never imagine such a peaceful ancient temple exists near this busy highway.

The Vishnu temple was actually situated nearby on the banks of the cooum.Apparently in 1970’s there was flooding and the temple was washed away and the Moola virat was rescued and installed in this Shiva temple.IMG_20170625_091415


On Poonamalle highroad as you are coming from the Kanchi/ Bangalore side towards Chennai you will cross the inner ring road and then come to the first signal.Just after this is the Maduravoyal corporation office and adjacent to this is the narrow lane leading to the temple. Since I was not sure about this road I proceeded a bit straight and took the next acute left turn  east mada street and reached the temple

The main Shiva temple is undergoing renovation IMG_20170625_092955IMG_20170625_092918IMG_20170625_092607

Due to the renovation the main lord is in Balalayam and kept in a small enclosure in the for court next to the navagraha. The most captivating thing here was the sheer peace and greenery with multiple Ganeshas under various banyan treesIMG_20170625_091812IMG_20170625_092353

There were also a mango tree , Bhilva tree and Jack fruit tree all with fruitsIMG_20170625_092505IMG_20170625_092632IMG_20170625_092713

In the hind court of the temple complex is the Karunakara perumal temple with Sridevi and Bhoodevi.IMG_20170625_091848IMG_20170625_092357

Picture of the main deity taken with the permission of the Bhattar below



A small derelict temple which I am sure will be attracting more visitors shortly


Sri Kari Varadaraja Perumal Temple–Nerkundrum Chennai

Among the many rare gems hidden inside of Chennai this temple ranks  on top and I was lucky to visit it today.The perumal opens his eyes when Nerkundram is performed so wonderful is the sculptors work. The sculptures are unquestionably ancient but the temple is very modern

Here is a link to the video of the phenomenon I saw on you tube

You tube link of Moola virat during Aarathi

I had heard many years ago from my daughters school friend  that this temple was in nerkundram today morning I located it and visited


On Poonamalle high road after  proceeding from  Koyambedu , before reaching the MGR engineering college signal on the left look for Dayasadan street  turn in and take the narrow lane on the left adjoining the mosque then take the first right and you will be in front of the temple. The roads are all narrow and I was able to negotiate with my zen, It will be prudent to park in the mosque street and walk down



The legend here is related to the Gajendra moksham episode of Vishnupuranam where Gajendra’s foot is caught by a gandharva in crocodile form and the merciful Lord gives moksha to both at this place. The temple is a few thousand years old said the hereditary bhattar.

As you enter the main gate on the left you see these sannidhis  for the alwars, Anjeneya and Sri Vishwaksenar(Ganesha)IMG_20170625_084705IMG_20170625_084725

Anjeneya sannidhi


Once you see these sannidhis you are in front of the main sannidhi with the Garudalwar in front. This sannidhi is air conditioned and has glass doors.

Behind this structure  are the sannidhis for thayar and Andal.these are all so wonderful to see ancient sculptures in modern housing!!IMG_20170625_084912IMG_20170625_085713

A view of the reflection of the Moola virat in the mirror on top of Garudalwar sannidhiIMG_20170625_085802

The perumal is flanked by Sridevi and Bhoodevi . He stands with the Varada hasta left pointing to his feet the right hand has the Gada the posterior hands have the chakra and Conch, He also has a simha muka on his abdomen.

It is the belief here that he is the lord of the navagrahas. All prayers are fulfilled in 9 days or 9 months(child birth) and thanks giving is done then with in 9 weeks.

Sunday, June 4, 2017

Sri Agneshwarar sametha Oushadambikai Koil–Vanagaram Chennai

I travel very frequently on the Tambaram Maduravoyal bypass and  I was always keen to visit the temple seen from the bypass.Today morning I was given the opportunity do so.The one word to describe the visit was PEACE


The temple is open to the elements and can be seen west of the bypass. The service road which exists between PH road (Near Jesus calls ) and Chettiyar agraharam near the toll booth gives us access to the road leading to the temple, There is no proper road  up to the temple but the ground is motor able. You can also enter the temple from inside Chettiyar agraharam on the westIMG_20170604_083656


There was a huge Shivalingam which was more than a 1000 years old apparently lying in the open.It is thought to be the Jiva Samadhi of a sage. It was moved into the present garbhagraha  in 1960IMG_20170604_084512

The Original place where this lingam was found is still in worship but pilgrims are allowed only on the pradosha days  and on Sivarathri days all are allowed to worship the lord with our own hands offering Maha vilvam(9-12-15 leaved Vilvam leaves)

Originally daily these vilvam leaves would be brought from the Kovoor temple but now a days there are two trees in the temple itselfIMG_20170604_084825


There was also a 3 faced rudraksha tree which unfortunately dried up this summerIMG_20170604_085218IMG_20170604_085230

The temple in itself is a very peaceful small structure with small enclosures for the Agnishwarar, Oushadambikai, Ganesha and murugan.The Mahishasura mardhini is exquisite

The Shivan sannidhi is in front and the Ambal sannidhi is on the right in the pic below




The Koshta vigrahas


Vinayaka below



Mahishasura mardhini above

Navagraha sannidhi below


The legend of Parvathy saving the lord from the hala hala poison  hence she is called Oushadambikai


A short visit which was very pleasantIMG_20170604_084046