Monday, July 6, 2015

Thirukadaiyur temple

Courtesy:Sri.N.Jambunathan

Thirukadaiyur is a temple in Tamil Nadu, India. It is the place where Lord Shiva protected Markandeya from Yama (Lord of Death) when he was about to take the boy's life. Hence, this temple is supposed to give longevity of life to devotees.

 

A function called Sashtiaptha poorthi is often celebrated for couples, particularly at the temple premises, when the husband reaches 60 or Sadhabishegam when he reaches 80, which is believed to give them a long life.

 

In line with the grand temple architecture of the Cholas, the Temple occupies a very vast area of 11 acres, with five Prakarams, imposing temple towers and large and spacious Mandapams. Though the details of the king who consecrated the temple could not be ascertained, it is seen from the inscriptions in the temple that it has been in existence during the period of Raja Raja Cholan, that is, from the early 11th century.

 

Temple History:  

                 

Lord Brahmma went to Kailash to have the Gnana Upadesa (wisdom learning).  Lord Shiva gave the seeds of Vilwa tree to Brahma and asked him to sow them in earth in various places.  Where the seed germinates within one hour into a tree shall be venue of teaching, said Lord Shiva.  It happened in Thirukadayur.   Shiva the teacher of Brahma is worshipped as Adhi Vilwa Vana Nather in the temple having His own shrine.

 

The Devan began to consume the nectar without offering prayers to Lord Vinayaka who simply hid the pot.  They realized their folly and prayed to Vinayaka, got it from Him and placed it in this Thirudayur for Shiva Puja.  When opened it was Shiva Linga.  As Lord Shiva appeared here as a Swayamnu Linga from the Amirtha-nectar pot He is worshipped as Amirtha Kadeswarar.

 

 It is a grand temple with 5 Prakarams, imposing towers and ornate Mandapams covering an area of 11 acres. Based on the inscriptions seen here, it is inferred that the stone base of the central shrine was in existence even during period of Raja Raja Cholan (early 11th century).

 

It was during the period of Kulottunga Chola I (1075 - 1120) that the brick walls of the temple were replaced with stonewalls and the Mandapam in the front was constructed. The Rajagopuram is replete with images made of mortar, depicting the legends associated with the temple. DIVINESS OF THE TEMPLE:Thirugana sambandar,

 

Navukarasar and Sundarar have sung devotional songs, hymns about this temple, this temple faces West Side. It is believed that Sri Abirami Devi was evolved here from the meditation power of Sri Mahavishnu. Among sixty-three Nayanmars, Kungilinayanar and Karinayanar performed siva thondu and attained Moksha (mukthi) here. Images in the temple depict the Lord with a raised forefinger, warning Yama.

 

The mark of the kala paasa is visible on the Lingam. With Yama being rendered inactive, there were no deaths on earth. As nature should have its way, the Kala-samhara-moorthi, the other name by which Amritaghateswarar is known - Lord Siva brought God Yama to life. It is here that the significance of 'kicking with the left leg' is spoken about. Had he desired to quell Yama forever, He would have held him under his right leg - as in the case of Muyalaka.

 

The very fact that he used his left leg points to the fact that he intended it as a punishment for an act of rashness and not otherwise. HISTORY OF THE TEMPLE: There are a few temples that are well known for the Lord and his Consort and Tirukkadaiyur is one among them. The Amritaghateswarar - Abirami Temple of Tirukkadaiyur is associated with the legends of Markandeya and Abirami patter. When devas and Asuras churned parkadal to get Amirtham , they forgot to Worship Lord Ganesa (Sri vinayagayar), Lord Ganesa stole the pot of Amirtham and kept at Thirukadiyur, it is believed that the Sivalingam in this temple is made of Amirtha Kudam .

 

Since the pot of Amirtham was hidden here, the lord Ganesa is called Kailavarna pilliyar. Markandeya, son of sage Mrikandu was predicted to live for only 16 years. As advised by his father, Markandeya worshipped Amritaghateswarar in Tirukkadaiyur, bringing the water from Ganges through an underground passage to the temple. The passage is in existence to this day, to a depth of a flight of 20 steps. On the destined day, Yama appeared with his noose, kala paasa. Markandeya sought refuge in the Lord and embraced the Shiva Lingam.

 

The Lord warned Yama not to touch Markandeya as he was under His protection. Yama did not listen and threw the noose that bound Markandeya and the Lingam together. Angered by this act of rashness, the Lord kicked him with the left leg and held him under His left foot, making him inactive. Images in the temple depict the Lord with a raised forefinger, warning Yama. The mark of the kala paasa is visible on the Lingam.

 

With Yama being rendered inactive, there were no deaths on earth. As nature should have its way, the Kala-samhara-moorthi, the other name by which Amritaghateswarar is known - Lord Shiva brought Death to life. It is here that the significance of 'kicking with the left leg' is spoken about. Had He desired to quell Yama forever, He would have held him under His right leg - as in the case of Muyalaka.

 

The very fact that He used His left leg points to the fact that He intended it as a punishment for an act of rashness and not otherwise. Since Death was conquered at Tirukkadaiyur, it is not unusual to see couples who have celebrated their sashti-abta-poori (completion of 60 years) and sadhabishekam (completion of 80 years) make it a point to have a darshan of the Kala-samhara-moorthi.

 

Temple Timings

6 AM to 1PM.

4PM to 9PM.

Sometimes it will be remain open up to 10.30 based on any delay or poojas etc. Normally it will be closed at 9Pm to 9.30PM.

 

The worship services are offered six times a day in the temple. Almost every day dawns with one celebration or other, as hundreds of pilgrims throng the temple to celebrate their 60th or 80th birthday celebration of 60th and 80th birth days (birth star) called as Sashti Aptha poorthi and Sathabishekam respectively is held very auspicious by the people as their longevity will increase.

 

The annual 'Brahmotsavam' is celebrated in the month of Chithirai (April-May); the 'Shankhabishekam' celebrated in the month of Kartikai (November-December) is also of great importance here. Few other festivals being celebrated over here include Navaratri and 'Aadi Pooram'

 

It is believed that Lord Siva dimnished Kalan (Yaman) in Thirukadiyur. So Lord Siva in Thirukadiyur is called Mritunga jaya murthi . Devotees completing 59 years and starting sixty have to perform Ukira ratha Santhi ; completing sixty years and starting sixties have to perform Sashtiyapatha purthi . Completing sixty-nine years and starting seventy have to perform Beema ratha santhi. Starting eighty has to perform Sathabishekham and Ayusha homam. According to astrology devotees can perform Mrutinji jaya homam.

 

         

Thanks giving:    

                 

Those seeking wedding boon offer Wedding garlands. Some offer their child in adoption for child boon and perform Rudrabishekam. Those suffering from diseases of serious nature, perform Conch Abishek (Sangabishekam) for cure. Patients facing heart related problems conduct the Mrutyunjaya Homa (conquering the God of Death). Many devotees with staunch faith had survived even serious heart attacks.

 

Devotees perform abishek to Mother Abhiramai with sandal, rice flour, cosmetic powders, oil, milk, curd, green coconut, Panchamirtham, lime juice, honey. Women scared of the safety of their Mangal Sutra (fear of widowhood) use to place a new mangal sutra at the feet of Ambika wear it, leaving the old one at Her feet. Many undertake Annadhanam-feeding. Many contribute liberally for the renovation of the temple. They also offer Sari to Mother.