Sunday, April 21, 2013

Trichy - Temples


Trichy - Temples

Temples of Historical Importance:

A number of temples of historic importance stands here in Trichy include Sri Rangam, Rock Fort, Samayapuram, Thiruvanaikkaval, Vekkaliyamman, Iyappan Temple, Vayalur Murugan Kovil, Somarasam Pettai Mariyamman Kovil, Uyyakondan Thirumalai, Erumbeeshwar Temple, Rettai Malai Sami Kovil,bikshandar koil, etc.

Rock Fort Temple:

The Rock Fort temple complex in Tiruchirappalli is a collection of three temples - the Manikka Vinayakar temple at the foot of the hill, the Uchhi Pillayar Koyil at the top of the hill and the Taayumaanavar Koyil (Shivastalam) on the hill. This Shivastalam is a rock cut temple on a hill and is the most prominent landmark in Tiruchirappalli that can be reached by a flight of steps on the way to the famous Ucchi Pillayar temple.

The spectacular Rock Fort Temple, the landmark of the city, is on the shores of the River Cauvery. It is perched on a massive rocky outcrop at an altitude of 83 m above sea level. The Thayumanaswamy Temple, dedicated to Lord Shiva, is situated halfway to the top. It has a 100-pillar Hall and a vimana covered with gold. On the southern face of the rock are several beautifully carved rock-cut cave temples of the Pallava period.

Ranganatha Temple (Srirangam):

Srirangam is a small town located 9 kms North of Tiruchirappalli city and is known for its temple dedicated to Lord Vishnu. This is one of the largest temple complexes of Tamil Nadu comprising an area of 148 acres. The Ranganatha temple complex as it exists today has evolved over a period of four centuries. The temple originally constructed in 10th century has undergone extensive reconstructions during the period of Nayaka rulers. The temple complex is dominated by 21 gopurams with walls defining its seven enclosures. The most magnificent part is the spacious Thousand-Columned Mandapa, where images of Ranganatha and his consort are worshiped during festivals

Shrouded in a haze of coconut palms away to the north, the temple is built on an island in the middle of the Kaveri and covers an area of 2.5 sq km. Enclosed by seven rectangular walled courtyards, this 13th-century temple has 21 gopurams, the largest of which was built in 1987 and measures 73 m in height. The temple is connected to the mainland by a bridge. The temple is replete with excellent carvings and numerous shrines dedicated to various gods. It is believed that Sri Ramanujar the Vaishnavite saint and philosopher is embalmed inside the temple premises in the Sri Ramanujar Sannidhi.

Sanctity is accorded to a place on the basis of its threefold popularity   of the presiding deity, the quality of the holy waters and its hoary past.  The     holy shrine   of Srirangam has all these attributes    in    rich    measure.    The township of Srirangam enveloping the shrine is situated on a tiny island formed by the bifurcation of the river Cauvery at  a  place   called   Mukkombu (Upper    anaicut).   The        southern distributary   of   the   river   retains the name Cauvery,    while    the     northern branch is called Coleroon. The abode of the Supreme Lord, Sri Ranganatha, and the reclining form of Lord Vishnu is situated in   Srirangam   8 kilometers from Trichy city. There   are not less than 22 gopurams, one of which is the tallest in India. The 72m high 13-tiered Rajagopuram was built in 1987 while the remaining 21 gopurams were built between 14th and 17th centuries.

This temple is at Sri Rangam Island, in the middle of the Cauvery River. This temple was built by various dynasties including the cheras, Pandyas, Cholas, Hoysalas and the Vijayanagar Empire between 13th and 18th centuries.

 The temple of Ranganatha, the largest in India, is of particular reverence to all Hindus. Srirangam is also listed as one of the Nava Graha Sthalas, or temples representing the planets.

Gangaikondacholapuram:

The Brahadeeswarar temple at Gangaikondacholapuram was conceived and constructed by the Chola King Rajendra -I after his victory over the kingdoms bordering the river Ganga. Apart from the huge Nandi, there are some beautiful sculptures including a dancing Ganesha,a lion-headed well and a stunning frieze depicting Rajendra being crowned by Siva and Parvati.

GangaikondaCholapuram is located in Udayarpalayam Taluk (also spelt as Taluka) of Perambalur district, at a distance of 100-km from Trichy. Rajendra I, a Chola ruler established GangaikondaCholapuram as his capital city and built a magnificent temple dedicated to Lord Shiva.

Apart from the huge Nandi, there are some beautiful sculptures including a dancing Ganesha, a lion-headed well and a stunning piece depicting Rajendra being crowned by Lord Shiva and Parvati.

Sittannavasal:

In this village are the remains of 2nd century B.C.Jain cave temple. Fresco paintings reminiscent of Ajanta adorn the walls. Many of them are typical of the 9th century Pandyan period and include exquisitely detailed pictures of animals, fish, ducks, people gathering lotuses from a pond and two dancing figures. There are also inscriptions dating back to the 9th and 10th centuries. Fresco painting from the 7th century can be seen on the ceiling of the Ardhamandapam. There are many pre-historic burial sites around Sittannavasal and among the relics unearthed are burial urns, cists and Kurangupatarai.

Sri Kokarneswarar Temple:

The rock-cut cave temple of Sri Kokarneswarar Brahadambal at Thirukokarnam is of Mahendravarma Pallava's period.


This is a very important place of pilgrimage, famous for its temple dedicated to the Goddess Mariamman .The people believe that what they pray will occur. In the Tamil month 'Chithitai' there will be a car festival and Poochoridhal will be celebrated in

The Samayapuram Mariamman Temple is located 12 km north of the Trichy central bus terminus on Trichy-Chennai NH 45. The Maariamman Temple is one of the most visited shrines in Tamilnadu, dedicated to Maariamman, a manifestation of the primeval energy shakti as the mother goddess. The offerings are in various forms. The most common offering is the mavilakku mavu made of jagery, rice-flour, dhal and ghee. Mariamman is believed to be a form of shakti associated with prosperity and health. Local beliefs associate the deity with cures for diseases such as small-pox and chicken-pox. Samayapuram was a local capital of the Vijayanagar rulers in the vicinity of Tiruchirappalli, and was known as Vikramapuram.

Samayapuram, lying at a distance of 11 km from Trichy in Lalgudi taluk, is famous for the shrine of Goddess Mariamman. It has a rich legendary and historical background.

Tirupattur is located around 5 km from Samayapuram. It is famous for its Bramhapureeswarar Temple which has a huge shrine for Lord Brahma. This is the second of the two temples dedicated to Lord Bramha in the world. The first being in Pushkar near Ajmer, Rajasthan

Uthamar Koil:

Uthamar Koil in Karumbanur is one of the most famous shrines in 108 Vaishnavik Padalshtalam. This temple is situated eight kilometres north of Trichy Fort Station, 4 km north of Srirangam railway station. Here is the temple where the Lord Creator - Brahma, the lord for the well being of the universe - Vishnu and the destroyer of universe - Siva take their abode. This place is also known as " Kadambavanam" or "Trimurthishektram".

Kodumbalur:

Also known as "Moovarkoil", Kodumbalur is 36-km from Pudukkottai and 42-km from Tiruchirappalli. It was formerly the seat of Irukkuvelirs, who were related to the Cholas. Of the three shrines of Moovarkoil only two exist now. Boodhi Vikramakesari built these temples in the 10th century AD. The architecture of the temple is unique among south Indian temples. The sculptures of Kalarimurthi, Gajasamharamurthi Ardhanariswara, Gangadaramurthi, etc. are interesting masterpieces of art. Nearby is the Muchukundeswarar temple of the early Chola period.

Elakurichi:

This place is famous for its temple for Vishnu, known as Prasanna Venkateswarar.

Malai Koil:

This temple, dedicated to Lord Siva os also called as 'Erumbeeshwarar temple'. Erumbeeswarar Temple, also known as Tiruverumbeeswarar Temple, is located at Thiruverumbur, in Tiruchirappalli District of Tamil Nadu. It is located about 15 km east of Tiruchirapalli, on the way to Thanjavur. Dedicated to Lord Shiva, the temple enshrines Erumbeeswarar as the presiding deity along with his consort Saurabhya Kudalaambal.The temple has several inscriptions dating back to the Chola and Pandya period.

Viralimalai:

Viralimalai is a small town situated at a distance of 30-km from Tiruchirappalli and 40-km from Pudukkottai. It is famous for its Murugan temple and the Peacock sanctuary. The town is bestowed with a large number of wild peacocks, which roam around the Murugan temple.

Ayyapan Koil:

Located near the district court of Trichy, is a peaceful temple and attracts many people in all week days. This temple is famous for its discipline and neatness.

Jambukeswara Temple:

Dedicated to Lord Shiva, Jambukeshwara temple is situated 2 kms east of Srirangam and 10 kms from Tiruchirapalli. The temple is named after the elephant which is believed to have worshipped Lord Siva here. Installed under an ancient Jambu tree, the lingam is partially submerged by water and meant to represent God incarnate as water.
It has five walls and seven gopurams with a finest Dravidian architecture work.
The principal deity is the shiva lingam, almost submerged in water, which flows from the subterranean spring in the sanctum sanctorum. It is one of the panchabhoota sthalam - representing five basic elements. This is the Appu Sthalam among the Pancha Bootha Sthalams.

The others are –

Tiruvannamalai (Thejo sthalam - Fire)

Kanchipuram (Prithvi sthalam - Earth)

Kalahasti (Vayu sthalam - Air)

Chidambaram (Akasa sthalam - Space).

This temple is situated about 2.5 km east of the Sri Ranganathaswamy temple. It has an interior with a large central court, an excellent example of the Dravidian architecture of AD 1600. The rampant dragons, elaborate foliated brackets and royal Nayak portraits are incorporated to its courtyards pillars.

Katha Veeraiya swamy temple:

Katha Veeraiya swamy temple is a very famous temple in Tamil Nadu. It is located in Pachur near Mannachanallur. (Bus root no 27A, E)

Hazarath Nathervali:

It is ancient Durga more    than 1000 years old.  It is marvelous architecture; the doom is made up of shining marbles giving a great look to the Durga.  It is also situated in the heart of Trichy City.





Kailasamundaiyar Temple:

It is located amidst lush green paddyfields and sylvan surrounding on the northern banks of the Uyyakondan channel in a sleepy hamlet named Cholamadevi near Thiruverumbur, 12 km away from Trichy City. For a trained eye, the history of this dilapidated temple wouldn't go unnoticed.

Avadayar Koil:

Avadayar Koil, previously known as "Thiruperunthurai", is an important Shivasthala located at a distance of 8 miles from the Arantangi railway station and about 94-km from Trichy. The sculptural work of the temple is exquisite. It is perhaps the best architectural marvel in South India.

Gunaseelam:

Located at a distance of 22-km from Trichy is Gunaseelam, a place famous for its temple for Lord Vishnu, known as "Prasanna Venkateswara".

Mutts:

Ramakrishna Mutt:

It has been started during 1949 by respected Ramaswamy Adikal .During 1950, The Primary School for the Orphan and later upgraded as High School. Only Boys Who's having no parents are admitted Gurugulam Method Is practiced. Any time of the year from First Std to Eight Std admission is being made. Nearly 300 children are Studying

Ramakrishna Mutt is functioning at Thiruparaithurai. It is a service organization with the intention of uplifting down trodden and poor children of South India. Poor and down trodden children are given free food and shelter with good education including imperative training in technical skills In Making Garland .Since 1985 Stands On Its Own Funds and no donation Is accepted. The lush green setting of the institution on the banks of the River Cauvery at Thirupparaithurai is condusive all throughout the year. The philosophy of Ramakrishna and his disciple Vivekananda are projected here.

Ragavendra Mutt:

Ragavendra temple at Ragavendra Mutt lies at Srirangam. The life of the saint has been displayed here paintings

Ahobila Mutt:

The Ahobila mutt, Srirangam a religious institution of importance in Tamilnadu , which is traditionally presided over by a saint noted for learning and piety ,has its headquarters at Ahobilam

Situated on the banks of the river Cauvery, Tiruchirappalli, the fourth largest city in the state was a citadel of the early Cholas which later fell to the Pallavas. But the Pallavas never really managed to retain control of this strategic city and lost it to the Pandiyas several times.

This tug of war finally ended when the Cholas reasserted themselves in the 10th century. The fort of Trichy continued to be in their possession until the decline of the empire after which it became a Vijayanagar stronghold. When this empire collapsed in 1565, Trichy came to be occupied in turn by the Nayaks of Madurai, the Marathas, the Navabs of Carnatic, the French and finally the British. But it was under Nayaks of Madurai that Trichy flourished and prospered in its own right and grew to be the city that it is today.

Trichy is a fine blend of tradition and modernity built around the Rock Fort. Apart from the fort, there are several churches colleges and missions dating back to the 1760s. With its excellent infrastructure facilities, Trichy will serve as a good base to see central Tamilnadu.

Festivals:

Samayapuram Mariamman Temple Festival:

Every year 3 important festivals--Poochoriyal,pancha prakaram and Brahmotsavam attract pilgrims to this temple. During Poochoriyal, flowers worth Rs.35, 000 to 50,000 are showered on the deity for 24 hours.

Thousands of people from various castes and communities throng the temple, when Brahmotsavam is performed in the month of April,

Devotees from Malaysia, Singapore, Srilanka and other far-off places visit Samayaburam to fulfill their vows for the many benefits they received through Her grace.

Those who are unable to personally present their offerings,will send it by post.

Allur Jallathiru Vizha:

During Puratasi Ammavasai, the woman of folk of Allur give the money and ask the potter to make new cow and calf for the Pooja and collect them next month.(same new moon day) 9 days they will conduct Pooja with chanting of religions songs for the cow and calf. 10th day they will have Kolatam dance and will have procession with the cow and calf at Allur.

Later they will proceed to the banks of the river Cauvery & sub merges the cow and calf in the river. They will offer sweet Pongal and distribute to one and all.

The same type of Jalatharai takes place at Madurai, Tirunelveli and Chinnamanur.

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