Friday, June 17, 2016

Skandasramam, Udayapatti, Salem

Skandasramam, Udayapatti, Salem
Skandasramam is located in serene surroundings amidst hillocks in the vicinity of Salem, is a temple complex with shrines to Skanda and to other deities. Skandasramam was founded by Shantananda Swami in the latter half of the 20th century. Shantananda Swami - a disciple of Swayamprakasa - was also associated with the Avadhoota Dattatreya Sampradaya of Gujarat - and with several philanthropic activities.

It is about 10 kms from Salem town. It is located on top of a small hill called Skandagiri. A couple of small hairpin bends would take you to the main entrance of the temple. The temple was set up in the 1970s. As the name indicates, it is the temple dedicated to lord Muruga. However, the temple is more famous for the sheer size of statues of various gods and goddesses in its premises. In specific, the relatively big statues of Pancha Mukha Vinayaka, Anjaneya, Dhanvantri and Dattatreya deserve special mention.

Skandasramam, located in serene surroundings amidst hillocks, two kilometres away from Udayapatti of Salem Town, is a temple complex with shrines to Skanda and to other deities. This lies in Salem-Attur route.

History
This Ashram-Skandasramam was established in the year 1971 by His Holiness Sri Santhananda Swamigal.  Lord Muruga appeared in his dream and directed to install him at a particular place here.  His Holiness searched for the place indicated by Lord Muruga and finally found this place. He began the temple with simple structures, which today has grown big in size and fame with all architectural skills and sculptures.  The temple is situated in a hilly environment noted for its natural beauty.

Skandasramam was founded by Shantananda Swami in the latter half of the 20th century. Shantananda Swami - a disciple of Swayamprakasa - was also associated with the Avadhoota Dattatreya Sampradaya of Gujarat - and with several philanthropic activities. Skandasramam is a unique temple. The presiding deities here are Skanda and Ashtadasabhuja Mahalakshmi. It was planned by Om Shri Santhananda Swamigal in May 1968, and he executed it in the form of a temple by name Skandasramam and its Maha Kumbabishekam took place on 08.02.1971.

The Temple
It is situated on the extreme northern end of the Jarugu Malai Mountain on the banks of stream called Kannimar Odai and is dedicated to three deities:  Murugan as Skanda Guru, Lakshmi as Durga Parameshvari. The complex also contains shrines for Sadhasiva Swamy and Swayamprakasa Brahmendra Saraswathi Adhyavadhutha Swamy, two renowned saints of the avadhutha order and the gurus of the founder. The mammoth stone statues of Anjaneyar, Vinayakar, Dhatthathreya (all of them 16 feet high), and Idumban (13 feet) are remarkable for size and artistry. The Yajur Vedhic School in the complex gives instruction and training to young Brahmins into priesthood.

This is a scrupulously planned temple of the modern days in accordance with the rules of Agamas and Vedas. This is the only temple where Mother Parasakthi (heart of souls) and Lord Muruga (the wisdom power of the lives) are face to face thus ensuring a life of bliss to the devotees. Mother grants peace and Muruga bliss. As all adverse aspects of the planets would vanish if one circumambulates Lord Muruga and the planets installed around him with their consorts.

The Banalinga-Bhuvaneswarar and Bhuvaneswari brought from Narmada River for Pradosha puja are in Lord Muruga’s shrine.  Lord Veda Vinayaka and Acharya Sankara add more grace to the temple. The temple is built under strict Agama rules with a 16 feet tall Dattatreya Bhagawan – Guru and Swarna Akarshana Bhairava Murthy.
Lord Sankatahara Bhairava is very famous only in this temple. The deities belonging to the four Vedas are installed here. This is the only temple where Mother Parasakthi and Son Muruga are facing each other. Based on the astrological science, Navagrahas the nine planets are installed around Lord Muruga with their respective consorts. 

Sri Panchamukha Anjaneya (Anjaneya with five faces) and Panchamukha Ganapathi are face to face in the temple.  6 feet tall Lord Dhanvantri blesses the devotees with a disease-free life. Skandasramam is a unique temple. The presiding deities here are Skanda and Ashtadasabhuja Mahalakshmi (also Mahishasuramardhini).
Also here are shrines to Pancha Mukha Ganapati, Ashtaadasabhuja Mahalakshmi, Dhanvantri, Pancha mukha Hanuman (bearing faces of Anjaneya, Narasimha, Garuda, Varaha and Hayagriva), Dattatreya and Shiva. Most of the images are imposing ones, housed in shrines of vast dimensions. The sanctum of Skanda and Amman face each other.

The image of Skanda is of great beauty. Ambal’s image with 18 arms is an imposing one, and is said to be a manifestation of all forms of Divinity revered in the Indian system of beliefs. The Thiruvasi behind this image bears images of Navadurga. Another unique feature of this temple is that the Navagrahams are enshrined along with their spouses.
There are also images of the four Vedas.  Skandasramam is also known as Skandagiri. The theertham here is Kannimaar Odai. There is also a special hall here for statues of various renowned sages and saints across India.

In the Maha Mandapam, one can see Shri Ashta Dasa puja Mahalakshmi Durga Parameswari, who is also known as Skanda matha and opposite to Durga; there stands the grand, attractive, and smiling statue by name Gnanaskanda (Bala Dandayudha Pani). Both are in standing posture.

They reveal the greatness and spiritual attitude of Om Shri Santhananda Swamigal. Skandasramam is in the form of Linga. There are nine important points in the Linga in the form of the temple, they denote:
·        Dattatreya Bhagawan
·        Dhanvanthari
·        Swarnakarshana Bairavar
·        Panchamuga Ganapathi
·        Panchamuga Anjaneya
·        Gnana Skanda Gurunathan
·        Skanda matha
·        Magangal Mandapam
·        Skanda Jothi
Besides these nine points on the top of the Linga form, it is predicted as the adobe of Ganga, in between the 3rd and 5th point there is Gomuki. On the right and left side of Ganga there are moon and sun respectively. In the eastern side of the temple, there runs Kannimar Odai (stream). As it flows towards north, it is also known as Utharavahini. By the side of the stream there is the goddess Kannimar Amman.

In praise of Lord Skanda, Skandaguru Kavacham is being recited by the devotees. Skanda denotes the child sitting on the lap of Parvathi and Parameswaran. As Skanda ordered the Swamigal in his dream to build a temple, it is called as Skandasramam. At 8.00 a.m. daily, Abhisekam takes place and at 11.00 a.m. special puja is being performed. No camphor is used and no archanai is done by the devotees. Everyone is blessed by Skanda and his beloved mother Skanda Matha. There is a separate Yaga Sala where Yagnas are conducted on special occasions like Navarathri, Panguni Uthiram, Vaikasi Visakam etc.

The credit goes to Om Shri Santhananda Swamigal, the founder of Skandasramam. His original name being Subramaniam, his Guru Shri Senthamangalam Avathuda Swamigal named him as Santhananda. The goddess Durga gives ‘Santham' and Lord Skanda gives ‘Anandam'. Both Santham and Anandam combine together and bless the devotees with Santhanandam, which co-incides with the name of the founder Om Shri Santhananda Swamigal.

Temple Opening Time
The temple is open from 6.00 a.m. to 12.00 a.m. and from 4.00 p.m. to 9.30 p.m.
Festivals
An elaborate schedule of worship services is carried out throughout the day, commencing with the Suprabhata Sevai in the morning. Karthikai Deepam is celebrated in a very grand manner in this temple in November-December. Vaikasi Visakam in May-June and Aadi 18 in July-August are the other important festivals celebrated in the temple.
Prayers
People pray here generally for wedding and child boon and for the prosperous aspects of Guru Bhagwan. Lord Dhanvantri ensures healthy life and Lord Swarnakarshana Bhairava all prosperity.  Lord Sankatara Ganapathi removes worries of devotees while Sri Anjaneya blesses the devotee with physical prowess, Bhakti, courage, land, education and wisdom. Devotees perform abishek and archanas to Lords in the temple and Mother Parasakthi offering vastras.
Contact
Om Sri Skandasramam
Udayapatti, Salem - 636 140 India
Phone: (0427) 240660
Connectivity
Udayapatti is on the Salem – Attur road. Auto facility is available from Udayapatti to reach the Ashram. Town bus facility is available to Udayapatti from Salem. It is located at a distance of 10 Kms from Salem City.
Skandasramam is located two kilometres away from Udayapatti. Nearest Railway Station is located at Salem & Nearest Airport is located at Coimbatore & Trichy.

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