Friday, September 16, 2016

Puthirakamateeswarar Temple, Arani, Thiruvannamalai

Puthirakamateeswarar Temple, Arani, Thiruvannamalai
Puthirakamateeswarar Temple is in Arani Town which is about 41 kms from Vellore, 58 kms from Thiruvannamalai, and 71 kms from Kancheepuram. It is located at about 1km from Arani bus stand; this is a special parihara sthalam for child birth. King Dasaratha got Rama as his son only after conducting Puthra Kameshti yagna in 11 places and this is the first and prime one of those. There is a shrine for Dasaratha here.

Every year, on the full moon day of the Tamil month Aani, the temple conducts Puthra Kameshti Yagam and any couple can participate freely. If you want to do it on other days, it is better to do it on the star birthday or any other day suggested by a good astrologer and the expenses would be around Rs 7500.
Legends
Emperor Dasaratha was annoyed that he had no children to take care of his subjects after his life time.  As advised by his Family Guru (Kula Guru) Vashista, he came to this place, installed a Shivalinga and worshipped the Lord for the reward and conducted the Puthrakameshti Yaga headed by great Maharshi Rishyasrunga.  He was then gifted with four handsome sons, Rama, Lakshmana, Bharata and Shatrughna. Erecting a temple for the Lord, the emperor named the Lord after the Yaga, Puthrakameshti Easwarar.
The Temple
Presiding deity Lord Shiva called as Putharakameshtiswarar graces in the sanctum sanctorum under a 9 headed serpent.  Special pujas are performed on Full Moon days. Mother Periyanayaki Amman graces from her shrine with a flag post separately. Urchavar in this temple is Somaskandar. There is shrine for Emperor Dasaratha.  He looks as a Rishi performing a yagna.  He is holding a hand bowl (Kamandala) and Rudraksha chain.  Pujas are performed in this shrine on festival days.

The main Raja Gopuram is of three tiers. Here in front of the temple we see a big banyan tree under which Nagars are installed. As we enter inside the temple we see Dwajasthambam. Nandi is seen in a small mandapam in front of the Dwajasthambam. Sthala Vriksham is Pavazha Malli and Pushkarani is Kamandala River. The water that fell from the hand bowl (Kamandala) of Maharshi Jamadagni flowed as a river and was named Kamandala River.  The temple is situated on the bank of this river.  The river turns east from north only before the temple with a whirling. The river would be flooding heavily during the monsoon.

As we go around the prakaram we see a separate sanctum for Lord Murugan with his consorts Sri Valli and Deivanai. Lord Gopala Krishnan is seen in separate sanctum with his consorts Bama and Rukmini. Vinayakar and Dakshina Moorthy is seen here as koshta Deivam in Lord Siva sanctum. Other deities seen in the temple are Swarna Vinayakar, Pancha Lingam with consorts, Ashtotra Lingam, Kali and Veerabadhirar, 63 Nayanmars, Kala Bairavar, Saneeswarar and Sooriyan. 

According to Vedic scholars, any activity should begin with Vinayaka worship and end with Anjaneya worship. Following this principle, Lord Vinayaka facing north and Sri Anjaneya facing south are opposite to each other on the banks of the river. Those beginning an activity follow this system with deep faith. Lord Vishnu’s discus and conch are inscribed in Anjaneya idol. This is a rare system in the temple that Lord Vinayaka and Sri Anjaneya are facing each other.
Temple Opening Time
The temple is open from 7.00 a.m. to 11.00 a.m. and from 4.40 p.m. to 7.30 p.m.
Festivals
Lighting of one lakh deeps on Swathi Star day in Aadi (July-August), Purattasi Navarathri in September-October and Masi Shivrathri in February March are the festivals celebrated in the temple. Shri Puthra Kamateeswara Thirukoil witnesses a massive crowd during Kaanum Pongal.
Prayers
Those not having a child even after years of marriage pray to the Lord for this gift. Those praying to Lord Puthrakameshti Easwarar should undertake a fasting for 6 Mondays.  On the first such Monday they should feed a child in the midday and take their food then. The number of children would be 2, 3, 4, 5 and 6 in subsequent Mondays.  On the seventh Monday, they must offer garlands of red flowers and a Pavalamalli grown in the temple. The pudding offered as Nivedhana to the Lord must have pepper mix.  On the Poornima day in the month of Aani (June-July), 11 Shiva scholars (Shivachariyars) conduct the Puthrakameshti Yagna.  Devotees can participate in this yaga.
The child problem occurs to those having Kethu (serpent planet) in the 5th sign in their horoscopes.  To overcome the problem they should install Naga idols under the neem-banyan trees in the temple complex on their birth star days, paying the prescribed fee for these pujas.
Contact
Sri Puthrakameshti Easwarar Temple,
Pudukamoor, Arani – 632 301,
Thiruvannamalai District
Mobile: +91 97891 56179 / 96294 73883 / 9486046908
Connectivity
The temple is 2 km from the bus stand. It is located about 38 kilometres (24 mi) from Vellore and 60 kilometres (37 mi) from Thiruvannamalai. The city is well connected through various well-formed roads, the state highways SH-4 (Arcot - Arni - Gingee - Villupuram Road), SH-132 (Vellore - Arni Road), Arni - Thiruvannamalai Road are the major roads connecting Arni. The nearest railway station is "Arni Road" located at Kalambur, which is 8 km from the town. Nearest Airport is located at Chennai.

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