Friday, March 18, 2016

Naganathaswamy Temple (Rahu Sthalam), Tirunageswaram – Festivals

Naganathaswamy Temple (Rahu Sthalam), Tirunageswaram – Festivals
Brahmotsavam (November or December):
This grand festival is performed every year for ten days ending in the last Sunday of the Tamil month Karthigai i.e. November or December. There is a procession in silver vehicle, marriage festival of the presiding deity, another procession around the streets of Tirunageswaram in temple chariot, sanctification in temple tank and concludes with Vidayatri (farewell function) when a flower palanquin takes the images of the temple deities around the temple. The festival is celebrated amidst music with Nadaswaram (pipe instrument) and tavil (percussion instrument) and religious instructions in the Vedas (sacred text) and Thevaram read by priests.
Kanda Shashti (October or November):
Kanda Shastri Utsavam is celebrated for six days with procession of the deity every day. On the sixth day Lord Muruga getting Velayudham from Goddess is performed in a grand manner. In South Street there will be a symbolic fight between Surapadma and Lord Muruga.
Shivarathri (March):
It is in Thirunageshwaram that Rahu prayed unto the Lord and got relieved of curse on him, on Mahashivaratri day. Hence on this day every year there is Shivarathri Mahotsavam for three days with abishekam of the Lord using 1008 Conch Shells and every day there will be a grand abishekam and aaradhana for Rahu Bhagavan also. In the fourth period of Shivarathri night, Raghu Bhagavan comes in procession and has darshan of the Lord and gets relieved of the curse.
Navaratri function is performed for ten days for Goddess Girigujambal. Every day Abirami Andhathi Parayanam is done with Sahasranama Archana. On Saraswathi pooja day, Lecture of Abirami Andhathi is arranged. On Vijayadashami day Lord and Goddess are taken in procession on Horse Vahanam, duty accompanied by grand Nadaswaram music performances. There is a function of “throwing arrow” by the Lord (Ambu Poduthal) and only after this function people begin their preparatory works relating to Deepavali.
Sekkizhar Vaikasi Pooja (June):
Sekkizhar Vaikasi Pooja is celebrated from 1969 on the birth date of Sekkizhar, the author of Periya Puranam, the epic describing the life history of the 63 Nayanars.
Rahu Peyarchi (Switching Over to Next Rasi):
On every occasion of Rahu switching over to next Rasi once in one and half years special Abishekam with Homam etc., is performed and for three days Rahu Bhagavan is taken in procession in Sesha Vahanam.
Other Festivals:
There are weekly rituals like Somavaram and Sukravaram, fortnightly rituals like Pradosham and monthly festivals like Amaavaasai (new moon day), Kiruthigai, Pournami (full moon day) and sathurthi.