Friday, June 16, 2017

Koneswarar Temple, Kudavasal – The Temple

Koneswarar Temple, Kudavasal – The Temple
This is one of the 78 Maadakovils, built on an elevation, by Ko Chenkata Chola Nayanar so that elephants cannot enter the sanctum. This temple is also known as Konastanam. The temple has two prakaram, and there is no Raja gopuram for the temple. Main Deity is Swayambu Lingam known as Koneswarar / Konanathan and his consort known as Periya Nayaki / Bhriha Nayaki. Rays of Sun fall on the Lord for three days during Panguni month-March-April. Theertham is known as Amrutha Theertham, seen in front of the temple and Sthala Vriksham is Plantain.

Saint Thirugnana Sambandar had mentioned this temple in his hymn as Ezhilkola Mada Koil – beautiful Mada temple. As Lord Shiva granted his darshan from a high level place, it is praised as mini Kailash. Shrine of Anumadhi Vinayakar is located at the entrance of the temple in outer prakaram. Lord Kasi Viswanatha graces opposite the entrance. There is a Dwajasthambam and Nandi in front. After entering the temple, Sanctum for Periya Nayaki Amman in standing posture with Abhaya Varada Hastham can be seen.

Opposite to the sanctum Vahana Mandapam is seen. There is no separate Durgai in this temple; Ambal is worshiped as "Brugan Durgai". Inside the temple, a three storey Gopuram can be seen. Shrines of Idumban, Dhandapani and Saraswathi can be seen in this prakaram. Shrine of Murugan with Valli and Deivanai with peacock mandapam and Maha mandapam is located to North West corner of the prakaram. Arunagirinathar sang Thirupugazh on Lord Murugan here.

Sthala Vriksham Plantain, Jack Fruit tree, Navagraha, Murugan, Mahalakshmi, Thirunabindhu Muni, Saptha Madhas, Nalwar, Sundarar and Paravai Nachiyar can also be seen in this prakaram. In front of Sundarar shrine, there are steps to climb and reach the main sanctum. There are 24 steps to reach sanctum. Natarajar is seen here. There is a Maha Mandapam, Nandi Mandapam with pillars and Artha mandapam to cross to reach the main sanctum of Koneswarar. The Lingam is big in size with a square Avudayar. Lord Shiva, as a Swayambumurthy is facing west. The scar caused by the sharp nose of Garuda the eagle is visible on the Linga. There is no Durga in the Shiva ghoshta wall. 

Maalai Vazhi Pattu Vinayaka-Vinayaka for evening worship to whom the first puja in the evening is dedicated and also a shrine for Twin Vinayakas can also be seen. Vinayaka of the temple is worshipped as Siddhi Vinayaka. The Amrutha Theertham-sacred spring is outside opposite the temple. On the bank of theertha is Vinayaka in the name of Aadhi Gajanathar. The structure is such that the Vimana of Aadhi Gajanathar is visible from the Lord’s shrine within the temple. On the Masi Magam day, five deities-Panchamurthis, Lord Koneswarar, Mother Peria Nayaki, Lord Vinayaka, Lord Muruga and Lord Chandikeswara visit the Amrutha Theertha for Theerthavari festival.

There are two Bhairavars, one without the dog vaahana. Sun and Moon grace the devotees in sitting and standing form respectively. Those who had failed to perform the rituals for their ancestors pray to Sun and Moon seeking pardon. Sage Soodha before Lord Shiva appears worshipping the Lord. There are also shrines for four Saivite Saints, Sundarar (one among the four saints) with Paravai Nachiyar, Mother Saraswathi without her Veena Mother Gajalakshmi and Saptha Madhas.

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