Tuesday, July 24, 2018

Sangameshwarar Temple, Bhavani – The Temple

Sangameshwarar Temple, Bhavani – The Temple
The temple is spread over an area of approximately 4 acres on the northern banks of the Triveni Sangamam. The temple has two major gates or entrances. The Rajagopuram in the north has 5 distinct tiers and 7 kalashas. The colorful, five-tiered Rajagopuram gopuram is decorated with figures from the puranas.  The local belief is that every inch of ground under the temple has one Shivalingam.

There are shrines of Kottai Vinayagar in Left and Kottai Anjaneyar in right side of the Rajagopuram. Behind the Tower, Raja Vinayagar at the western side and Muthukumaraswamy at the Eastern side are also there. Kodimaram, Palipeedam and lighting monolithic stone pillar is a visual treat. The temple is unique in many ways. The whole temple is considered to be a Shiva Linga and therefore the Nandi is found outside the temple near the car park in a separate mandapam facing the temple.

During the rule of the Cheras, Cholas and Pandyas, it is said that there was an underground connection between Chidambaram and Sangameshwarar temple. Till date, pujas are performed at the same time in both temples. The Temple has a huge hall for social events, a beautiful river side garden, round boat ride, swimming and bathing area in the confluence of Kaveri & Bhavani River, and an elephant too. Here Kaveri River, Bhavani River and Amudha River join together. River Amudha flow as Antharvahini, just like Saraswathy at Triveni Sangamam of Allahabad. The place is also known as Dakshina Triveni Sangamam.

The rampart on the eastern side has now moved close to the Cauvery, and the three rectangular holes (one below the other) drilled in the wall, to have the view of the Dwajasthambam and the deity. This Temple is also known as Parihara Sthalam.  So, in the south of the temple in the place of koodudurai the purohits (priests) performing poojas i.e; parikara like Nagadoshas, Sevvaidhosa, Marriage Dosha, Navagraha Dosha and other Doshas.

The temple stands as an example for and is a testimony to the unity of the Saiva / Vaishnava cults, by being the abode of Lord Sangameshwarar and Goddess Vedanayaki as well as that of Sri Adi Kesava Perumal and his consort, Sundaravalli Thaayar.


For brief details, please refer below link;
Mother Shrine:
For brief details, please refer below link;

Jwarahareswarar Shrine:
There is a shrine for Lord Jwarahareswarar (Lord of Fever) inside the temple premises. This shrine is situated adjacent to the shrine of Murugan. Lord Jwarahareswarar has three heads, three arms and three legs, an image found only in a few temples in Tamil Nadu. Interestingly the Dwarapalakas in this shrine also have three heads, arms and legs. To be relieved of fever and other ailments, devotees believe that an offering of boiled rice, Pepper Rasam (dhal soup) and Ara Keerai Koottu will be effective. Worshipping him with Bilva leaves, while offering pepper and cumin seeds is said to relieve people of chronic gastric ailments.

Lord Murugan Shrine:
Lord Subramanya Swamy is housed in a separate Shrine situated to the right of Vedanayaki shrine. This Shrine is situated in between Lord Siva and Mother Sanctums representing Somaskanda form. Arunagirinathar sang Thirupugazh on Lord Subramanya of this temple.

Nayanmars Shrine:
Idols of the 63 Nayanmars, the Shaiva saints can be found to the south of Vedha Nayagi Shrine. The southern hallway hosts the idols of the 63 Nayanmars (Bronze Statues) in a Golu-mandapam type of arrangement. The procession idols of all the 63 Nayanmars are beautifully arranged on a few steps (displayed like a Navratri Golu). Surprisingly, Thiru Muruga Kirupananda Variyar Swamy, a modern-day storyteller who is famous for his Kathakaalakshepam (musical storytelling) finds his place as the 64th Nayanmar.

Pancha Bootha Lingams:
The circumambulatory path, behind the sanctum houses Pancha Bhootha Lingams, the representations of the five elements.
Saneeshwara Shrine:
Almost all of the Kongu Ezhu Sthalangal (Seven Devaram Paadal Petra Shiva Temples of Kongu Naadu) including Bhavani boast of an exclusive sannidhi for Lord Saneeshwara. Devotees believe the Bhavani Saneeshwara to have great divine power.

Sahasralingeswarar Shrine:
There is a separate Shrine for Sahasralingeswarar in the Temple premises. This Sahasralingam (one Shivalingam containing 1008 small lingams) is said to have been worshipped by Ravana, the Lord of Lanka. There is a popular belief that performing abhishekam to this Sahasralingam is said to rid one of Rahu - Kethu Dosha.

Amirthalingeshwarar Shrine:
Amirthalingeshwarar in this temple is placed on a seat called Avudayar according to Saiva principles. It is a mobile one that can be removed and placed on the seat again. The Amirthalingam is in the southern entrance of the temple. After the churning of the ocean, Sage Parasara is believed to have filled the pit containing the remaining nectar with the waters of all the holy rivers and made a Shivalinga with it. This Linga has been called as Amirthalingeshwarar.

Lord Shiva appeared in the Linga and promised to remove the sins of those who worshipped him in that form and grant their genuine desires. Those seeking child birth, come to the Amirthalingeshwarar shrine, and perform abhishekam. Then with wet clothes, the woman carries the Amirthalingam around the shrine thrice and place it back on Avudai. Then the devotee offers sweet Pongal to the Lord. It is believed that childbirth is definitely granted.
Palliyarai is situated on the northern side of the Mahamandapam. There is a Cradle hanging from the Ceiling. This cradle has been donated by an European collector William Garrow on January 11, 1804. It was made of Ivory (the tusk of elephant) and was presented to Vedanayaki Amman and he has signed on the frame of cradle.

Gayathri Lingeswarar Shrine:
There is a Linga called Gayathri Lingeswarar situated near the banks of the river i.e. meeting point of the rivers Cauvery and Bhavani. It is believed that Sage Viswamithra installed the lingam here and worshipped it, chanting the Gayathri Mantra and hence the name, Gayathri Lingeswarar. One can see devotees performing special poojas and making offerings as pariharam here for peace and success.

Vaishnava Shrines:
This predominantly Shaivite Temple has shrines for Lord Vishnu, as Adhi Kesava Perumal and his divine consort, Sri Soundaravalli Thayar.  There are also shrines for Lord Rama, Alwars, and Lord Venugopal, with Bhama and Rukmini. The Adhikesava Perumal Temple was originally in Kalingarayan Pudur lying south of the Cauvery, and was in a dilapidated condition. Puliyur Gounder (as per inscription) took the initiative to install Adhikesava Perumal with his consorts in the temple built by him close to that of Vedanayaki Amman. Besides, he built shrines for Lakshmi Narasimhar and Soundaravalli Thayar in the same row.

A significant factor at the Adhikesava Perumal temple is the Ranga Mandapam noted for the sculptural work on its 24 pillars in Taramangalam style. Adhikesava Perumal Shrine is located immediately after the Rajagopuram. Presiding Deity, Adi Kesava Perumal is in standing posture. On the northern side of the Ranga Mandapam and to the right of Adhikesava Perumal Shrine, there is a separate shrine for Venugopala Swamy with his consorts, Rukmini and Sathyabama. This shrine is said to have been built by the Wodeyar family of Mysore.

There is a separate shrine for Yoga Narasimhar with Lakshmi as Santha swaroopam and Santhanagopalan with his consorts near to the Adhikesava Perumal Shrine. Soundara Valli Thayar Shrine is situated next to Yoga Narasimhar Shrine. There is also a small shrine for Siddhi Vinayakar situated nearby. The cow behind the Vishnu statue reminds us of the harmony between Shaivism and Vaishnavism.

Other Shrines:
There are shrines of Jothilingam, Kasi Viswanathar, Nagars under the Ashwatha tree near bathing Ghat, Visalakshi, Gajalakshmi, Lakshmi and Jeshtadevi in the temple premises. There is a big Aswatha tree and a Siva Lingam known Koteeswarar is installed under it. 

Sthala Vriksham:
Sthala Vriksham is Ilandhai Maram (Jujube Tree). It is situated at the south-west corner of the temple premises. It is a belief that the divine scriptures, Vedhas, reincarnated themselves as the holy tree here for protecting the sanctity of the place. It is under this tree that Lord Shiva appeared before Kubera as a Swayambu Lingam. It is surprising to find that the tree is still bearing a lot of fruit.

The Lingam seems extremely ancient. There are separate shrines for Shani Bhagavan and Dattatreya near the Kubera Lingam. The sweet fruit of Ilandhai from tree is offered to Lord Siva after pooja every day. The fruit is given as prasadam for the couple who come and worship forsake of child. This fruit is consumed by ladies for fertility.
Theerthams associated with this Temple are Kaveri River, Bhavani River, Amirtha River, Surya Theertham and Gayatri Theertham. The Temple is situated at the confluence spot of the Kaveri and Bhavani Rivers, known as Kooduthurai. The pond near the Eastern Compound is called Suriya Theertham. The pond near the Gayathri Lingam is named Gayathri Theertham.