Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Ardhanareeswarar Temple, Elavanasur Kottai – The Temple

Ardhanareeswarar Temple, Elavanasur Kottai – The Temple
This is a large temple with 150 feet high 6-tiered Rajagopuram and 5 Praharams. The Temple has been located on 4 feet high Peedam. There is a Nootru Kaal Mandapam located between the Rajagopuram and Sanctum. This Temple is perhaps the one of the huge "Maadakovils”, (built on a raised platform) of Villupuram district. There are 18 steps to reach the sanctum located on the elevation.

Presiding Deity is called as Ardhanareeswarar and is facing west. He is also known as Urbhagangondaruliya Mahadevar / Urbhagangondaruliya Thambiranar / Urbhagangondaruliya Nayanar Sigara Sigamani Nathar / Gramardhanathesvarar / Amarabuyanga Thevar. The Lingam is a Suyambhu (Self Manifested).

Lord has three Nandhis in front of him, all facing the opposite direction i.e. West Direction. Naalvar is also present in Peedam in the sanctum. The Maha Mandapam has many interesting sculptures in dance postures. Also, there is an Ayyappan sculpture in one of the pillars near sanctum. Hence this temple is quite famous with Ayyappan Devotees. Devotees throng this Temple during Margazhi Month.

There is an Alankara Mandapam which has sculptures of Lord Shiva Play (Tiruvilayadal). Mother is called as Thiru Palliyarai Nambiraatiyar / Bhrihannayaki / Periya Nayaki and is facing east. There are four Durga Shrines on all four directions within the temple complex. Amman shrine is situated on the south west side of sanctum.

There are shrines of Dhandapani, Swayambu Linga housed on square Avudaiyar, Naalvar, Maha Ganapathy, Vallabha Ganapathy, Athmalingam, Somaskanda, Murugan, Agasthya Lingam, Rana Lingeswarar, Kasi Viswanathar, Visalakshi and Natarajar in the Temple premises. Sthala Vriksham is Jack Fruit Tree.

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