Friday, July 5, 2019

Vaidyanatha Swami Temple, Vaitheeswaran Koil – The Temple

Vaidyanatha Swami Temple, Vaitheeswaran Koil – The Temple
The temple has a five-tiered gopuram (temple tower), four inner gopurams and 3 large precincts. The Temple is west facing. The five towers – Gopurams of the temple are on a straight line. Presiding Deity is called as Vaitheeswaran / Vaidyanathar. Lord Shiva is a Swayambhu Murthy. He is housed in the sanctum (the central shrine) in the form of Lingam. Lingam is very small. Dhwaja Sthambam, Bali Peedam and Nandi can be found facing the sanctum in the inner prakaram. The sanctum sanctorum consists of Sanctum, Antrala, Artha Mandapam and Maha Mandapam.

There are two flag posts-Kodimarams before the presiding deity made of silver and gold. The other metal images in the sanctum are of Nataraja, Somaskanda, Angaraka and stone sculptures of Durga, Dakshinamurthy, Surya (Sun god), JatayuVedasSampati. Mother is called as Thaiyalnayaki. The shrine of Thaiyalnayaki in the second precinct facing south houses the image of Thaiyalnayaki sported in standing posture with the medicinal oil to cure the diseases.

The large precinct also has a small shrine to Dhanvatri and is located behind the sanctum. Lingams worshipped by Lord Rama, Jatayu, Subramanya, Suryan and Angaragan can be seen in the prakaram. The first precinct around the sanctum has the metal image of Subramanya, worshipped here as Chella Muthu Kumara Swamy. Lord Muruga is facing west. Lord Muruga is always worshipping his divine Father and Mother in the temple.

As a beloved son of Lord Vaidyanatha and Mother Thaiyal Nayaki, Lord Muruga in the temple is praised as Chella Muthukumaraswami – Chella-beloved. Lord Muruga enjoys all prominence in the temple. Hence all festivals are dedicated to him. Pujas to Lord and Mother are offered only after pujas to Lord Muruga. The eastern gateway also has the shrine of Adi (original) temple that has a smaller replica of the main shrines. There is a fine metal image of Gangavisarjanar inside the temple. 

The shrine of Angaragan (Mars) is present near the Eastern gateway in the third precinct. Planet Angaraka, Mars blesses the devotees on his Goat Vahana on Tuesdays. Lord Bhairava protects the temple in the east, by Lord Veerabhadra in the west, Lord Vinayaka in the south and Ma Kali in the north. The Maragatha Linga (Emerald Linga) is very famous. Navagrahas the nine planets are generally in the front side of the sanctum facing different directions in Shiva temples. Here they are behind the sanctum on a straight line obeying the presiding Lord blessing the devotees freeing them of their adverse aspects, it is believed.

To the east of the western outer corridor, there is a shrine for Kumara Guruparaswami. There are shrines for Nataraja, Sivakami, Durga, Sun, Sapta Kannikas, 63 Nayanmars, etc., in the southern corridor. The southern gateway from this precinct leads to the temple tank, Siddamruta Theertham and directly faces the Thaiyalnayaki shrine. It is known to have medicinal property. Devotees believe that taking bath in this water cures them of their diseases, especially skin diseases.

Priests perform abishekam holy bath) to Lord Shiva joins in the sacred tank of this temple using the way provided and hence, the holy tank inside the temple is known as Siddhamirth (Amirtha means the elixir and siddhi means success) Tirtha. Snakes and frogs, it is unique, are unable to survive in the holy tank. The holy Siddhamirtham tank is situated within the temple complex contains nectar, and a holy dip is believed to cure all diseases.

There is also another Theertham known as Jatayu Kunda near-by where it is believed that Rama and Lakshmana cremated Jatayu. There are images of Rama, Lakshmana, and Vishwamitra. Vasishtha and Jatayu near the Kunda. Singaravelar, Ayyanar, Mariamman, Draupadi and Bikshadana are the other Deities enshrined near-by.

Kodanda Theertham / Rama Theertham is in the southwestern corner of the temple and a deity of Sri Rama is enshrined here. The Sthala Vriksha (temple tree) is Vembu / Margosa (Azadirachta indica, Neem tree), believed to possesses medicinal properties, is present near the eastern gateway. The temple belongs to Dharumapuram Aadheenam of Tiru Kayilaya Parambara – descendants of Kailash dynasty.

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