Thursday, December 31, 2015

Samayapuram Mariamman Temple

Amman makes a once a year trip to Coloroon on Thai Poosam to collect gifts from Lord Ranganatha of Srirangam
Jambukeswarar of Thiruvanaikaval also sends her gifts during the Chariot Festival
Located 15kms North of Srirangam Ranganatha Temple on the Trichy – Madras NH is the Mariamman temple in Samayapuram, a temple whose legend dates back to the period of Vikramaditya. He undertook penance in this Neem Forest and had darshan of kali. It was then that Ambal appeared here as a swayambu idol

Samayapuram is said to be the headquarters of Amman temples.

Amman’s Grand Posture
Mariamman is seen in a Grand, Majestic sitting posture with the Serpent Lord providing her cover over her head. Mariamman is seen with 8 hands, a special feature at this temple and holds all the weapons that Lord Shiva normally possesses.  After destroying the evil forces, she adorned herself with the garland. Her left leg is seen folded with her right leg placed down on the ground in a posture of killing three Asuras. 

In ancient times, amman was seen with wild teeth. However, in one of the Kumbabishekam during the last century this was changed to normal teeth featuring her as a ‘Shantha Swaroopi’ and with a beautiful smiling face.

Gifts from Shiva and Vishnu
Shiva, Vishnu and Brahmma are believed to have invoked the blessings of Mariamman of Samayapuram. To this day, in memory of this legend, she receives gifts on the day of the Chariot Festival from the Jambukeswarar temple in Thiruvanaikaval. Only after receiving the gifts, does she alight from the Chariot and head back to her sanctum.

Similarly on Thai Poosam day, Amman makes an early morning trip to the Coloroon and stays in the Coloroon in the night and returns the next day only after collecting gifts from her family - Srirangam Lord.

When Devaki and Yashoda’s children interchanged and the girl child went with Devaki to Jail, Kamsa tried to kill her thinking it was Devaki’s child. It was there that she displayed her full weaponry with bow/arrow, conch/chakra, soolam, knife, bell, skull and a drum.

Amman changes Form!!!
In the middle of the last century, Tamil cinema actors funded the Poochoodal festival. Dhadhyonam was presented to several thousands of devotees who came in from villages across the state. During the Poochoodal festival, one can see the Mariamman in bo and see the slim and plump forms. During those 28 days true devotees are able to visualise her change from slim to plump form. This was seen as an aakrosham period for her and she is anointed with only Uthiri flowers and not garlands.

Historical Temple
With Kannanur as their capital, the Hoysalas under Veesomavaran built this village and named it as Vikramapuram.  He also built Bhojeswaram, a Shiva temple near Samayapuram. His son Veera Ramanathan’s rule was a golden period for Samayapuram with grand festivals being conducted and several improvements being seen at the temple. Later Vijayanagar rulers too contributed to the development of the temple. 

The utsava deity of mariramman was one for whom pooja was performed by Vijayanagara kings. Once when the Utsava idol was placed here after a tiring trip, to their utter dismay, they found that they could not lift the idol. Later Vijaya Ranga Chokka Nathar (known for the famous event on Kaisika Dwadasi morning) picked up the idol and installed it at Kannanur and then constructed the temple in its current form and structure with three prakaras.

In centuries gone by, it was the noise of the bullock carts that brought Archakas to the temple!!!

Samayapuram Mariamman is believed to be a powerful goddess providing solutions to all the problems of devotees who offer their sincere prayers to her at the temple.

Five Sacred Theerthams
There are several sacred temple tanks associated with this temple. Sakthi Theertham in the South where devotees take bath prior to Anga Pradakshanam, Mayamayi Theertham in the North West was constructed by Vijayanagar kings. Theppotsavam takes place here in Chitrai. This tank is connected to the Peruvalai canal, a tributary of Cauvery. There is inflow and outflow through this canal.

Sakthi Theertham (Aadi Pooram Theerthavari and Aadi 18 festival)
Mahamaayi Theertham (Grand Float Festival on Thai Poosam day and in Chitrai)
Sarveswaran Theertham ( Maha Magam Theertham)
Jatayu Theertham ( created to help Jatayu stay alive till he passed on the information about Ravana to the son of his friend Dasaratha) and
Ganga Theertham (created by Vikramaditya after he invoked the blessings of Goddess Kali).

Thai Poosam 10 day festival
Maasi Poochoodal Festival on last Sunday
Brahmotsavam Chariot Festival in Panguni

The temple is open between 530am and 9pm without a break. Contact: 99762 77029

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