Thursday, August 6, 2009

Poovarasan Kuppam Narasimha temple

This temple is referred to as the ‘Dakshina Ahobilam’
Debts and Enemies go away if one visits this temple and offers a 48 day prayer

Located about 18kms North of Panruti and 18kms East of Villupuram is the East Facing Lakshmi Narasimha temple in Poovarasan Kuppam. This is one of the four Narasimha temples around Villupuram (others being Anthili, Parikkal and Singiri – There is also the Sayana Narasimha at Thiru Vithigai).

Both Singiri Narasimha and Parikkal Narasimha which are in a straight line are facing the Poovarasan Kuppam Narasimha.

First appearance after Hiranya Samhaaram- Dakshina Ahobilam

For the first time, after the Hiranya Samharam at Ahobilam, Lord appeared here in the same form and provided darshan to the Saptha Rishis as Lakshmi Narasimha. Hence, this temple is referred to as Dakshina Ahobilam.

Thaayar’s Posture
A unique feature at this temple is the posture of Lakshmi. One eye of the Goddess is turned towards the Lord and the other eye is welcoming the devotees. Also, interestingly Lakshmi and Narasimha are seen at the same height at this temple!!!

One of Eight Narasimha Temples

This is one of the 8 temples in Tamil Nadu, where Lord Narasimha provided darshan after the killing of Hiranya. The other 7 are Singarakudi near Pondicherry/Cuddalore, Anthili near Thiru Kovilur, Parikkal near Kedilam, Sholingur, Nammakkal, Singaraperumal Koil near Chengalpet and Sinthalavadi.

3rd Century Ad Temple
There are culverts inside this temple dating back to the 3rd Century AD. Also, there are references to construction during Narasimha Pallava’s reign (7th Century AD). There are also inscriptions indicating Krishna Deva Raya’s visit to this temple (about 500 years ago).

Prarthana Sthalam-Wishes Fulfilled
All wishes of the devotees are said to be fulfilled if one visits this temple, lights a ghee lamp and recites the Mantra Raja Patha Stotram twice a day for 48 days. One should tie a 5 rupee coin to a Manjal cloth and drop it at the temple, once the 48 day period is over.

One should also prepare Panagam (prepared out of jaggery) every day for the Lord. No non Vegetarian food should be consumed during this 48 day period.

Bad Debts and enemies are said to go away and the belief is that one will live in prosperity after a visit to the three Narasimha temples seen in one line near Villupuram – Parikkal- Poovarasan Kuppam and Singiri.


Swathi Nakshatram
It is auspicious to visit the temple every month on Swathi Nakshatram, when Sudarshana and Dhanvantri homams are performed.

Sri Suthra Homam is performed on all the 9 days of Navarathri Utsavam

Procession in Thai
Lord Narasimha takes a 1 km to South Pennai river for Theerthavari on the 5th day of the Tamil Calendar month of Thai

Narasimha Jayanthi Utsavam and 3rd Saturday of Puratasai are also special occasions at this temple.

Quick Facts

Moolavar : Lakshmi Narasimha East Facing Sitting Posture
Thaayar : Amritha Valli Thaayar

Temple Time : 8am-12.30pm and 4pm-8pm
Contact nos. : Parthasarathy Bhattar @ 94439 59995 or 0413 2698191

How to reach the temple:

From Villupuram

1. Take Pondy Highway, drive straight towards East from Koliyanur Cross Road, take a right at Valavanur, drive 6kms to Siruvanthadu and go further South 3kms to reach the temple- Share Auto/Auto available from Siruvanthadu


2. Take a right at Koliyanur Cross Road on to the Panruti-Kumbakonam highway, cross the Villupuram-Pondy railway line and take a left at Panchamadevi to reach the temple (about 7kms from the main road)

From Panruti

Take Kumbakonam-Vikravandi highway, drive 10kms and take a left at Panchamadevi to reach the temple (about 7kms from the highway towards East)

From Madras

Take a left at Vikravandi(145kms from Madras) into the Kumbakonam Highway, go further South after the Villupuram-Pondy cross road, cross the railway line and take a left at Panchamadevi to reach the temple (about 7kms from the main road)

There are direct buses to Poovarasan Kuppam from Villupuram, but it is better to take a bus from Villupuram to Vilavanur.

Auto at Siruvanthadu: Murugan (driver) @ 99656 35641

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Aadi Utsavam in Srirangam

A Thanks Giving Event- Festival to honour Goddess Cauvery for her significant contribution

As can be seen from several of the festivals and events at the Srirangam temple, Lord Namperumal recognizes and respects each and every one who has played a role in the well being of the people. And this gesture of rewarding is almost always done immediately without any delay.

The Aadi (18th day festival) festival is an event to honour the significant role played by Goddess Cauvery in the development of the Srirangam temple and the peaceful and prosperous lives of the people there. It also marks the first procession of Lord Namperumal in the month of Aadi.

The significance of Cauvery can be compared to the Vraja River which flows in Vaikuntam. Just as one who attains moksham has to enter Vaikuntam after a bath at Vraja river, one who wishes to have darshan of Lord Ranganatha has to bathe first in the Cauvery before entering the temple.

Singing Cauvery's Praise

River Cauvery, as praised by Emberumaanar, is even more pious than the sacred Ganges. Parasara Bhattar, the eldest of the two sons of Koorathazhvan, who is said to have lived in the 12th Century AD explains this beautifully in his verse.

‘The water flow at the Cauvery is fast, touching the edges of the banks on both the sides. When one closely looks at the froth, it seems as if Cauvery is laughing.

Parasara Bhattar reasons out this laughter of the Goddess. "Cauvery seems to be laughing at Goddess Ganga and saying ‘All of them seem to be singing praise only of you and your greatness. Yes, the water there flows through from Brahmma’s Kamandalam to the legs of Lord Vishnu and then Shiva keeps the water on his coil (on his head). You are Lord’s Shree Paatha Theertham.’"

Parasara Bhattar says ‘Theertham Sunthathi’ in reference to Cauvery-a river that makes all other rivers pious. Those who bathe here with purity of thought are said to be relieved from all sins.’

Parasara Bhattar goes on to say, ‘The beautiful garlands that one sees every day around Lord Ranganatha are a result of the pure water from the Cauvery. Trees are seen all around the place, flowers bloom every day. All streets and corners are clean and cool, with water from the Cauvery.’

Even more significant is the fact that though there are 10 wells inside the Srirangam temple, the theertham for the Lord and his Thirumanjanam is from the Cauvery, every single day. Is this not a great contribution of the Goddess?

What more, Goddess Cauvery has encircled the Lord from all sides coming round and round him day after day and her presence makes his stay right in the middle of Srirangam a cool and comfortable one keeping him in the right spirits at all times. Thus, Goddess Cauvery is always near Ranganatha.

It is the Goddess who has kept the farmers in the delta region of Tamil Nadu happy and prosperous all these years.

For such a significant contribution made by Goddess Cauvery, Lord Ranganatha wonders as to what he can do to recognize and praise her in public.

Namperumal leaves to meet Goddess Cauvery
With this as the background, Lord Namperumal, the Utsavar deity of Lord Ranganatha, goes in his palanquin on a 6 hour procession to Amma Mandapam on the Southern Banks of the Cauvery to praise Goddess Cauvery and shower gifts on her for keeping every one happy.

It is believed that this is the time when the Cauvery is at its peak with water gushing across from the West and flowing through the green belt of Tamil Nadu down east- Thiruvayaru, Thanjavur, Kumbakonam and Mayavaram (things may not be as rosy these days as it once used to be!!).

6 hour Procession

The Aadi 18 event of Lord Rangantha (through his processional deity) making it to the Cauvery river banks is an appreciation and recognition of this contribution of Goddess Cauvery and his way of showing gratitude to her for helping the farmers with the right quantity of water for the coming harvest season.

Namperumal reaches Amma mandapam, South of Srirangam, right in the mid afternoon heat,and goes straight on to the Southern banks of Cauvery for Theerthavari. For the next 3 hours, he provides darshan to the devotees at the Mandapam.

2 special events in the evening
The evening of the Aadi 18 Utsavam is marked by two special events.

Showering Gifts on the Goddess
The first event saw Namperumal’s representatives getting on to the temple elephant and showering gifts - Garlands, Thiru Mangalyam, Thaligai, Fruits and Saree- on the Goddess Cauvery in a thanks giving gesture as per the wishes of the Lord.

Later in the evening, on his way back to the temple, Namperumal seeks a 9pm appointment with Andal at the Veli Andal temple, the original Andal temple in Srirangam(before a sannidhi came up later inside the temple) on the Southern end of West Adaivalanjan and standing right opposite Andal exchanges garland with her bringing to end the ‘Aadi 18’ Utsavam.

The Aadi 18 Utsavam this year(2009) took place in Srirangam on Monday August 3.