Saturday, August 12, 2017

Kasi Viswanathar temple Kumbakonam

Kumbakonam and nearby areas are surrounded by magnificent temples, each has interesting legends associated with it. Even after four or five visits , I am yet to cover a minuscule percentage of those.
But whatever I have seen are very very popular in that area . I am trying to share  the same through my brief descriptions and through pictures.

I do have lot of limitations ,I wish , I could have spent  more time in each of these holy places. But time constraints,situations and personal commitments allow me only a fleeting glimpses of these huge monuments.

This time I am taking you to Kasi Viswanathar temple in Kumbakonam.
The presiding deity here is  Lord Shiva, known as Kasi Viswanathar, His  consort is Visalakshi. This temple is small compared to other Kumbakonam temples. There is a separate shrine for Navakannigas ;7 rivers here. There are also shrines for Bhairava, Sun, Moon, Lindohbhava, Mahishasura Mardhini and Lord Dakshinamurthy.

This comes under Padal petra sthalam hence an important Shivalayam. Legend is that Lord Rama and Lakshmana prayed here to Lord Shiva and sought blessings to enable them to slay Ravana. The nine rivers Known as Nava kannigas prayed to Lord Shiva at Varanasi to absolve them of sins washed away by bathers. Lord directed them to bath in Mahamaham tank and pray to Lord Adi Kumbeshwara  here, yet another beautiful temple.
More details here.

Kai Viswanathar  temple is in the heart of city and is very close to the famous Mahamaham tank.

 I have included a few pictures of Mahamaham tank too.
Once in 12 years people gather here in large number to have a holy dip in the tank during the Mahamaham festival . It is believed that a holy bath during the festival will wash away one's sins and will purify the soul .
Legend is that a few drops of nectar from the Amritha Kumbham spilled in this place.
Last Mahamaham festival took place in February 2016.














Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Vainkunta Perumal Mangadu


Just half a kilometer form Kamakshi Amman temple is the abode of Vainkuta Perumal , He is the brother of Kanchi Kamakshi, and He came down to Mangadu to perform the wedding of Kamakshi Amman with Lord Shiva.

The wedding could not be solemnized in Mangaadu.

Perumal in this temple  is in a sitting position  with His consorts Boo devi and Sree devi.

He sits holding a ring in  His right hand which he carried as gift for his sister.
There are sub shrines here for  Kankavalli Thayar, Andal, Anjaneyar.

 There is also one more temple, temple of Shiva known here as Velleswarar  which is related to  Kamkshi amman temple. Will post the same soon.











Saturday, August 5, 2017

Kamakshi Amman temple- Mangadu, near Chennai

Kamakshi Amman temple on the outskirts of Chennai at Mangadu  is very popular and Goddess Sakthi is worshipped here. This temple is  draws huge crowd on Tuesdays and Fridays as these days are considered to be auspicious to pray and perform rituals to Goddess and seek her blessings.

It is believed that Goddess Parvati arrived here from Kailasha once she was cursed by Shiva . To reunite with Shiva she did severe penance standing on one leg and other leg folded over fire in a Mangaadu ( mango forest). One can see this idol of Amman doing penance in a shrine here.

Lord Shiva pleased with her penance came down to Mangadu and blessed Her and married her at Kanchipuram and both bless their devotees in Ekambereshwar temple in Kanchipuram.
Read my blog Kanchi Kamakshi temple in Kanchipuram

The temple main sanctum houses a Ardhmeru Sri Chakra by Sri Sankaracharya when he found out that the place where Godess did the severe penance still was hot by  the power of Agni( fire) which did not subside even after the penance was complete.

The main worship with kumkum ( vermillion ) is performed for the Sri Chakra and no abhishegam here as Sri Chakra contains rare herbs.

There is also an idol of Kamakshi behind the Sri Chakra which was installed by Sri Kanchi Paramacharya.

Maangaadu is just 24 kms from Chennai city and is located off the Chennai Bangalore highway on the way from Poonamallee to Kunrathur.


Buses as well as cabs are available to reach this temple.
Also make it a point to visit Vaikunta Perumal temple near Kamakshi Amman temple. God came here to help Goddess Kamakshi, His sister during her wedding.















Saturday, April 15, 2017

Holy Ganges, Haridwar, Uttarakhand

An evening by the Ganges.

Haridwar, considered as one of the seven  holiest cities of Hindus. This city is made sacred by the presence of Ganges.

Ganges after originating form Gaumukh enters Plains  in North India at Haridwar.

Ganges ,appears much  pretty same  here at  Haridwar without loosing her charm. Banks of this river is lined with hundreds of shrines. Thousands of pilgrims flock here everyday to bathe in river Ganges.  A bath in Ganges purifies one body and soul. They also carry  Holy water to their homes to distribute to their near and dear. 

The Ganga worship known as Ganga Aarti is very famous and pilgrims make it a point to attend and seek blessing of  Mother. Ganga aarti takes place in the evening. 

One can float oil lamps and offer flowers in Ganges during the worship.

One shouldn't miss Ganga Aarti at any cost. The evening by the sides of river with thousands of glowing lights, chanting of devotional songs, cool river flowing by your side  is really a spectacular view. Float a few lamps and you would wish that you would ever remained rooted  to the spot. It is just bliss.
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Tuesday, April 4, 2017

Holy Ganges, Rishikesh, Dehradun district, Uttarakhand


This time, I am taking you to Rishikesh, a lovely place  located at foot hills of Himalayas. It is also the Gateway to Himalayas. This is a sacred city for all Hindus and they make it a point to visit this town and worship, bathe in  Holy Ganges at least once in their life time.


Ganges is  considered as the most  sacred river in India worshipped by all Hindus. .She forms the life line of millions and they depend on her for their daily needs.A bath in Holy waters washes the sins away.

She is worshipped as Goddess  and Mother and as per legend she emanates from the matted locks of Lord Shiva.

One can also enjoy the breath taking view of the great river Ganges from the suspended bridge across the river. It is really difficult to take the eyes off this great enchantress, Ganges  from the suspended bridge. 2 Kms away from Lakshman jhoola is Ram Jhoola.


Legend : It is believed that Lord Rama did penance at this place here before he killed Ravana and Lakshmana crossed river Ganges at the place where the Lakshman Jhoola stands.

Rishikesh abounds in temples and ashrams one can spend time here  eternally in pursuit of the divine.

 Enjoy the pristine beauty of river Ganges below .

write to manchitra2001@yahoo.com for your queries.
Rishikesh- Rishikesh is well connected by air, road and rail as it is a Pilgrim center.
Dehradun is the nearest airport and one can also reach via road from New Delhi, Haridwar.
Nearest rail station is Haridwar, Yet another sacred city for all the Hindus.