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Tamil Nadu Temples Darshan Ride, Day 2:


PBSrinivas
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Temple Visits:

 

The 1st Temple I visited on this day was the The Ekambareswarar Temple in the morning..

It took me around 1 hour in the temple to have Darshan and see around the temple premises..

The Ekambareswarar Temple

It is a fascinating temple with a rich history, and the holy gravitas that it endures is something worth discussing.

It is one of the temples associated with Panch Bhoota Stalam.
Panch Bhoota Stalam constitutes the five temples dedicated to Lord Shiva.

And these five temples hold prominent fundamental meanings.

Being the manifestation of the five elements of nature: Earth, Water, Fire, Air, and Space,

Representing the fundamental meaning of life itself, the five elements with which every life is made.

Ekambareshwarar is one of the temples representing the element earth or Prithvi. Also known as Ekambaranathar Temple.

Lord Shiva is worshiped and represented by the Shiva Lingam named Ekambareshwarar or Ekambaranathar.

Goddess Parvati, his consort, is revered as Elavarkuzhali.

Ekambareshwar is among the seven most important pilgrimage centers in India and attracts numerous tourists.

It is one of the largest temples in Kanchipuram. The temple complex spread across 40 acres.

 

This ancient temple is in existence since at least 600 AD. It is thousands of years old brought down and rebuilt by various kings.
Pallavas initially built the temple. Kachiyapper was a poet and a Vedantist. He served as a priest at the temple, which was pulled down and was rebuilt by the Chola Kings.
Later in the 15th century, the succeeding Vijayanagar era, Several significant structural contributions to the temple were made by the Vijayanagar king Krishna Deva Raya.
Many architectural wonders were associated with this ancient temple, like the thousand-pillared hall, which was built during the Vijayanagar period.
The four gateway towers called Gopurams. The largest one being the southern one with 11 stories and a height of 192 ft, simply concluding it among the tallest temple towers in India.

 

Stories behind the temple:

There’s a very interesting story about the temple. Goddess Parvati was doing intense penance to win over Lord Shiva under the temple’s ancient Mango tree near the Vegavathi river.
Lord Shiva wanted to test her devotion, so he set her on fire. In order to ask for help, Goddess Parvati started praying to her brother, Lord Vishnu. To save Parvati, Vishnu took the moon from Lord Shiva’s head and showered its rays onto the mango tree and Parvati to cool it down.
To check how persistent Parvati is, Lord Shiva again sent river Ganga to threaten and disrupt Parvati’s penance. But Parvati requested Ganga and convinced her that they are sisters and worship the same supreme power, Lord Shiva. Ganga accepted her request and did not harm her and agreed not to disrupt her penance.
To worship and with the wish to get united with Lord Shiva, Parvati made a Shiva Lingam out of the sand. Impressed by Parvati’s devotion, Lord Shiva descended into a human and married Parvati.
Lord Shiva settled there in the form of the Lingam Parvati worshiped. Lord Shiva here came to be known as Ekambareswarar or Lord of Mango Tree.


As per another story, Parvati was worshiping Lord Shiva under a mango tree in the form of Prithvi Lingam, a lingam which she made out of the sand. Vegavati, The nearby river, threatened to engulf the Shiva Lingam by overflowing. Parvati or Kamakshi, devoted to Shiva, embraced the Lingam to protect it even at the cost of her life. This gesture of Parvati touched Lord Shiva. He materialized in person and married her.

 

When it comes to literary mentions, this temple has been mentioned in several texts over the centuries. The three most prominent Saivite poets of the 7th and 8th century Sambandar, Appar, and Sundarar mentioned Ekambareswarar in ten verses in Tevaram, The first seven volumes of the Tirumurai, the Twelve-volume collection of Shiva devotional poetry.
Manickavasagar, a 9th-century Tamil saint and poet who used to write Shiva hymns, also honored Ekambareswarar in his writing.
The Tamil saint poets of the 6th century known as Nayanars, the group of 63 saints revered Shiva in the Tamil Saiva canonical work, The Tevaram

 

Ineresting facts about the Temple:

The mango tree in the temple is more than 3500 years old, and to date, it gives four varieties of mango. It is said that it symbolizes the four Vedas.
On the 19th, 20th, and 21st of Panguni month, the sun rays fall directly on the main Shivalinga.
There are ten pillars in the temple’s inner corridor, and if you tap them with a stick, they produce different musical sounds.
There’s an idol of Kubera, which is believed to grant riches to his worshippers.
There are all the 12 zodiac signs on the roof of the temple. It is believed that you can rid of your Horoscopic defects and problems if you pray in the temple.

 

Details extracted from Behindeverytemople.org

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Edited by PBSrinivas
Adding pics
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