Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Kailasanatha at Thiruvalangadu

Some sacred places are equated to Mount Kailash due to various reasons. Shiva Temples at Kalahasthi and Thiruvaiyaru are described as "Dhakshina kailasam". Some places are compared with Kasi(Varanasi) likes those at Vedaranyam,Mayuram,Sri Vanchiyam etc. There are places which are regarded above Kasi , like those at Vridhachalam and Thirup poovanam(Near Madurai). The shrines at Thiruvaiyaru and Thiruvalangadu are hailed as "Kailasam" ,the former gave Kailash Dharshan to Sri Thirunavukkarasar(Appar)and the later to Karaikkaal Ammaiyar (one among the 63 nayanmars).

The sacred tamil Poet Sekkizhar narrates the life and works of Karaikkaal Ammaiyar in his incomparable masterpiece called "Peria Puranam". When Karaikkal Ammai attempted to go and worship Mount Kailash, the Lord asked her to go to Thiruvalangadu to be blessed. Karaikkal ammaiyar went to this place in the form of "Pei"(Desired form of a ghost) and had dharshan of Kailash. Hence she walked upside down ,considering the Holiness of this place.(It is said that Kanchi Paramacharya during His visit to Thiruvalangadu, had His feet covered due to high regard He had with Karaikkaal Ammai.)

This place is called "Vataaranyam " in Sanskrit hence the Lord is known as Vataranyeswara. It is one among the five sacred sabhas of Sri Nataraja,the other four at Chidambaram,Madurai,
Thirunelveli & Kutraalam. Goddess Kali could not dance to match the Urdhuva Thandava of
the Lord. Later,rishis like Munchikesa performed penace to have the Urdhuva thandava dharshan. In order to fulfil the request of the rishis to give thandava dharshan to all devotees who come to this place,Sri Nataraja continues to give dharshan of His matchless Thandava in Rathnasabhai,witnessed by His consort,Sri Sameecheenambika.

Devotees of this place have formed a group in the name of Sekkizhaar and conduct a conference every year inside the temple on 25th and 26th January inside this temple. Thevaram recitation and religious lectures form the agenda of this programme. My close friend, Mr Chandramohan who had gone to Mount Kailash few years back,was invited by this group to deliver a speech on Kailash during the occasion. I joined him and visited the place on 26th Jan and had dharshan at the temple. Mr Chandramohan gave a detailed account of his journey to Mt Kailash and also narrated how his wife was also blessed to visit the place separately.Finally I spoke briefly on Karaikkal Ammaiyar and significance of this place.
வீழிமிழலை வெண்காடு வேங்கூர்
வேதிகுடி விசயமங்கை விசலூர்
ஆழி அகத்தியான்பள்ளி அண்ணா
மலை ஆலங்காடும் அரதைப்பெரும்
பாழி பழனம் பனந்தாள் பாதாளம்
பராய்த்துறை பைஞ்ஞீலி பனங்காட்டூர் தன்
காழி கடல் நாகைக் காரோனத்தும்
கயிலாய நாதனையே காணலாமே.
__ அப்பர் தேவாரம்.