Nagaresu Kanchi-Sri Devaraja Perumal koil: Part-2
The temple tank is called Anantha Saras or the Lake of Anantha. Anantha or Sesha as we all know is a nityasuri who is ever waiting to serve His Lord Narayana. He exists as a Hill in Tirumala and as Water in Kanchipuram. We see a mandapam with two rows of pillars painted white and yellow in the centre. Behind this mandapam we can see a smaller four pillared mandapam and to its right another mandapam in the water. What makes this Anantha Saras special is the presence of Atthi Varadar in a silver box inside. Attimaram means fig tree and this was the original Moolavar who comes out of the Anantha Saras once in forty years and is worshipped for a mandalam (fourty+ days) This will happen in the year 2019. The original divyamangala vigraham was replaced with the present one in the 15th century. The pushkarni is a delight to watch and is filled with fish of varying sizes. Devotees offer pori (rice flakes) and it is fun watching the ripples created by the fish coming up to devour them. Again if one comes during sandhya vandhanam time one can see devotees performing their nitya karma there. This is where Teppam (Float festival) takes place for Perumal and Thayar during the month of Thai (January/February) for three days. There are many residents who take their daily bath in the pushkarni, there are others who take a dip on auspicious occasions and thousands on ‘Theerthavari’ day.
Sudarsanazhwar (Chakrathazhwar ) Sannidhi
As we turn around we have Chakrathazhwar sannidhi. Sudarshanazhwar is endowed with all auspiciousness and this sannidhi is particularly potent with positive energy. We have to climb a flight of steps and offer our prostrations at the mandapam. This is the spot where Veda Parayanam is done daily at about 6.00 p.m. People make offerings to the goshti on special occasions like birthdays and weddings. As we proceed inside we see Yoga Narasimha seated on a five headed coiled up snake. The five tirumans on their heads at short distances attract attention. As is the norm we have ‘Yoga Narasimha’ (Narasimha in Padmasanam) with chathur bhujams (four Hands) holding four chakrams on one side and Sudarshana on the other.
As we proceed in pradakshinam we reach the entrance to Chakrathazhwar sannidhi. There is a twelve pillared mandapam with carvings of deities like Rama and Hanuman. Hanuman on one pillar is offered lamps and pradakshinam. There is a ‘Yagya -kundam’ decorated with kolams and many a time ‘Sudarsana homam’ is done here. Devotees light clay lamps on a big tray. On Saturdays this tray is shifted outside to the Nandavanam side. There is a huge lamp filled with oil which is kept lit near the hundi. As we enter the sanctum we behold Sudarsana (Moolavar) with 16 Hands and Utsavar is ‘Dwadasha Sudarsana’ that is Kesava, Narayana, Madhava,Govinda, Vishnu, Madhusudana,Trivikrama, Vamana,Sridhara,Hrishikesa,Padmanabha and Damodara figurines are found on the divya mangala vigraham. Tirumanjanams can be sponsored and devotees get relief from physical and mental ailments by worshipping Charathazwar. This sannidhi is particularly crowded on Saturdays. Devotees perform pradakshinams starting from 2 to 108.
Behind Chakrathazhwar sannidhi is the temple’s Nandavanam or garden. This goes by the name Dorai Thottam. It can be reached through Chakrathazhwar sannidhi and is open early in the morning. There are plenty of coconut trees, mango trees as also Tulasi-vanam, champaka trees and different kinds of flowers like nandiavatai, tuber rose, sampangi etc. There is a mandapam here where Perundevi Thayar comes on Fridays along with Her children (devotees). There is a pond which goes by the name ‘Potramarai-kulam’. This place is huge and provides greenery but can be improved by increasing man-power and roping in those with expertise in laying and maintaining gardens.
Photos : Sundararajan
Write-up Vyjayanthi Rajan
To be continued