Thursday, October 14, 2010

Temple Trails Tamil Nadu : Golu at Triplicane Parthasarathy Temple

Golu at Parthasarathy Temple

Thanks to my grand father, Prof. T.K.Srinivasan (Dorai thatha), I came to know about this Golu. I am really glad not to have missed it. Thank you thatha!

Awesome! There is no other word to describe the Golu. I heard from Thatha that the trio who had arranged for the Ashtadik golu in Mylapore temple last year, had arranged for the same at Parthasarathy temple. I happened to meet one of them, Mr.Surendranath, who was very helpful. Thank you Mr. Surendranath!

The major difference between the Ashtadik Golu in the Mylapore temple last year and Parathasarathy Temple this year is that this golu was full of Mahavishnu and Mahalakshmi!

The main four dikkus (directions) had seven steps each and the side four dikkus had three steps each, the last step being floor level in both. On all the ashta dikkus the last step was one of the Ashta Lakshmis

We started our darshan with Viswaroopam of Mahavishnu with Arjuna praying to him. The next step had Mahavishnu and Mahalakshmi with idols of Rama hugging Guhan on one side and Krishna hugging Kuselar on the other.

The third step had Narasimhar, Thayar and Anjaneyar. Next step was Sreedevi, Boodevi sametha Mahavishnu with the periya thiruvadi, Garudan and siriya thiruvadi, Anjaneyar on either side. Next followed Trivikraman giving darshan to Mahabali, Sukracharya and others with Venkatachalapathy and Thayar on one side and Varahamoorthy on the other. Sixth step had Gajendra moksham beautifully depicted on one side and Rama, Lakshmana and Sita on boat with Guhan on the other side.

The first side dikku had Krishna with a pot full of butter on the first step along with dolls depicting the episode of Govardhana Giri and Krishna standing on one of his friends trying to take butter from the pot hanging on the roof.

Next was Radha and Krishna with the Lord playing the flute and a group of saadhus chanting and dancing.

Second main dikku had Narasimhar with Thayar on his lap on the first step. The next few steps illustrated the various incidents of Rama Avatharam beautifully.

See the birth of Rama and the Lord breaking the Shiva dhanusu on either side of the Rama, Lakshmana, Sita, Hanuman on the second step. Third step was Rama on boat with Guhan followed by the Soorpanaka episode; Maya Marichan; Ravana in a saadhu disguise and Ravana killing Jatayu. Fourth step was Hanuman meeting Seetha in Asoka Vanam; Vanara sena throwing boulders into the sea to build a bridge under the supervision of Rama Lakshmana and Hanuman bringing Sanjeevi Malai to revive Lakshmanan. Fifth step had Ramar Pattaabishekam and Lava Kusa bringing the horse on either side with a metal doll set of Rama, Lakshmana, Seetha and Hanuman in the centre. Sixth step was again Ramar with Seetha, Lakshmana and Hanuman and another lovely statue of Hanuman in meditation.

The fourth dikku had Chakrathaazhwar, with Yoganarasimhar on the other side. A mirror was kept there for us to see the Yoganarasimhar on the reverse. On either side were a gurukulam set and Perumal with Sreedevi and Bhoodevi with a Palli Konda Perumal in the centre.
Next step was a lovely looking Pandurangan and Ragumayi with Radhe Krishna and Krishna with flute on either side 

Next dikku had Durga, Lakshmi, Saraswathi on first step and Narasimhar flanked by two Varahamoorthys all with their consorts on their lap on second step. Third step was Mahavishnu and Mahalakshmi on Adhiseshan surrounded by Naradhar, Sukha Maharishi and other rishis with a Venkatachalapathy and Alamelumangai Thayar on either side.

Fourth step was a beautiful Andal with Vishnu on Garuda Vahanam on either side. There were very cute looking Krishnas also on this step. Next step was Guruvayoorappan with a Perumal Thirukalyana set on one side and a regular wedding set on the other side. Sixth step had the traditional Chettiyar/Chettichi with their fruit shop

Sixth dikku had a majestic looking Garudan on top step with Balaji and the Goddess on either side. There was a gorgeous golden Radha Krishna and a baby Krishna also on this step.

Second step had Trivikraman, Mahavishnu and Matysavathaaramoorthy.

Next dikku was really lovely with details of Krishna Avataram. First step was Parthasarathy and Vedhavalli Thayaar. Seeing this Parthasarathy was very similar to looking at the main deity of this temple, so clearly made was the idol. Second step had a golden Viswaroopa Moorthy and Krishna playing the flute with Krishna and Gopikas in the centre.

From the next step were displayed the dolls depicting scenes from the story of Krishna. See the jail in which Krishna was born. Krishna is being taken in a basket to Gokulam by Vasudevar and Adhiseshan acting as an umbrella. Krishna is playing on the swing and the cow is being milked in Gokulam. Krishna steals butter along with his friends and in the next step Krishna sheperds the cows, the story of Sakadasuran, Krishna waiting while Yashoda is churning butter, Kalinga nardhanam, Govardhana Giri and Krishna playing hide and seek with the Gopikas.

Fifth step starts with Radhe Krishna, Krishna with Gopikas, Geethopadesam, Radhe Krishna and Rukmini samedha Krishna

Sixth step had a very charming Krishna with his cows and two sets of Marapachi couples on either side.

Next dikku was again Krishna. This Krishna was so beautiful with his hand extended towards the pot of butter. Do not miss his headdress in the mirror behind him! This step had few more cute looking Krishna dolls and Perumal with Thayar and many saadhus around.

Next step had Krishna with his hand on the butter pot flanked on either side by Vasudevar carrying Baby Krishna

The dolls on the side are a must see. It starts with Thumbikkai Azhwar  as Vaishnavas call - Ganapathy  with a namam.

 Next was a huge Venkatachalapathy and Thayar followed by a golden mandapam.

On the window were dolls of Ramar, Seetha, Lakshmanan, Hanuman set and a Mahalakshmi.

Next was a very colourful Ramar set on the top step with Krishna playing his flute and standing in front of the cow with a Meerabhai and another Krishna troubling Yashoda while she is milking the cow on either side.

In the front was the Urchavmoorthy of Parthasarathy with his consort. See the marks on his cheeks. All due to the arrows that hurt him when he acted as sarathy to Parthan! On either side were the garuda vahanam and kudhirai vahanam procession.

Next was the most breathtaking scene in the whole set! It was the Parkadal and Paramapadham set. One gets a feeling that he is already in front of parkadal with Mahavishnu and Mahalakshmi on Adhiseshan surrounded by the ten avatars of Mahavishnu. There is a Gajalakshmi in the front. Next step is Palli Konda Perumal with Paramapadha doors on either side; an Urchavamoorthy with consorts in the front and stairs leading to the paramapadham.

This step and the next had Azhwars and saints like Ramanujar and others.

Next scene was Mahavishnu with Andal and a sitting Krishna playing the flute with a few cows looking on. The cows looked so real.

The last step here had Balaji and Alamelumanga with a very cute theppa kulam (pond) in the front and a sitting Mahavishnu and Lakshmi on Adhiseshan on one side and Chakarathaazhwar on the other side.

All the doors on these structures had metallic sheets hanging on them with different scenes like Dasavatharam, Ashtalakshmi, Azhwars etc.

There was also a palanquin near the Golu and I could not resist clicking it.

All in all it was a grand Golu that was a feast for our eyes and we very reluctantly left the place!

As we were moving out, Swami procession was moving inside the temple and I managed a distant shot of same.


  1. It was just awesome reading it
    You have put an all out effort writing this one
    and have managed to cover soooooooooo much

    this is true journalism
    being able to report something 'as is'


    I dont need to say 'keep up the good work'
    you are already doing it
    congrats :)

  2. Now for the pictures - Picture 4's angle is amazing. I don't quite know how you managed to take it. Every picture, as I am seeing them,I am able to recall your words - rather your writing. The parkadal - both the display and photo are superb! Excellent blog, Lak. The best of yours, I would say. I cannot honestly say I miss Madras now. I have seen more Golu in your blog than I saw in reality during my childhood. Thank you so much. God bless you. Keep up the great work :)

  3. Lovely write up with so many details...I too visited the temple today morning and took some pics..I finished uploading the pics in my food blog and published them..have to write the details tomm..It is really a blessing to be in Chennai and visit such golus during Navratri..Great work on ur part and ya visiting the Mylai temple is on cards for me tomm after seeing ur pics..Thanks to u I got to see last year's astha dikka golu at Mylai temple in pics

  4. La
    superb superb superb
    it is too good and you have covered all small details. great work
    Thankyou for taking me to see this golu, but looking at your blog it is too toooooooooooooo good
    God Bless you

  5. Dear Lakshmi
    As you know Chithi & I went the next day to your visit and the Trio took us around most kindly, as usual.We are amazed by the devoted thorughness you have put in here!Fervently pray to The Almighty to bless you to continue this work.
    Chithi & Thatha

  6. My dear Lakshmi,
    The word of praise I can give to your photos and writings is "SUPERB".
    I have visited Kapali Temple often but during my young days I never had a chance to visit Parthasarathy Temple especialy during Navarathri.
    Thank you for taking effort not only to visit and enjoy the beautiful places of worship but also to take us to those places you have visited through photos and narratives.
    My suggestion for you is to compile and publish a book of all the places you get a chance to visit for the readers, especially for readers like me who are far away from home to read and enjoy the beauty of the temples of Tamil Nadu.
    With greetings,

  7. Wow Lakshmi!!! What a superb commentary & Pictures. We also visited the temple with Dorai Mama the next day but your write up is excellent. The Golu was a visual treat no doubt, but your write up is wonderful. Thankyou & God bless you.

  8. Happy Dasara to you all.Lakshmi words fail to explain my feelings after seeing the Kolu by the trio in Thiruallikeni temple.very well explained in great detail.We haven't seen it but you have done a great job with photographs taken from all the directions,very well done indeed.Thanks a lot for sharing with all of us.God bless you with good health.Love.Savi3 J Rao.

  9. excellent photographs. I had seen it in person for a few minutes. but you have covered it elaborately and given beautiful explanation.

    thanks a lot.

  10. Dear Lakhshmi

    I had been wanting to vist the temple and show the golu to Samyukta. I cud not make it and was feeling really bad about it.
    Thanks your great work we were able to enjoy the same.

    It was a real prayer fulfilled for me


  11. WOW!! I was a regular at the Parthasarathy temple shifted to Bangalore now... Felt I had missed the first golu there and now feel I couldn't have seen it much better than here... Thanks!!

  12. Hi,
    My mother had visited the Parthasarathy Kovil Golu and was raving about it to me. I stumbled on your blog when trying to look for images of "The Golu" online. Thank you very much for posting the pictures, especially for us deprived souls who did not get the opportunity to see it. Your efforts are very much appreciated, it was a great visual treat. Priya.