Thursday, September 25, 2014

Navaratri 2014 - Day 1

Kollapuri Amman

To be honest, the name of the temple intrigued me more than invoking reverence. Every time the suburban train moves from Kodambakkam to Mambalam, I see this temple and have been wondering when I would get a chance to visit it.

Today being the first day (or should I say first night) of Navaratri, with no golu at home this year, I thought I should try to visit one Amman temple a day for these nine days. I was lucky to have darshan of two Ammans today - Kollapuri Amman and Mupathamman. Hope the Goddess continues to bless me with darshan on the remaining days too!

A fairly huge Pillayar greeted me as soon as I entered the temple of Kollapuri Amman. This Ganapathy is a Goshta Murthy for the Iyyappan sannidhi with a cute kutti Durgai and kutti Dakshinamurthy on the other two sides as Goshta Deivam. Iyyappan is a small deity. I then went further inside to the main Ambal sannidhi. The entrance is flanked by the two sons of the Goddess - Pillayar and Murugan. A majestic looking Amman looks at us with grace.

There are two more Amman mugams at the feet of the deity. When asked about the temple, the archakar told me that the temple is about 64 years old. In those days, only one of the Amman faces was the main deity and only a few years back the Goddess we now see as the main deity was installed with gopuram.

The main thiruvizha falls in the last week of the Tamil month of Aavani (Aug 17-Sept 15) preceded by the thiruvizha in the nearby Muppathamman temple. Thiruvizha is for three days, beginning on Friday and ending with swami purappadu (procession) on Sunday. Every year a devotee used to go into a trance on this particular day. It was the same devotee every year until he passed on. The archakar says now Ambal has chosen another devotee who goes into a trance every year.

The golu in the temple is so cute. Here are some photos. 

padi golu

sabari malai


malai with steps and chettiar kadai

To the right of Amman sannidhi is the Navagraha sannidhi. Amman is surrounded by Saraswathi and Lakshmi as Goshta Deivam. The sannidhi is in the shade of a peepal tree. 

Behind the Amman sannidhi to her left is a small sannidhi of Shirdi Sai Baba. Next is a puthu below a sacred neem tree. 

After this is a very majestic Madurai Veeran statue with his consorts and a swing.

Though the archakar could not give an explanation about the name of the temple, he mentioned there is a temple by the same name in Dharmapuri.

On my way from Kollapuri Amman temple to Muppathamman temple

Muppathamman temple

Situated bang opposite Krishna Gana Sabha on Maharajapuram Santhanam Road (previously called Griffith Road) I used to go to this temple quite regularly on Friday mornings many years ago. I noticed many changes in the temple today. Ambal gives us darshan as we enter the temple, with her karunai parvai as always. Today she was even more beautiful with Navratri alangaram. On the left were the Navagraham. I went further down on the left to see the Ganapathy first. The huge puthu which used to be on ground level earlier has been raised and tiled around neatly with Naagar statues at intervals. Further down, along the left side wall was a long row of golu bommais, not in steps but in just two row. I could see that most of these dolls were quite old but very well maintained. 

Right behind the Amman sannidhi on the right side, was the urchava Ambal. What a sight it was! With sandhana kaapu Ganapathi on her lap, Ambal was full of grace. 

Having had my fill of mother and son, I turned further to see a magnificent golu on the right side of the Ambal sannidhi. On the left corner was the regular padi golu followed by - whatever you look for - malai temple, puthu, regular temple, swami oorvalam, cricket, school, parade, bridge, movie banner, park, zoo, beach and what not! I was amazed by the effort taken! It reminded me so much of Kili Rajamma of Nungambakkam. 

Padi golu

sivan koil on the hill and a puthu next

another malai koil

temple pond

a bridge covering the entire length
cricket stadium - a match in progress

a school with two classrooms and two parades

a park and a zoo behind

market and street vendors in the middle of the road with houses on either side

beach with people on the shore and salt production

kids and grown up viewing the golu with great enthusiasm
I spent the longest time near the golu and as it was getting late moved further to the sannidhis of Valli Deivanai Samedha Muruga Peruman, Iyyappan and Anjaneyar in that order on the right side. I crossed the Ambal sannidhi again to circumambulate around the Navagraham and went two more rounds around the temple having one more look at the urchava Amman with Ganapathy on her lap. 

When asked, I heard the archakar saying that the temple is about 100 years old but a flower vendor outside disputed this. It must be definitely older than the Kollapuri Amman temple as the archakar there said that the Tiruvizha in Kollapuri Amman temple is always preceded by the Tiruvizha in Mupathamman temple!

1 comment:

  1. Beautiful write up and lovely pictures. Looking forward to more over the next 8 days :)
    I am amazed at the patience with which the Kolu has been set up at Mupathamman Koil. I know what you mean about Kili Rajamma. There's so much to see. Thank you for the virtual tour :D