No jumping to conclusions on seeing the title for those who know about the temple. No. Am not in any idea to get married in near future. It has quite a deal of time. It was a normal visit to the temple, just as I visit several other temples.
If you don’t relate to the above paragraph, lemme give a one-liner about this temple. It’s a wedding speciality temple!!!
It was a casual Sunday in Chennai and I badly wanted to watch a movie. Even if it’s a dumb movie, it would do. So I planned it with a friend and she would turn up only by noon. So till then I had to kill time all alone. We had planned for Mayajaal in ECR. (Well, Mayajaal is one of the very good multiplexes in Chennai which is on East Coast Road aka ECR). So, I thought of going further and visit Thiruvidanthai and get back to Mayajaal by noon. So I was off, on the track!!! A simple bus ride and there I was dropped right in front of the temple.
It has an arch that denotes the temple and a 250m (only m not km!!!) walk from the arch into a lean road took me to the entrance of the temple. I left my slippers out as it is to be done in any temple anywhere.
The legend here is that when Kalava Maharishi was perplexed about getting his 360 girl children married off, he prayed to Lord Vishnu (Moolavar – the one in sanctum sanctorum) who is called Vishnu Varaha Perumal here, to show him a way. So Perumal himself came down to the earth everyday for one whole year as a bachelor and married all his 360 girls, one each day. The first daughter is Komalavalli Thayar. All the rest of the 249 girls are cumulatively called Akilavalli Thayar. He kept her on his lap on the left side. So the place is called Thiru + Ida + Vindhai. Thiru is respect like Mr. and Ida is Left and Vindhai is Magic. So Thiruidavindhai which is nowadays called Thiruvidandhai.
The Uthsavar (the one carried in celebrations) is called Nithya Kalyana Perumal. The Uthsavar statuette is a bronze statue always and this one has a dot on the cheek which is a Dhrishti Pottu which is kept to ward off evil sights.
Nithya Kalyana Perumal is seated here on Adhiseshan, his Snake Vahana. One of his legs is placed on Adhiseshan and the other on the ground. Adhiseshan is seen here with his wife, which is very very unusual. The inner circumambulation passage has the shrines of Achudhan, Thumbikkai Azhawar, and Vaishnavi. Also seen are the 12 Azhwars, Manavala Maamunigal. The outer circumambulation passage has separate shrines for Komalavalli Thayar, Andal, Ranganayaki.
I performed the basic prayer and as everyone who visits that temple is told, I was also blessed by the priest that I would get married soon to an amazing guy. Errr.. Hmm…. Let’s see!!!!!
So generally singles come here to pray that they get the best spouse in the world. And engaged couples and couples in love come here to pray for their wishes to come true with regards to wedding and married couples come here for the longetivity of their marriage and happiness in family. Also, they come here to say thanks for the blissful married life.
So the singles, unmarried, engaged ones have to do a special prayer and circumambulate the inner passage once and outer passage 9 times. The couples are given a garland that is supposed to be preserved till marriage and placed back in the temple during the visit after marriage. The married ones circumambulate both the inner and outer passages once.
This temple is one of the 108 Divya Kshetrams of Vaihnavaits. Manavala Mamunigal has sung several hymns upon this temple and Thirumangai Azhwar has sung 13 Paasurams (a type of hymn) here. Several epitaphs are found here. It was found that RajaRaja Chozhan’s nakshatra is Sadayam through an epitaph here.
Outside on the way to the arch is the tank of the temple. This is called Varaha Theertham aka Kalyana Theertham. There are so so so many fishes here It wouldn’t even justify if you don’t feed em with blown rice (Pori). There is a shop available nearby just opposite to the tank that sells Pori.
Sorry, there are no pics of the temple interiors as it’s not allowed in there.
P.S. After the temple I went back to Mayajaal for the movie. At that timeslot the only movie was errr.. Main aur Mrs. Khanna. Yup. As I guessed initially itself – Dumb Movie!!!
TO GET THERE:
From Thiruvanmiyur: 25 km on ECR via Mayajaal, Kovalam.
Regular Buses available. Hop-in Hop-off service of TTDC also available
From Tambaram: 35 km.
By car/bike – could prefer a route via Vandalur and then taking the Kelambakkam road that leads till ECR coz this road has no traffic at all.
By bus – could take direct bus to Mahabalipuram which is rare or could break the journey as East Tambaram – Velachery – Thiruvanmiyur – Thiruvidanthai.
From Mahabalipuram/Mamallapuram: 17 km en-route to Kovalam
From Puducherry/Pondicherry: 112 km via Mahabalipuram