As a part of my Kumbakonam trip, I visited Thillai Nataraja-koothan Kovil in Chidambaram. It is famous for annual Natyanjali. Incidentally, it is the only temple where both Lord Shiva and Lord Vishnu are in the same temple.
In went in June when theru thiruvizha (car/chariot festival) was going on. I was able to see the Ulsava Moorthy. The Kumbabhishekam of the temple had happened in May 2015. So, the temple was bright and colorful. And the mandalakaala Pooja was also going on.
According to legend, the Thillai forests were inhabited by a group of sages who believed in magic and thought that even God can be controlled by rituals and mantras. Lord Shiva wanted to test the sages. He assumed the form of Bhikshatana, a beggar and went to Thillai forests with Lord Vishnu who assumed the role of His wife, Mohini.
Both the sages and their wives were enchanted by the couple’s beauty. The enraged sages performed rituals and invoked snakes. Lord Shiva lifted the serpents and wore them as ornaments over his body. Then, the sages invoked a fierce tiger. Lord Shiva killed it and used its skin as his clothing. Sages sent elephant. Lord Shiva killed it too.
Finally, the sages gathered all their spiritual strength and invoked a powerful demon Muyalakan – an epitome of complete arrogance and ignorance. Lord Shiva stepped on the demon's back with a gentle smile, and did the Aananda Thaandavam, thereby disclosing His true form.
Soon, the sages realized their mistake. They understood that nothing can control God.
Kolam patterns freshly made as a part of celebrations.
Kovil's Theru... Awaiting to roll!!!
|Intricate Carvings on the Theru|
PS: If you are planning a trip to Kumbakonam, Murugan Residency (I stayed here) and Sitthi Residency (Opposite to Murugan Residency) can be a really good option to stay. Do not miss the famous Kumbakonam Degree coffee… And for travel, if you are looking for a good taxi service, you can contact Shankar - 9524724442.