Old is Gold - Bringing back the unknown old temples back to Life

Sri Lakshminarayan temple

Location : Chennai

Exact Place :  Pallikaranai . Pallikaranai is a place located at Tambaram Velacheri Main Road

Main deity : Sri Narasimhar seen embracing Goddess Lakshmi

This is a 800 years old Chola temple. The main deity Sri Narasimhar is seen embracing Goddess Lakshmi who is sitting at his lap.Moolavar Lakshminarayan is seen holding Sri Laksmi with His left hand placing Her at His lap. In the walls of the temple there are inscriptions that show the temple was built during the rule of Chera, Choza, Pandyas. On the roof of the temple there Is a fish symbol and some inscription. If the Archeological department take some initiative, perhaps they could find out more information. There is a tall Deepa sthambam in front of the temple with Garuda, Anjaneya, sangu ,chakram and some inscription upon it.


Majour :Thiru Karthigai 

Others: margazhi  masam
            Vaikunta Ekadasi
            Purattasi Saturdays
            Hanumath Jeyanthi

Ratnagiri Temple

Ratnagiri Temple

Location: Vellore in Tamil Nadu

Origin: This temple was built in the 14th century, by Arunagiri Nathar.

Literary Evidence:

The 14th Century poet Arunagirinathar has sung about this temple as Rathinakiri Vazh Murukane Ilaya Vaaramarar Perumaley', which means 'Murugan, the God of Devas resides in Rathinagiri'.

Deities of the temple :

1) Vinayagar Sannidhi

2) Arumugaswamy & Urchavar Sannidhi

3) Balamurugan Sannidhi (main deity)

Festivals :

Adi kiruthigai kavadi (June – July)

Thai kiruthigai kavadi (January)

Thai Poosam (January)

Karthigai deepam(November – December)

Latcha deepam.

Sri Arunachaleswarar Temple , Thiruvannamalai.

Sri Arunachaleswarar Temple , Thiruvannamalai.

LOCATION : Thiruvannamalai

Main Deities:

Annamalaiyar or Arunachaleswarar

Unnamalaiyaal (Apitakuchambaal)

Other name:

Sonachaleswarar, Arunagiriswarar, Sounadriswarar,Bhaktapasavimochakar,Vedamurthi


Thiruvannamalai is so rich in history that it finds mention in ancient literature dating as far back as the year 100 BC. and legends around this monumental place tell stories from times as long back as human existence on this earth.The main temple is known to have existed for well over 2000 years, the massive temple complex that is visible today with impressive gopurams have a history of over 1200 years.

Significance : Panch Boodha Sthalams
                       Element- Agni
                       One of the 275 Siva Sthalams


This holy temple at Tiruvannamalai lies at the foot of Arunachala hill and occupies a vast area of 24 acres of land , is the largest Siva temple in India, and smaller only to the Vishnu temple of Srirangam in Tiruchirappalli, Tamil Nadu. Arunachaleswara is said to be at least 2000 years old, with the gopurums (towers) and stone structure dating back 1200 years. This dating is from an inscription in the structure that was made during the reign of the Chola kings who ruled in the ninth century A.D.

The Arunachaleswara Temple has a 60m or 11 storied high sculptured gopurams. There are in total 9 gopurams of which four are in the middle of the walls. The larger one is called by the name of Raja gopuram. Thirumanjuna gopuram and pey Gopuram are to the north and south of the temple.

On entering the temple from the east, there is the Thousand pillar hall built by Chola king Krishna Deva Raya. The exactly 1000 pillars are inscripted with the sculptures of the Naik period. The mandapam where the deity is placed and worshiped is known as the Ani Thirumanjaram. The sacred tank or pool of ShivaGanga is towards the south of the Kambathu iiayanar mandapam with enclosed corridor.

The third mandapa has 16 pillars and it is from this mandapa that the Pancha Murthis or the five deities give darshan on the day of Kartigai. The sanctum is reached by the main entrance in the east. The Rudra baga is covered with gold plate. There is the Devi shrine to the opposite of the Mandapa.

Legend of this temple :

Once there was a dispute between Lord Brahma and Lord Vishnu as to who was superior. Lord Shiva in order to put an end to this dispute appeared before them as fire in the shape of a glowing mountain. The two who were quarrelling did not realise who or what this 'mountain of fire' was. So they decided to search for the 'Aathi' (beginning) and the 'Antham' (end) of this 'Jothi' and whoever succeeded first would be declared the superior god.

Lord Brahma took the form of a swan and flew upwards in search of the beginning and Lord Vishnu took the form of a 'Varaha' (wild boar) and went burrowing in the earth in order to find the end. Each after flying high and borrowing low failed in his attempt to find the beginning or the end. Brahma did not want to concede defeat. While coming down he saw a petal of 'Thalampoo' floating in the air. He asked the flower to be his witness that he had seen the beginning. The flower agreed to his request. They arrived together and found Lord Vishnu and told Him that Brahma had seen the top and this flower 'Thalampoo' was the witness. At this juncture the 'Jothi' transformed itself as Lord Shiva and admonished Brahma for telling lies and the 'Thalampoo' for bearing false witness. He also decreed that no temples would be dedicated for Lord Brahma and that 'Thalampoo' should never be offered in worship. Brahma and Vishnu realising their mistake prayed to Lord Shiva to remain there as a 'Jothi lingam'.


Brahmotsavam celebrated in the Tamil month of Karthikai. Four Brahmotsavams are celebrated every year, the most famous of which is the one celebrated during the Tamil month of Karthigai (November/December). This ten day event culminates on the day of Karthigai Deepam and on that evening, a huge lamp is lit in a cauldron with three tons of ghee at the top of the Annamalai hill.

Giri valam : Every full moon night, tens of thousands of pilgrims worship by circumambulating the Arunachala hill barefoot. The circumambulation covers a distance of about 15km.

Chitra Powrnami (full moon) night in the Tamil calendar year, lakhs of pilgrims come from across the world to worship Him


Significance of Girivalam based on Days

• Sunday: One attains salvation and gets liberated through Lord Shiva

• Monday: One sores to great heights socially and boosts his morale

• Tuesday: One gets freedom from debts, wards off poverty, cleanses the past karmas

• Wednesday: One attains proficiency in art/work and leads a successful life

• Thursday: One attains the highest state of wisdom as the Saints

• Friday: One attains prosperity and gets blessings of Lord Vishnu.

• Saturday: One attains the blessing of Navagraha and all the ill effects of the planets will vanish

Asthta Lingas and their powers

There are 8 lingams and 8 Nandis in 8 directions along the path of girivalam. There are also several holy tanks, ashrams and mandapams.

Indra Lingam (East Direction)

This is the first lingam on the path of girivalam. Lord Indra the king of Devas is worshiping Lord Shiva at this place. This lingam is auspicious for people whose ruling planet is Sun and Sukran (Venus). Worshiping Indra lingam boosts the moral and the social status.

Agni Lingam (South East Direction)

This is the second lingam on the path of girivalam. This is the only lingam on the right side of the girivalam path. This lingam is auspicious for people whose ruling planet is Moon. This Lingam signifies fire which is the very source of all living beings. One who worships this lingam gets relieved from disease and fear.

Yama Lingam (South Direction)

This is the third lingam on the path of girivalam. Lord Yama is the God of Death. But he also denotes truthfulness and steadiness. This lingam is auspicious for people whose ruling planet Sevvai(Mars). This lingam wards off the fear of death and bestows long life.

Niruthi Lingam (South West Direction)

This is the fourth lingam on the path of girivalam. It is very auspicious to see the hill from inside this temples prakaram. This relieves us from difficulties and gives us a feeling of bliss and peace. This lingam is auspicious for people whose ruling planet Raagu. It is also believed to bestow boon to issueless women to beget children and happiness in the family.

Varuna Lingam (West Direction)

This is the Fifth lingam on the path of girivalam. Varuna means water the key essential need of all living beings. This lingam is auspicious for people whose ruling planet Sani(Saturn).It is believed that one who worships this lingam is relieved from diseases.

Vayu Lingam (North West Direction)

This is the sixth lingam on the path of girivalam. Vayu means wind or air. There is no life without air and this is the element essential for survival and is all over. This lingam is auspicious for people whose ruling planet Ketu. One who worships this lingam is relieved of all diseases mainly those related to respiratory.

Kubera Lingam (North Direction)

This is the seventh lingam. Lord kubera is the God of wealth. This is the place where Lord kubera is worshipping Lord Shiva. This lingam is auspicious for people whose ruling planet Guru(Jupiter).One who worships Kubera lingam is blessed with wealth and well being.

Esanya Lingam (North East Direction)

This is the Last lingam along the girivalam path. This lingam is believed to be one of the 7 Rudras(Saints) of shiva who is sitting on the tiger skin with holy ash smeared all over the body. This lingam is auspicious for people whose ruling planet Budhan(Mercury).One who worships this lingam is relieved from all the difficulties and receives good karma.

Uchi Pillayar kovil

Location: Tiruchirappalli

Exact location point : Near the Chattram bus stand

Other name: Dakshina kailasam , Rock Fort hill , Sirappalli, Rishabachalam


The Rock Fort hill is beleived to be formed lakhs of years back.As per the mythology, once there was a great tuffle between Aadhiseshan and the wind God Vaayu, on who is more powerful. Aadhiseshan encircled the Maha Meru hill (Himalaya) and challenged Vaayu whether he can take Himalayas off his clutches. Vaayu tried much and accepted his defeat.

It is said that during the fight, 3 pieces of the mountain broke and flew off to different places. Out of the 3 peices which flew off, one is this Rock fort at Trichy. The other two are at Triconamalee (Ceylon) and Sri Kalahasthi (AndraPradesh).

About the Temple:

Height : 273 feet

Steps :417

Temple complex: consist of 3 complex

1) Manikka Vinayagar temple – This temple is at the foot of the hill

2) Thayumanavar Temple – This temple is at half way

3) Uchi pilliayar Temple – At the hilltop.

Deities :

1)Lord Thayumanaswamy and his consort Goddess Mattuvarkuzhal.

2) Lord Ganesh called Lord Uchi Pillayar shrine is on the hill top & Manickam Vinayakar shrine is at the hill.

3) Lord Brahma in the form of Lord Jureswarar.

Legend of this temple

There are several tales associated to the Uchi Pillayar Temple.

Legend of Lord Thayumanaswamy

As per this Legend their was women called Ratnavati who was an ardent devotee of Lord Shiva. She stayed in the northern banks of river cauvery. She became pregnant and while the time for delivery was nearing she requested her mother to come to her place for help. But her mother had to cross the river cauvery which was in spate. Ratnavati prayed to Lord Shiva and her mother appeared before her. She was very glad to see her mother by her side and soon she delivered her baby safely. Later the floods receded and Ratnavati's mother visited her and surprisedly enquired how she had managed all alone during childbirth. Only then Ratnavati realised that it was Lord Shiva himself who had come in disguise as her mother to help her. Hence Lord Shiva here is called as Thayumanaswamy and thousands of people visit this temple to offer their prayers for a safe childbirth.

Legend of Lord Uchi Pillayar

The legend of Uchi Pillayar temple dates back to the time of Lord Rama. It is believed that when King Vibhishana attended the coronation ceremony of Lord Rama in Ayodhya, Lord Rama gifted him a statue of Lord Ranganatha as a departing gift. Lord Rama warned King Vibhishana that the idol should not be placed on the ground till he reached Lanka. The moment he places the idol on the ground the idol would grow into a massive size and will be unable to move it further.

King Vibhishana thus started his journey towards Sri Lanka. When he reached Trichy he was amazed by the beautiful course of river cauvery and he wanted to take a dip in the river. Since the idol should not be placed on the ground he was hesitantly looking for help. At that time he noticed a young boy near the river. The King requested the boy to hold the idol and cautioned him not to place it on the ground. The boy was in a hurry thus he told the king that he would count till 10 and at the count of 10 the king should comeback and get the idol from him. If the King failed to do so then the boy warned him that he would place the idol on the ground. The King agreed to the boy's condition and went to the river for a dip. The boy started his count and waited for the King. The King was totally fascinated by the river and he failed to heed to the boys count. The boy after counting till 10 placed the idol on the ground.The Lord Ranganatha idol instantly grew into massive size and was deeply rooted on the banks of the river. King Vibhishana hurriedly came back from the river but was too late. He tried moving the idol but in vain. Angered by the boy's act he started chasing him. The boy ran to the top of hillock and rested there. The King followed him and knocked him on his forehead. Instantly the young boy took the form of Lord Ganesha. Hence the Lord Ganesha is called as Uchi Pillayar  and one can see a pit in the forehead of the idol even today. The Lord Ganesh then blessed King Vibhishana and told him that the idol was destined to be here.

Poojas and Festivals

Giri valam : during full-moon days
Annual Brahmotsavam : in Tamil month of Chithirai.

Little known facts

• The cave temple has a doorway, which is lead to Uraiyur.

• There is a "pit" on the top of his forehead, believed to have been created when Vibhishana hit him on the head in anger for placing the idol.
• It is believed that the same idol placed by Lord Ganesh on the ground is today the presiding deity of Famous Srirangam Ranganatha Swamy Temple in Trichy.

• Agasthya, Arjuna, Hanuman, Rathnavathi, Rama, Saptha Kanniar, Saptha Rishi and Sarama muni had worshipped Shiva of this place

• Sarama muni worshipped Shiva with chevandi flowers brought from Naga lokha and hence the Lord is called as Chevandhi nadhar also. He is also called Mathruboodheswarar.


• Lord Brahma in the form of Lord Jureswarar who cures fever.

• Thayumanaswamy thousands of people visit this temple to offer their prayers for a safe childbirth.

Strange Facts

In Madurai Meenakshi Amman temple, in Swami Sannathi near venai Kaali amman, there is Anjaneyar statue in a pillar.It is said that this Anjaneyar is growing in stature.

Panaga narasimhar

Panaga Narasimha Temple is at Mangalgiri between Guntur and Vijaywada.
In this idol if you pour panagam that is jaggery water in his mouth he will take exactly the half of the quantity we provide and leave the rest for us as prasadam.Moreover, all day crowds of bhaktas offer panagam, yet its a miracle that you cannot see any insects or bees or flies whatsoever .

A unbelievable event during Garuda Sevai - Garuda increases in weight manifold

Nachiyar kovil about 10 kms from Kumbakonam.There is  a Garudar sannadhi there made out of salagrama stone.
The unique thing about this Garuda is when he is taken out on a procession the number people carrying is four.Then the number increases to 14 ,then when he move into the next praharam it becomes32 .,then when moves further the no of people will be 64.Finally when the idol comes onto the road the number is 148.At this juncture you can really see Garudar sweating.When the procession is over the number of people carrying the idol comes in the descending order.While the  idol reaches its original place only 4 people carry the Lord.