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Triplicane Parthasarathy Temple, Chennai,www.flickr.com
This 8th-century Hindu Vaishnavite temple is in Tiruvallikkeni (Triplicane), an important part of Chennai and lots of people visit this temple daily to get the blessings from the presiding deity Parathsarathy. It is one of a very few rare temples dedicated to God Sri Krishna as Parathsarathy (a Sanskritic name meaning the 'charioteer of Arjuna', referring to Sri Krishna's role as a charioteer to Arjuna in the epic Mahabharata). The temple is vividly glorified in the Divya Prabandham, the early medieval Tamil literature canon of the Alwar saints from the 6th–9th centuries CE and is classified as an important shrine among the 108 Divya Desams. The fascinating feature of the main stone idol of Parthasarathy (Moolavar) here is his big impressive mustache, seldom seen in other temples.
Originally built by the Pallavas in the 8th century there are five shrines -– sannadhis in this temple.They were built in different periods. The sanctum enshrines Venkatakrishnan with Rukmini, Balaraman, Satyaki, Anirudha, Pradyumna - seated and facing east. The Utsavar (idol meant for procession) here is that of Parthasarathy. Scars from the arrows of Bheeshma`s bow on Sri Krishna can be seen on the idol. Sri Krishna purposely donned the role of a charioteer and rode Arjuna's chariot in the Kurushetra war to save him from the impending death. It implies God guidance always be with those people who follow the path of Dharma or righteousness.
There is a shrine dedicated to Ranganathar seen in a reclining pose - Aanada sayanam, his consort Vedavalli has a separate sanctum. There are sannadhis for Rama flanked by Sita, Lakshmana, Bharata, Shatrugna and Hanuman facing east; Varadarajan seated on a Garuda facing east, and Narasimha seated and facing west. There is a separate shrine for Andal, daughter of Periyazhvar.
|Parthasarathy Temple Chennai,T. N. www.journey. mart.com|
There are inscriptions in Tamil and Telugu dating back to 8th century - Pallava period. The Cholas expanded the temple to a large extent and in the 15th century Vijayanagar rulers made considerable contributions and gave endowments. The temple seems to have been restored during 1564 CE with additional shrines. The temple saw a major expansion during the reign of the Vijayanagar kings like Sadasiva Raya, Sriranga Raya and Venkatapati Raya II (16th century). Many sub shrines and pillared pavilions (mandapas) like the Tiruvaimozhi Mandapa were added. The temple has two prakarams (narrow corridor around the temple) and a five-tiered rajagopuram (tower). The golden images of Tirumal and Nachiyaar, adorn the chest of Venkatakrishnan. It is believed that Sri Venkateswara of Tirupati manifested himself as Parthasarathy here, and hence the name Venkata Krishnan.
Yoga Narashimhar Sannidhi:
There is an important shrine here dedicated to ''Yoga Narashimher.'' Devotees should not miss this popular shrine. A significant aspect of this shrine is people with all sorts of problems - physical, mental, marital, monetary, etc come here and pray with full faith and devotion. They offer salt and pepper as offerings here. I have heard reliable people tell me that their prayer never goes unanswered and sooner they get a favorable result on account of Sri Yoga Narashihar's blessings and unique divine power. To achieve success, the most essential things are dedication and faith in God.
Festivals: The annual Bhrammotsavam is celebrated in the month of Chittirai (April-May). Vaikuntha Ekadasi celebrated in Margazhi (December-January). Visiting this temple is as good as going on a pilgrimage to Tirupathy or Uppiliappan temple near Kumbakonam. Saturdays of Purattasi (September - October) month are considered sacred.
A visit to Chennai on pilgrimage will not be complete if you do not make a trip to this tradition-bound temple of great antiquity steeped in Thenkalai Vaishnava Sampradhaya.
Ayyar, P. V. Jagadisa (1991). South Indian shrines: illustrated. New Delhi: Asian Educational Services. ISBN 81-206-0151-3.
M.S., Ramesh (1993). 108 Vaishnavite Divya Desam Volume 1. Tirupati: Tirumala Tirupati Devasthanams.