January 12, 2011

Tiruvottiyur Thyagarajar and Vadivudai Amman Temple - Introduction

Chennai, one of the four main cities of India and the gateway to South India, has a lot of tourist sites including some famous and ancient temples. Tiruvottiyur aka Tiruvotriyur is a small town located north to Chennai city, where the gigantic huge temple for Lord Shiva is located. The name of the temple is Thyagaraja and Vadivudai Amman temple. This temple is at least 1300 years old and it is very huge. To my knowledge, there is no such big temple available in and around Chennai city.

Sri Thyagaraja and Vadivudai Amman temple of Tiruvottiyur is one of 275 Paadal Petra Sthalam temples of Lord Shiva (one of the 275 temples which were sung by the 63 Nayanmars). As I write this post, I am not sure how many more posts I will end up in writing to cover all information about this extraordinarily huge temple of Thyagaraja.

Thyagaraja temple was sung by all three main devotees Sundarar, Appar, and Sambandhar. It is said that this temple is as old as the earth. As this temple is associated with the life of Sundarar who lived in the 8th century AD, it is evident that this temple is at least 1300 years old. As this temple is believed to have been visited by Adi Shankara, this temple can even be dated back to before Christ (BC).

As per a legend, the great Tamil poet Kamban studied Valmiki Ramayana in Sanskrit here before writing Kamba Ramayana in Tamil language. The goddess of the temple is Vadivudai Amman, who is one of the three main mother Goddesses in Chennai region. She is considered as Ichha Sakthi. The other two main Goddesses are Kodiyudai Amman in Tirumullaivayil and Tiruvudai Amman at Melur. Devotees worship all these three temple on the same day during full moon day.

The temple has a lot of legends associated with it. As I start writing about the temple structure from the next post onwards, I will write about everything wherever it is applicable.

Happy travelling.

Fast Facts:
Site Name: Thyagarajar and Vadivudai Amman Temple
Site Type: Hindu Temple
Location: Tiruvottiyur,near Chennai city, Tamil Nadu state, India 
Highlights: 1300 years old temple; one of the biggest and ancient temples of Chennai region; historically and religiously rich temple; one of 275 paadal petra sthalams of Lord Shiva
Nearest Railway Station: Chennai - well connected from the cities/towns all over India
Nearest Airport: Chennai has both national and international airports
How to reach: Easily reachable by road, train, and flight
Hotel: Many star hotels, luxury hotels/resorts, and budget hotels are available in Chennai
Restaurants: All options - vegetarian, non-vegetarian, Chinese, South Indian, Gujarati, North Indian, Punjabi,....- you can find everything in Chennai city



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