February 14, 2011

Velachery Yoga Narasimhar Temple

Have you noticed Yoga Narasimha temple in Dandeeswaran Nagar of Velachery locality in Chennai? The colorful and fresh looking structure of this temple in the  most happening and busy locality might confuse you to believe that it is a modern day temple. But, this is one of the oldest temples of Chennai city.

This Yoga Narasimha Temple had inscriptions right from the period of Raja Raja Chola to 12th century CE. It is believed to have been built during the Chola period. One of the highlights of the temple is the bronze idol of Veda Narayana. It is Pallava period bronze, which is older than the original temple.

The temple was completely renovated now and Kumbabhishek happened in 2016 CE. In this blog, I have provided the photographs of the temple before renovation and after renovation.

The west facing temple has two entrances, east one and west one. The sanctum faces the west direction. It enshrines big idol of Yoga Narasimha, who is found in the yogic posture. He has four arms and his upper arms hold conch and discus. His lower arms are rested on his knees. The vimana is called as Vedapuri Vimana.

The utsav murti, Bhaktavatsala Perumal along with his two consorts are also found in the sanctum.

Before Kumbabhishek - Old photo
In addition, the sanctum has a very important icon, the Pallava period Veda Narayana. He is in the standing posture and holds discus and conch in his upper arms. His discus is in the form of Prayoga Chakra. I am not sure how many people realize that this is one of the most beautiful bronze idols from the Pallavas that is found till date.

As per the legend, Narasimha gave darshan to Prahalada in this site, after killing Hiranya.

It is said that there are nine forms of Narasimha, namely Jwala Narasimha, Ahobila Narasimha, Malola Narasimha, Krodha Narasimha, Kaaranja Narasimha, Bhargava Narasimha, Yoga Narasimha, Chatravada Narasimha and Pavana Narasimha. All these forms are found as the stucco images on the walls of the sanctum. They are all newly built.

The Goddess of the temple is Amritabalavalli. She is found in a separate east facing shrine.

The sub-shrines of Sudarshan, Garud and Kodanda Ram-Sita-Lakshman-Hanuman are also found in this temple. Matsya Avatar, Lakshmi Narasimha, Lakshmi Varaha and Lakshmi Narayana are the niche images on the outer walls of the sanctum.

Happy travelling.






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