June 19, 2011

Appar Swamigal Temple - Mylapore, Chennai

Mylapore locality of Chennai city in South India is popular for heritage, tradition and Kapaleeswara temple. Let me introduce you to a comparatively lesser known temple of this locality.

Opposite to Sanskrit college, the temple of Apparswamigal is located. In the 19th century CE, there lived a saint named Appar Swamigal in Chennai. After he died in 1851 CE, his disciple Chidambara Swamigal built a tomb (samadhi) and also installed a Shiv Linga on the samadhi. In 1853, the temple was built with this Shiv Linga as the presiding deity. (Please note that this Appar Swamigal is a different saint - not Appar, the one among 63 nayanmars).

The temple has a huge open corridor with few trees which makes the environment serene. The fusion of neem and peepul tree in this temple is a rare sight. The well maintained temple has Nandi idol, flag staff and bali peeth facing the main shrine. However, there is no tower for this temple.

The presiding deity is Viswanath in the form of a big Shiv Linga. The corridor (prakara) surrounding the main shrine has the niched images of Ganesha, Dakshinamurti, Vishnu, Durga and Brahma. Chandikeshwara is found in his usual location. There is a separate shrine for the Goddess of the temple, Vishalakshi (a very big idol).

In the open corridor, the shrine of Neethi Vinayakar is found - there are three idols of Ganesha in one row. It is believed that these deities solve the legal problems. There is a shrine for Jaya Subramanya along with his consorts Valli and Devasena.

The temple also houses the following idols:

1) Sekkizhar
2) Navagraha
3) Tayumanavar
4) Nalvar (4 main devotees of Shiva)
5) Bhairav
6) Apparswamigal (on whose tomb this temple is built)
7) Natraj-Sivakami along with a lot of bronze idols
8) Shaneeswarar
9) Jaya Ganesh

Don't ever miss this temple whenever you pass by Sanskrit college locality of Mylapore.

Happy travelling.

Fast Facts:
Site Name: Appar Swamigal Temple
Site Type: Hindu Temple
Location:  Mylapore, Chennai city, Tamil Nadu state, India 
Highlights: A famous temple in Chennai which is built on the tomb of a saint

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 from any part of the city; local train facility is also available in Mylapore
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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