Abodes of lord Vishnu

60. Arulmigu Vedhavalli Thayar sameda Parthasarathy Temple - Thiruvallikeni

 
Moolavar   Parthasarathy
Utsavar   Venkatakrishnan
Thayar   Vedhavalli, Rukmini, Sathyabhama
Kshethram   Brindhaaranya Kshethram
Theertham   Kairavini Pushkarni
Pose & Direction   Standing Pose facing East
Vimanam   Anantha Nilaya Vimanam
Sthala Vruksham   Ape Flower Tree (Magizha Maram)
Paadiyavar   Thirumangai Alwar, Pei Alwar, Thirumazhisai Alwar
Travel Base   Chennai
Nearest Railway Station   Triplicane
 

 

Location

Triplicane (Tiruvallikeni) is an important division in Chennai city. The Temple is located at about 1 Km from Marina Beach, 7 Kms from Nungambakkam, 7 Kms from T Nagar, 11 Kms from Anna Nagar and 10 Kms from Vadapalani. Town buses are available from every corner of the city to reach the temple comfortably. The Temple is located at about 1 Km from Lyolds Road Bus Stop, 1 Km from Triplicane Post Office Bus Stop, 1.5 Kms from Marina Beach Bus Stop and 12 Kms from Koyambedu Bus Terminus.

 

History

Vishnu devotee, king Sumathirajan by name had a desire to have the darshan of Lord as the Sarathy of Arjuna in the Kurukshetra battle field. He prayed to God for the darshan which Lord obliged as controlling and managing the Rath of Partha-Arjuna. The king begged the Lord to stay in the place in the same form. Perumal appears only with his conch and not the discus. Lord absorbed the arrows shot by Bhishma aimed at Arjuna and thus sustained injuries. The scars are visible even now. Parthasarathy is the procession deity. As he grew prominent among the devotees, the temple came to be known as Parthasarathy temple. As per Mahabharata, Vishnu, in his avatar as Krishna was acting as charioteer for Arjuna, the Pandava prince during the war with Kauravas. Krishna did not take any weapons during the war. During the fight between Arjuna and Bhishma, Krishna was injured by the arrow from Bhishma. The mark in the image in the temple is believed to follow the legend. These scars are visible in Lord’s face even now. Based on this history, Perumal is praised as Parthasarathy – driver of Partha-Arjuna. The Ghee component in the Nivedhana is more to cure these wounds, it is said. No spices are used in the Nivedhanas to Lord. Praying to Lord Parthasarathy, people of unattractive complexion will understand the truth that beauty is not a constant one but may or will vanish one day due to age, illness or any other incidents in life. In days of yore, Sage Brugu performed penance here to have Lord as his son-in-law. He found a female child in the Alli flower in the Pushkarini here. He took the child, named her Vedavalli. When she attained the marriageable age, Lord Ranganatha came to this place and married her. This wedding festival is celebrated in the temple on the 12th day-Dwadasi in full moon fortnight in the month of Masi-February-March. Vedavalli Thayar blesses the devotees from her own separate shrine. She does not come out in procession outside the temple but goes around the prakara only on Fridays and Uthiram star days. Rukmini, Thondaiman, Sumathirajan, Arjuna, Bhrigu Maharishi, Markandeya, Madhuman Maharishi, Saptharoma, Saptha Rishis, Athrimaharishi, Jajalimaharishi, Aniruddha, Pradyumna & Balarama worshipped Lord Vishnu here. Ramanuja’s father Aasoori Kesavacharyar conducted an yagna here and got Ramanujar as his son. Madhuman, son of a rishi called Sashivadan, heard of the story of Rama from Gargeya rishi, upon whose advice, he came to Brindaranya. Here he performed penance for a darshan of Rama. The Lord obliged appearing with Sita Devi and his brothers Bharata, Shatrugna and Lakshmana. Unlike the Ranganatha in Srirangam, the Ranganatha in Tiruvallikeni does not face south, but east. But Rama here faces south probably to reassure Vibhishana that he is watching over him. Gajendra Varadhar is said to have been worshipped by Saptharoma Maharishi in accordance with the Vaikhanasa Agamam. The Moolavar is worshipped as Sri Gajendra Varadaraja Swamy as he has given Moksha to Gajendra after saving him from the jaws of a crocodile. The Lord in heaven heard the appealing tone of his Bhakta Gajendra who was dragged into the waters by the crocodile and he rushed to the spot seating on Garuda, the king of birds, holding discuss in one hand and conch in another to save his Bhakta and threw the discus at the crocodile and saved him from death. In olden days, though the idol of the Lord was cast three times, the face of the Lord continues to have pimples. As the sculptor was worried about it, Venkatakrishnar appeared in his dream and convinced him that he (Krishna) has received injuries on the face by the arrows shot at him, at the Mahabharata war, he appeared so to remind them. The idol of Lord Parthasarathy is fine with all the other parts smooth except the face with its marks. Not only that; the toe next to the big toe in the left leg is without nail. The arrow shot by Bhishma to mark his surrender hit the nail of Krishna. At the hip of Parthasarathy there is a scar, it is said, which was formed as Yasodha tied a rope around the hip. Sage Atreya requested Vedavyasa to mention to him a place fit for tapas. Vedavyasa directed Sage Atreya to go to Brindaranya, on the banks of the Kairavani Theertham, where King Sumathi was doing tapas. Vedavyasa also gave a Divya Mangala Vigraha (image) with a conch in his right hand and Gnana Mudra in his left hand. Sage Atreya installed Lord here and worshipped. It is said that the Lord Narasimha Swamy appeared to Athri Maharishi being pleased with his tapas and at his request took his Abode in Brindaranya. As per Hindu legend, Saptarishis, the seven sages worshipped five deities Panchaveeras, namely, Venkata Krishnaswamy, Rukmini, Satyaki, Balarama, Pradyumna and Aniruddha. The place is called Allikeni, meaning a pond of lily as it is believed that historically the place was full of lily ponds. This is the only place where the presiding deity is sported with a mustache.

 

Architecture

This temple is one of the navarathnam temple representing Aacharya Rathnam. This is a Pre Pallava Period temple in existence from beyond 7th and 8th centuries CE. The east facing Rajagopuram with 5 tiers, 2 Prakarams, a large Temple Tank to the east of the Rajagopuram, many stone inscriptions and an atmosphere around which goes back to days gone by makes the experience truly unique. the Vimana of the main deity is Ananda, Pranava, Pushpa, Sesha, Vaidheega Vimanam. The temple has two gopurams (towers) in the eastern and the western directions. The temple is one of the oldest structures in Chennai. The temple walls, ceiling, pillars all depict the rich Pallava, Chola and Vijayanagar architecture. There are several inscriptions in Tamil and Telugu dating back to the 8th Century. Some of the inscriptions are about the Pallava and Chola rulers who contributed to the building and maintenance of the temple in a big way. The glory of the temple lies in its being one among the 108 Divya Desams of Perumal. The temple was renovated in 1564 CE during which the new shrines were added in the temple complex. The outer most mandapam has the different Avataras of Lord Vishnu sculpted tastefully. There are several flag posts and pillars which are intricately carved. It is one of the very few shrines in the country dedicated to Lord Krishna as Parthasarathy, that is, charioteer of Partha or Arjuna, which role he took in the Mahabharata war. Unusually, he is depicted with a prominent moustache and carries a conch in his hand. Also unusual is the iconographical combination found in the sanctum. Here, Krishna is seen standing with consort Rukmini, elder brother Balarama, son Pradyumna, grandson Aniruddha and Satyaki. They are taken to represent Pancha Vrishnis, and conceptually Pancharathra or the Bhagavata worship. Because of the association of the temple with Krishna, Tiruvallikeni came to be regarded as the Southern Brindavan. It is a rare twin temple of the Pallava period. While Lord Parthasarathy faces East, just behind him is the yoga Narasimhar facing West. Both the sannidhis have equal importance and have a Dwajasthambam in front of them. Another feature of this temple is that while the Utsavar is Parthasarathy the moolavar is Lord Venkatakrishnar. The beauty of the place, its thick groves, tall mansions and the architecture of the temple have been extolled by Tirumangai Azhwar in a string of 10 verses (patikam). Against the tradition of one deity in presiding status, there are five in this temple with this importance. Lord Venkatakrishnar is in the main sanctum sanctorum. Lord Ranganatha and Lord Sri Rama are in the front Mandapam. Lords Gajendra Varadha and Yoga Narasimha are in the prakara shrines. Hence, the temple is praised as Panchamurthy Sthala. There are flag posts-Kodimaram and entrances for Venkatakrishnar facing east and Yoga Narasimha facing west.

Arulmigu Vedhavalli Thayar sameda Parthasarathy Temple
Triplicane, Chennai - 600005
Phone: 044- 28442449, 28442462
Temple Timings : 6.00 am to 12.00 noon, 4.00 pm to 9.00 pm