Palani is home to one of the most sacred shrines of the Lord Muruga, as worshipped in the Hindu sect of Kaumaram. The Thandayudhapani Temple dedicated to Lord Murugan “Palani Andavar”, and regarded one of his Arupadai Veedu (Six Battle Camps), is situated here. The temple is situated atop a hill known as Sivagiri. The Garbagriham is surmounted by a gold gopuram and the walls of the Garbagriham have numerous stone inscriptions describing offerings made by devotees to the temple. Steps are hewn into the rock, besides a wide path meant for the ascent of elephants, up the hill. In addition, a winch pulled railway with three tracks and a ropeway are operational. Besides this, right at the foot of the Sivagiri is a small shrine dedicated to the god Ganapathi, where he goes by the name Pada Vinayakar. It is customary amongst the pilgrims to pay their obeisances at this shrine before commencing their ascent of the hill. Halfway up the hill, there is the Idumban shrine where every pilgrim is expected to offer obeisance to Idumban before entering the temple of Dandayudhapani. The practice of Pilgrims to Palani bringing their offerings on their shoulders in a kavadi is associated with the legend of Idumban. Within the town is another temple dedicated to the Goddess Parvathi as Periyanayaki Amman. Near the Periya Nayaki Amman temple are two others, the Mariyamman Temple and the Perumal Temple.
Sightseeing Points In Palani
Arulmigu Dandayudhapani Swami Temple is one of the Six Abodes of Murugan. It is located in the city of Palani in Dindigul district, 150 kilometres southeast of Coimbatore and northwest of Madurai in the foothills of the Palani Hills, Tamil Nadu, India. Palani temple is considered synonymous with Panchamritam, a sweet mixture made of five ingredients. As per Hindu legendary beliefs, Sage Narada visited the celestial court of Shiva at Mount Kailash to present to him a fruit, the gnanapalam. He decided to award it to whichever of his two sons who first encircle the world thrice. Accepting the challenge, Murugan started his journey around the globe on his mount peacock.
However, Ganesha, who surmised that the world was no more than his parents Shiva and Shakti combined, circumambulated them and won the fruit. Murugan was furious and felt the need to get matured from boyhood and hence chose to remain as a hermit in Palani. The idol of the Muruga in Palani was created and consecrated by sage Bogar, one of Hinduism’s eighteen great siddhars, out of an amalgam of nine poisonous herbs or Navapashanam.
Thiru Aavinankudi Temple is an ancient and large temple at the foot of the hill is the third Padai-Vîdu celebrated in song, classics, legend and tradition since antiquity. The official name of the shrine is Kulandai Vēlālyudhaswāmi Temple, Tiru Avinankudi is the name of the place. Tiru Avinankudi is among the earliest abodes of Muruga and perhaps it had humble beginnings under the shade of the Nelli tree (amla). Poet Nakkirar says that God Muruga holds at Tiru Avinankudi a Royal Court of all gods with saints emancipated and clad in saffron-dyed clothes and deerskin. The presiding deity is Muruga as a child sitting on a peacock. A convenient and full view can be taken by the worshippers since the sanctum is on an elevation.
He is like a kindly monarch on His throne who receives the humble tributes and petitions of His loyal subjects. The festival deity and the Nelli and naga linga flora and the shrine of Arunagirināthar are worth your notice.
Usually, before going to the main hill temple, devotees visit Tiru Avinankudi. It is located near ‘Saravana Poigai’ sacred temple tank. This is an ancient temple, more ancient than the hill temple and among the earliest abodes of Lord Muruga. It is revered as the third Padai-Veedu. The official name of the shrine is Kulandai Velayudhaswamy Temple and Tiru Avinankudi is the name of the place. A sacred tank is attached to the temple.
Idumban Temple is a noteworthy place in history since the time of Sage Agastya, is located on the Idumban Hills. According to legends, Sage Agastya wanted to take two hills, Sivagiri and Saktigiri to his abode in the South and commissioned his asuran disciple Idumban to carry them. Idumban was one of the very few asuran survivors of the fierce war between Murugan’s forces and those of Surapadman. Idumban collected the hills in his shoulder by means of sacred snakes which were used instead of ropes. This was prototypical of what devotees and pilgrims do and call it as, Kavadi. Near the forest at a site now known as Palani. Idumban, weary, set the hills down while he rested. When he attempted to resume his journey,
he found that the hills were stuck to the ground Upon ascending the slopes he encountered a youth clad only in a loincloth, holding a staff, and “shining like a thousand suns”. This youth claimed the hills as his own. In the subsequent fight, Idumban was killed. Both Agastya and Idumpi (Idumban’s wife), interceded and pleaded on Idumban’s behalf, and Murugan restored Idumban to life. Idumban requested that he remain forever at the portal of Murugan’s shrine. Murugan duly appointed Idumban as an official gatekeeper at his temple and advised that henceforth all who worshipped Murugan with a Kavadi would first acknowledge Idumban.
Periyanayaki Amman Temple is a large and spacious temple is in the heart of Palani town, two kilometres from Adivaram. Built four centuries ago by the Nāyaks and enlarged by chieftains of Palani, Ayakudi and Neikkarappatti, it has Goddess Periyanāyaki as the presiding deity, there are sanctums for Muttukumāraswāmi, Subramanyar, Kailāsanāthar and Nātarajar. In the Muttukumāra Swāmi shrine, within the iron railings are a series of festival deities, the last of which Uchi Mahākāli is an amazing piece of art. This temple is essentially a Muruga shrine with other shrines added perhaps at later stages. This is clear from the fact that the central tower is over Muruga’s shrine. The flagstaff and image of the vehicle are all in front of Muruga only.
Kailāsanātha is on the northern side and Periyanāyaki on the southern side with Muruga in the centre, or in between father and other. This seating arrangement is known as Somāskanda Mūrtam. In the Palli Arai in the Amman shrine, it is worth taking a look at the mirror reflecting the chamber. Ask for the shutter to be raised up. Almost every pillar is extravagantly covered with a filigree of sculpture. The supreme climax of South Indian architecture in its most prodigal plastic manifestation. In one pillar of the Kailāsanāthar shrine and in another in the Navaranga Mandapam, Gnāna Dandāyudhapani has been remarkably produced by stonemasons. The pillars and sculptures therein add to the importance of the Navaranga Mandapam, which has been built by the Nadar community. On Vijayadāsami day, the Lance of the Lord is brought from the hill temple to this temple and the Utsava deity Muttukumāraswāmi uses it to destroy evil and usher in an era of hope and good cheer after Navarātri. In the month of Aadi (July-August) 100,000 Archana (Laksha & chana) are performed in this temple. Particularly, the Fridays of this month are crowded days here and one has to inch his/her way to the sanctum. This temple houses the vāhanas of all the temples under the Devasthānam and from this point of view, this temple is an art gallery. Do not miss the silver car, a galaxy of various vehicles, the ivory palanquin, several vāhanas in silver, brass and wood. Their beautiful workmanship needs close observation. Near the Periyanāyaki Temple is the Mari Amman Temple, very popular with the local folk. It is crowded on Fridays. Increasing attention is being paid to this temple.
Tour Packages Offered From Palani
2 Nights 3 Days Madurai | Kodaikanal | Palani Tour Package.
2 Nights 3 Days Coimbatore | Palani | Coimbatore Tour Package.
5 Nights 6 Days Aarupadai Veedu Murugan Temple Tour Package.
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FAQs About Palani
Palani is home to one of the most sacred shrines of the Lord Muruga, as worshiped in the Hindu sect of Kaumaram. The Thandayuthapani Temple dedicated to Lord Murugan “Palani Andavar”, and regarded one of his Arupadai Veedu (Six Battle Camps), is situated here. The temple is situated atop a hill known as Sivagiri.
700 steps. There are four ways to reach the hill top temple. Two different step ways are there, left one is like a ramp with less slope which is very easy to climb. Right side steps are a little steep, approximately 700 steps are there.
Palani temple is considered synonymous with Panchamrutham, a sweet mixture made of five ingredients.
The Murugan Temple of Palani is one of the oldest temples in the world. No one knows when the temple was constructed. It is believed from the Tamil scriptures that Bogar, one of the 18 siddhars, devised the moolar (main idol) of Lord Karthikeya. He was born in South India around 3000 BC.
Spending some more time at the hill top around the temple, we returned. Only regret was we had left our mobile phones at the Hotel thinking we would not be allowed to carry it to the temple. No photos could therefore be taken.
20 – 30 minutes Right side steps are a little steep, approximately 650 – 700 steps are there. If you don’t have problem in climbing, take the right one to reach the top faster. It takes 20 – 30 minutes to climb the hill.
According to a notice board outside the Palani temple, male devotees have been advised to wear dhoti, shirt, pyjama or pant and shirt while women and girls should wear saris or churidar or pavadai with half-sari. Devotees wearing lungi, bermudas, jeans and tight-leggings would not be allowed.
The kavadi (“burden”) itself is a physical burden, the bearing of which is used by the devotee to implore Murugan for assistance, usually on behalf of a loved one who is in need of healing, or as a means of balancing a spiritual debt. Devotees process and dance along a pilgrimage route while bearing these burdens.
Navapashanam is the tamil word which is broken as Nav means Nine and pashanam means poison. Thus the navapashanam which means nine most dangerous poisons mixed in a fixed ratio which will result in the new medicine that will cure many diseases. It was invented by Bogar one of the 18 revered saints of Tamil Nadu.
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