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Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Triplicane Parthasarathy Temple, Chennai

The Parthasarathy Temple is a Hindu Vaishnavite temple dedicated to Lord Krishna. The temple is located at Triplicane, Chennai, India. This temple is one among the 108 divyadesams.
Parthasarathy Temple History:
The temple origins date back to the 8th century A.D., the reference of which has been given in the Vaishnavite works of the Alwar saints. The Parthasarathy Temple bears impressions of the popular historic dynasties like Pallavas, Cholas and Vijaynagar. 
The temple was originally built by the Pallavas in the 8th century and then later renovated by the Cholas and the Vijayanagara kings. The Best features of the Parthasarathy Temple is that it contains the deities of the four avatars of Vishnu: Narasimha, Rama, Varaha and Venkata Krishna.
Parathasarathy temple is dedicated to Lord Krishna. The name Parthasarathy has been derived from two Sanskrit words Partha and Sarathy, Sarathy (charioteer) of Partha (Arjuna). The History about the temple is King Sumathy prayed to Lord Thiruvengada of the Seven Hills, Thirupathy to give him darshan as the Charioteer (Sarathy) to Partha in the Maha Bharatha War discoursing on Geetha. He appeared in the dream of King Sumathy and bade him go to 'Brindaranya' where he would give him Darshan in the form he wished. So the Moolavar is known as VenkataKrishnan. The Sage Athreya had installed the idol of Lord Parthasarathy Swami. Sri Ramanuja came to this temple and prayed to the Lord for a son and eventually the great acharya was born. It is also believed that the great saint Sri Ramanuja is none other than the Lord Parthasarathy himself who was born to revive the Vishistadvaitha.
Special Features of Parthasarathy Temple:
Some of the best special things of Parathasarathy temple are the great seven Munis who are called “Saptha Rishis” (1. Brighu, 2. Atthiri, 3. Mareeshi, 4. Markandeyar, 5. Sumathi, 6. Jaabali, 7. Saptharomar had done thavam here and so the temple is also called as "Brindaranyasthalam". Vyasar had installed the Lord. 
Among the 12 alwars, three of them namely Peyalwar, Thirumazhisai alwar and Thirumangaialwar have sung about the deities of this temple. Many acharyas have also written songs on the deities of this temples.

The Deities in Parthasarathy Temple:
The usual Chakra (the wheel) associated with Mahavishnu is conspicious by its absence. Sridevi and Bhoodevi - the consorts of Lord Vishnu are seen on either sides of the Uthsavamurthy.
The special feature of this temple is the installation of the idols of the 5 avtars of Lord Vishnu. Vedavalli - another consort of the Lord is also enshrined here. The Moolavar of this Temple is Venkata Krishnan with Rukmani Piratiyar, the lord holds sword in one hand, Varadha Muthirai on the other hand and his brother Balaraman on his right, Sathaki on his left, son Prathyumnan, Grand son Aniruthan are also found near the Moolavar. This is one of the Temple where the Perumal shows his seva along with his three generations. The lord is found in standing position facing east direction.
Separate Sannathi is there for Sri Vedhavalli Thayar facing east on the right side of the Sri Parthasarathyswamy Sannathi. Festivals are performed to Sri Vedhavalli Thayar on fridays and taken in procession within the precincts of the temple.
Another important feature of this Parthasarathy temple is the colored gopuram. The 'Gopuram' is said to the pyramidical shaped temple top which is a stereotyped feature of the South Indian temples. After passing under the colorful gopuram (temple gateway), you'll enter the courtyard, which has several carved shrines.

Festive Season:
During festival days the place is given a new look and accompanied by various traditional rites. The first of every Tamil month, the two Ekadasis in a lunar month, Full and New Moon days and the days presided over by Rohini and Sravana Nakshatrams are days of festivity. The most important festival is Pagal Pathu and Ra Pathu. Throughout the year, festivals and processions are being performed for one or other of the Deities, Azhawar's and Acharyas.The Brahmothsavam is celebrated every year in the month of Chithirai (April-May) for Sri Parthasarathyswamy and for Sri Narasimhaswamy in the month of Ani (June-July). Separate Thuvajasthambaml are here for these Gods. This is the special feature in this temple. The festivals includes Vasanthothsavam in Chithirai (April-May), Pavithrouthsavam in Avani, Adhyayana Utsavam in Markazhi, Floating festival, Davanauthsavam in Masi (March-April), for Sri Gajendra Varadharajar in Vaikasi (May-June), for Sri Ranganathar, Sri Ramar in Panguni, for Andal in Adi, for Vethavalli Thayar in Purattasi (September-October), for Ramanujar in Chithirai (April-May) and Sri Manavalama Munigal in Ippasi (celebrated for 10 days).
'Vaikunda Egathesi' is an unique festival, in the month of margazhi (Dec-Jan). During this festival Four Thousand Tamil Pasurams of Alwar's and Vedas are recited for 21 days in the presence Sri Parthasarathyswamy, Alwar's and the Acharyas. This is in accordance with the 'Thennacharya Sambradayam', founded by Sri Manavalamamunigal.
The annual Bhrammotsavam is celebrated in the month of Chittirai. Vaikuntha Ekadasi celebrated in Margazhi is one of the important festivals. The float festival is held in the month of Feb-Mar. There is a beautiful glass palanquin. The Utsavar is Parthasarathy. The image of Krishna bears the scars from Bheeshma's arrows.

Temple Tank
 The tank in front of the temple is known as 'Kairavini', which means white lily considered to be most sacred for the places of worship. Kairavini Pushkarani has five theerthams (Indhra, Soma, Meena, Agni and Vishnu).

Outside the Temple
Outside the temple can be seen a carving of Parthasarathy (Krishna as charioteer) discoursing to Arjuna

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