Famous Ganapathi temples, Tamil Nadu - 02

God Ganesha - remover of obstacles, Alamy.com

Uchi Pillayar temple, Trichy, TN:

Trichy rockfort Vinayagar temple,Alamy.com

The very name  Trichy, Tamil Nadu  is synonymous with Srirangam, Aganda (wide) Cauvery and the Uchi Pillayar temple. 

Trichy rockfort Vinayagar temple, TN. gosahin.com

rock outcrop 3 bilion years old.Trichy rock fort Vinayaga temple Global Vision Tours

The shrine dedicated to Vinayagar or Ganapathi is atop the hill that can be accessed  via 417 steps carved out of hard stone. The hill is roughly 275 feet above the MSL  The Thayumanavar temple at the foot of the hill is one of the popular Shiva temples of the state and is glorified in  Thevaram hymns. The Pilliyar temple has a small prakaram around the small sanctum. From here, one can have a panoramic view of the city, the third largest one in Tamil Nadu. The temple priests conduct daily puja protocols and  have to climb the steps to reach the hill shrine. The hill fort was constructed during the reign of Mahendra Pallava-Gunaparan in the sixth century according to inscriptions. These rock-cut temples were further improved  during the Madurai Nayak period.

There is a legend behind this temple. Upon participating in the coronation ceremony  of Sri Rama at  Ayodhya after Rama had rescued  Sita from the captivity of demon king  Ravana of Lanka, Sri Vibishana, brother of Ravana, was on his way to Lanka with  the gift of Sri Ranganatha idol from Sri Rama. The Devas did not like  Vibeshna, an assura taking the idol of Vishu (Ranganatha) to Lanka. So, they sought the help of god Vinayaga. Vibishana, after reaching this part (of Trichy) was enthralled by the beauty of the River Cauvery and the serene environment, wanted to relax for a while.  Lord Vinayaka was there in the guise of a little boy.  Vibishana asked the boy to take care of the idol of Lord Ranganatha and not to keep it on the ground. While away to bathe in the river, the boy placed the idol on the ground and hid Himself in the hill.
Upon his return, Vibhishana was  upset and could not locate the missing boy. On top of it, he could not lift the idol of Ranganatha that was to be taken to Lanka. Thus Ganapathi helped Sri Ranaganatha choose his abode in Srirangam.  Both Lord Vinayaka atop the hill and  Lord Ranganatha on the island of Srirangam grace this place. 

Devotees perform abhishekam to Lord Vinayaka with milk and offer garlands made of a grass called Arugampul ( a kind of grass). It was built in the 6 to 7th century by the pallava rulers..  


The Swetha Vinayagar Temple, Thiruvalanchuzhi, Kumbakonam:

Swetha Vinayagar Temple, Thiruvalanchuzhidivinetraveller.net

Swetha Vinayagar Temple,thiruvanchozhi  Dinamalar

The Swetha Vinayagar Temple (Tamil: Vellai Vinayakar Koil) is a Hindu temple situated in the village of Thiruvalanchuzhi (also spelt as Thiruvalanjuli) near Swamimalai in Kumbakonam taluk of Thanjavur district, Tamil Nadu, India. The presiding deity is Kapardiswarar, a form of the Hindu god Shiva and his consort Brihannayaki.

The Swetha Vinayagar Temple (in Tamil Vellai Vinayakar Koil), situated in the village of Thiruvalanchuzhi  is a famous and unique shrine dedicated to Ganesha whose idol is white in color.  Believed to have been  made from white sea sand,  the temple also goes by the name of Swetha Vinayagar Temple (in Sanskrit). 

Swetha Vinayagar Temple,  Thiruvalanchuzhi wikiwand.com/

Above images: Ornate pillars of  Swetha Vinayagar Temple, Thiruvalanchuzhi, near Swamimalai and Kumbakonam, TN...... 
 Swetha Vinayagar Temple lattice window, jaali, twitter.com

The legend, has it that  Indra, the king of the Devas, during the churning of the ocean (Samudra Manthan), created the idol of Ganesha out of sea sand and kept  it in a niche in the temple  in the belief that he would  get it  back later. When Indira came back to get the idol, he could not remove it. So, he left the idol  to remain where it was. Kanaka Chola  is said to have built the temple. The temple has  fascinating ornate pillars and latticed-stone window pane.

Yet another legend has it that during churning of the ocean by Devas (celestial deities) and Asuras (demons) with Vasuki the serpent, poison spilled into Amrita. To get it rectified, the Devas created an image of Vinayaga with sea water and worshiped him at the place. The image of the presiding deity is white in colour on account of this belief.

This temple  cane be accessed from  Swamimalai  and  the presiding deity is Kapardiswarar, a form of the Hindu god Shiva and his consort Brihannayaki.