Monday, October 24, 2016

Venkata Subramaniam!

Venkatasubramania Swamy Temple, Valasaravakkam

Skanda Sashti refers to the six days of battle between Lord Muruga or Skanda with Soorapadma. It is usually commemorated in the Tamil month of Aipasi, and starts on Pradhamai Thithi, the day after New Moon. Deepavali normally falls on the New moon or the previous day in this month. So the Skanda Sashti Viratham is observed immediately after the festival of Deepavali.

Skanda is said to have fought with the demon Soorapadma for five days before killing him on the shores of Thiruchendur and accepting the split portions of his body as peacock (his vahana) and a cockerel on his flag. The Soora Samharam comes to an end with Thirukalyanam (marriage) of Lord Muruga on the sixth day and abhishekams performed to cool down the anger of Jayanthinathar. (the victorious Skanda).

During this time,  devotees fast by taking only one meal per day and worship Lord Muruga. There are several temples dedicated to Lord Muruga and we are now going to look at one such unique temple, amidst the hustle and bustle of busy Arcot Road in Valasaravakkam.

Today, Valasaravakkam is home to several commercial establishments, high rise apartments, schools and such. But prior to the 1950s all it had was extensive groves, which were slowly being converted into layouts for construction. When one such plot of land was being dug up for laying cornerstones, an idol of Lord Muruga was unearthed.

The idol was not only large and beautiful, but also very unique in nature. The Lord Muruga was seen as Brahma Sastha, holding a Gendi or Kamandalam in his left hand and a Aksharamalai in his right hand. There was a Vishnu chakram behind his head and surprisingly, his right foot had six fingers! The owner of the land vowed to construct a temple for the Muruga if he was successful in selling his plots of land. Soon he was successful in doing so and the temple came up nicely, to house the Lord, who had been a long-term resident of the land.

When Thirumuruga Kripananda Variar Swamigal heard about this Murugan, he visited the temple and named him Venkatasubramaniam, as he had the Vishnu chakram behind his head. He also revealed the special significance of this Lord. Anyone worshiping Venkata Subramania Swamy for eleven weeks with devotion, will be granted any genuine wishes that he/she might have.      

Lord Venkatasubramania Swamy
(Photo Courtesy: Mr Venkata Subramanian)
The procedure for performing this eleven week ritual is as follows:
The person placing the wish before the Lord must visit the temple for eleven weeks and offer two lemons along with items for archanai. A sankalpam with the wish will be performed by the priest and after the archanai, one lemon will be returned to the devotee who must take it home, and drink the juice of that lemon.

The wish is normally fulfilled before the end of the eleven week period. Once fulfilled, the devotee performs abhishekam to the Lord to offer his gratitude. I have seen several people do this ritual with devotion and be benefitted.

On the Sashti day of every month, abhishekams are performed to the Lord's spear and special Tirisadhis are chanted.  Moreover, on Panguni Uthiram, Ekadhina Laksharchanai is performed and festivals such as Thaipoosam and Skanda Sashti are celebrated with great pomp and glory.

Hanuman at Sri Venkatasubramania Swamy Temple
(Photo Courtesy: Mr Venkata Subramaniam)
Apart from this very benevolent Venkatasubramania Swamy, this temple also has a benevolent Hanuman. Devotees tie coconuts with their shell on to rods around the Hanuman shrine and pray for seven weeks. Within this time, their wishes are fulfilled. Once done, the coconut is removed and de-shelled and offered to the Lord along with Tulsi garlands and garlands of Vada.

The temple also has a seperate shrine for Santhoshi Mata. On full moon days, abhishekam is performed here and on Avittam star every month, Lalitha Tirisadhi recitals are done.

Apart from these shrines, there are also shrines for Ganesha, Shiva and Navagraha.

Do visit this very beneficial Venkatasubramanya, during the Skanda Sashti this year, and be blessed!

How to get here:

The Venkata Subramania Swamy temple is in Venkatasubramania Nagar, in Virugambakkam on the lane opposite the Corporation office on Arcot Road.

Temple Timings:

The temple is open from 6.30 am to 10.30 am in the morning and from 5.30 pm to 8.30 pm in the evening. On Tuesdays, Fridays and Krithigai days, the temple would be open up to noon in the mornings and up to 9 pm in the evenings.

Contact details:
91762 37273, 97898 87058

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