Temples of Tamil Nadu

The spiritually inclined, there is no dearth places where we can find inner peace.  Tamil Nadu is truly special it is not just the plethora of temples related to the legends or feats of gods, but the thematic spiritual circuits that criss-cross the land.  Divya Desams are 108 temples of Lord Vishnu glorified in the Divya prabandham or poems of the 12 Alvars of the Vaishnava tradition.  The Nava-Tirupathi or nine Vishnu temples form an important circuit along the banks of the Thamirabarani between Tirunelveli and Tiruchendur.

Paadal petra sthalam are 275 Shiva temples revered in the verses of the 63 Nayanmars or Shaiva saints.  They lived between the 6c and the 9c, they are Sambandhar, Sundarar, Appar and Manickavasagar.  Pancha Bhoota Sthalams are five temples where Shiva is worshipped as the five elements as earth at Ekambareswarar temple in Kanchipuram, as fire at Arunachaleswara in Tiruvannamalai, as ether in Chidambaram, as water at Thiruvanaikaval near Trichy and as air at srikalahasti in Andhra Pradesh.

Panchasabha are the five dancing halls where Lord Shiva performed the cosmic dance of Taandav-Kanakasabha or Hall of silver at Madurai, tamra sabha or Hall of copper at Tirunelveli, ratna sabha or Hall of Ruby at Tiruvalangadu north of Kanchipuram and Chitra sabha or Hall of pictures at Kutralam.
Arupadai Veedu or six abodes of Lord Murugan are at palani, Swamimalai, Tiruchendur, Tiruttani and Thirupparankundram and Pazhamudhircholai near Madurai.  Lord Ganesha occupies a prominent place with temples dedicated to his various forms Uchipillayar at Trichy.  Manakula Vinayagar at Pondicherry.  Mukkurni Vinayagar at Madurai Meeanakshi Temple and the sacred Karpaga Vinayagar Temple at Pillaiyar patti are one of the nine clan temples of the Chettiars.  Navagraha temples are between Kumbakonam, Sirkazhi and Karaikal.  These temples are dedicated to the nine planetary bodies.  Many devotees offer prayers for merit and perform poojas for removal of ill effects of planets.

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