Vadapalani Dandāyudhapani Temple, Chennai
Built about 125 years back, this much-hallowed and regularly frequented Muruga sannidhi has emerged from a thatched shed, an unostentatious one enshrining a Murugan picture only, and established for itself a name on par with ancient places of worship. Around 7,000 couples are married here each year.
According to the sthalapurana, one Muruga devotee by name Annaswami Tambiran with his limited means built a small thatched hut and kept a Murugan painting for his personal worship primarily. During his meditation and worship, he used to experience some divine power entering his body and inspiring him to utter some mysterious things -- whatever he said in his trance was found true. His utterance went by the name of arulvak and relieved people in several ways, like curing diseases and getting jobs, solemnising marriages, etc.
Once he fell ill suddenly. At the instance of a sadhu, he visited Tiruttani and prayed to Muruga offering a part of his tongue cut with a knife at Balipeeta. On his return, the disease took to flight.
He paid a visit to Palani by foot and had some strange experiences there. He continued his worship in the hut he built, and when he felt his end was nearing he requested a close friend by name Ratnaswami to continue the devotional activities to the painting he was worshipping. Strangely enough, this Ratnaswami too started giving arulvak after building a small shrine and worshipping as promised to his friend.
The money that public gave was put to building purpose. But Ratnaswami also passed away before completing it. Another like mind took the building project with the money he was getting from arulvak just like his predecessors. Unluckily, he too passed away.
Then entered into the arena some humanist philanthropists who metamorphosed that simple hut into a superb spiritual abode. Among the builders, the renowned Saiva Pravakta Kripananda Variyar's name takes first place. Thus emerged this great Muruga kshetra, and now a great temple drawing a steady streams of pilgrims throughout the year.
There are very many sannidhis in the vast courtyards, like Varasiddhi Vinayaka, Chokkanāthar, Mother Parvati, Kāli, Bhairava, Shanmuga with Valli and Devasenā, et al.
The moolavar in standing posture resembles the Palani Muruga in every respect. In the inner prakara, there are many niches housing Dakshina Murti, Chandikeswar, Mahalakshmi, et al. It has a spacious hall used for conducting marriages and religious discourses. It is one of the most-frequented Murugan shrines in the city of Chennai.
The entrance to this temple is crowned with a rajagopuram adorned with several stucco images depicting legends from the Skanda puranam. In front of the temple is the temple tank. The eastern tower rises to a height of 40.8 metres. The 108 bharata natyam dance gestures can be seen on the eastern tower as well.
Location: Andavar Koil Street, Vadapalani, Chennai
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Text courtesy of eprarthana.com
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