Sunday, January 21, 2018

Parthasarathy Temple, Parthivapuram, Kanyakumari

Parthasarathy Temple, Parthivapuram, Kanyakumari
Parthasarathy Temple is a Hindu Temple dedicated to Lord Vishnu located at Parthivapuram near Munchirai in Kanyakumari District of Tamilnadu. This Temple belonged to ninth century AD. Presiding Deity is called as Parthasarathy, the avatar (incarnation) of Lord Vishnu. The temple was built by King Ko Karunandadakkan in AD 864-65. Moreover, Parthivapuram was one of the four educational centers (sala) in these parts, around 1,100 years ago – others being Kanthaloor, Thiruvalla and Moozhikulam Salas. It is a notable distinction of this temple that there is no hundi (for collection of money from devotees) anywhere in the premises. The temple is now a protected monument under the Archaeological Survey of India.










History
For brief details, please refer below link;
The Temple
For brief details, please refer below link;
Inscriptions
For brief details, please refer below link;
Temple Opening Time
The temple is open from 05:00 am to 10:00 am and from 05:00 pm to 07:00 pm.
Festivals
The festival of Thiru Onam which falls in the Malayalam month of Chingom (August/September) is the most important festival of this temple. The annual festival of ten days duration is in Chingom from Atham to Tiruvonam asterism. Other than this, the auspicious occasion of Ekadasi which falls every month, is considered special here, just like any other Vishnu temple. Krishna Jayanthi, Deepavali and Chithira Vishu are the other major festivals celebrated in this temple.
Connectivity
Parthivapuram Parthasarathy Temple is located on the western side of Marthandam – Thengapattanam highway. The Temple is located at about 9 Kms from Kollemcode, 2 Kms from Munchirai, 9 Kms from Kuzhithurai, 9 Kms from Marthandam, 8 Kms from Kaliyakkavilai, 33 Kms from Nagercoil, 55 Kms from Kanyakumari and 46 Kms from Thiruvananthapuram. Nearest Railway Station is located at Kuzhithurai and Nearest Airport is located at Thiruvananthapuram.

Saturday, January 20, 2018

Parthasarathy Temple, Parthivapuram – History

Parthasarathy Temple, Parthivapuram – History
According to the Huzur Office (copper) plates, the temple was built by Ay (Vrishni Kula) King Karunandadakkan (AD 857 - 880) who wanted the temple to be one of the finest constructions by the Ay rulers. One particular Chola inscription got from the site, mentions about the installation of a deity’s silver Vigraha (idol). Another record dated AD 923 reveals that a land was gifted for lighting perpetual lamps. More recent inscriptions found in the temple pertains to the 15th century. The latest known inscription is assignable to the 15th century and the inscriptions are silent about any renovation work till then.
Parthivasekharapuram, today’s Parthivapuram, is inextricably bound to history, specifically to the powerful Ay Kings Kokkarunandadakkan and Vikramaditya Varaguna whom dominated the major part of later Venadu.  The Palayam Shasanam (in local Jargon) or Huzur Plates of Kollam 42/867 AD are exhaustive in detail on Parthivapuram referred to in them as Parthivasekharapuram. There are five copper plates. The first plate informs the process of land procurement, fixing boundaries, erecting a temple, consecrating the idol of Vishnu and naming the village around as Parthivasekharapuram.  Establishment of a Salai (boarding school) is also detailed.
The second plate prescribes duties of temple servants and power suppliers, enumeration of lands granted for perpetual lamps here and directions for conduct of the Temple festival in much elaboration including derivation of income, duration, duties and so on. The third plate lists lands gifted to meet payments to temple staff and temple-allied services. The fourth plate enjoins the people of the various areas to protect charitable institutions e.g. Salais, while fixing the number of the students.
The last plate is weighty with abundant directives as it specifies the code of conduct of the students, their curriculum, land rent collection for the temple, rules regulating the behaviours of the temple servants towards the students and the names of the officer directing the document and the writer of the same. There is also a single Sanskrit verse in praise of a personality by name Srivallabha who is, probably, King Karunandadakkan himself.
It is said that the temple complex had a separate Patasala (Vedic University) within it, with boarding facilities for more than 95 scholars. The 9th century Ay King Vikramaditya Varaguna wanted to make this Patasala at Parthivapuram in par with the famous Kandalur sala at Thiruvananthapuram (the exact location of this university is still a matter of contest among historians). However, the Parthivapuram sala failed to raise its quality and standards, thus losing the race to the prominent Kandalur Shala at Trivandrum. It is also evident from the fact that not a single Chola invasion of 10th or 11th Century was directed against it as was the case with Kandalur Salai.
However, it is clear that the Vrishni Kula King made all efforts to build a magnificent edifice in this temple-Salai complex, worthy of his fame and achievement. The temple is now a protected monument under the Archaeological Survey of India. As a monument, temple might be regarded as a time capsule to know the social, cultural and economic life of the people through the ages. Above all, the temple served as the centre of cultural and educational activity. It promotes the bond of unity among the people. This temple conducted Mahakumbabishekam before 1200 years.

Parthasarathy Temple, Parthivapuram – Inscriptions

Parthasarathy Temple, Parthivapuram – Inscriptions
Tamil inscription with Vattezhuthu scripts are found engraved at the northern side of the Naalampalam entrance which mentions about the grants made by a ruler called Varman, from the Valluvanadu which is presently in the Malabar region. T.A.S. Vol. III, p.53 states that Valluvanadu was once one of the most ancient territories divisions of Chera country. This inscription stands proof to the reach that Chera rulers had on regions even far away.
References to a fort and a moat surrounding the land, along with this Parthivasekharapuram temple are found. It also informs is of the prominent men from Parthivasekharapuram who had assembled near the temple’s tank reciprocating the gifts and grants made by Keralan Aadichchan (Varman) alias Rajadhiraja ‘Valluvanaadaalvan’ of Karitturai. The terms ‘Rajadhiraja’ and ‘Valluvanaadaalvan (Lord of Valluvanadu) glorify the king’s royalty.
The grants bestowed by the king enables the villagers to enjoy all the produces got from the demarcated land granted by him, for which the villagers in turn must protect his fort at Kulachchai (Colachel). It was also decided to provide one sacred lamp to the Alwar (saint) at this temple, from the income earned from within the grounds of its vast boundaries.

Another inscription belongs to 9th Century A.D found on the left of this Naalampalam (Vishnu Temple) registers the gift offered by Kaaman Tadakkan of Kunrathur, to meet the requirements for burning Karthika deepam (November/December) in this temple. The temple at Parthivasekharapuram was constructed by Karunandadakkan, an Ay chief who controlled the eastern hilly region of the Travancore State. However, current records present the donor’s name as Tadakkan not as Adakkan, thus creating ambiguity.

Parthasarathy Temple, Parthivapuram – The Temple

Parthasarathy Temple, Parthivapuram – The Temple
The temple complex covers an area of about 2.50 acres. This west facing shrine has a three tired vimana that is built on a square plan from adhishtana to sikharam. The adhishtana is made up of granite. The pranala is in the form of a fluted shaft with a curved lotus bud end that appears out of the Simha mukha. One can find the Bhootha Ganas seated below the pranala. The temple walls are made of granite blocks with few portions of it plastered with lime. Floral design is also carved on the temple walls with a Simha mala at the top.





The niche in the walls is literally non-functional and doesn’t hold any deity. A square shaped sanctum sanctorum (garbha griha) is found at the centre of the temple complex with Pradikshina Patha (path for circumambulation) all around it. There is a mukha mandapa with an attached portico made of granite and has a tiled roof. A Namaskara Mandapa seems to have been built later in front of the portico and has four granite pillars on all the four corners. In between them on the four sides are wooden arches supported on wooden pillars.




The Namaskara mandapa has no ceiling as such, but the wooden rafts converge on the roof top, covering the Mandapa from top. The mukha mandapa has three entrances from the west, north and south directions. The southern entrance leads to the thitappally (temple kitchen). The portion above the entablature in the main vimana is constructed of brick. The second tala has deities placed at four cardinal nooks; Brahma on the north, Indra on the east, Dhakshinamoorthy on the south and Narasimha on the west. These images are made of stucco.





The stupi crowning the edifice is of metal. There are four small turrets on the four corners of the vimana. The temple encompasses six sub shrines with the Krishna shrine being the oldest. This shine in located in south-west corner of the temple complex, built in the Dravidian style. It is also an example of sama-chaturashra vimana, with square griva (neck) and shikhara (roof above griva), the latter as usual pinnacled by a stupi (finial). A small mukha mandapa extends out from the Lord’s sanctum to the east.




The vimana over Krishna’s shrine has a well-crafted Mriga mala (animal chain) at its lower and the subsequent upper level. This temple is believed to be from the 9th century AD and stands as the finest examples of such Mriga mala exposition. The sub shrines of Varaha Perumal and Vadakkum Perumal (Vishnu) is found on the north side, while Karakandiswaram Siva shrine is found on front of Krishna temple in the south side. Sastha and Dhakshinamoorthy grace from their respective shrines located in the west side of this temple complex.



Tiru Vikramar Temple, Vellamcode, Kanyakumari

Tiru Vikramar Temple, Vellamcode, Kanyakumari
Tiru Vikramar Temple is a Hindu Temple dedicated to Lord Vishnu located at Vellamcode in Kanyakumari District of Tamilnadu. The Temple is located at 7 Kms from Thirparappu, 6 Kms from Kulasekharam, 6 Kms from Thiruvattaru, 12 Kms from Kuzhithurai, 9 Kms from Marthandam, 32 Kms from Nagercoil, 10 Kms from Thirunanthikarai, 57 Kms from Kanyakumari and 48 Kms from Thiruvananthapuram. Nearest Railway Station is located at Kuzhithurai and Nearest Airport is located at Thiruvananthapuram. 

Thiruvenkada Vinnaperumal Temple, Ashramam, Kanyakumari

Thiruvenkada Vinnaperumal Temple, Ashramam, Kanyakumari
Thiruvenkada Vinnaperumal Temple is a Hindu Temple dedicated to Lord Vishnu located at Ashramam near Suchindram in Kanyakumari District of Tamilnadu. The Temple is located at about 8 Kms from Nagercoil, 14 Kms from Kanyakumari, 9 Kms from Kottaram, 16 Kms from Boothapandi, 21 Kms from Thuckalay, 19 Kms from Eraniel, 29 Kms from Colachel, 18 Kms from Aralvaimozhi, 14 Kms from Thovalai, 87 Kms from Tirunelveli and 80 Kms from Thiruvananthapuram.

The Temple is located at about 750 meters from Suchindram Bus Stop. Suchindram is well connected to Nagercoil, Kanyakumari, Thirunelveli, Thiruvananthapuram and other nearby places by Bus. Nagercoil Railway Station is the nearest Railway Station, located at about 4 Kms from the Temple. Nearest Airport is Thiruvananthapuram International Airport, located at about 80 Kms from the Temple.

Sivananintha Perumal Temple, North Kundal, Kanyakumari

Sivananintha Perumal Temple, North Kundal, Kanyakumari
Sivananintha Perumal Temple is a Hindu Temple dedicated to Lord Vishnu located at North Kundal in Kanyakumari District of Tamilnadu. The Temple is located at about 1.5 Kms from Kanyakumari, 2 Kms from Kanyakumari Bus Stand, 2 Kms from Kanyakumari Railway Station and 102 Kms from Trivandrum International Airport.