Chidambaram Temple is a Hindu temple dedicated to Lord Shiva, located at the center of the temple city Chidambarama, Tamil Nadu. The temple is 78 km south of Pondicherry and 235 km away from Chennai, the capital of Southeast India. Sangam Classics, Viduvelvidugu Perumtakan, refers to the respected tribe of traditional Vishwakarma as the chief architect of the temple restoration. There have been many restorations in its history, especially in the days of the Pallav/Chol emperors in the ancient and pre-Medie times.
Chidambaram is one of the five most sacred Shiva temples, each represents one of the five natural elements; Chidambarams represent the Akash (Ether). There are four other temples in this category: Thiruvanaikwal Jambukeshwar, Trichy (water), Kanchi Ekambareshwar (earth) Kanchipuram, Thiruvannamalai Arunachaleshwar (Agni), Thiruvanna Malai and Kalahasti Nathar (Hava), Kalahaasti
Chidambaram Temple :
The temple premises spread over 50 acres in the middle of the city. This is an ancient and historical temple dedicated to Lord Shiva Natraj and Lord Govindraj Perumal, one of the few temples where both Lord Shiva and Vaishnava reside in the same place. For Shaivism (Shivism) or Shaiv followers, the very word refers to Koil Chidambaram. Similarly, for the followers of Vaishnavism it refers to Srirangam or Thiruvarangam.
Meaning of Chidambaram :
The word Chidambaram can be derived from Chit, which means “consciousness”, and Ambaram, which means “sky” (from sky or Akayam); it refers to the sky of consciousness, which is the ultimate goal according to all Vedas and scriptures that must be achieved. Another theory is that it comes from Chit + Ambalum. Ambalam means a “stage” for performing arts. Chidakasam is a state of ultimate joy or joy and Lord Natraj is symbolic representation of Param Anand or Anand Natnam. Shaviyas believe that the journey of Chidambaram leads to liberation. Yet another theory is that this is derived from the word Chitrambalam, which means “God’s game or dance” and Ambalam means “stage”.
Special traits :
A unique feature of this temple is the gemstone statue of Natraj. This reflects Lord Shiva as the God of Bharatanatyam dance and one of the few temples where Shiva is represented by a human form instead of classical, ionic lingam. The cosmic dance of Lord Nataraj is the symbol of the continuous movement of the universe by Lord Shiva. The temple has five courts. Argalur Uday Iraratevan Ponparappinan (aka Vancovarayan) reconstructed Shiva temple in Chidambaram around 1213 AD. The same Bana chief also built the Tiruvannamalai temple. The temple is traditionally administered by an intermarried group of Shiavi Brahmins named Dixitar, who also act as its priests.
The story of the Chidambaram Temple :
Chidambaram’s story begins with the story of Lord Shiva while walking in Lord Shiva’s Thilai Vanam (Vanam means forest and Thilai Tree – botanical name Exokoria Agalocha, a species of mangrove trees – which currently grows in the Pichvaram humidabhoomi near Chidambarm) Yay! Temple statues indicate the thilai trees are from second century CE).
There was a group of saints or ‘saints’ living in the forests of Thilai who believed in the supremacy of magic and that God could be controlled by rituals and ‘mantras’ or magical words. God beggars a simple beggar, walking in the forest with stunning beauty and sharpness. After that comes his grace and wife who is Lord Vishnu as Mohini. Rishi and his wives are mesmerized by the talent and beauty of the beautiful monk and his wife.
Seeing their women enchanted, sages get angry and call for many ‘snakes’ (Sanskrit: Naga) by performing magical rituals. As a monk God lifts up snakes and wear them as ornaments on his tangled rhymes, neck and waist. More angry, the sages call for a fierce tiger, which God wears as a shawl around his waist. Totally disappointed, the sages gather all their spiritual power and call for a powerful demon assessment – the symbol of absolute ego and ignorance. God, wearing a gentle smile, steps on the demon’s back, stabilize him and performs anandava (dance of eternal joy) and reveal his true self. Saints surrender, realizing that this God is truth and He is beyond magic and rituals.
Anandava pose :
Lord Shiva’s Anand Tandav Mudra is one of the famous mudras recognized by many people around the world. This celestial dance pose tells us how a Bharatanatian dancer should dance.
The demon beneath the feet of Natraj shows that ignorance is beneath his feet. In this hand fire (power of destruction) means the lifted hand that destroyer of evil shows that he is the Savior of all lives. The ring behind is the symbol of the universe. The drum in His hand is the symbol of the origin of life.
These are the main things that Nataraj idol and celestial dance poses. A rare type of orgasm is seen in Melakadambur temple about 32 km away from here. In this caracoil, the Nataraj dances on a bull and circulates the structure of the God, this is a sail art being placed in this temple.
Chidambaram is also referred to in various works such as Thilai (after the earlier Thilai forest which is now located), Perumptrapuliyur or Vyagrapuram (in honor of Saint Vyagrapathar). The temple is considered located in the heart of Lotus. Cosmos” : the big heart lotus place. The place where God performed his dance of joy, Anand Thandavam – a place just south of “Thirumultaneshwar Temple”, today Ponnambalam/Porsabai (Pon means Sona, Ambalam/Sabai) Earth Manch) Lord Shiva’s abode in His dance form. That is why God is also called Sabhanayakar, which means God of the stage.
This gold roof platform is the womb of Chidambaram temple and holds God in three forms:
- “Form” – The human form as the presence of Lord Nataraj, called Gross Thirumeni
- “Semi-form” – Chandramauleshwar’s crystal gender, semi-anthropological form as gross flawless Thirumeni
- “Foelless” – Chidambara mystery as space, a vacant space within the womb, impeccable thirumeni
The Punch Booth Venue :
Chidambaram is one of the Panchabutha places where God is worshipped in the form of sky or agayam (“Punch” – which means five, booths – which means elements: Earth, Water, Fire, Air and Space and “Place” meaning Place).
Others are :
Ekambareshwar Temple in Kanchipuram, where God is worshiped as earth, Jambukeshwar Temple at Thiruvanaikwal in Tiruchirapalli, where God is worshipped as water Annamalaiyar Temple in Thiruvannamalai, where God’s worship as fire Kalahasti is done in Srikalahasti Temple, where God is worshipped as air/air. Chidambaram is also one of the five places where Lord Shiva performed his dance and all these places have platforms/ meetings. Apart from Chidambaram, those who have Por Sabai, others are Rathina Sabai in Thiruvalangadu (Rathinam – Manik / Red), Chitra Sabha at Kutralam (Picture – Painting), Rajath Sabha at Madurai Meenakshi Amman Temple (Rajatha) or Valley Ambalam / Valley – Silver) and Thamira Sabai, Nelleup Par Temple, Tirunelveli (Thamiram – Copper).