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THE HINDU article on Thiruneermalai temple

From: Venkatesh Elayavalli/DCOM (vke_at_cypress.com)
Date: Fri Jan 19 1996 - 09:21:21 PST

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Samprokshanam of Thiruneermalai temple

[Photo]
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Date: 12-01-1996 :: Pg: 31 :: Col: a

Cl: Religion

          In Thiruneermalai, a village 5 km west of Pallavaram, is
located one of Tamil Nadu's ancient temples. It is among the  108
places considered sacred by the Vaishnavites and has been sung in
praise by saint-poets Thirumangaialwar and Boodhathalwar.

        History   has   it  that  once   sage   Valmiki   reached
Thiruneermalai  (then going by the name Gandavanam) and atop  the
Thoyadri hill worshipped Lord Narayana in three forms  Ranganatha
in  the  reclining  posture, Narasimha in  sitting  position  and
Thiruvikrama  in  walking style; but he still felt  that  he  was
missing  something. Back at the foothill he realised what he  was
looking for. His earnest prayers were answered by the Lord.  And,
there  was his favourite ``Kalyana Raman'' giving him darshan  as
``Neervannan'' with Sita, Lakshmana, Sathrugna, Bharatha, Hanuman
and others.

        Later,  when Thirumangaialwar wanted to worship the  Lord
at the temple, the place was surrounded by a large sheet of water
and  he  waited  for  months  at  Kaliyanchavadi  (now  known  as
Karayanchavadi)  to have the access and the darshan.  Since  then
the  place  came  to  be mentioned  in  religious  literature  as
`Thiruneermalai'.

        It   is   believed   that  a   devotee   worshipping   at
Thiruneermalai will be endowed with the blessings which one would
receive  by  visiting  the four  sacred  places  of  Thirunarayur
(Natchiyarkoil),  Thiruvali,  Thirukkudanthai  (Kumbakonam)   and
Thirukovilur.

        This  ancient temple complex, comprising shrines  at  the
foothill  and  on  top of the 300 ft hillock,  is  frequented  by
devotees  not  only from the nearby villages and towns  but  also
from Madras. Now under the HR & CE administration, the temple  is
undergoing renovation at an estimated cost of Rs. 10 lakhs, to be
met mostly through contributions from devotees, according to  Mr.
T. Mohanasundaram, Executive Officer. The `samprokshanam' of  the
Neervannan  temple at the foothills is slated for February  2.  A
few weeks thereafter the consecration of the hill top temple will
be performed.



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