Phew! Finally getting down to post the Kanchipuram travel tales. Though it was just a day trip, we have enough memories to last us a lifetime, and so much more to assimilate. 🙂
I could have covered all that we saw in 1 post, but wanted to dedicate the whole of this first one to one of the most beautiful temples that I have ever seen. I loved this temple so much that I was willing to forego seeing anything else and spending all the time at hands there. I surely plan to do that sometime. What a marvel this one is!
The Kailasanathar temple, supposed to be the oldest structure in Kanchi and one of the earliest temples of South India, houses all the 64 aspects of Lord Shiva, and is apparently the only edifice of it’s kind in the entire country.
A circumambulatory passage with a symbolic meaning is situated surrounding the deity, a mighty and glorious Shiva Linga. In order to make the circumambulation, there is a narrow entry passage which devotees must crawl through. Passing through the narrow passage is indicative of passage through life. The exit is again through another narrow pit symbolic of death.The crawling and coming out of the passage indicates the coming out of the mother’s womb.
The temple was commissioned to be built by Rajasimha Pallava and has an interesting legend associated with it’s consecration. A poor Shiva devotee by name Poosalar desired to a build a shrine for his beloved Lord in Tinnanur. Unable to afford to buy even a single stone, he chose his heart of the site and built the structure including the sanctum with this mind. Since the consecration of Poosalar’s temple coincided with that of the Kailasanathar temple, there was an aerial voice informing the Raja to postpone the consecration by a day! Such is the power of faith.