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Vishnu Mayam Jagat
Index Introduction
Chola Nadu  Tamil Nadu 
Thondai Nadu  Vada Nadu 
Malai Nadu Pandya Nadu
Divya Tirupathis
Temples Of India
Lord Siva To Be Adored The Devalayas Of Karnataka
Palani Dhandhayudhapani The Kovils Of Kerala
The Temples of North-West India Temples For The Triple Sects
Mata Kanakadurga of Vijayawada The Legend Of Mata Kanyaka Parameswari
The Temples Of North-East India Mantralya Mahakshetra
The Aalayas of Andhra Pradesh The Mandirs Of Maharastra
Mighty Atoms For Tiny Tots Lord Siva Of Sri Kalahasthi
Bhagawan Vithoba Of Pandharpur Bizarre Beliefs And Odd Traditions
Asoka Priyadarsin The Mother Of Melmaruvathur And Her Miracles
Vishnu Mayam Jagat Sarvam Sakti Mayam
The Temples Of Tamilnadu Hindu Ethos In Capsules - Vol I

Hindu Ethos In Capsules - Vol II

Hullo Tirupathi !
Uthuthshta Govinda Cum Jo Jo Mukunda The Miracles Of Gods For The Debacles Of Humans
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Thiruvananthapuram - Anantha Padmanabhaswamy Ambalam

Tiruvananthapuram - the old name of Trivandrum, like a gold mine exhilarates the heart, and feast the ears, at its very mention. In the past or present too. Such is the sweet music of this holy city, the august seat of Anantha Padmanabhaswamy. As is its melody, so is its glory. Nay, much more. For theists, the temple is a heaven. Vaishnavates, a Bhutalaswarga; the Maharajas of Travancore, the most venerated private puja Mandir cum durbar hall, presided over by Sri Anantha Padmanabhaswamy to guiding their every movement. Though the Lord appears in yoganidra - deep sleep reclining on the thousand headed, comfortably-coiled, soft, supple fleecy lithesome body of Adisesha, he is ever wakeful to the goings-on in and out of the palace.

The sacred name - Thiruvananthapuram admits two meaningful interpretations. It means the place of Anantha - the divine serpent couch of Sri Mahavishnu. As Anantha is one of the holy names of Lord Vishnu, it applies equally to that Highest Divinity also. So it is the abode of both Adisesha and its creator Mahavishnu. Being the seat of Anantha Padmanabhaswamy, lying on the serpent of Anantha, this thirtha kshetra has many enviable plus points, responsible for luring theists in thousands throughout the year. It is this Anantha Padmanabhaswamy, who shrank from his 13 km long form to the present 10 feet length at the request of Diwakaramuni; it is this temple, which is so firmly entwined with the fortunes of the kings of Travancore that they styled themselves as the Padmanabhadasas, after dedicating their entire kingdom to the deity in the true spirit of scriptural injunctions; it is to this Divinity, Tutu brahmin priests alone are appointed according to divine command for performing pujas; it is to this holy kshetra called Sayanadorapuram Balarama visited during his Bhupradakshana in Dwaparayuga, thriving then as a great centre bf pilgrimage; it is here, of all the ancient biggest shrines in the world, the presiding deity is to be seen through three doors - face from the southern door, feet from another at the end and nabhi from the middle door, it is to the making of the imposing temple flag staff, elephants performed,- a colossal feat of transporting the huge teak wood log without allowing it touch the ground, all along from a forest, 45 km off the temple; it is this holy kshetra visited by many illustrious Vaishnavate saints, like Nammalwar etc; it is this sacred place, elaborately described in the Skanda and Padma Puranas as a highly venerated thirtha along with others, like Venkatadri, Mathura etc. of immense spiritual significance; it is this shrine's Uttupura -free feeding centre that fed thousands of brahmins throughout the year for centuries; it is this temple that withstood the onslaughts of iconoclasts several times, and emerged in greater splendour soon after the clashes were hushed; it is this temple that has been preserving old traditions in their pristine form, despite a tremendous western impact on the adorers, and it is the biggest, holiest and grandest of the Kerala temples sculpturally, architecturally, historically and reputably too.

The Temple

This architectural piece of superb craftsmanship, occupying a spacious 7 acre-land lies on an elevated part of the city and is visible to the visitors for miles afar. Surrounded by massive prakaras with a tall l0lfoot-high, seven-storied tower of pyramidal shape, it faces east, and has a flight of broad stone steps to reach the sannidhi. The elaborately and intricately sculptured Pouranic figures adorning the tower are a treat to the connoisseurs and detain them for hours, whereas the asthikas bow to them seeing living gods in them. Crossing the portal, we enter the broad open oblong corridor, supported, by 324 pillars, called the walk of the God's procession. The pillars and the ceiling are fittingly beautified with excellent sculpture. The grand 80 foot-high circular golden flag staff lying at the end of this covered walk is adorned with the image of Garuda, the Lord's vehicle. Kulashekhara Mantap bearing the exquisite sculptures lies to its south. Then comes the two-storied rectangular inner shrine richly ornamented with gables - the characteristic features of the Kerala architecture. The garbha griha is beautified with Hemakota Vimana. Its outer walls are beautified with mural paintings, depicting many legendary tales. There are several mini-shrines dedicated to adorable gods and goddesses, like Krishna, Sastha, Siva, Narasimha, Vyasa, Kshetrapala, Rama, Lakshmana, Sita etc. Lord Ganesha's icon with its prominent pot belly, matching his deminutive stout limbs attracts everyone most. The sculptors's artistry in the making of Vishnu image with four hands and Lakshmi sitting under the canopy of a tree peeps at beholders and bends heads in homage to the Lord and the makers too. For this and more, credit goes to the illustrious Maharaja Marthanda Varma, whose devotion is second to none but to itself. To be true, history has not so far produced another specimen king of Kerala to stand beside, or behind him. He is a unique gem of purest ray serene, dazzling among the royal patrons of art and architecture. The cause of his matchless passion for construction and faith in God, and love of fellowmen deserves reverent study. The temple tanks are called Matsya thirtha, Padma thirtha and Varaha thirtha.


The temple celebrates two annual festivals on a grand scale in such an impressive way that the whole Vaishnavate community living all over India participates lustily, besides common folk in lakhs. Each is a 10 day festival - one falling in the month of Meenam, corresponding to March-April, and the other in the month of Tula i.e. October month.

It can be reached from railway station or bus stand, the Kerala' Capital - Trivandram from autos or by walk even.


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About Malainadu Divya Tirupathis
Adbhuthanarayana Ambalam
Tirukatkaraiappan Ambalam
Imaiyavarappan Ambalam
Narayana Ambalam
Mayappiran Ambalam
Tirumulikkaathan Ambalam
Tirukkuralappan Ambalam
Panbanaiyyappan Ambalam
Kolappiran Ambalam
Anantha Padmanabhaswamy Ambalam
Adikesavap Perumal  Ambalam
Tirukuralappan Ambalam
Vuyavanda Perumal Ambalam
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