Wednesday, 29 November 2017

SRI STHAMBESWARAR ROCK CUT CAVE TEMPLE, SEEYAMANGALAM, NEAR VANDAVASI, THIRUVANNAMALAI.

26th November 2017.
Visit to this cave temple was a part of Heritage Visit to Vallam, Seeyamngalam, Thirumalpadi,  Kanchipuram temples, caves and Heritage structures. After visiting Thirumalpadi Sri Ranganathar Temple headed towards this rock cut Cave Temple at Seeyamangalam. Visited this cave temple earlier along with R.E.A.C.H. Foundation, a part of epigraphy field Visit.  11 heritage enthusiasts led by Mr Venkatesh visited this Rock cut cave temple on 26th November 2017. It was drizzling when we landed and stopped after we came out of the cave. When we reached it was around 13.00 hrs and the Gurukal was kind enough to open the temple and explained us.

Iraivan :  Sri Sthambeswarar
Iraivi    : Sri Maragathavalli
Some of the important features of this temple are…

An early period Vinayagar facing east at the entrance of  Gate welcomes us. The temple is facing west with a 4 tier Rajagopuram on the north side. There is a mandapam abutting the rajagopuram. There are two  empty shrines built before the muka mandapam. Nandhimandapam and Palipedam are in front of Mukamandapam.

The sanctum sanctorum consists of sanctum and arthamandapam ( both are rock cut cave ), a maha mandapam and a muka mandapam ( are built separately at a latter stage. ). A 3 tier vimana like rajagopuram is also there above sanctum rock.

Ambal,  Bairavar, Vinayagar, Chandikeswarar and Navagrakas are in the mahamandapam.  There is also a Vamana statue in the mandapam. A Murugan Sannadhi is on a small boulder with steps chiseled on the rock to climb.

Dwarabalakas are at the entrance of  cave sanctum. The left side dwarabalakas head gear has the horn and it was told that Yema guards Shiva in the form of Dwarabalaka. The mandapa pillars has the relief  of Natarajar, Rishabandhikar and warriors. The details of Natarajar relief is worth to watch. The warriors face expressions  are like before and after war. It was not known how the Shiva Linga was moved inside the sanctum with a small door way. 
  
As per the legend Shiva is in the form of sthambam and Gurukkal showed us a sthambam in the midst of a small lake by the side of this rock cut cave temple ( This is a menhir as per the experts, which will be written separately ). As per the inscriptions this rock cut cave was excavated during 7th century by Mahendravarman – I ( 600 to 630 AD). This Rock cut cave temple is under the control of Archeological Survey of India ( ASI ).

TEMPLE TIMINGS:
The temple will be kept opened between 07.00 hrs to 10.00 hrs.

CONTACT DETAILS:
Rajasekara Gurukkal, mobile number 9578160058, may be contacted  for further details.

HOW TO REACH:
Seeyamangalam is about 130 KM from Chennai and 66 KM fom Kanchipuram and 25 km from Vandavasi via Mazhaiyur and Desur.
Town bus Route No 144  from Vandavasi to Gingee and a private Bus from Desur to Gingee  passes through the Village and this Jain cave is about a KM from the Village.
Auto is also available from Desur.

LOCATION:CLICK HERE







Rishabhanthikar

Dwarabalakas, similar to Vallam rock cut cave 
head crown with horns - may be soolam but the Grukkal claims as Yeman.
It was told that this relief of Natarajar in Anandha thandavam is the first and earliest. Natarajar is not dancing on muyalakan and cobra is on the ground with its raised hood. While one Shiva gana is playing a musical instrument muzhavu sitting on a stool and other is worshiping Lord Shiva. Lord Shiva is with 4 hands, the upper hands holds fire and Mazhu and lower right hand in abhaya hastham and other in dola hastham.  The waving of hair to the rhythm of dance was beautifully chiseled.   


Vamana statue

The warriors expression before and after the war

 The warriors expression before and after the war

Murugan temple
The Sthambam in the middle of the lake ( Experts of the opinion that this must be a  menhir )
---OM SHIVAYA NAMA---