Saturday, 6 January 2018

Unique Procession Deity Of Lord Narasimha - Sri Narasingam Yoga Narasimha Perumal Temple - Yanaimalai, Madurai

The cave temple at Yanaimalai, eight kilometres from Madurai, on the road to Melur. This place, though not a `Divyadesam' sanctified by Azhwars' hymns, is situated between two holy places — Azhagarkoil in the north and Thirumohur in the east. There is a hill in the shape of an elephant adjoining it, hence the name Yanaimalai. The Yoga Narasimha Perumal temple is situated to its west in a village called Narasingam. It was built by Maran Kari, a minister of the Pandya king Jatila Varman, also known as Komaran Sadaiyan. Thiru Mogur Kaalamegha Perumal makes his annual trip to this temple on Maasi Pournami to enact Gajendra Moksham episode.

oga Narasimha Perumal Temple Raja Gopuram
Yoga Narasimha Perumal Temple Raja Gopuram
According to the Sthala Puranam of Madurai Koodal Azhagar Temple, known as Koodal Manmiyam, published 80 years ago, sage Romasa had installed the Narasimha idol in a cave in the hill. And the 87th chapter of the Uthara Kandam of the Brahmanda Puranam says the sage did penance on the banks of the tank called Padma Thadagam, as it was filled with lotus flowers, near the Gajagiri Kshethram (the present Yanaimalai) seeking progeny, and wanted the Lord to appear in His Narasimhavatara. The Lord appeared as Ugra Narasimha and the heat that emanated from Him was unbearable. Even the celestials were affected by it and they all came to Gajagiri Kshethram and prayed to the Lord to calm down. The Lord could not be pacified and then they sought the help of Prahlada, whose arrival quietened Him to some extent. They prayed to Goddess Mahalakshmi, who also took Her abode in Him as Narasingavalli, after which He became Yoga Narasimha. The Lord later granted the boon sought by the sage.

Yoga Narasimha Perumal Temple Complex
Yoga Narasimha Perumal Temple Complex
According to another legend, Lord Siva was afflicted by Brahmahathi Dosha after He plucked one of the five heads of Lord Brahma. He was relieved of it after He took bath in the holy water source here, also known as Chakra Theertham, and He worshipped Lord Narasimha. It is believed that taking a dip in the Chakra Theertham, which is near the temple, rids one of all sins. The Thiruvilaiyadal Puranam, written first by Perumbatrapuliyur Nambi and later by Paranjothi Munivar, says that the Chozha king, who could not win the battle against the Pandya ruler, sought the help of Jains. They created a giant elephant using their mystic powers and directed it to kill the Pandya king and destroy his capital. But the Pandya prayed to Lord Siva to save him and his capital. The Lord sent to him the `Narasinga Asthram,' which turned the elephant into a hill.

Yoga Narasimha Perumal Temple Complex
Yoga Narasimha Perumal Temple Complex
Inscriptions belonging to the rule of later Pandyas, especially Maravarman Sundara Pandya I, are also available but most of them are incomplete. The Yoga Narasimha idol at the temple is six feet high, sculpted on the hill itself. There are Mahamandapam, Garuda Mandapam and Mukhamandapam of the Pandya period. The shrine of Goddess Narasingavalli faces south, at the entrance. Inscriptions say that there was also an `agraharam' for Vedic Brahmins, but there is no trace of it now. The temple bustles with activity during the Narasimha Jayanthi, and on Masi Makam day, when Sri Kalamega Perumal of Thirumohur visits this place for the `Gajendra Moksham' festival.

Yoga Narasimha Perumal Temple Main Deity
Yoga Narasimha Perumal Temple Main Deity
The temple is unique for its utsava idol of Narasimha in a standing posture with the Sudarsana and Panchajanya in His upper two hands while the left lower hand holds the Gathai and the right is in the Abhaya Hastha posture. A similar Narasimha idol is worshipped atParikkal.

Yoga Narasimha Perumal Temple Procession Deity
Yoga Narasimha Perumal Temple Procession Deity
The fort around Azhagarkoil is also known as Iranyan Kottai, and even now a stone idol of Lord Yoga Narasimha is found atop its entrance. A big idol of Yoga Narasimha, found in the outer Prakaram of the Azhagarkoil temple, known as `Jwala Narasimhar,' is said to be ferocious. To pacify Him, regular Thirumanjanam is performed with gingelly oil. A hole is found in the ceiling above the idol which is believed to let out the fire emanating from it. The foot of the hill, where the Narasimha temple is located is known as Narasingam or Hasthigiri or Gajagiri.

Temple Timings:

Morning Timings: 07:00 AM to 12:00 PM
Evening Timings: 04:00 PM to 08:00 PM
On Special Occasions timings might differ.

Temple Location:

Located 8kms East of Madurai off the Melur Highway and 4kms North of the Thiru Mogur Kaalamegha Perumal Divya Desam at the foot of the huge Yanaimalai (elephant hill) is the Yoga Narasimha temple in Narasingam (Y. Narasingam). This place is referred to as the Gaja Giri Kshetram and this temple is known as ‘Kodavarai Koil’ signifying the construction of the temple by breaking the huge piece of rock. Narasingam is a village located 8 km from Madurai on the road to Melur. It is named for the nearby cave temple dedicated to Yoga Narasimha Perumal, at the foot of the Yanaimalai hills.

Yoga Narasimha Perumal Temple Pond
Yoga Narasimha Perumal Temple Pond

Temple Address & Contact Details:

Sri Narasingam Yoga Narasimha Perumal Temple,
Yanaimalai, Othakadai,
Madurai,
Pin Code : 625 107,
Tamil Nadu.
Phone : 0452 2422750 ; 0452 2422158 ; 94864 68780 ; 98654 88821

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