Monday, 23 April 2018

The Sacred 3500 Years Old Mango Tree (Sthala Vriksha) - Sri Ekambareswarar Temple - Kanchipuram

Ekambareswarar Temple is one of the famous Hindu temples dedicated to Lord Shiva, located in Kanchipuram in the state of Tamil Nadu, India. Kanchipuram. It is one of the five major Shiva temples or Pancha Bootha Sthalams (each representing a natural element) representing the element - Earth. The other four temples in this category are Thiruvanaikaval Jambukeswara (water), Chidambaram Natarajar (ether), Thiruvannamalai Arunachaleswara (fire) and Kalahasti Nathar (wind). All of the four revered Saivite Saints have sung the glories of this temple. This vast temple is one of the most ancient in India having been in existence since at least 600 AD. Second century AD Tamil poetry speaks of Kama kottam, and the Kumara kottam (currently the Kamakashi Amman temple and the Subramanya temple). The existing structure then, was pulled down and rebuilt by the Pallava Kings. The Cholas, who came later, also made several contributions to the temple.

3500 Years Old Mango Tree
3500 Years Old Mango Tree
There is a Mango tree in the temple dating back to 3,500 years. The divine tree with its four branches representing the four Vedas yields fruits in four flavours – sweet, citric, spicy and bitter. Legend has it that once Parvati was doing tapas under the temple's ancient Mango Tree. In order to test her devotion Lord Shiva sent fire on her. Goddess Parvati prayed to her brother, Lord Vishnu, for help. In order to save her, he took the Moon from Lord Shiva's head and showed the rays which then cooled down the tree as well as Parvati.

The Mango (mangifera indica) tree in Kanchipuram Ekambareswarar temple has different types of fruits in different branches. The four branches in the ancient mango tree yielded mongoes in four different tastes and shapes viz. sweet, sour, bitter and astringent (thuvarpu in Tamil) taste. According to another legend, it is believed that Parvati worshipped Shiva in the form of a Prithivi Lingam (or a Lingam improvised out of sand), under a mango tree. Legend has it that the neighboring Vegavati river overflowed and threatened to engulf the Shiva Lingam and that Parvati or Kamakshi embraced the Lingam. Shiva touched by the gesture materialized in person and married her. In this context he is referred to as Tazhuva kuzhainthaar ("He who melted in Her embrace") in Tamil.

Moreover, the Deity derives its name from the Mango tree from the words Eka-Amra-Natha, meaning the Lord of the Mango tree. The path to the tree also has a Shiva Lingam made of around 1008 small lingas.

Temple Timings:

Morning Timings : 06:00 AM to 12:30 PM
Evening Timings : 04:00 PM to 08:30 PM
On Special Occasions timings might differ.

Temple Location:

Sri Ekambareswar Temple is considered one of the most popular and largest temples in Kanchipuram. It is situated on a huge area and is dedicated to Lord Shiva, in the form of Prithvilingam. The temple comprises an intricately carved 1000-pillared hall, 5 spacious corridors, massive outer stonewall and a 57 metres high Gopuram. Some 1,008 Shivalingams adorn the inner walls of the temple. A 3,500 years old mango tree is located in the courtyard that yields four different kinds of mangoes. This absolutely blissful Shiva temple is located in car street, Periya Kanchipuram.

Temple Address & Contact Details:

Sri Ekambareswarar Temple,
Pin Code: 631 502,
Tamil Nadu.
Phone : 044 27222084 ; 044 27232083

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