Kumara Kottam

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Location : Kanchipuram, Tamil Nadu
Deity Worshipped: Lord Muruga
Also Called: Devasenapathisam
Festivals Celebrated: Adi Krithigai, Kanda Shasti

The temple town of Kanchipuram has several Shaivite and Vaishnavite temples glorified by the Tevaram hymns of the Nayanmars and the Prabandam hymns of the Alwars. Kumara Kottam is located in between the Kamakshi and Ekambreswara temples in the Somaskanda formation in the town of Kanchipuram. It is a well-visited temple with two Prakarams and a complete pantheon of parivara devatas enshrined in their respective shrines.

About The Temple
In the sanctum, Muruga is in a seated pose. Valli, Deivayani are absent here, but their festival idols are kept here. In accordance with the function of Creation he has assumed, his right arm is in Abaya pose, the upper hand holds the rosary, the lower left arm is on the thigh in Katyavailambita pose with the left arm holding the Kamandalam. The posture is also called "Brahma chattam". Here only honey is used for ablutions. When we come out after worshipping the main deity, we can see the festival idols. In the front part of the temple in the mirror, room one can see the marble figure of Ramalinga Swamigal.

In the inside Prakaram is Santana Ganapati and on an artificial hill to the north is Dandayuthapani. Look at the Ardha Mandapam. That is the sanctum of Devasenapathisar. In this circuit to the south facing Vinayagar is the image of Kachiappar. Here is Arumugam as festival idol facing south. Next is Bairavar. Next to him devotees can have a Darshan of Vishnu.

It was he who begged Lord Shiva to release Brahma, when Muruga imprisoned him. His heart melted at the fate of Brahma and hence here he got the name "Urugum Ullathan". Somaskandar, Nava virar, Muthukumarsamy and Gajavalli - all these festival idols are kept here. In the eastern part of this circuit Valli in the north end and Deivayani in the south end are stationed. In the middle is Navagraha sannadhi.

Legend Connected With The Temple
Kumara Kottam is located between Kamakottam and Ekambaranatha shrine. While all the Devas paid homage to Muruga, only Brahma neglected and went on his way. This naturally irked Muruga and he summoned Brahma and asked for the meaning of 'OM'. Brahma could give no proper reply to this sacred word. Muruga chastised him as to how he can administer the function of Creation without knowing the meaning of the word 'OM'. Muruga imprisoned Brahma and took over the work of Creation himself.

The Devas of the celestial world rushed to Lord Shiva, father of Muruga and complained about the action of Muruga. Lord Shiva sent for Muruga and asked him whether he knew the meaning. Promptly retorted Muruga that he will explain the meaning if only Lord Shiva approached him as a disciple. Lord Shiva took Muruga on his shoulders - a higher position - from where Muruga whispered the meaning in the ears of Lord Shiva. Lord Shiva was delighted. But whatever it is, the sin of not respecting his father laid on him and to get rid of that he was asked to worship a Linga (also spelt as lingam). Muruga established a Linga between his mother's place and father's abode (Kamakottam and Ekambaram) and worshipped it. This Kumarakottam is also called "Devasenapathisam".

Worship Services
The priests here are said to come down the lineage of Kachiappa Shivachariyar associated with the "Skanda Puranam" (also spelt as Purana). The Kartikai asterism each month attracts large crowds.

'Visaka' star belongs to Lord Muruga and in the month of Vaikasi on full moon day, a great festival takes place for Muruga. Besides this, Adi Krithigai, Kanda Shasti and some other festivals too are performed for Muruga here. Crowds gather on every Tuesday, that day being a favorite for Lord Muruga.

HOW TO GET THERE

Air: Chennai is the nearest airport to Kanchipuram. One can take flights for most of the important Indian cities and important cities abroad from Chennai.
Rail:Trains for Kanchipuram are available from Chennai, Chengalpattu, Tirupati, and Bangalore.
Road: Kanchipuram is 75-km away from Chennai and is well connected by a network of roads. There are frequent buses from the city to Chennai, Bangalore and other places. For local transportation bicycles can be hired from the shops near the bus stand. Cycle Rickshaws and auto rickshaws are also available on hire to move in and around the city.

WHERE TO STAY

Accommodation is available at the moderate class and small budgeted hotels, lodges and choultries in Kanchipuram.



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