Monday, April 16, 2012

Tamil Nadu with Quilley - 12-13 March 2012 - Thiruchendur to Rameshwaram

After Manappad, we stopped near the Thiruchendur temple at the Valle Caves where we got in line and eventually went down into a very small dark temple carved into the rock below and received a blessing from the pujari there.  The scarves you see hanging from the shrubbery against the wall are all prayers for children.

At the Thiruchendur temple complex

Leaving Thiruchendur, we headed toward Rameshwaram, which eventually meant turning out onto a peninsula that reaches toward Shri Lanka.

A fishing village we could see from a bridge

We decided to see how far we could walk toward Shri Lanka.  This is Davina and Quilley walking and talking.

We saw these ice blocks being broken up and put into fishing boats.

Fish, drying in the sun.

As I recall, we had checked into our hotel to find that a wedding was scheduled there, and oh how noisy it became.  So, we fled the hotel to poke around.  Here we are at Kothandaramar Temple nearby.

A large number of devotees visit Tamil Nadu's ancient Thilakeshwar Temple, popularly known as Navagraha Temple at Devipattinam, a coastal village located 70 kilometers from Rameshwaram Dhaam.

Legend has it that prince Rama in-exile had prayed to Navagrahas (nine planets) at Devipattinam before embarking on his journey to Lanka (the present day Sri Lanka), the then kingdom of demon King Ravana, who had abducted Rama's wife Sita.
Rama placed nine stones as symbols of Navagrahas or nine planets, at Devipattanam. Those stones can still be watched partly submerged in the water close to the beach near a bathing place (Ghat) of the Thilakeshwar Temple or the Navagraha Temple.
It is said that Rama performed the ritual so that the nine planets would shed their auspicious light on him in his battle with Ravana to rescue Sita.
As per Hindu mythology, the planetary conditions have a major effect on humans' lives and thus by worshipping them their impact can be reduced.
"This has been constructed under the sea by Lord Rama. While Lord Rama was worshipping here, he was disturbed by waves. He prayed to Lord Vishnu. Lord Vishnu stopped the waves so as to help Rama perform his Puja (prayers)," said Renganathan Iyengar, a temple priest.
Since that time Devipattinam drew popularity for being a place to get relief from all kinds of adverse planetary conditions by performing the suggested rituals.  by Jayakumar for BoldSky

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This post should end with the big temple at Rameshwaram.  But, again, we were racially discriminated against and refused entry. 

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