The Jambukeswarar Akhilandeswari Temple is situated near Sri Ranganathaswamy Temple in Tiruchirapalli of Tamilnadu. This shrine signifies the presence of 5 natural elements and also represents Water. Hence known as Pancha Bhootha Sthalam. The Jambukeshwarar (Lord Shiva) inside the shrine was worshipped by Goddess Parvathi, Spider, and Elephant. The Shiva Linga inside the shrine was made by Goddess Parvathi using water of Cauvery river. One can witness a water stream beneath the Linga hence the Lord is famous as "Appu Linga" and this place is known as Appu Theertham. The consort of Jambukeshwarar is known as Goddess Akhilandeshwari. Here Akhilandeshwari means 'Ruler of the Universe' (Akilam – Universe, Aanda – Ruler, Eshwari – Goddess).
Jambukeswarar Temple Tiruchirapalli Tamilnadu
The Temple is currently under the administration of the HRCE Department, Government of TamilNadu. And the day to day affairs is vested with an officer of the rank of Assistant Commissioner.
Legend of this Temple:
This Temple was built by Emperor Kocengannan Chola more than 1,800 years ago. The Temple has Inscriptions which date from this period. This temple is situated in Coromandel between two rivers, Cauvery in the south, coleroon in North.
According to the mythological scriptures, Devi Parvathi in Her Incarnation as Goddess Akhilandeshwari had performed penance in the Jambu forest (Thiruvanaikoil). She made a Lingam using the water of river Cauvery, and installed it under the Venn Naaval tree (the Venn Naaval tree on top of Saint Jambu) and commenced her worship. Hence this Lingam is known as Appu Lingam (Water Lingam). Pleased by her penance Lord Shiva gave his darshan to Goddess Akhilandeshwari and taught Her Siva Gnana. Devi Akhilandeswari took Upadesa (lessons) facing East from Lord Shiva, who stood facing west. Hence this temple is also revered as a Upadesa Sthalam.
Another legend says, A spider, which worshipped Lord Jambukeswarar in its previous life, was blessed to born as Kochengat cholan in its next birth. He constructed this temple about 2500 years ago. Uma Deviyar, Thirumal, Brahman, Attathikku Balakhar, Attavasukkal, Jambu Munivar, Gowthamar, Aghasthiyar, a spider known as Gananatharul maliyavan, an elephant named Pushbadhanthan, Suryan and Chandran attained glory by worshipping at this temple.
Another legend says, once upon a time an Elephant worshipped Lord Jambukeshwarar and was blessed by Him, so this temple came to be known as ‘Thiruvanaikka’. As Lord Shiva is seated below Jambu tree at this temple, it got its name Jambukeswaram. When Goddess Ahilandeswari penanced here, Lord Siva satisfied by her prayer blessed her. For this reason, this temple is also known as Gnanakshethram.
Jambukeshwarar Worshipped by Goddess Parvathi, Spider, and an Elephant
Significance of this Temple:
The Temple is one of the 275 Paadal Petra Sthalams, where all the four most revered Nayanmars (Saivite Saints) have sung hymns in the glory of the Deity in the Temple.
Since Devi Akhilandeswari worshipped Lord Shiva in this temple, even today at noon the Priest dresses like a female and performs Puja to Lord Jambukeswarar along with the Holy Cow (A specific breed of black cow, called Karam Pasu is brought to the Temple for puja). As the Devi was like a student and Lord Jambukeswara like a Guru (teacher) in this temple, there is no Thiru Kalyanam (marriage) conducted in this temple for Lord Shiva and Devi Parvathi, unlike the other Shiva temples.
Devotees worshipping here are blessed both in this birth and in next birth. One who worships Goddess Ahilandeswari will be blessed with good education and intelligence, marriage and wishes for the child are fulfilled. As they come around the fifth divine wall known as "Thiruneetran thirumathil one gets their wishes fulfilled.
Architecture of this Temple:
The Shrine of Lord Prasanna Vinayaka (Lord Ganesha) stands opposite to the Devi Shrine and represent the shape of the Pranava Mantra called "OM". This temple is endowed with 5 praharams (corridor) and it is said that Lord Shiva himself built the 5th praharam, by appearing in the form of Spider, it is known as ‘Thiruneettan thirumathil’. Thus this is the same temple where Lord Shiva blessed a spider and elephant to attain moksha.
Prasanna Vinayagar shrine inside of Jambukeswarar Temple
There is a mandapam which houses Monolithic stone pillars (made from single stone), it is situated at the entrance of Aariyavittan tower in 3rd Praharam. Stone chains and 12 zodiac signs are beautifully carved on these pillars. One can find artistic sculptural works on the 1000 pillars present inside the hall and various parts of the temple. In the year 1910, 2 big temple cars were made for god & goddess. ‘Coratham’ (used for procession) and several wooden Vahanas are present in this temple. There are 156 Inscriptions found in this temple. Inscriptions of King Madurai Konda Parakesari varman paranthaka cholan is the oldest among them. These inscriptions give the information about renovations and wealth of this temple. The temple also houses a sacred pond (pushkarni) inside the temple.
Temple pond of Jambukeswarar Akhilandeswari Temple
Famous poets who have sung hymns in this shrine:
Some noted poets like Thirugnana Sambanthar, Arunagirinathar, Appar, Sundarar, Iyyadigal kadawarkon, Thayumanavar have enchanted the glory of Lord Jambukeshwarar with their literary works. Kalamega Pulavar was blessed by the Goddess with the talent to write poems at this temple.
The temple till date implements the Honourable Tamilnadu Cheif Minister's "Food Donation" program that provides food to 50 persons on daily basis.
Here is the list of some of the important festivals that are celebrated on occasions: Vasantha Urchavam, Aadipuram, Navarathiri, Thai Poosam, Brahmotchavam, Car festival and Panchaprakara and Car festival.
Car Festival of Jambukeswarar Temple Tiruchirapalli TN
Temple Pooja Timings:
1. Ushakkala Pooja- 6:30 A.M to 7:30 A.M
2. Kaalasandhi Pooja- 8:00 A.M to 8:45 A.M
3. Uchhakala Pooja- 11:00 A.M to 12:00 P.M
4. Saayaraksha Pooja- 5:00 P.M to 5:45 P.M
5. Ardhajama Pooja- 9:00 P.M
Arulmigu Jambukeswarar Akhilandeswari Temple,
Trichy District - 620005
Phone - 0431 2230257
E-Mail - firstname.lastname@example.org
How to Reach:
By Road: Thiruvaanaikkaval is situated in the middle of Trichy and thiruvarangam about 320 km on Chennai & Kanyakumari national highway. The temple is located 8 km from central bus stand and 3 km from Chathiram bus stand trichy. There are plenty of Government and private bus services available to reach Thiruvaanaikkaval.
By Train: The nearest railway station to reach the temple is Trichy junction (8km).
By Air: The nearest airport is situated at Trichy (15 km).
Image Courtesy: http://www.thiruvanaikavaltemple.tnhrce.in