Anantha Padmanabhaswamy Temple

About The Temple

Anantha Padmanabhaswamy Temple at Chennai. Tamil Nadu

The Anantha Padmanabhaswamy Temple is situated near the bus stand in Adyar, in Chennai the capital of the state of Tamil Nadu. The 50-year-old temple was built by the Adyar Hind Religious Society on a plot of land that was donated the Maharaja of Travancore His Highness Sri Padmanabha Daasa.

Influence religion and culture

As per the request of Lord Vishnu, there were three doors made to enable the darshan of the Lord. The three doors of the Anantha Padmanabha Swamy temple represent life, birth and death. You can get a glimpse of Lord Vishnu’s face through the first door that stands for “Sthithi” or preservation and protection for the soul provided by Lord Vishnu. Through the second door, you can have a darshan of Lord Brahma, who is seated on a Lotus that originates from the navel of Lord Vishnu. It stands for “Shrishti” or creation. Lord Brahma is the creator whose form is seen through the second door. The third door is used to get a view of the lord’s feet. It is the wish of every person that the Lord will allow his soul a place at his feet after death.

The presiding deity

The presiding deity of this temple is Lord Vishnu, who is surrounded by 33 crore demigods and goddesses inside the sanctum sanctorum. The temple and its deity are replica of the original Vishnu temple at Trivandrum. Here, the presiding deity Lord Vishnu is the centerpiece of attraction. On either side of the presiding deity sit his two consorts. Other gods and goddesses are standing behind Lord Vishnu’s reclining figure. The right hand of the Lord hovers over a Shiva Lingam that depicts protection of the Lord provided for everyone.

Details of idol

The idol of Lord Vishnu lies on the coiled body of the holy serpent Adisesha. The Lord is reclining in the posture of the Anatha Sayanam or eternal sleep on the coils of Adisesha, who has five head on five hoods. Each hood represents one of the Panchabhootas or the five elements which are Earth, Fire, Wind Water and Space. A lotus rises from the navel of the reclining idol on which Lord Brahma is seated. The right hand of the Lord rests on a Shiva Lingam while the images of the lord’s two consorts Goddess Bhoodevi and Goddess Sridevi are seated in front of the idol.

Other nearby shrines

The temple complex has quite a few shrines other than the main shrine of the presiding deity. These shrines are dedicated to various Gods and Goddesses namely Goddess Durga, Goddess Lakshmi, Lord Garuda, Lord Sudharshana, Lord Anjayena, Lord Narshimha and Lord Vinayagar. There is also a shrine dedicated to the Navagrahas or nine planets inside the temple complex.

Rituals and worship

Lord Vishnu is worshipped in this temple by thousands of people who come here every year. The main theme of the puja consists of three stages that a person has in his life. Devotees worship the face of the Lord, which symbolizes Birth, through the first door. They worship life or the image of Brahma through the second door. The third door stands for salvation that can be obtained by finding a place at the feet of the Lord. These three periods in the life of a man are mainly worshipped here. Only people belonging to the Hindu faith are allowed to enter the temple premises. People are not allowed to smoke or chew betel leaves inside the temple complex.

Special festivals and events

The special occasions or festivals connected to this temple are Srivaikuntha Ekadasi, Brahmotsavam and Navarathri. The Srivaikuntha Ekadeshi is held during the months of December or January. This festival is also called Moksha Ekadeshi as the worship done during this period can help you achieve moksha or salvation. Devotees celebrate Brahmotsavam with much fanfare during the months of February and March. The festival begins with the worship of Lord Ganesh. The festival lasts for ten days when Lord Vishnu is taken out in processions through the streets. Navaratri is celebrated for nine days the months of September-October. Nava means nine and Ratri mean nights. As the name signifies, the festival is held for nine days and nights to commemorate the killing of Mahishashura by Goddess Durga. It is the greatest festival to be held with pomp and glory every tear. Other festivals comprise of Abhishekam, Rathotsavam, Sathanrayana, and many more that are held throughout the year.

Pilgrimage and tourism

Devotees from all over the country come to this temple to get the blessings of Lord Vishnu. They worship the Lord and the three aspects through the three doors and receive his blessings. Tourists from various countries and other parts of India also visit this temple to pray and worship The Supreme God.

Temple puja timings

As per the schedule set down in the Anantha Padmanabha Swamy Temple Timings, the temple is opened to the public at 6.00 a.m. every morning and is finally closed after 9.00 p.m. After opening the temple in the morning, the first puja that is performed is Pratha Kala at 7.00 a.m. After this, the Deepaarathanis is performed at 8.00 a.m. that is followed by the Utchi Kalam at 11.30 a.m. The recess in the afternoon is at 12.00 p.m. when the doors of the temple are closed. The temple again opens at 4.40 p.m. after which the Sayaratcha puja is held at 6.30 p.m. This is followed by Deeparathanai at 7.00 p.m. and Thertha Prasadam at 7.15 p.m. The temple closes at 9.00 in the evening for the final time.

How To Reach

Local taxis, state buses and auto rickshaws can take you to the Padmanabh Temple at Adyar, whose location is the southern portion of Chennai. Reaching Chennai is not a problem as it is very well connected by air, rail and road. The methods of arriving at Chennai are:

 

  • By Air - Chennai is connected to the main cities of the country like Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata, Bangalore and Hyderabad by domestic carriers. It also has an international airport where foreign airlines from various countries land with tourists from abroad.
  • By Rail - The city of Chennai is connected to the rest of country by the Southern Railway section of the Indian Railways. It has two stations called Central and Egmore Railway Stations. Trains coming from the northern, western and the southern parts of the country terminate at either of these two stations. The “Mass Rapid Transit System” or MRTS runs through the city and the stations that lie nearest to the temple are Indira Nagar, Kasturbai Nagar and Thiruvanmiyur.
  • By Road -The city is very well connected to various parts of the country by good wide roads. National highways from various parts of the country pass through the city, and some of them terminate at the city bus stand.

 

Nearby Attractions

Temples are the main attractions of this city along with other places that attract a large number of tourists and devotees from all over the world. Other than the Anantha Padmanabha Swamy Temple Adyar, the places you may be interested to see are:

  • Parthasarathy Temple – Lord Krishna is the main deity of this temple as he had been Lord Arjun’s charioteer during the Mahabharat war.
  • Adeeswar Temple – Lord Iyyappa is the principle deity here. The temple is a mirror image of the Sabari Mali temple in the star of Kerala.
  • Mangadu Kamakshiamman Temple – Mother Shakti is worshipped at the is temple.
  • Ayyappan Temple – Lord Ayyappan is the main deity of this temple.
  • Kapaleshwarar Temple - This temple is dedicated to Goddess Karpagambal or Goddess Parvati. It was built in the 7th century.
  • Thirumalai Tirupati Devasthanam Temple – People worship Lord Venkatachalapathi at this temple that is situated on the Tirumala Hillocks on the seventh peak of the Venkata Hills.
  • Sri Vadapalani Andavar Temple – Disciples of Lord Muruga, come to pray to him at this temple. Celebrities also come here to pray which has made this temple very famous.
  • Shirdi Sai Baba Temple – The memory of Sai Baba of Shirdi is epitomized by this temple.
  • Mathyakailash Temple – Lord Ganesh is the presiding deity of this temple that is visited by Thousands of devotees come to this temple to pray to Lord Ganesh every day.
  • Marutheeswarar Temple – A 11th-century temple whose presiding deity is Lord Shiva.
  • Thiruneermalai Vishnu Temple – It is one of the 108 temples all over the country that that have been dedicated to Lord Vishnu.
  • Vedagiriswarar Temple – This temple was built on the top of a hill in dedication to Lord Shiva.
  • Kaligambal Temple – Lord Kamateshwarar is the presiding deity here. Originally the situation of the temple was very near the shore. It had to be relocated due to erosion. The relocation job was done in 1620.
  • Anjaneyaswami Temple – A 32 feet high statue of Lord Hanuman sculpted from a single piece of rock is the main draw of this temple. Lord Hanuman is the presiding deity.
  • Marina Beach – it is supposed to be the second largest beach in the world and visited by thousands of tourists every year.

History Of Temple

The story goes that the residents of Kasturibanagar and Gandhinagar wanted a place of their own where they could pray to Lord Vishnu in peace. In the meetings that were held between the residents of these two areas, it was decided that everybody should help in the construction of a temple by paying some subscription. In 1956, the people formed a society for this purpose. Though there was a consensus on the matter, there was no suitable land available near the colonies. The society then approached The Maharaja of Travancore, His Highness Sri Padmanabha Daasa Chithirai Thirunall for a piece of land. His Highness agreed and gave the society a sum of Rupees 7500 for the purchase of the land, and the temple was built.

The image or the idol that had to be installed at the Anantha Padmanabha Swamy Temple Chennai was also donated by His Highness, which was made as a mirror image of the idol of Srianantha Padmanabha Swamy, which existed in Trivandrum. The temple was consecrated by His Holiness the Shankaracharya of the Kanchi Peetham, who wanted the idol to be similar to the one in Trivandrum.

The main deities were installed in 1962, but the Mahakumbhabhishekam was carried out only in 1974. The second Mahakumbhabhishekam was performed in 1976 and the third and fourth ones in 1988 and 2001 respectively. The Swarnaratham and Swarna Dwajasthambam were done in 2007, and 2009 respectively and the temple was opened to the public in 2011. Since then the temple has seen the Swarna Srivaikuntha Dwaraam and the fifth Mahakumbhabhishekam in the year 2012.