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Arulmigu Swaminatha Swami Temple - Swamimalai

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Arulmigu Swaminatha Swami Temple - Swamimalai
Swamimalai - is located on the banks of river cauvery – at a distance of 5 KM along the western side of Kumbakonam in Tamil nadu, India. The temple is located at a height of 60 feet – above an artificial hillock and is reached by a flight of 60 steps – which signify 60 years.

Arulmigu Swaminatha Swami Temple - Swamimalai
This south Indian temple of Swaminatha Swami can be reached easily by motorable roads from Kumbakonam. There are three prakarams and three entrances in this Murugan shrine. The southen entrance is the main entrance to the temple and the main temple tower (Raja gopuram) – with its 5 tiers – is located above this entrance. There is a temple dedicated to Meenakshi Sundareswarar ( depicting Lord Vishnu giving his sisters hand in marriage to Lord Shiva ) – this temple is known as Kizh Koil . The main temple that enshrines Lord Muruga as Swaminadha swami is known as Mel Koil. There are several small temples around the Meenakshi Sundareswarar temple. As we enter the 2nd Prakaram, there is a very beautiful structure that portrays the teaching of Omkara by Muruga to Lord shiva. Once we cross the 2nd prakaram we can see the temple of Netra Vinayagar (Lord Ganesh who blessed a devotee with eyesight) - along with statues of several other gods and goddesses including Karthaveeryarjuna, Idumban and subramanya swamy. As we approach the sanctum sanctorum, we pass across worshipping Sabhabathi, Senapathi, Shanmuka with Valli and Devasena – all being various manifestations of Lord Kumara or Karthikeya. There is a beautiful statue of Nataraja or dancing Lord Shiva as well. Poet Saint Arunagirinathar – who sings about this temple in detail in this sacred Tamil hymn Thiruppugazh is also represented in the form of an idol here. The main lord of swami malai – affectionately called as Swaminadha – is 6 feet tall with broad shoulders holding sakthi vel and dhandam(staff). Instead of Mayil Vahanam or the peacock vehicle, Elephant is depicted as the vahana (divine vehicle) in front of the lord. This feature is very unique, not available in any other temples of Lord Muruga. The stala vriksham for Thiruchendur temple is the Amla tree( Nellimaram) . There are five Theerthams or divine water sources, in and around the temple. They are: Vajra Theertham, Saravana Theertham Netra Pushkarini( well)and Kumaratturai (Kaveri) Legend has it that a blind devotee by name Sumathi lost his eyesight because of his sins. Sage Bharatwaja asked him to go and worship Netra vinayaga and take a dip in the Netra teertham to get over his sins and regain his sight. It is believed that the devotee took a dip in the sacred waters and regained his sight as he approached the Netera Vinayagar temple.

"The regaining of eye sight when dipped in the sacred water and approaching Netra Vinayagar Temple was suggested by Guruji Sri Narendra Babu Sharma to one of the Caller".

Mythology and History:
Swamimalai is fourth among the six padai veedu or sacred shrines dedicated to Lord Muruga. The presiding deity here expounded the meaning of the Pranava mantra OM to his own Father Lord Siva Himself.

Arulmigu Swaminatha Swami Temple - Swamimalai
Mythology says that saint Bhrugu before commencing an arduous tavam or penance, got the boon that anybody disturbing his mediation will forget all his knowledge. Such was the power of the penance that the sacred fire emanating from the head of the saint reached up to the heavens, and the frightened devas surrendered to Lord Siva praying for his grace. The Lord extinguished the sacred fire by covering the saint's head by hand. With the saint's penance thus disturbed the Lord became oblivious of all his knowledge and is said to have regained them by learning the Pranava mantra from Lord Muruga at this shrine.

Once when Brahma, the lord of all creations was proceeding to Kailasa, the ever-playful child Lord Muruga asked him for the meaning of the Pranava OM. When Brahma admitted his ignorance, the Lord imprisoned him. With Brahma imprisoned, all creations came to a standstill and the devas prayed to Lord Siva to get Brahma released. When Muruga insisted that the imprisonment was a just punishment for the ignorance of Brahma, Lord Siva asked him whether he himself knew the meaning of the primordial Pranava OM. Lord Muruga said that he knew the meaning of OM and can expound it to the latter only if he can accept him as guru and listen to the exposition as a devoted disciple. As Lord Siva acceded to the request of Lord Muruga and heard the exposition of OM as a disciple, the place came to be known as Swamimalai and the presiding deity as Swaminathan.

The temple is built on an artificial hillock of about sixty feet height with sixty beautifully laid stone steps representing the Hindu cycle of sixty years - leading to the Lord . In the ground floor there are temples dedicated to Lord Sundareswarer and Goddesss Meenakshi.

Hymns in praise of the presiding deity have been sung by saint Nakkeerar in Tirumurukatrupadai and by Saint Arunagirnathar in Tiruppukazh.

Pujas and Festivals
Daily pujas to the deities are performed six times a day (six kalams). Usha Kalam, Kalasandhi and Uchikala poojas are performed in the forenoon and the afternoon poojas commencing from Sayaratchai and Rendam kalam are concluded with Arthajama pooja in the night.

Arulmigu Swaminatha Swami Temple - Swamimalai
The important festivals conducted in the temple are:

Monthly Kirutikai festival;
Temple Car festival in April;
Visakam festival in May;
Navaratri festival in May;
Skanda Shashti festival in October;
Tiru Karthikai festival in Nov/December;
Taippūcam festival in January; and
Pankuni Uttiram festival in March.

Golden Chariot
The temple has an imposing golden chariot made of seven kilos of gold, 85 kilos of silver and other metals like copper, beautifully illuminated with electric bulbs.

Arulmigu Swaminatha Swami Temple - Swamimalai
Devotees on payment of Rs. 1001 can take the deity in a procession in the golden charriot around the outer corridor. Devotees are offered a shawl, eversilver pot and a small box with the Lord's prasadam.

For the convenience of the pilgrims and devotees, 11 rooms, four cottages, two VIP cottages, one donor cottages, three marriage halls and one dining hall have been constructed and are let out at nominal rent ranging from Rs. 20/- to Rs. 100/- per day only.

Arulmigu Swaminatha Swami Temple - Swamimalai
Among the sub-temples under the administration of the Swamimalai temple, the Sveta Vinayagar temple at Tiruvalanchuli is an important one. The presiding deity Lord Sadaimudinathar and Goddess Perianayaki have been sung by Tirugnanasambandar and Tirunavukkarasar in Tēvāram. A unique feature of this temple is the Sveta Vinayagar or White Pillaiyar made of the sea foam formed at the time of churning of the Milky Ocean by the devas and asuras to get the nectar. The sacred Cauvery River flowing nearby herself has turned around in a right semicircle around this shrine and hence the name Valanchuli or right twist. Renovation of this temple at a cost of Rs. 50 Lakhs is progressing.

Another architecturally beautiful temple at Kilpazhayarai dedicated to Lord Somanathaswami is also under renovtion at an estimated cost of Rs. 50 Lakhs. It is worth mentioning that this shring is the birthplace of Saint Managaiyarkarasi, one among the 63 Nayanmars. Hymns in praise of the presiding deity have been sung by Tirunavukkarasar.

Other sub-temples mentioned below under the administrative control of Swamimalai temple are also to be renovated at a modest cost of about Rs. 5 lakhs each.

Dharmapureeswarar Temple, Vallalarkoil;
Chakravageeswarar Temple, Chakkrapalli;
Ezhutharinathar Temple, Innambur;
Skandanathar Temple, Tiruerakaram; and
Thirupandeeswarar Temple, Adanur.

All the above temples along with the Swamimalai temple are administered by an Asst. Commissioner / Executive Officer appointed by the Commissioner, Hindu Religious and Charitable Endowments Dept, Chennai.

Location of Arulmigu Swaminatha Swami Temple - Swamimalai:

Arulmigu Swaminatha Swami Temple - Swamimalai
Swamimalai is a sylvan village, situated about five kilometers west of Kumbakonam on the banks of a tributary of river Cauvery. The temple is situated very close to the bus stand and the railway station is about two kilometers away. It is well connected to and surrounded by important places like Kumbakonam, Tiruvidaimarutur, Mayiladuthurai, Papanasam, Tanjavur etc.

Distances from following places to Swamimalai (TamilNadu):
Bangalore - 389km
Kumbakonam - 8km
Mayiladuthurai - 41km
Thanjavur - 35km
Thiruvarur - 47km
Nagapattinam - 71km

Temple Info:
Assistant Commissioner / Executive Officer
Arulmigu Swaminatha Swami Temple
Swamimalai - 612 302
Thanjavur district Tamil Nadu, India
Ph: 0435-2454358


Don't Forget to Read This Post: Procedure To Visit OR Worship Arulmigu Swaminatha Swami Temple - Swamimalai By Sri Narendra Babu Sharma


  1. pls,update the phone number

  2. The Temple phone numbers are updated.