Lord Chandramoulishwarar sannadhi
Lord Chandramoulishwarar sannadhi
On the right side of Gnananandar, there is a sannadhi for Lord Siva known as Chandra Moulishwarar. The uniqueness of this sannadhi is, Siva in both formless-form (Bana Lingam as Narmadeswarar) and with form as Chandra Moulishwarar can be seen. In no other place can one see Lord Siva both with in the same sannadhi. There are also twelve jyothir lingams around Narmadeswarar. Inside the sannadhi, a Nandi (bull God) who is supposed to be the vahana (vehicle) of Lord Siva is installed in the front and a trishul symbolizing Goddess Kamakshi faces the sannadhi. There is a huge bell near the sannadhi. Adjacent to this, a pair of stone padukas of Devi have been installed.
By ringing the bell five times and praying to Lord Chandra Moulishwarar, the faithful's prayers will be answered. The story behind the bell is as follows. A huge bell from a discarded ship was donated to the temple through Chakyar Rajan's son. Swami converted the abhaaya (danger/alarm) bell to an abhaya (dispeller of fear) bell. The bell was installed near the Chandra Moulishwarar sannadhi during Sivarathri. The usage of the bell is threefold.
Vidhya mani for education purposes. To invoke this blessing, The bell should be rung thrice.
Loukika mani for all problems connected with family and career matters. To invoke this blessing, the bell should be rung twice.
For all other problems connected to physical suffering and illness, marriages and other pariharams the bell should be rung five times. This calls back the punyam of the previous birth. Fifth House in any horoscope is the purva punya sthanam. Hence ringing the bell five times clears any obstacles that may be caused by previous karmas by recalling the positive punyam of previous births. Please note that the bell can be rung only once by a person in a calendar year.
Thus, the Bagavathi siddhar peetam is an abode of peace, love and spirituality. It is really unique in that devotees forget the outside world and enjoy a pure, peaceful stay of immense happiness. After staying for a week, one leaves charged with divine thoughts and great mental peace. Mere prokshanam (sprinkling on oneself) of the peetam water is equivalent to having a dip in the holy Ganges. Another wonder is that all the civic requirements of the peetam like connecting roads, power supply and other basic facilities were provided by the local government when they visited the peetam and took Swami's blessings. There was absolutely no need for Swami to go knocking on doors to get the facilities in place. It is noteworthy that there is no hundi (collection box) kept anywhere unlike in all other Indian temples. With the grace of Devi, without any publicity the peetam is growing in sanctity and developing ceaselessly.
Before the year 2000 there used to be two important festivals celebrated at the peetam. The first one sometime between the month of June 15th to July 15th every year. These are the prathishta day celebrations which coincide with the star birthday of Swami according to Hindu calendar. The function lasts for five days beginning with Ganapathi homam. Subramania homam, Rudra homam, Sudarshana homam are performed on other days and on the last day, the prathishta day of Devi, Chandi homam is conducted. Many devotees from different parts of the country attend the function to get the blessings of Devi, Sadguru Gnananandar and Swami. There are two big halls for the stay with all necessary facilities. Since all are present for the sacred rituals and to obtain Devi's blessings, none is perturbed nor complains about minor inconveniences during their stay. The devotees experience an atmosphere of complete mental peace as their minds are inundated with divine thoughts. Early morning coffee/tea, lunch and dinner are all served free to devotees. Whosoever visits the peetam to worship Devi are all given free prasadam.
After the morning pooja and homam, most devotees rest for a couple of hours. From 3 to 5.30 pm, there is a spiritual discourse by eminent personalities to enable the audience to learn about various episodes depicting the glory of God. In the evening there is bhajan where all the devotees participate and get a chance to sing. Cast and creed are no bar, the devotees feel that they all belong to one Bagavathi family and they render whatever service possible. As soon as one enters the peetam, one gets charged up with renewed vigour and energy. They exchange their views and experiences and they get a chance to be in Swami's company for all five days and enjoy to their heart's content. On the last day when they have to leave, everyone feels sad that they have to go back to the world of mundane materialism brimming with misery.
Another important festival is the Sadguru Gnananandar aradhana, Lord Ayyappa mandala pooja and Makara jyothi which lasts for a duration of eight days from 7th to 15th January every year. Swami puts malai to those devotees who wish to climb the sacred eighteen steps of Lord Ayyappa. The next day there is Gnananandar aradhana and pada pooja for Gurunathar. One full day is spent filling up the coconuts with ghee and packing the bags of devotees (irumudi kettu) with required items for those who are to climb the sacred eighteen steps. After the aradhana day, devotees with their irumudi on their heads go round all the sannadhis in the peetam and finally climb the sacred steps to get the darshan of Lord Ayyappan. The divine chanting of 'Swamiyai Saranam Ayyappa' can be heard throughout the day and the whole atmosphere is sacred. The peetam hums with activity as all devotees are involved in preparing and making arrangements for the poojas. In the evening there is a special padi pooja for the sacred steps performed by Swami himself and on the last but one day the entire peetam is lit with oil lamps, sarvam jyothimayam. It is really a wonderful sight! On the last day, in the evening around 6.15 to 6.45 pm, Swami through his siddhi enables the Makara jyothi to appear in the Tambaram sky and one and all throng the temple premises to witness this divine phenomenon. When they see the divine light, they forget themselves and with the full devotion chant Swamiyai Saranam Ayyappa. This divine experience is beyond description. After that the temple of Lord Ayyappa is closed. Another wonder during this festival is that the water from the taps is naturally warm and so no one need worry about taking bath in cold water even in the peak of winter. It is only at the peetam that one gets good drinking water on tap by the grace of Devi.
Many newspaper reporters and media persons have expressed their desire to write about the peetam and approached Swami for permission. But Devi had strictly instructed Swami that the peetam will develop by itself and She did not need any publicity. In the year 1990 when we visited the peetam there was only a small temple for Devi alone and the entire place was covered with sand and wild plants. Within a period of twelve years, the entire premises has developed beyond imagination. Swami never approaches anyone for monetary help for the maintenance work and for conducting poojas. The devotees themselves contribute as per their capacity and desire, collect the funds and donate the required items for the functions and carry out the arrangements, with the permission and direction of Swami.
From the year 2000, as per Devi's desire all the functions are held at the peetam. The main functions are the Prathishta celebrations, Navarathri festival, Gnananandar aradhana, Ayyappa festival and Sivarathri. For all these functions, Swami is present at the peetam throughout the programme. The monthly poojas like pournami pooja for meru, abhishekam to Lord Siva on pradosham days, abhishekam to lord Srinivasa and Goddess Padmavathi on Thiruvonam star are held regularly. Swami is normally on tour and travels quite a lot and so he may not be present for the monthly functions except on occasions when he happens to be in the town during that time. Daily all the sannadhis are kept open except Ayyappa sannadhi during, the morning and evening. Many local devotees visit the peetam daily for prayer and worship.
In the year 1995, during the June function a thrilling incident occurred at the peetam. One video photographer from Mumbai who knew Swami for only six months wanted to come and attend the function. As per Swami's direction, he was doing the video coverage of all the events. On the last day while he was covering the Chandi homam, suddenly he screamed "Amma Amma" and fell down unconscious. Swami got hold of his camera as it was falling down. After an hour, when he regained consciousness, he showed the recorded clip in his camera to all devotees. The clip was unbelievable. It revealed the form of Durga in the flames of the homam fire. All flocked to see the clip. Devi had appeared in the fire to bless all those who had gathered there. Everyone was spell bound and it was an unforgettable episode. This incident has a reference in the sacred song about the history of Kalyana Bagavathi.
Swami is no doubt the living legend of Kalyana Bagavathi who showers Her profound grace on those who pray to Her sincerely and seek her blessings.
Oh! Divine Mother Sri Kalyana Bagavathi.
Please forgive our known and unknown sins.
We have surrendered ourselves at Thy Lotus Feet.
Protect us and free us from sins.
Bless us so that one day we will be fit to be one with Thee.