Aadi Amavaasai In Kumbakonam on Kaveri banks – Ultimate Destination For The Hindu Rituals
Aadi Amavaasai Tarpanams, Pinda Daanams, Shraadham (Shradh) rituals on Kaveri banks in Kumbakonam of Tamil Nadu State have been a practice from time immemorial. Performing the rituals of Aadi Amavaasai In Kumbakonam on Kaveri banks has been an ultimate destination for the followers of the Hindu traditional practices.
Temple-Town of Kumbakonam Sri Kshetra and its neighbouring villages on the banks of River Kaveri, are world famous for its many ancient temples that were built even before the world developed Civilization. Kumbakonam is best known for its Navagraha Sthalams. The region is teeming with Spirituality and Sanatan Dharma because of this long period of Hindu traditional practices and Changam (Sangam) influence. This resulted in the development of excellent literature and other fine arts. River Cauvery (Kaveri) has from the time immemorial been a lifeline in nurturing the Sanatan Dharma in many ways, providing a source of water, food, practices of art, spirituality and so on. Some of the oldest Shakti Kshetras, largest ancient temples are situated in this belt.
PurePrayer offers best experienced and Vedic Pandits, Kannada and Telugu Purohits, Tamil Vadhyars to perform Aadi Amavaasai Tarpanam, Mahalaya Paksham tarpanam, Pinda Daanam, Shraadham at Kumbakonam Kaveri Bhagavath Padithurai and Tiruvenkadu. We also offer these ancestor rituals at specific kshetras on Kaveri banks like Tiruvidaimarudhur, Tiruvisanallur, Govindapuram, Aduthurai, Bhaskara Rajapuram. Get in touch with our Support Team for more information.
However, the timeline of Kumbakonam goes much more beyond this.
Kumbakonam today is an important Teertha Kshetra for the followers of Sanatan Hindu Dharma in order to perform the traditional spiritual activities like Homas and Pujas to Gods, Tarpans to the ancestors, Pind daan to the the departed. Homage to the ancestors during Dakshinayanam like Aadi Amavasai, Thai Amavasai, Mahalaya Amavasai days of the year.
An ancient Sanskrit verse is clearly a pointer to the importance of Kumbakonam Sri Kshetra:
|| ಅನ್ಯ ಕ್ಷೇತ್ರೆ ಕೃತಂ ಪಾಪಮ್ ಪುಣ್ಯ ಕ್ಷೇತ್ರೆ ವಿನಶ್ಯತಿ |
| ಪುಣ್ಯ ಕ್ಷೇತ್ರೆ ಕೃತಂ ಪಾಪಮ್ ವಾರಾಣಸ್ಯಾಂ ವಿನಶ್ಯತಿ ||
|| ವಾರಾಣಸ್ಯಾಂ ಕೃತಂ ಪಾಪಮ್ ಕುಂಬಕೋಣೆ ವಿನಶ್ಯತಿ |
| ಕುಂಬಕೋಣೆ ಕೃತಂ ಪಾಪಮ್ ಕುಂಬಕೋಣೆ ವಿನಶ್ಯತಿ ||
|| अन्य क्षेत्रे कृतं पापम् पुण्य क्षेत्रे विनश्यति |
| पुण्य क्षेत्रे कृतं पापम् वाराणस्यां विनश्यति ||
|| वाराणस्यां कृतं पापम् कुम्भकोणे विनश्यति |
| कुम्भकोणे कृतं पापम् कुम्भकोणे विनश्यति ||
One can sin anywhere and wash it away in a holy town
One can sin in a holy town and wash it away in Varanasi.
One who sins in Varanasi has to wash the sins only in Kumbakonam
Further, one who commits sins in Kumbakonam, can wash it away only in Kumbakonam!
Such is the greatness of Kumbakonam kshetram which is flanked by one of the Sapta Moksha Rivers, Kaveri.
Glory of Kumbakonam in Puranas:
Puranas mention that, the Pralaya (storm) waters carried a divine Amrutha Kalasha Kumbham (Pot of Elixir) with mango leaves, coconut and flowers on it. Parts of the Kalasha were thrown in different corners (konam) by the huge tidal waves. As the storms subsided, these corners became the spots of the famous temples in Kumbakonam. Shibi Chakravarty who was the ancestor of Rama ruled here. Pallavas have contributed in a big way right from the second Century CE to the temples in the southern India. Chola Empire is said to have descended from Shibi.
Kaveri Teertha in Kumbakonam:
Kaveri River in Kumbakonam, has several Padithurais, also known as ghats. Padithurai literally means flight of steps. Of these, the two popular ghats are the Chakra padithurai and Bhagavata Padithurai. There are very interesting ancient anecdotes about these two ghats.
Lord Vishnu released the Sudarshana Chakra from Vaikunta to the nether world to slay Jalandharasura. After slaying him in the nether world, Sudarshana appeared out of the river Kaveri in Kumbakonam. Brahma, who was taking a holy dip at this ghat, noticed the Sudarshana Chakra appear out of the waters. He immediately installed a replica of this Sudarshana Chakra on the banks, at what is today known as the Chakrapani Perumal Divya Desam temple. The waters here are absolutely holy, as the Sudarshana Chakra and Brahma bathed in the Kaveri at Kumbakonam.
Once, the Sudarshana Chakra shone brighter than the Soorya (Lord Sun), thus making Sun god lose all his powers. The Sun God prayed at Chakrapani temple on Magha nakshatram in Maasi month and regained his radiant powers. Hence Kumbakonam is also called as Bhaskara kshetram, honouring the Sun God.
Sri Govinda Dikshitar, the renowned minister of the Nayak kings, renovated this temple to its present glory. Read on further to learn more about Govinda Dikshitar.
PurePrayer offers Aadi Amavaasai Tarpanam, Mahalaya Paksham tarpanam, Pinda Daanam, Shraadham at Kaveri Chakra Padithurai near Kumbakonam.
Bhagavath Padithurai is another popular ghat of Kumbakonam on the banks of Kaveri, where devotees offer prayers to their ancestors on Aadi Amavasai, Thai Amavasai, Mahalaya Amavasai days of the year. Its importance can be understood from this example.
Long long ago, a Brahmin called Bhagavan from Tirunelveli in South Tamilnadu set out for Varanasi (Kashi) to immerse the ashes of his parents. The Brahmin’s disciple went along with him. The two of them stopped on the banks of Kaveri at Kumbakonam, for their routine rituals and night halt. While the Master was taking a dip, the disciple secretly opened the ashes pot to see what was inside it. He noticed it filled with lotus petals and he immediately closed the pot. The Master and disciple reached Varanasi after several months.
When they reached Ganges in Varanasi, Bhagavan opened the ashes pot. The disciple casually looked into the pot and shouted in shock. Bhagavan asked him as to why he was shocked. The disciple confessed that he had secretly opened the ashes pot in Kumbakonam and saw it filled with only lotus petals. He was shocked and surprised to see them now as it was filled with ash.
Bhagavan then recollected his father’s words… ”Immerse my ashes in the holy place where the ashes turn into lotus petals”. Bhagavan immediately sealed the ash pot without immersing them in the Ganga and immediately travelled back to Kumbakonam.
He went to the exact spot in Kumbakonam Kaveri banks where the disciple mentioned and opened the ashes pot. To his astonishment, the pot was filled with pink lotus petals instead of the ashes!
Bhagavan exclaimed,”Kumbakonam is more powerful than Kashi!” and immersed his parents’ ashes turned to lotus petals, in the Kaveri. He also installed an idol of Ganapathy right on that ghat as a witness to this miraculous incident.
That Ganapathy temple still exists and is known as Bhagavan Ganapathy, the ghat was known as Bhagavath Padithurai. Hence, offering rituals to ancestors at this Bhagavath Ghat in Kumbakonam will certainly appease the souls of one’s forefathers.
Kanchi Kamakoti Peetham moved south to Kumbakonam, to safeguard the Mutt during the Islamic invasions. The holy Mutt selected this holy Bhagavat Ghat Kaveri banks at Kumbakonam to re-establish.
PurePrayer offers Aadi Amavaasai Tarpanam, Mahalaya Paksham tarpanam, Pinda Daanam, Shraadham at Kaveri Bhagavath Padithurai near Kumbakonam.
Tiruvenkaadu on banks of Kaveri:
Tiruvenkaadu – Shwetaranya translates to Venkaadu in Tamil. Tiruvenkadu, situated 60 kilometres from Kumbakonam, is called as Rudra Gaya and is a very holy Teertha Kshetra. The huge Shwetaranyeshwara temple in this town is the Budha Graha Parihara sthalam among the Navagraha Parihara temples around Kumbakonam.
This temple has a unique distinction with Shodasha Pindam (16 Pindas) offering to ancestors. Nowhere else, can one see this practice to offer Shodasha Pind daan to one’s ancestors other than Tiruvenkadu kshetram. Offering rituals to ancestors here, will bestow peace to their souls.
PurePrayer offers Aadi Amavaasai Tarpanam, Mahalaya Paksham tarpanam, Pinda Daanam, Shraadham at Tiruvenkadu on the banks of Kaveri near Kumbakonam.
Sri Govinda Dikshitar:
Sri Govinda Dikshitar is said to have contributed to the present glory of this great Temple-Town of Kumbakonam during the reign of Nayak Dynasty. Govinda Dikshitar, the Hoysala Karnataka Smartha Brahmin hailing from Honnali, Shimoga, was the illustrious, pious, visionary minister of three Thanjavur Nayak rulers in the 16th and 17th centuries. Under his able administration the Nayak rulers undertook renovation of innumerable Saivite and Vaishnavite temples in Tamil Nadu, including Tiruvannamalai, Madurai and Rameswaram. It was the Nayak kings along with Govinda Dikshitar, who brought Hoysala Kannada Vedic Brahmins to this Thanjavur Kaveri Delta region and established several Veda Aagama Shastra schools.
Not only was Dikshitar a man of great scholarship and erudition, but also was a patron of music and arts. Venkatamakhin was the son of Govinda Dikshita. Venkatamakhi established the basics of the 72 Carnatic music raagas and is regarded as one of the profounders of modern Carnatic music theory.
The most iconic greatest descendant of Govinda Dikshitar is the 68th Acharya of Kanchi Kamakoti Peetham, the greatest saint of the 20th century, Sri Chandrashekharendra Saraswati Shankaracharya(1884 – 1994), who was fondly addressed as Periyava y his followers.
Illustrious works of Sri Govinda Dikshitar:
Some of the illustrious works carried out under the guidance of Sri Govinda Dikshitar are mentioned here.
- The iconic Mahaamaham (Kumbh Mela) tank of Kumbakonam was revived by Govinda Dikshitar. He revived the huge ancient tank with 16 Mantaps around it. This tank witnesses the Kumbh Mela every 12 years where devotees throng in lakhs to take a dip in it. He ensured the festival took place every 12 years, which continues till date.
- The oldest, largest temple within Kumbakonam town, Aadhi Kumbeswarar Shiva Temple was renovated to a great extent along with Kumbabhisheka performance. Statues of Govinda Dikshitar and his wife Nagamba have been installed inside this temple, facing the sannidhi.
- The famed Ramaswamy Perumal temple in central Kumbakonam, known for its stunning Ramayana sculptural marvels, was built by Govinda Dikshitar. This temple wasn’t renovated, but built from scratch under Govinda Dikshitar’s guidance and known for best sculptural pillars.
- The famed Thenupureeswarar Durga temple at Patteeswaram near Kumbakonam was also renovated by Govinda Dikshitar. You can see his statue within this temple as well.
- Shivalingam here was renamed as Govinda DikshitaLingam honouring him. Govinda Dikshitar was granted a palatial bungalow in Patteeswaram by the Nayak kings. This structure exists to this day.
- Raja Veda Kavya Patashala in central Kumbakonam was established by Govinda Dikshitar in 1542 AD. Smartha, Vaishnava and Madhwa sects learn the Vedas here without any discrimination. Tamil Brahmins prefer Kumbakonam Raja Veda seminary as the first choice to send their children for Vedic studies.
- The world famous Saraswati Mahal Library in Thanjavur which is housing the collections of the ancient Palm manuscripts relating to Hinduism from time immemorial, was started by Govinda Dikshitar.
- The huge Tiruvidaimarudhur Mahalingeswara Swamy temple witnessed major renovations under Govinda Dikshitar’s guidance. His descendants settled in this town Tiruvidaimarudhur.
- Govinda Dikshitar established a separate Agraharam village for Vedic Brahmins near Tiruvidaimarudhur, called Govindapuram. This village named after Govinda Dikshitar, continues to be a Centre of Vedic studies.
- Kalyanis (Water ponds) of several hundred temples around Kumbakonam and Tamilnadu were renovated/built by Govinda Dikshitar.
- He established a business corridor between Ramaswamy Perumal temple and Chakrapani Perumal temple in Kumbakonam. This lane still exists as the central business lane of Kumbakonam.
- Due to such great administrative works, many roads and areas in Kumbakonam and all over Tamilnadu are named after him as Ayyan. Ayyan/Iyer means the respectable Brahmin in Tamil. Ayyankulam Agraharam, Ayyan Kadai street etc.
PurePrayer offers Aadi Amavaasai Tarpanam, Mahalaya Paksham tarpanam, Pinda Daanam, Shraadham at Kumbakonam Kaveri Bhagavath Padithurai and Tiruvenkadu. We also offer ancestor rituals at specific kshetras on Kaveri banks like Tiruvidaimarudhur, Tiruvisanallur, Govindapuram, Aduthurai, Bhaskara Rajapuram.
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