After a long time, a post about Avinashi in the month of Chithirai seemed appropriate. Avinashi is one of the celebrated Shaivite temples and is considered as the first of the seven Thevaram Sthalams in the Kongu region. The temple is a about 40 kilometres from Coimbatore and a few kilometers from Tiruppur. The word Avinashi means indestructible and the sanctum sanctorum Lord Shiva stands as the indestructible force here. The temple is also known by its various names, Karunaiyaathaal Kovil (Merciful Mother’s Temple referring to Goddess Parvathi the consort of Lord Shiva), Dakshina Varanasi (Varanasi of South), Thirupukkozhiyur. The temple is over 1500 years old and has been sung by Manickavaasagar, Sundaramoorthy Nayanar, Thirumoolar and Arunagirinathar in their respective works.

There are inscriptions that the temple received a lots of endowments from the Cholas and Pandyas. There is even a legend that Sundaramoorthy Nayanar on his way to Thiruvanchikulam to meet the Chera King, Cheramaan Peruman, Sundarar happened to visit Avinashi. While walking through the streets of Avinashi, he heard conflicting voices from two of the opposite houses one blooming with happiness and joy and the other with a gloomy and melancholic voices. Sundarar came to the know the reason for the discordance. He came to know that the incident took place some three years ago, when two boys of the same age went to bathe in a nearby tank and one of them devoured by a crocodile that emerged from the tank.

The surviving boy had his “Upanayanam” (A thread ceremony to mark the beginning of studenthood) held. And so there was joy in that house. While on the other house people were sad because had their boy been alive, they too would be celebrating his “Upanayanam” too.

Sundarar was able to understand the pain of the worrying family and he sung out a soulful song, praying to Lord Shiva to resurrect the dead child. Lord Avinashiappar heeded to Sundarar’s prayers. The empty tank started to fill in with water from which emerged the crocodile and regurgitated the child as a fully grown boy of 8 years. And there filled happiness in the other home to as their boy was brought alive. There is a sculpture in the Kodimaram (flag mast) and inside the temple explaining this incident. There is even a temple for Sundaramoorthy Nayanar nearby and the tank, called the Thamaraikulam, from which he revived the boy. The temple is on the shores of the Thamaraikulam and this event is commemorated during the ‘Mudalai Vaai Pillai’ Utsavam on Panguni Uththiram.

The most special thing of all is the temple’s car. It is one of the biggest cars in South India. Same as Thiruvarur, Avinashi boasts the biggest car and the auspicious festivals that are held as done in Thiruvarur. The Avinashi car is known for its fine wooden carvings. The old car was destroyed in the recent fire accident, and a new one was built. The car festival is conducted during the month of Chithirai called the Chithirai Thiruvizha.

Some of the pictures of this magnificent temple.

The majestic Avinashi temple Gopuram

Another view of the temple Gopuram

Close up view of the temple Gopuram

Side view of the temple Gopuram

The view of the Amman Temple Gopuram

A close view of the Avinashiappar Temple Gopuram

Gopurams and Vimanams from inside the temple

The temple Gopurams and the Vimanams

The main temple Gopuram from inside

The Chandikeshwari Temple and the Vimanam of the Amman temple

Old inscriptions on stone

View of the outer prakaram

View of the outer prakaram and the main Gopuram

Another view of the outer prakaram and the main Gopuram

The majestic Avinashi Temple Car in all its grandeur and splendour

View of the Temple Car from the side

Another view of the temple car

Avinashiappar Car and the Amman Car

View of the intricate carvings on the car

Another view of the intricate carvings on the car

Another view of the intricate carvings on the car

Lets try to visit this magnificent Temple for this Chithirai Festival and look the car in all its grandeur and splendours and get the blessings of Lord Avinashiappar.

More to come, until then…