Chennai, 18th February 2017: Three important temples are located in the ancient Ayanavaram region of Chennai. Two of these are for Siva while the third one is a Temple for Lord Vishnu. The Ayanavaram region is the same as the Ayanapuram mentioned in an inscription from the 12th century.
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The Vishnu Shrine has been dedicated to Kariya Manikka Perumal Temple. In the central sanctum of the temple, the image of Karia Manikka Perumal, stands with Sri Devi and Bhu Devi on each side, under the Kumbhakar Vimanam. While his upper left and right hands hold the Charkha and the Sankha, the lower right hand is in the gesture of blessing (Abhaya Hasta) and the lower left hand rests on his waist (Kati Hasta).
The Vestibule (Antarla) that connects the Main Shrine and the Mandapa, holds a processional image (Utsava Murti), just like the main one, the only difference being that the lower left hand is in the gesture of Boon-Giving (Varda Hasta) unlike the main shrine where it rests on the waist.
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In the Vestibule, the Azhvars are also in worship. Also, interestingly, a rare image of Vikhanasa Maharishi- founder of the Vikhanasa Agama, can be spotted at the same place.
In front of the main Sanctum, the Mandapa holds granite pillars. Traces of Antiquity are also visible here in spite of the modernisation that has taken place over the years. The entrance galores a few Stucco Sculptures and the temple holds a modern, five storey Gopuram too.
All the sanctums and the temple as a whole follow the codes of Vikhansa Agama. Some of the other sanctums are for goddess Lakshmi (Kanakavalli Thayar), Andal, Sudarsana (the discus of Vishnu) and Hanuman.
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The Temple is not only extraordinarily peaceful and serene; but also a treat for the eyes with its breathtaking beauty.
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