Mahalingeswarar Temple Thiruvidaimarudur, Tamil Nadu

The ancient Mahalingeswarar Temple, located at Thiruvidaimarudur, Thanjavur in Tamil Nadu, is named after the presiding deity Mahalingam. This Hindu shrine dedicated to the god Shiva. It is said that kings would pray to this deity before establishing their rule over a subject territory. According to Hindu legend, the Ganga had washed away all of Kanchi's sins which prompted Vishnu to return here on his Vahana (vehicle) Garuda and build the city again. The Mahalingeswarar Temple features an impressive colonnaded exterior with two ornate entrances and beautifully-carved statues within its walls. It also houses shrines for several other deities including an idol of Vishnu and his consort Lakshmi, Lakshmi Narasimha, the ganas and the eight Guardians of Direction apart from Lord Shiva.

The Thiruvidaimarudur Temple main entrance is located on its eastern side and has three archways with beautifully sculpted statues of various Hindu deities and characters on its outer walls. To the right side of this entrance is a shrine for Agni, the fire god. It also houses shrines for Lord Shiva as Dakshinamoorthy (seated on a serpent) and Lord Vishnu as Surya Narayana (with his wife Lakshmi). Inside the eastern entrance is the shrine for Lord Ganesha. It is believed that worshipping here will appease Ganesh and remove obstacles in one's life. This hall also houses shrines for Mahalakshmi, Yoga Narasimha, Ardhanarishwara (Shiva with his consort Parvati) and Nataraja. The next hall has a spacious rectangular mandapam, which is surrounded by many shrines. The floor of this hall is decorated with colourful patterns and the temple's main deity Shiva appears in an impressive form here.


Mahalingeswarar Temple of Thiruvidaimarudur open at 06:00 AM to 11:00 AM and then 05:00 PM to 08:00 PM

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