Manakula Vinayagar Temple
Manakula Vinayagar Temple (Tamil: மணக்குள விநாயகர் கோவில்) is a Hindu temple in the Union Territory of Puducherry, India. Dedicated to the god Ganesa, it is a popular pilgrimage site and tourist destination in Puducherry. The temple is of considerable antiquity and predates French occupation of the territory. During the tenure of Dupleix, there were attempts to destroy the temple but the temple was finally spared owing to strong protests from the Hindu population and the threat of British and Maratha invasion of the territory.
Manakula Vinayagar Temple was in existence before the French came and settled in Pondicherry i.e. before 1666. According to mythology, Lord GANESHA is named in 16 types based on his various forms out which this god facing the east cost near Bay of Bengal it has been named as Bhuvaneshar Ganapathy, now called as Manakula Vinayagar.
In Tamil 'Manal' means sand and 'Kulam' means pond near the sea, earlierly which was full of sand around pond. So the people called the god as Manal Kulathu Vinayagar [means God near the pond of sand]. Later it is named as MANAKULA VINAYAGAR.
The Manakula Vinayagar Temple is one of the famous ancient temple is in Puducherry, a Union Territory situated in the southern part of Indian sub-continent. The temple is 400 meters West of Bay of Bengal Sea, 165 km South of Chennai (Capital of Tamil Nadu State), 23 km of North of Cuddalore and 35 km East of Villupuram, Tamil Nadu. The main deity “Manakula Vinayagar” (Pranavamurthy) of this temple is facing east and the temple is bordered on east by Orlean Street (Now Manakula Vinayagar Koil Street), south by Jawaharlal Nehru Street, north by Law-de-Louristhon street and west by a canal running north-south.
Morning 5.45 am to 12.30 pm Evening 4.00 pm to 09.30 pm Timings are subject to change during Festival days and Holidays
The golden chariot was made purely on the basis of collection of donations from the devotees. The total weight of the gold used in this chariot is 7.5 kg with the estimate of around Rs.35 lakhs. The height & breadth of the chariot is 10 ft & 6 ft. The chariot was fully made up in teakwood covered by copper plates duly engraved with beautiful art works and the plates duly attached with golden rakes. At first the running of the said Golden Chariot was held on 05-10-2003 in a grand manner. At present most of the devotees are very much interested to fulfill their prayer by pulling the Golden chariot inside the temple on payment of fixed fees. Once in year i.e. on Vijayadhasami day the said Golden Chariot run outside of the temple i.e. only in the maada veedhis.
Nearly 300 years before a saint standing 6 ft tall, broad forehead, glittering blissful eyes, big hole bearing ear, small pot bellied with hand extending up to knee cap and hands with lotus regai, guru medu and sanimedu at a height showing arul gnana ragai. He got enlightenment from this deity and attained Samadhi in this temple. From then on people bring their new born here for worship before going to any other temple.
Scholar works about the temple
- Mahan Vanna Sarabam Dhandapani Swamigal has sung Sthothira Parthigam on Lord Manakula Vinayaga Peruman.
- Sri V. M. Subramania Iyer has written “Puduvai Manakula Vinayagar Suprapatham.”
- Also some 100 years back Puduvai Mahavidvan Sri P. A. Ponnuswamy has written “Manakula Vinayagar Nanmani Malai” for which Tamil teacher Sri Ellapillai has written a support poem “Vedapuriyil Vilangum Mankulthu Nathan”.
- Puduvai Nellithope Sri G. Ramanuja Chettiar has written and released in “Sri Manakula Vinayagar Parthigam”.
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