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Travel Tamil Nadu Temples

Chidambaram Temple is a Hindu temple dedicated to Lord Shiva. Chidambaram is one of the five Pancha Bootha Sthalas, each representing one of the five natural elements. Chidambaram represents akasha (ether). The other four temples in this category are Thiruvanaikaval Jambukeswara (water) in Trichy, Kanchi Ekambareswara (earth) in Kanchipuram, Thiruvannamalai Arunachaleswara (fire) in Thiruvannamalai and Kalahasti Nathar (wind) in Kalahasti. The tandava represented in Chidambaram is Ananda tandava, the cosmic dance of Lord Nataraja (Shiva). Another important aspect in Chidambaram is of the Five Sabhas. Chidambaram represents Por Sabai or Ponnambalam. The other Sabhas are at Thiruvalangadu (Rathina Sabai - ruby), Madurai (Velliambalam - silver), Tirunelveli (Thamira Sabai - copper), Kutralam (Chitra Sabai - painting). All the main Saivite Nayanars -- namely Thirugnana Sambandhar, Appar, Sundarar and Manicka Vasakar -- visited this holy shrine and it is said that they entered this temple from all the four cardinal directions, i.e. through the South, West, North and East Gopurams, denoting the four different margas or pathways. The gold-plated gopuram is the one of the main attractions of this temple. Chidambaram is supposed to be the oldest of Saivite temples and all Thirumurai concerts conclude with the words "Thiruchitrambalam".

Great Temples of Tamil Nadu

By some estimates Tamil Nadu has about 33,000 ancient temples, many of them over 600 to 800 years old. A majority of the great temples are dedicated to Lord Shiva and his fierce aspect of Bhairava, closely followed by temples dedicated to Lord Vishnu. There are also a number of temples dedicated to Lord Murugan and Lord Hanuman, besides a number of Amman temples. Yahoo! reader CHANDRASEKARAN A (Flickr) shares this wonderful collection of photographs.