Saturday, July 23, 2005

Why to go to a Sivan Temple??

Those who have gone to the Sivan Kovil would have known of the habit of sitting before coming out of the temple. The sitting time varies between just a second to the maximum of a minute.

And you will be surprised to find, that the whole purpose of visiting the Temple is for that Sitting.

Saiva Sidhantham has advaitam in its deepest root.
“ஆதியனே அந்தம் நடுவாகி அல்லானே,
ஈர்த்து எனை ஆட்கொண்ட எந்தை பெருமானே”
“Aadhiyane andham naduvaaghi allane!
Eerthu enai aatkonda aendhai perumaane!” is how Manickavasagar calls the Almighty.

If the whole of this universe is one, why do we need to go to a particular place to search him??
The samsara sagaram acts on us everyday and it is a fact that the normal loukeeka[worldly/earthly/materialistic] human mind cannot practice advaitam 24hrs a day. Thus it is prescribed to visit the shivalayam to practice and meditate on the oneness of the universe.

If we are going to temple to meditate on the oneness of the universe, why do we then have so many Gods and Idols there??
A normal child has an exam tomorrow, and before opening the book this afternoon, if he watches a very interesting movie, it will be difficult for him to concentrate on his studies, right away. Just being rolled in the samsara sagaram, and immediately starting to mediate on Brahmam is not an easy task. The deities in the temple are meant to gradually bring the devotee into the world of spirituality.

The procedure for worship in a shivan kovil, astonishingly matches with this.
The worship starts with SriGanesha. The agama shastras have made the form of Ganesha [human body, elephant face, pot belly, and with all this sitting over a mooshikam] so well that, concentrating on Ganesha as the supreme power and worshiping is, relatively easier, and to come from the world around to the spiritual mindset.

Worshipping and concentrating on the parivara devatas, [who mostly have human form mebbe with 4 arms] as the supreme, get the mind closer to the spirituality and prepares for realizing the oneness.

This is then followed by the ShivaLinga darshanam. The supreme now has a form, but it is just a simple object where the mind can concentrate.

Now that the individual intellect has been able to come out of the hassles of the daily routines, it is ready for the next step, to reach out to meditate on the Brahman. This meditation is what is done while sitting in the temple before coming out.

Thus the range of deities present in the temple is to prepare oneself for the sitting and meditating on the supreme.

For effective realization of the supreme,
1. Go to the temple, preferably alone, if not possible, detach from the companion for the time in the temple. It is important that the closest and only influence you have before sitting to meditate is the Ganesha / Subrahmanaya / Lingam.
2. Spend enough time at the sannidhis till you have got the mental set to move on to the next stage.
3. Concentrate at least for 10 minutes, where you are able to realize the beauty and magnificence of the oneness of the universe.
4. Enjoy the bliss, get recharged, and composed to take on the rest of the days.

Ps: The above views have come up purely out of my thought process, which is hence limited to the exposure I have.


At Sat Jul 23, 09:05:00 AM CDT, Blogger Ganesh said...


Very good. Good to see young people appreciating our spiritual things. Most of our stuff is symbolic signifying higher meaning, but the problem is people get stuck at only those symbols, forgetting the true meaning.

At Sat Jul 23, 02:16:00 PM CDT, Blogger krishna said...

vow...Tj ..that was a wonderful post..

Right from my younger days..i used to blindly follow my dad when he used to follow the order of worshipping the various gods but neither did i ask him nor did he tell me about its significance..

yeah...thats pretty shameful..:(

thnks for pointing it out..

and on top of what ganesh pointed out that people go to the temple merely to worship the symbols , it's even more pathetic to find people that are not aware of the order that has to be followed..

Anyways, it doesnt make much of a difference between following something without knowing its essence and not following it..

Hopefully, This post will definitely get me thinking b4 blindly following somthing from now forwards..

At Sat Jul 23, 08:07:00 PM CDT, Anonymous Kasthuri Srinivasan said...

Nice one again TJ. Hope it will be an eye opener to many. Far apart from meditating, most people talk like anything inside the temple as though they don't have anything to talk outside. Not only that they don't realize the significance of visiting the temple, but also they disturb the other people who are meditating. One should see the discipline in churches. I guess these types of posts will greatly help people. You are doing a great job. Keep it up.

At Sat Jul 23, 09:21:00 PM CDT, Blogger ioiio said...

Enna Online Kovil onnu open panradhaa plana?

At Sun Jul 24, 12:14:00 AM CDT, Blogger ada-paavi!!!! said...

i somehow dont like ogin to temples, wat u say or the texts potray a very spiritual place, but in reality temples r rarely that, they are places where ppl meet and stuff, and i dont like goin to temples,

wats the routine in a vishnu temple ne idea?

At Sun Jul 24, 09:54:00 AM CDT, Anonymous Anonymous said...

What can i say a coincidence? I was recalling the charmer Chidambaram Nataraja and the majestic raganathar next to him and the greatness of that temple and its history of how it descended from Akasham. Then started reading blogs and came across yours for the first time and was amazed to see an explanation for the various dieties leading towards the Lord. In chidaambaran however there is no Linga. The main diety is in human form.
Nice post and keep them coming.
Maha - FL, USA.

At Sun Jul 24, 12:56:00 PM CDT, Blogger பள்ளி கொண்டான் said...

அன்புள்ள டிஜே அவர்களுக்கு,

அருமையான கருத்து. எளிமையான நடை. புரிந்து கொள்ளும்படியான பார்வை.

எங்கியோ போயிட்டீங்க டிஜே!

எல்லாம் வல்ல இறைவன் உங்களுக்கு என்றென்றும் துணை புரிய வேண்டுகிறேன்.

வாழ்க வளமுடன்,

At Sun Jul 24, 12:59:00 PM CDT, Blogger ranganathan said...

//A normal child has an exam tomorrow, and before opening the book this afternoon, if he watches a very interesting movie, it will be difficult for him to concentrate on his studies, right away. Just being rolled in the samsara sagaram, and immediately starting to mediate on Brahmam is not an easy task. The deities in the temple are meant to gradually bring the devotee into the world of spirituality.//

how true...tjs! kalakkals:-)

At Mon Jul 25, 12:24:00 AM CDT, Anonymous Anonymous said...


very good post. must say that you have brought out the significance of going to temples well. I understand that you are an advaitin by conviction. I go to temples for apreciating the saumyam of Narayana. I feel the bhakti bhava is inherently more blissful than samadhi.

At Mon Jul 25, 02:18:00 AM CDT, Blogger Ranj said...

TJ: Wonderful post! Definitely an eye opener for me as I had no clue about the order to be followed, or why it was. I just go to meditate. Keep such posts coming!

At Mon Jul 25, 07:12:00 AM CDT, Blogger TJ said...

Yes, It is very painful to see people coming to temple, and making it jus another place for public meeting.

Online kovil ellam illapa.. Aedho naama sindichadha makkal kitta pagirndhukkadhaan.

Vatsan, as Anand pointed out, bhakthi bhava is blissful both in both shaiva and vaishnava temples.[though i would not buy the phrase 'more blissful', since i belive bliss is a state which is experienced ;) which doesnot have superlative or comparitive.]

This is because, it reiterates that, you have the most poweful, most merciful on your side, loving and care you atmost at all times. This is a simple way to feel the Brahman. This makes the soul void of the stress, and gives a lot of confidence.

Chidambaram, is where double promotion is granted. The lingam is an akasha lingam which is invisible. Thus from the parivara devata, next step is the Invisible lingam then to Oneness.

Thanks folks for visiting and for the wishes.

At Wed Aug 03, 07:10:00 AM CDT, Blogger Sneha Acharya said...

Very nice Post ... I have some interest in knowing the reason behind some tasks done with respect to GOD. For Example why we do namaskaram, why we have to move from right side to left .. ippaid neraya ... and sitting for sometime before comign out was one among them and you gave me the answer. Thanks for the post

At Wed Aug 03, 05:26:00 PM CDT, Blogger Subbu said...

Good one,
As you said , its is preferrable to go alone. I go alone and avoid talking to anyone, just pray and meditate.


At Thu Aug 04, 09:56:00 AM CDT, Blogger Phoenix said...

Awesome explanation...

At Fri Aug 05, 06:17:00 AM CDT, Blogger TJ said...

Thanks for visiting. And i strongly belive that there are a lot of good reasons for following such customs. If we understand it and appreciate, we would not feel it as a burden, rather enjoy it.
Yes sir, always going to temple is the best, because you can really feel close to Him.
Thanks for dropping by! Keep visitng!!

At Thu Oct 13, 05:35:00 PM CDT, Blogger Shuuro said...

Thanks for this detailed explination!

At Sat Nov 05, 08:35:00 PM CST, Anonymous Anonymous said...

let us appreciate our friends for their valuable inputs.Its a refresher for us to see the whys and hows of tample darshan.Also one of my friend has asked why to do namaskaram.Namaskaram is what symbolises "saranagati" in bhakti.We fall at the feet of the almighty\ishta deivam\guru.When we surrender, by this way our mind becomes cool and may even end up in thoughtless state(in ripe people).Such a state is itself is called the natural state which is the goal of all sadhanas.

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