30 jun 2013
am here in the amritavidyalyam, kanyakumari, came to interact with kids.
it was a ‘free’ day. decided to go to suchindram temple. a very famous one. this holy place is only 13 km from Kanyakumari. its believed that indra got purified from here. hence the name – suchi – indra. he met the trinities – brahma, vishu and maheswara here thus purified. the name of the diety is sthanu-mal-aryan meaning siva-vishu-brahma respectively.
i had been there in my teens. but i dont remember all that i have seen. only the music pillar was there in my mind.
i wanted to see that again.
many music pillars are there in the temple, carved out of a single granite block which is about 20 feet tall.
each pillar is different. one like the music notes of a piano. another one you have to tap with your fist between two different size pillars. in the middle there is a small pillar. your hand just touches the 3rd small pillar…ahah the sound comes. another like ‘jala tarang’ 4 rings are on a pillar. you tap with your nails. it will sound exactly like in jala tarang – (playing music with water in porcelain vessel). unfortunately people have broken 3 of those rings who have no respect for art, culture.
yet another pillar having 32 small pillars! small pillars in one big granite stone, which is a support pillar of the temple roof. it has 32 diff notes!! wooowwwww…. its like a peetham on which all these 32 poles stand connect at the upper part to the bigger piece of the single granite. how its hard for the hand to get in and play on each pole. how did they chiseled it out, and made it to perfection.? ( this is locked inside a net to protect it from the people!! ). the temple has 2 pillars like that.
another stunning exquisite workmanship is on few statues… what is the speciality? they look ordinary. but if you insert a small iron wire or a thin stick in the left ear, it comes out through the nose! if you insert it in the right ear it come out through the left ear! remember its done in a single stone image. (this also people have pushed all sort of things into the ears and the authorities have blocked the approach to the statue. very sad)
another statue where you can insert a wire in an ear, it comes out through the other. another – a salabhanjika- lady standing with a lap. she has a nose ring. you can insert a a wire in the rose.
another is a statue, which is one among the 4 big statues, part of a 20 feet pillar. the statue is standing with folded palms – like namste. the beauty is when the light falls on the hands from a side, you can see the finger nails tips like that of a human being.. transparent!!!! brilliant is int it?
also i sow ganeswari, a statue with elephant face and woman body. another ganesha is having a nandi pratishta in front of him. usually nandi you will find only in front of shiva. another, hanuman is going though the mouth and coming out of the ear of a rakshasi on his way to lanka.
statue of kama deva and his consort rati devi is so exquisite. i havent seen the statue of kama deva anywhere else. statues of arujuna and karna also decorates the same mandap.
the hanuman image in this temple is 22 feet tall. you need a ladder to climb up and do the daily pujas. this beautiful, single granite block image which has been buried during the muslim invasion and was reinstalled around 88 years ago.
so many more special idols there – both big and small- conveying art and engineering, beauty and skill of our ancient masters.
remember all these are done on granite!!
next one is the nandi. 13 feet high, 21 feet long and 10 feet wide. its not granite but is made of lime and mortar. its one of the biggest of its kind.
the guide told me that during the regime of Ayilyam Thirunaal Maharajah of Travancore, a lottery scheme was introduced to raise funds for rebuilding the temple. it was in in 1875, and a sum of over rs 40,000 was raised. that was the first lottery in india. then kerala lottery came. and other state lotteries consequently.
when you visit these temples without any prejudice, you will stand in awe to the past of india. why did we loose the connection? how we lost it? questions we need to ponder seriously.
(unfortunately the temple authorities won’t allow the camera inside. i wonder really do they know what they are depriving to the society? a chance to talk about our great culture. no one in this world are going to recreate this sculpture. then why this restrictions? by allowing the pic, no damage it will create to those sculptures. will they reconsider this?)