Goddess Garbarakshambigai




There is a proverb in Tamil(an ancient Indian language) that the blessing for a child and rain are to be showered by the God and is beyond the human senses. How True!
Despite the immense growth in Medical Sciences, there are miracles happening everyday. Any sincere, continuous prayer to God for a healthy long living child will definitely be answered some day.

All through this blog, lets travel around some holy places and chant some slokas and mantras. Hope God answers our prayers.

The first God from whom we seek her courteous blessings is Goddess Rakshambigai.

Goddess Garbarakshambigai

The Goddess Garbarakshambigai is seated in the Grabarakshakambigai temple. The temple is situated in Thirukarukaavur, Papanasam Taluk, Tanjore District, TamilNadu. Garba means womb, Raksha means protect and ambigai means the divine mother (incarnation of Parvathi). A remarkable feature of the temple which distinguishes this temple from the innumerable other shrines of our land is that the Goddess Sri Garbharakshambika not only protects the embryo, but also blesses people who long for a child.

For centuries thousands of devotees, across the country, especially from South India visit the temple and have been offering prayers and special pujas to seek the blessings of the Goddess. Most of them have been blessed. They have conceived children and have gone on to deliver healthy babies.

The other presiding deity is Lord Mullaivana Nathar (Lord of the Jasmine Garden) and worshipping this God will cure all kinds of skin diseases. People who are afflicted with incurable diseases come to this temple. 

Among the numerous shrines in Tanjore District the temple at Thirukarugavur is a unique one. The presiding deities of the temple are Lord Mullaivananathar and Goddess Garbharakshambika. Lord Mullaivananathar is Lord Shiva himself and Goddess Garbharakshambika is an incarnation of Goddess Parvati. Goddess Parvati is the embodiment of Shakti (Power). She has the power to give or empower and she is perhaps the most loved and undoubtedly the most giving of her love. In her we have the true celebration of Hindu womanhood. 

The Shri Garbharakshambika Sameta Shri Mullaivana Nathar temple is spread over a wide expanse with huge towering Gopurams and a beautiful water tank in front of it. The temple is surrounded by tall coconut - palms, the whole atmosphere is very calming and serene and lends the place sanctity. 

Once you walk past the temple tank, you reach into the temple complex of Shri Garbharakshambika Sameta Shri Mullaivana Nathar. 

There is a main Raja gopuram on the east and the temple has also got an entrance on the south side. 

Both the shrines of Lord Mullaivana Nathar and Goddess Garbharakshambika are situated in the outer Prakaram, which is the main Prakaram facing the east direction. 

The main sanctum of this temple has the Shiva lingam and Goddess Garbharakshambika is situated to the left of the Shiva temple. It is believed that the Nandi at this temple is in Swayambhu vigraham (Self manifested) and so is the Karpaga Vinayagar inside the temple which is also a Swayambhu (self manifested) and as such commands unique devotion from the worshippers. There is also a shrine for Lord Subramanian. 

Devotees pay their respects to the presiding deity, Shri Mullaivana nathar ( Lord Shiva) first, as is the custom that is followed in Shiva temples anywhere in TN and then to Goddess Garbharakshambika. 

The Supreme Personality of Motherhood:

Goddess Garbharakshambika is the supreme personality of Motherhood and the sanctum sanctorum (Garba Graha) of her temple is filled with the presence of her beautiful idol of, which is about 7 feet tall and decked in beautiful kanjeevaram sarees and exquisite jewellery. She is adorned with the most beautiful flowers which are offered in abundance to the Goddess increasing her beauty. The Goddess has the most radiant smile on her face depicting positivity and a ray of hope. For the thousands who throng her abode she isn’t an idol, she is their only remaining hope. 

Even a casual visitor cannot fail to be thrilled by the motherly grace and the imposing look of the Goddess here. 

The Garbarakshambigai Temple:

The Gopuram and the huge compound walls tell the story of more than a thousand years. The Sthalapuranas which are in Sanskrit and Tamil are preserved in manuscript forms and show the antiquity of the temple. The Sthalapurana gives a detailed account of the origin of this Kshetram and the various persons who obtained Divine Grace at this place.There are also ancient inscriptions of the walls inside. 

Inscriptions from King Raja Raja Chola’s period who ruled between 985 and 1014 . as well as those from Parantaka Chola’s period (early 10th century) are seen inside the temple. There is evidence that Beema, Garkiyar, Gouthamar and a lot of ancient kings worshipped the God in this temple. 

Appar, Sundarar and Sambandar, the three famous Nayan-mars (Saints) have celebrated the glory of the God and this temple in soul-stirring verses (pathigams) of rare beauty and charm. 

The three Nayan-mars visited these temples along with their followers in spite of the inconveniences they faced while travelling the nook and corner of Tamilnadu in search of these temples. There are instances when God Shiva himself had directed them and shown the way to some of the temples so that the above Nayan-mars could visit these temples and compose Pathigams. These Pathigaams composed in the classical Tamil language are of immense value to the Tamil literature. 

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