Saturday, April 28, 2012

Suruli Falls

  • This cascading water fall is located 56 km from Theni and 10 km from Cumbum valley.
  • Silappathikaram written by Ilango Adigal mentions the beauty of this falls.
  • This falls is part of Pothigai hills or Agasthyamalai. Pothigai hills are famous in Hinduism for providing the balance for the world during Lord Siva’s marriage in Mount Kailash. The similarity between Mount Kailash and Pothigais Hills backs the mythological connection of these sacred peaks.
  • Tiru Kalyana teertham at Pothigai hills is visited by saints from Hilmalayas.
  • Bogar visited and took herbs from these hills for constructing the navapasana(a type of medicine created using nine poisons) statue for Lord Muruga at Palani temple.
  • Saints do meditation at a natural spring at Kailasanathar cave temple. This cave temple is connected to Sathuragiri Mahalingam cave temple.
Suruli Falls, Theni

Nearby Places:
  •  Periyar wild life sanctuary, Thekkady, Idukki District, Kerala. 80 km from Theni and 5 km from Kumuli.
  • Munnar, Kerala. 95 km from Theni.
  • Megamalai
  • Mettur Dam

View Larger Map

Wednesday, April 11, 2012


  • It was a capital of Tondaiman Ilantiriyan, a sangam age king who ruled the northern tamil country.
  • Mauryan king erupted a stupa in Kanchi, which is referred by the Chinese traveler Hieun Tsang.
  • It is one of the most important Buddhism centers and one of the most prominent learning centers of the ancient India, in line with Varanasi, Nalanda, Takshasila and Valabhi.
  • Pallavas made this place as one of most important Jains landmarks. Jain Tirthankars temple in this town was built around ninth century CE. This temple contains several fresco paintings and a huge image of Bhagwan Mahaveer.
  • The sixth century CE famous poet Bharavi in the court of King Harshavardhana praised Kanchi as the best city at that time.
  • Based on the evidences, this city might have housed 1008 temples. But only 200 out of those temples are still remaining in Kanchi.
  • Fifteen of the 108 divya desams are in Kanchi.
  • It is the birth place of Saint Ramanuja acharya, Srivaishnava acharya. Also it is believed that the great Chanakya and the poet Parimelazhagar are from this town.
  • Chaitanya Mahaprabhu, Nityananda Prabhu and Madhvacharya visited Kanchi.
  • During sixth century, this city became the imperial capital of Pallava dynasty.
  • Kanchi is one of the Shakti Peethas.
  • The great texts, Tiruvacakam, Tirukkovaiyaar, Kanchipuranam, Manimekalai speak the glory of Kanchi city.
  • Kailasanathar temple of Lord Shiva is the oldest temple in Kanchi and it was built by Rayasimha Pallava around seventh century CE. The eighth century murals, red stone carvings of Rudra Thandava, Lord parvathi are the significant remains of Pallava arts.
  • Ekambareswarar temple is one of the largest temples in Kanchipuram. Pallavas initially built this temple and Cholas extended this temple later. Krishnadevaraya built the main tower and the outer walls in the sixteenth century CE. It is one of the Panchabhoota Stalams representing Earth and it is one the 275 Devara sthalams.
  • Kamakshi amman temple called as Kachi Kamakottam is one of the Shakti peethas and famous for its ornate pillars mandapam. Sri Adi Sankara installed Srichakra yantra here.
  • Varadarajaswami Temple is one of the 108 divya desams and was built by Vijayanagar kingdom rulers. The main tower and the prakaram were built by later chola kings. One of the interesting features of this temple is that it has a huge chain carved out from a single piece of stone. Inside the temple tank, there is an idol of 10 meter high statue of Vishnu, made of wood of a "Fig" tree. This idol is taken out once in 40 years for worship.
  •  Sri Kacchapeswarar temple is located in the centre of Kanchipuram and the construction timeframe is unknown.

Divya Desams in Kanchi:
  • Varadarajaswami Temple
  • Adikesava perumal temple
  • Jagadeeswarar temple,Tiruneeragam
  • Chandrachooda Perumal temple (Tirunilaattingal Tundam) – Located in Ekambareswarar temple
  • Tirukaarvanam temple – Located in Ulagalanda perumal temple, Tiruooragam
  • Aadi Varaha temple, Tirukkalvanoor – Located in Kamakshi Amman temple
  • Tiruppavalavannam temple
  • Sri Vijayaraghava Perumal Temple, Tirupputkuzhi

Other temples:
  • Sri Subramanya temple – This temple was built in last century. But it has become very famous among pilgrims. This temple is called as Kandakottam and located in between Ekambareeswarar temple and Kamakshi amman temple.

Nearby Temples:
  • Tirumaakaral temple is located 15 kilometers from Kanchipuram near Uttiramerur. Shiva is said to have manifested himself as a giant golden lizard to Rajendra Cholan here and in another legend, an Udumbu (giant lizard) is said to have worshipped Shiva in an ant hill. Indra is said to have worshipped Shiva here.
  •  Tirupparuthikkundram is a village on the banks of Palar River. This village is the place of two great Jain temples, which were built around ninth century CE.
  •  A separate temple for Chitragupta is located in Kanchipuram. This might be the only temple where Chitragupta is the main deity. To get release from the clutches of Kethu, and to appease Yama, the Lord of Death, the blessing of Chitragupta is sought here.
  •  The famous Sri Sankara mutt is located in Kanchi and one of the Sankara Peetams established by Sri Adi Sankara.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Pre-sangam Tamil history

     Though Sangam literatures throw some light on how the people lived during sangam age, there are not enough proof other than literatures to understand their way of life. This is mainly no excavations were done in Tamilnadu,like Harappa or Mohenjodaro . There are some links between tamil civilization and other well known civilizations.But those are not enough. Until there is a major excavation in Tamilnadu, it would be hard to prove that there was a tamil civilization before sangam age.
     I actually agree with the theory that people moved from northern India to southern India. The move might have taken a long long time and in this case, Did the migrated people bring the whatever culture they had it in other civilization? or Did they form a new civilization?. This migration could not have happened over night. So Defnitely people brought few customs along with them and formed a new civilization. So when that would have happened? It should be definitely before sangam age. The mighty king Asoka did not conquer Tamil land during his time(300 BCE) and maintained friendly relationships with the tamil kings. That means that some form of civilization should have been in Tamil land at that time and it should have taken at least 1000 years to form a governed society. So during 1000 BCE at least, tamil land should have a civilized society.

Indus Valley period (3500 BCE)
  • In May 1999, 'plant-like' and 'trident-shaped' markings have been found on fragments of pottery dating back 5500 years at Harappa (Pakistan). This is the earliest script identified till now and these scripts are older than the scripts found at Egypt and Mesopotamian civilizations.
  • A well-preserved bull-fighting seal found at Mohenjodaro in the 1930s. It’s 2000 years old seal. Is it the proof that Dravidian culture migrated from Indus valley? Tamilnadu is the only place in India where bull-fighting is still practiced.
Pre-Sangam age:
  • The arrow-mark graffiti on the megalithic pottery found at Sembiyankandiyur and Melaperumpallam villages, Nagapattinam district. As they are in the Indus scripts, arrow-mark graffiti are always incised twice and together. Indus script belongs to the period 2600 BCE to 1900 BCE.
  • A large megalithic terracotta plate found at Sulur near Coimbatore, with symbols closely resembling an inscription on a tablet found at Harappa.
  • Excavations at Mayiladuthurai have been claimed to contain Indus symbols being used as late as 1100 BCE.
  • The urn with the rudimentary Tamil-Brahmi script, and a human skeleton and miniature pots at Adichanallur in Tamil Nadu, dated back to 500 BCE.
  • Three foot Hero stones of the Sangam era found at Puliyamkombai in Andipatti taluk of Theni District. These are the oldest among the hero stones in India so far. These stones are 2300 years old, roughly belong to 300 BCE.
Sangam Age(300BCE – 300 CE)
  • Jambai inscription proves that the “Satyaputo” mentioned by Asoka was none other than the Adhiyaman Neduman Anji dynasty, which ruled from Tagadur, modern Dharmapuri.
  • Mankulam inscription of Pandyan king Nedunchezhiyan
  • Chera King Irumporai inscriptions at Pugalur near Karur   
  • The Pandyan coin of Peruvazhuthi or the silver portrait coins of Cheras belong to Sangam age.
  • Numerous gold, silver and bronze rings of merchants and noblemen from the prosperous trading town of Karur dated back to Sangam period.
  • A broken storage jar with inscriptions in Tamil Brahmi script dated to first century CE, excavated at Quseir-al-Qadim, an ancient port with a Roman settlement on the Red Sea coast of Egypt. Earlier 30 years ago, two pottery inscriptions in Tamil Brahmi belonging to the first century CE found at the same place. Another Tamil Brahmi pottery inscription of the same period was found in 1995 at Berenike, also a Roman settlement, on the Red Sea coast of Egypt. These discoveries provided material evidence to corroborate the literary accounts by classical Western authors and the Tamil Sangam poets about the flourishing trade between the Tamil country and Rome (via the Red Sea ports) in the early centuries CE.
  • A unique Tamil-Brahmi Inscription on pottery of the second century CE has recently been excavated in Thailand. And also a touchstone engraved in Tamil in the Tamil-Brahmi script of about the third or fourth century CE found in Thailand. This indicates that the overseas trade between India to both the West and the East involved people from the Tamil country.