Chidambaram Tillai Nataraja swamy temple :

God and Godess :

  • Thillai Nataraja,
  • Sivakami Amman
  • ThillaiKali Amman temple
  • Lord Govindaraja perumal
  • Pundarikavalli amman
  • Lord vinayaka
  • Lord Murugan

Location :

Chidambaram Tillai Nataraja temple,
Thillai Nataraja temple, Chidambaram(Town),
Cuddalore district – 608001,
Tamilnadu.

Timings :

  • Thillai Nataraja temple :
  • Morning 6:00AM – 12:00PM
  • Evening 5:00PM – 10:00PM
  • Govindarajar – Parthasarathy –Chakravarthi Tirumagan Temple :
  • Morning 6:30AM – 12:00PM
  • Evening 5:00PM – 9:30PM

Temple History :

Chidambaram Temple is a Hindu temple dedicated to Lord Shiva located in the heart of the temple town of Chidambaram, Tamil Nadu.The temple is at 78 km south of Pondicherry and 235 Km from Chennai city.The Sangam classics refer to Viduvelvidugu Perumtaccan, a respected clan of traditional Vishwakarma’s, as being the chief architect of the temple renovation. There have been several renovations in its history, particularly during the days of Pallava/Chola emperors in ancient and pre-medieval periods.Chidambaram is one of the five holiest Shiva temples in South India, each representing one of the five natural elements; Chidambaram represents akasha Linga. The other four temples in this category are Thiruvanaikaval Jambukeswara, Trichy Jala Linga, Kanchi Ekambareswara, Kanchipuram, Thiruvannamalai Arunachaleswara AgniLinga, Thiruvanna malai and Kalahasti Nathar Vayu Linga. The temple of Chidambaram spread over 50 acres in the heart of the city.

It is an ancient and historic temple dedicated to Lord Shiva, Nataraja, and Lord Govindaraja Perumal.One of the few temples where both the Shaivite and Vaishnavite deities are enshrined in one place.To the followers of Shaivism (Saivism) or the Shivite, the very word Koil refers to Chidambaram. In the same way, to the followers of Vaishnavism, it refers to Srirangam or Thiruvarangam.A unique feature of this temple is the bejeweled image of Nataraja. It depicts Lord Shiva as the Lord of the dance Bharatanatyam and is one of the few temples where Shiva is represented by an anthropomorphic Murthy rather than the classic, anionic Lingam. The Cosmic Dance of Lord Nataraja symbolizes the motion of the universe as sustained by Lord Shiva. The temple has five courts.Aragalur Udaya Iraratevan Ponparappinan (alias Vanakovaraiyan) rebuilt the Siva temple at Chidambaram around 1213 AD. The same Bana Chief also built Tiruvannamalai temple.The temple has been traditionally administered by an endogamous group of shiavite brahmins called Dikshitar, who also officiate as its priest.

Temple Story: The story of Chidambaram begins with the legend of Lord Shiva strolling into the Thillai Vanam.In the Thillai forests resided a group of saints or ‘rishis’ who believed in the supremacy of magic and that God can be controlled by rituals and ‘mantras’ or magical words. The Lord strolls in the forest with resplendent beauty and brilliance, assuming the form of ‘Pitchatanadar’, a simple mendicant seeking alms. He is followed by his Grace and consort who is Lord Vishnu as Mohini. The rishis and their wives are enchanted by the brilliance and the beauty of the handsome mendicant and his consort.On seeing their womenfolk enchanted, the rishis get enraged and invoke scores of ‘serpents’ by performing magical rituals. The Lord as the mendicant lifts the serpents and dons them as ornaments on his matted locks, neck, and waist. Further enraged, the rishis invoke a fierce tiger, which the Lord skins and dons as a shawl around his waist.Thoroughly frustrated, the rishis gather all their spiritual strength and invoke a powerful demon Muyalakan – a symbol of complete arrogance and ignorance. The Lord wearing a gentle smile, steps on the demon’s back, immobilizes him and performs the Ánanda Thaandava and discloses his true form. The rishis surrender, realizing that this Lord is the truth and he is beyond magic and rituals.

Adhisesha, the serpent who serves as a bed for the Lord in his manifestation as Vishnu, hears about the Änanda Thaandava and yearns to see and enjoy it. The Lord blesses him, beckons him to assume the saintly form of ‘Patanjali’ and sends him to the Thillai forest, informing him that he will display the dance in due course.Patanjali who meditated in the Himalayas during Krita yuga joins another saint, Vyagrapathar / Pulikaalmuni (Vyagra / Puli meaning “Tiger” and patha / kaal meaning “feet” ). The story of sage Patanjali as well as his great student sage Upamanyu is narrated in both Vishnu Puranam as well as Siva Puranam. They move into the Thillai forest and worship Lord Shiva in the form of Shivalinga, a deity worshiped today as Thirumoolataneswarar (Thiru – Sri, Moolatanam – primordial or in the nature of a foundation, Eswarar- the Lord). Legends say that Lord Shiva displayed his dance of bliss (the Aananda Thaandavam) – as Nataraja to these two saints on the day of the Poosam star in the Tamil month of Thai (Jan – Feb).

Significance: Chidambaram is also referred to in various works such as Thillai, Perumpatrapuliyur or Vyagrapuram? .The temple is supposed to be located at the Lotus heart of the Universe”: Virat Hridaya Padma Sthalam. On the spot where the Lord displayed his dance of bliss, the Änanda Thaandavam – a spot exactly south of the “Thirumoolataaneswar temple”, today is the Ponnambalam/ Porsabai (Pon meaning gold, Ambalam/Sabai meaning stage) housing Lord Shiva in his dancing form. The Lord is also hence referred to as the Sabhanayakar, meaning the Lord of the Stage.

Festivals :

  • Naayanmaar Uthsavam
  • Srimoolanaathar Mahaannaabhishekam
  • Sri Sivakamasundari Uthsavaarambam
  • Amman Rathothsavam
  • Poorachalankai pattu vaangal
  • Maalaimaatral ,Kanoonjal ,Thirukalyanam

Ticket price for rituals, darshanams & special sevas :

  • Abhishegam
  • Panchamruthabhishekam
  • Sptikalinga Abhishekam
  • Paal Nivedyam – 6:30AM
  • Maha Harathi – 7:00AM
  • Kala Sandhi pooja – 7:45AM to 9:00AM (1st pooja of the day )Kala sandhi homam ,Saptikalinga Abhishekam , Maha Harathi
  • Irandaam Kaalam – 10:00AM to 11:00AM (2nd pooja of the day) Saptikalinga Abhishekam , Rathna Sabhapati – Rubi Nataraja Abhishekam
  • Uchikaalam – 11:30AM to 12:00PM (3rd pooja of the day) Saptikalinga Abhishekam and Harathi temple will be closed
  • Saayarakshai – 5:15PM to 6:00PM (4th pooja of the day) Saptikalinga Abhishekam ,Chidambara rahasya pooja,Maha harathi
  • Irandaam Kaalam – 7:00PM to 8:00PM (5th pooja of the day) [Saptikalinga Abhishekam , Maha Harathi,Mahaaarthi at Pilliyaraj ,Chandeswarar aarthi,Bhairava aarthi,Ardhajaama Sundharar aarthi]

Nearest Temples Around Chidambaram Tillai Nataraja swamy temple :

  • Sivapuri Uchinathar Temple – Cuddalore district – 4.00 km
  • Thirunaraiyur Soundaryeswarar Temple – Cuddalore district – 18.00 km
  • Omampuliyur Pranavapureeswarar Temple – Cuddalore district – 33.00 km
  • Srimushnam Sri Bhoovaraha Swamy Temple – Cuddalore district – 43.00 km
  • Poovarasankuppam Sri Lakshmi Narashima Perumal Temple – Viluppuram district – 71.00 km
  • Govindaputhur Gangajadatheeswarar Temple – Ariyalur district – 77.00 km
  • Parikkal Sri Lakshmi Narasimha murthy Temple – Viluppuram district – 83.00 km
  • Koovagam Koothandavar Temple – Viluppuram district – 90.00 km
  • Thiruvamathur Nandeeswarar Temple – Viluppuram district – 95.00 km
  • Tiruthangur Periyanayaki vellimalai nathar temple – Tiruvarur district – 102.00 km
  • Tirukoilur Ulagalantha Perumal Temple – Viluppuram district – 107.00 km
  • Thirumazhapadi VaidhyanathaSwamy Temple – Ariyalur district – 107.00 km
  • Siruvachur Madhura Kali Amman temple – Perambalur district – 120.00 km
  • Singavaram Sri Ranganatha Swamy Temple – Viluppuram district – 130.00 km
  • Chettikulam Ekambareswarar Swamy temple – Perambalur district – 134.00 km
  • Chettikulam Dandayuthapani Swamy temple – Perambalur district – 134.00 km
  • Kanchipuram Varadaraja swamy temple – Kanchipuram district – 188.00 km
  • Kanchipuram Kamakshi Amman Temple – Kanchipuram district – 190.00 km
  • Kanchipuram Kumara Kottam Subramanya temple – Kanchipuram district – 190.00 km
  • Kanchipuram Ekambaranathar temple – Kanchipuram district – 191.00 km
  • Kanchipuram Sri Kailasanathar Temple – Kanchipuram district – 191.00 km

Nearest Bus Stations :

  • Chidambaram – 1.00 km
  • Sethiyathope – 22.00 km
  • Sirkali / Sirkazhi – 22.00 km
  • Mayiladuthurai – 40.00 km

Nearest Railwaystations :

  • Vallampadugai – 7.00
  • Kille – 7.00
  • Kollidam – 10.00

Nearest Airports :

  • Pondicherry Airport – 69.00 km
  • Tiruchirapally International Airport, Trichy – 173.00 km
  • Coimbatore International Airport,Coimbatore – 336.00 km

Photos of the temple :