Temples of Tamil Nadu
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Kamatchi Amman Temple

kamatchi amman
Kamakshi Amman (file photo)

The Kamakshi Temple is a very ancient temple dedicated to Kamakshi, the mother Goddess. It is located in the historic city of Kanchipuram, near Chennai and is popularly associated with Sri Adi Sankara and later Kanchi Paramacharya and the Shankara Matam.Goddess Kamakshi is the main deity and this temple is one of the fifty one Shakti peetams. The naval part of Sati Devi's body is believed to have fallen here and this Peetam is known as Nabisthana or Ottiyana peetam.

The temple also houses Thiru Kalvanoor Adi Varaha Perumal,one of 108 Divyadesams

Goddess Kamakshi here is seen in a sitting, Padmasana posture. She holds a Sugarcane bow on her left upper arm and a Lotus, Parrot in her right upper arm. Kamakshi has divine chakras Pasa and Angusa in her other arms. As per legend,Goddess Kamakshi was doing a penance under a mango tree with a Prithivi Lingam (Shiva lingam made of sand) to marry Lord Shiva. Lord Shiva, after testing Parvati's devotion in various ways, appeared before her and married Kamakshi.

kamatchi temple
The temple with gopurams view

The Temple: Kanchi Kamakshi temple has four entrances. The main entrance of the temple has a Kalabhairavar on its left and the Mahishasura Mardini on the right. As yopu enter you can see a huge Dwajasthampam (flag post). There are sanctumsfor Kamakshi is surrounded by deities of Ayyapan, Saraswati, Annaporani and Adisankaracharya on its outer prakaram. There are other sanctums for Varahi, Roopalakshmi and Arthanariswarar deities outside the main sanctum santorum . On the right wall of the main sanctum you can see Arupalakshmi, a form of Lakshmi without a proper shape. You will miss this , unless you ask specifically about this to the priests inside. There is a Srichakra Yantra (Sri Kamakoti Peetam) established by Jagadguru Sri Adisankaracharya in front of the Kamakshi. Kamakshi temple has a close relation with the Sri Kanchi Kamakoti Peetam and its successive Sankarcharyas. The temple has a gallery of Adisankarcharya's Life history inside the temple premises. The temple also has a golden Gopuram on the sanctorum of the Goddess Kamakshi deity which is visible to all devotees.

There is a small shrine for Lord Vishnu, Thiru Kalvanoor Adi Varaha Perumal as you exit out of the sanctum,which is one of the 108 Vaishnavite's divya desams.

Tank and the golden gopuram view
Tank and the golden gopuram view

Rituals The temple rituals are performed three times a day, 5:30 a.m., 10:00 a.m., 4:30 p.m. The main rituals are abhishekam (sacred bath), alangaram (decoration), neivethanam (food offering) and deepa aradanai (showing of lamps). Weekly twice (wed and Sat evenings) Sandhana Kaapu is performed. Pournami pooja at 9:30pm is performed during Pournami ( full moon) days.

Temple location It is situated in Kanchipuram around 3.5 kms from the bus station.

Temple Timings The temple is open from 7:00 AM till 12:00 noon and from 3:30 pm till 8:00 pm

How to reach?

Kanchipuram is around 75 kms from Chennai off the Chennai- Vellore/ Bangalore highway via SriPerumbudur. Kanchipuram is well connected by several bus services from Chennai. There is a railway station in Kanchipuram with a few train services from Chennai in the mornings.

Where to Stay? There are many semi deluxe hotels in Kanchipuram
Other interesting places around Kanchipuram The famous Ekambareswarar temple, Varadaraja Perumal temple, Sri Kanchi Sankara mutt are in Kanchipuram. It is a temple town with 15 out of the 108 divya desams spread around here. Sri Perumbadur, the birth place of Sri Ramanujar and Rajiv Gandhi Memorial are nearby.

Contact Sri Kamakshi Temple, Kancheepuram – 631 501
Phone +91- 44- 2733433
Useful data
State: Tamil Nadu
District: Kanchipuram
Famous for: Pilgrimage,shopping for the world famous silk sarees,weaving
Languages: English,Tamil, Telugu
Best Season: Throughout the year. Summer( from May to July) could be very sultry when the mercury shoots to 40 degree celsius.
Weather: Summer 33-42°C, Winter 16-28°C
Altitude: Sea level


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