Chepparai Natarajar Temple – Arudhra Darisanam – Festival of Cosmic Dance of Lord Shiva

Sairam friends,

I feel happy to write about Chepparai Natarajar Temple in Rajavallipuram Village, Tirunelvelli. The Lord shiva here is also called “Alagiya Koothar” The one who’s dance is beautiful or one who is beautiful and dancing .

Rajavallipuram – My mom’s village . My first home :

This is the village situated in Tirunelvelli district of Tamilnadu on the banks of River Tamiraibarani . In 1980’s when me and my sister were kids , we used to pack our bags for a stay in grandparents house every summer.  My Thatha Sankarasubramanian ,paati chellamaal and other mamas , athais used to give us the best they can untill we return to coimbatore. When i was born i was taken to this grandparents house and lets consider it as the first shelter God gave me in this birth – My thathas house in Rajavallipuram Village.

I still remember my thatha aasking as soon we enter house

” Vengatu , summa irukiyala…”

The native Tirunelveli tamil of asking “Are you ok – Fine !  ” and we used to joke

“Aaama , Summa dhaan iruken”

I can’t forget the days they get us hot Alwa and omapodi during night times ….my thatha affectionately asks “Pandam saaptiala”

Chepparai Natarajar
Chepparai Natarajar – Gloriously blessing us

Blessed with beauty of Nature :

The mud path leading to river is full of greenary ! Its agricultural treasure and the breeze makes us feel exited.

We remember my mom and all relatives walking to the small mud path which leads to the River where they dip into the river and take bath. At times Maatu vandi – cart with 2 cows will cross us in Ferrari speed with a friendly invitation to get in .

Once we reach the river banks we used to jump in exitement and usual warning from elders .

“Vengatu … indra …. aathula thanni narayaa oodudhula paathu kulikanum , enn kaiyaa pudila”

Theres too much water in river , be careful , hold our hands !

Me and my sister get scared of getting into the river , so we use a Mug to take the water from river banks and pour over us.

chepparai natarajar
chepparai natarajar also called Alagiya Koothar

Photo of Lord Nataraja in copper statue – Chepparai Natarajar used by Courtesy

Chepparai Natarajar Temple :

On the way to the Thamaraibarani river towards right in the mud path is this Ancient sacred temple of Lord Shiva as Natarajar called – Chepparai Kovil – or Chepparai Natarajar temple.

Story behind Chepparai Natarajar Temple :

My amma used to tell the history ( stalapuranam ) behind Chepparai Natarajar temple many times but this time i use a article in Dinamalar Newspaper for referance to write this.

The Lord Nataraja Statue in Chidambaram :

There was a king by name Singavarman who ruled “Uthiradhesam ” . Singavarman was tyrant ruler and his people suffered a lot. Later he changed to be a good hearted man and decided to go to forest for doing meditation  ( Dhavam ).  He saw the sages Pathanjali munivar and Vyakarapadhar .  Lord Shiva gave them darshan and the King also had witnessed it. The sages asked the kind to build Lord Nataraja temple in Chidambaram .

The Kind asked the Sculptures to make a Natarajar statue made of Copper and they created a beautiful Nataraja statue . The statue in copper metal itself was so captivating that the king wondered how beautiful it will be to make similar statue of Natarajar in Gold.

Sculpture Namasivaya muthu ordered to create Natarajar in Gold :

The King ordered the head sculpture Namasivaya Muthu to create Natarajar statue in Gold. The statue was made in Gold but seems every night Lord Shiva would drop a copper coin over it secretely to change the golden statue in to copper sttaue.

The king was shocked to see this and ordered to keep the head sculpture in the forts Jail. The sculpture pleaded the King to prove his innocence but in vain.

Dream Vision – I wish to be in Copper :

That night Lord Shiva as Natarajar appeared in Dream to the king and said

“I don’t wish to be in Gold, i wish to be in Copper”.

So the King released the sculpture.

Lord shiva’s guidance to carry the copper statue towards south :

Lord shiva also asked the King to do this…The copper Nataraja must be carried by the sculpture – Namasivaya. The place where the copper statue weighs too much that they can’t proceed further, that will become the residance of the Copper Nataraja and the Temple must be built there.

Thus when the sculpture Namasivaya came towards south carrying the Nataraja statue over his head on the banks of river Thaamaraibarani , it wighed so much that he could not move ahead. so the statue was placed there.

Copper in Tamil is “Cheppu ” . Hence the name “Chepparai Natarajar ”

King Raama Paandiyan built Chepparai Natarajar temple :

The kind Raama paandiyan built Chepparai Natarajar temple. Even the temples Gopuram is made of Copper which is a beauty to see.

Friends, In recent years i have never visited the temple and all i have is memory of my childhood days. When i go to Chepparai Natarajar temple next time i wish to take few photos.

Aerial view of Chepparai Natarajar and correcting Google Maps :

Now flash back over. It was sometime in november 2010 that me and my chittapa were trying to spot my Amma’s village in Google map.  It was really hard to spot the exact place and finally after 30 minutes we could even spot our thathas house.

I dragged the curser down to see the path…the beautiful still greenish way towards the river.  Suddenly i saw someone had mistaken the Chapparai Natarajar temple for someother temple and it was included in google maps also.

Google maps approved Chepparai Natarajar temple :

My amma was angry that Chepparai Natarajar temple was misunderstood as another temple and marked in Google as i told this to her. I told her we will try to request them and prove its Chepparai Natarajar temple. I marked it and wrote,

“This is my mothers village and we know for sure its Chepparai Natarajar temple. Its thousands of years old and sacred Lord Nataraja temple.”

After 2 weeks the good news came, though the old temples name was still there, The name “Chepparai Natarajar was also included.

Shirdi Sai baba’s guidance to learn about greatness of Chepparai Natarajar temple :

The day before i corrected google maps marking , i had a dream as if i am entering an ancient Lord shiva temple and bowing to shiva, Then another dream where i pray happily and i see the name “Muthu Thillai “. Later when Google approved the presence of Chepparai Natarajar in the exact place, i had a dream as if i am showing pilgrims the way to reach Rajavallipuram .

My amma’s kuladaivam ‘Gobal swami – a holy snake with kalasam ‘ is also in this village  as a privatly worshipped god.

Its holy day of Arudhra Darisanam …for long time i desired to Write about the greatness of Chepparai Natarajar. After todays morning pooja, i started it. My parents wanted me to go to Bank and pay phone bill etc. I din”t had my breakfast though its going to be afternoon .

I feel really satisfied , Today is 6th Birthday of StarSai.com , entering 7th year and i am writing about the greatness of Chepparai Natarajar , The God who blessed me with sweetest Mother on earth from a village , the world won’t care about if not the sacred Lord Shiva Temple – Chepparai Natarajar .

Sai ki jai
Aum Namah Shivaya

C.Venkatraman
december 22nd 2010

About ARUDHRA Darisanam
Arudhra Darshan is observed in the Tamil month of Margazhi (December – January) on Thiruvathirai Nakshatram. It is essentially a Shaivite festival and celebrates the cosmic dance of Lord Shiva, which is represented by the Nataraja form. Arudhra signifies the golden red flame and Shiva performs in the form this red-flamed light

Google maps – I hope the name soon turns as Chepparai Natarajar temple .


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Also Read

Joradevar and Shirdi Saibaba blessings to cure us from Fever

Some one asked for the address of the Temple..The below is not the exact address and I can’t assure that your snail mail will reach through below address. So use the address in case you travel to Tirunelveli, Tamilnadu

I believe you can reach the temple by simple address like

Chepperai Natarajar Temple,

RAJAVALLIPURAM VILLAGE,

THALAIYUTHU,

TIRUNELVELI,

TAMILNADU

Sairam

7 thoughts on “Chepparai Natarajar Temple – Arudhra Darisanam – Festival of Cosmic Dance of Lord Shiva”

  1. I am happy to read your article and became a Tinnevelian.I belong to Suttamalli and I am currently living in Kolkata. The Tinneveli language, chepparai details made me long for a visit to Tinneveli. i had lived at karisulndamngalam,where Natarajar similar to that of Chepparai is kept.

  2. Dear Sir

    Kindly write about ARUNAM or Suryanamskar in your blog for the benefit of other devotees

  3. Nice article. I had a similar childhood. I am from Rajavallipuram and my kulaideivam is also gopal swamy.I am sure we are related.

    Thanks for sharing

  4. It was nice to go through your article. Will certainly visit Chepparai to get blessings from Lord.Nataraja. Thanks for your introduction to a holy place.

  5. My father-in-law’s grandfather devoted 108 sea shells for Sangu Vilakku poojai that used to be celebrated once a year during Karthigai masam on a Monday (approximately 65 years before) at that Chepparai temple. I looked it up after my father-in-law mentioned it today. Thanks for posting about that temple with pictures. We enjoyed it!

  6. Its my pleasure to know that your writings have the blessings of Sai Baba. I read this article on Natarajar since i visited this temple yesterday, 7 August 2020. Its indeed a delightful vistas to watch this idol and understand its deep history. I came to know that 5 statues of same kind were creator bt the artisan. The last one placed at Karivalamkulam, this idol has a mark on its cheek. Mark of affection expressed by the sculptor after completing the creation, spell bound by its beauty. Continue your journey with Starsai, my best wishes

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