Stone Temple Architecture
Stone Temple Architecture
When every stage of the temple building was divine ordained, how the stone can the architecture planning and execution be different? It was not. Actually, the trust members after finalising the land at Kannanthangal debated the idea of building ‘Shree Swarna Kamakshi Temple’ only out of rock stone as ordained by Sri Guruji ala the ancient south Indian temples of the past era. The challenge however was to find right Stapathi who is an exponent of Shilpa Sastra with hand-on experience on stone temple architecture. The trustees did zero in on a leading exponent of Sastra and a renowned Stapathi in South India but the discussions were dragging for next 6 months for one reason or other.
That’s when in 2009 August for Sri Guruji’s Vardhanthi celebrations, there was an invite given to Shri Sampath IAS, then Commissioner of Hindu Religion & Charitable Endowment Board of Tamil Nadu State Government who introduced Padmasri awardee, Shri R. Muthiah Stapathi, who was also invited for the function. Shri Muthiah Stapathi not only turned up for the function on time, he did participate in the function and keenly listened to the temple plans of the trust. In his key note speech, Shri Stapathi threw a pleasant surprise to one and all by volunteering to ‘design, supervise and construct the stone temple of Shree Swarna Kamakshi and other temples in the campus’.
So the stone temple of Shree Swarna Kamakshi consisting of Garbagraha or Sanctum Sanctorum, Artha Mandapam, Maha Mandapam and the Vimana all made of rock stone is like a structure done by Pallava, later Chola and Nayaka kinds and hence was very challenging. With the grace of the Divine Mother, however the entire activity of stone procurement, designing, crafting and modular development were well coordinated by the Stapathi team with the trust.
Stone work completion & Kumbabhishekam – 100 day achievement
Thought the stone architecture was progressing steadily, during a periodical assessment in September 2013, as per the Stapathi team, the work completed was about 50% while the balance works will take another 8-9 months to complete with Vimana work yet to commence. Accordingly the trust was planning its activities on procurement etc; however the divine will seemed different!!
During the concluding day of Navrathri in the last week of October 2013, Shree Guruji announced that the ‘temple consecration (Kumbabishekam) would be conducted on February 9, 2014’ thereby leaving exactly 108 days for not only completing the balance 50% stone work but also for Kumbabishekam readiness in scheduled Muhurtham!!
This was a humongous challenge in front of the trust members and all associated with project including Stapathi’s team. So the activities and resources were planned to the meticulous level through multiple teams and the work continued till February 8th well into the midnight for completion. On February 9th, the Kumbabishekam happened as per the scheduled muhurtham where the Stapathi himself exclaimed “this is nothing but miracle the work got completed only through the grace.” Everyone was moved as it was celebration time as the Divine Mother ensured her work was completed on time the way SHE wanted.
The Kumbabishekam was conducted as per the Vedic tradition participated by learned pundits headed by Vadagudi Brahmasri Sankarrama Dikshidhar. As per Brahmanda Purana, when Divine Mother Kamakshi Devi descended into Kanchi, she was surrounded by all Devas and in particular Gayathri Devi the embodiment of four Vedas. It is due to this reason, Sri Guruji ensured Shree Swarna Kamakshi Temple consecration and the daily poojas are as per the Vedic tradition.
Devotees and general public at large from different places in the State and from different parts of the world participated in the Kumbabishekam function and got the Anna Prasadam. This Kumbabishekam was performed in the Star Rohini coinciding with the Star of Lord Krishna and not that of Divine Mother. On closer scrutiny only this Sukshmam got revealed to the devotees. Yes, the temple is part of village named Kannanthangal (meaning Lord Krishna’s place in Tamil) an abode of Yadava community even today. We all know that Lord Krishna is none other than Lord Padmanabha and Shree Swarna Kamakshi Devi is none but Padmanabha Sahodari. Kannanthangal villagers were deeply emotional immediately after the Kumbabishekam having experienced a rare event of “a huge eagle revered as Garuda-the Lord Vishnu’s primary vehicle circulating above the vimana of Shree Swarna Kamakshi Temple during Kumbabishekam more than once. Devotees at large also experienced this unique event and were all blessed.