Shri Sundaresan of New Delhi had boundless interest towards God Nataraja. If Nataraja tattvam — principle of Nataraja, was feast for his intellect, Nataraja’s statues were feast for his eyes and heart.
What is the distinction in the Nataraja statue of Koneripuram? Of what sort is Nataraja of Tiruvalankadu? What is so special about the sacred physique of Thillai (Chidambaram) Nataraja? the largest Nataraja vigraham –statue in the world is at Neyveli– he would speedily throw such ample details in no time.
Sundaresan who had unshakable bhakti –devotion towards the dancing God, also had solid bhakti towards Kanchi MahaPeriyaval too, Who was often sitting motionless in silence.
Sundaresan, hands folded on his chest, stood before the Mahaswamigal.
“Have you seen the Makizhanjcheri Nataraja?”
Like an arrow the question hit him.
‘I never mentioned my antaranga –personal, interest in Nataraja to Periyaval… How did He know it?’
“No”, said Sundaresan.
“It’s near the village Panangkudi, this Makizhanjcheri. You know about the vishesham — distinction in that village? Nataraja Shivam is doing His nita-vasam –permanent living, in the Perumal (Vishnu) temple! A vigraham that is more wonderful than the one at Chidambaram. Go and see it. Come back and tell me what speciality you observed in it.”
Sundaresan went to Makizhanjcheri the very next day, and went to the Perumal temple, taking a Bhattacharya — Vishnu temple priest, with him. When the priest Heard that it was ‘Periyaval uthtiravu’– Periyava’s order, he set Sundaresan in aikyam –unity with Nataraja.
Inch by inch — tiruvasi — the circular, decorated, metal frame around the statue, locks of hair that were spread, hand that carried an udukku — a small drum, another sacred hand that carried the fiery flame, a beautiful face where a smile of Anandam — bliss snaked through, the sacred foot that was aloft, the other foot firmly rooted on the ground — Sundaresan saw every feature in the statue. His orders were to report any speciality he watched, right?
Oh! That flower of the thorn-apple plant! That’s it, which lies overturned on the Head! Shouldn’t it be straight? This one looks overturned and slipping, about to fall over the apex of the forehead? Why so?
Standing ten feet away, Sundaresan watched it. He went to see the back of the statue and was enthralled at the beauty of the back! The statue was created to portray the body-insensate state of the Ananda Thandavam –frantic dance of bliss!
Sundaresan stood before Periyaval (who asked him):
Periyava: “Doesn’t the Makizhanjcheri Nataraja look like He is in body-insensate tandavam ?”
Shri Sundaresan: “Yes, it is tatrupam –very natural, as if the thorn-apple flower on the Head overturns and is about to slip through the front of his Head.”
Periyava: “Bhesh !–well! You have looked very well at the details! Nataraja has performed different varieties of dance in different kshetras–sacred places. At Makizhanjcheri, it was unmatha natanam –crazy, frantic dance, which is an- apurva –rare natanam –dance!”
The devotees who were audience to this speech were enthralled, with loss of sensation of their body. But then, Periyaval Himself, fully conscious of his body, was wandering in the great space of Shivananda!
Categories: Devotee Experiences
Very good. I am also interested in seeing the unmaththa natarajar. If possible please give the exact place and how to go there. It will be helpful to all who wish to see him. Awaiting reply eagerly, Pushpa Narayanan
Dear Pushpa My husband and I , after reading this, made a trip to Kumbhakonam last week. Makizhancheri is a few miles from Nannilam. The Bhattar in the Perumal Kovil had gone off after doing the morning pooja( we were there at 8.15 a m ) but the wife was gracious enough to open the temple door for us. With all eagerness we went in and had Darisanam of Perumal with His consorts and a small Anjaneya…No sign of the Cosmic Dancer. When we enquired the Bhattar’s wife said that the Moorthy had been there for hundred years but was removed from the Temple by the Endowment Office fearing theft as it is a very small temple..with no compound wall…It just rises between the rows of houses on the street, standing at one end. She did not know where the Moorthy has been kept. ..amt be Thiruvarur, Thanjavur..
who knows !! came away with disappointment..but high hopes that He will soon reveal His presence..Shall let you know if I hear about Him 🙂
108 natanams of Nataraja is depicted beautifully in Thiruvannamalai Arunachaleshwarar temple before padhala lingam while coming outside from temple
Dear Shri Sundaresa Mama, I am keen to know about Natara and His Significance in terms of His Dance, instruments like Drum, fire etc. Have you written any article on that
It would be nice to know where this Panangudi village is located.
could you tell me where Makizhanjcheri is?,
will find out and post it here…
There are 2 magizhancheriand 2 panangudi, this one is in Nannilam Taluk, in Tiruvarur district
can some one guide where this temple is.
Jaya Jaya Sankara, Hara Har Sankara
Thanks for your continued seva; every post is a blessing and a delight to read & learn.
There is a book, “Aadal Vallavan”, published by the Thiruvaaduthurai Aadheenam. The subject of the book are the 108 vigrahams of Nataraja, depicting the 108 natya poses, and the 108 temples they are to be found. It is a treasure of a book.
where do we get this book?
I have not seen thisbook anywhere, though I have tried to get it for a Bharata Natayam School and Research Centre, The Aadhinam could be approached.
Meanwhile, I have one copy with me, that I inherited from my mother. I do not know, nor have the wherewithal to scan it and put it up on a commons platform like Scrib’d. I do not want to entrust the book to anybody else, as on this way I have lost many precious books.
I do not know what to do.
@ Konneri rajapuram below the shoulder joint(i.auckle in tamil) we can see the actual hair) no were this type of wounderful statue can be seen. @ utharkosamangai(ramanathapuram called adhi thilliai)is raremargatha Nataraja covered with sandal paste opened during Thiruvadirai/Mahasivarathiri only.RG pammal BJP.