Sri Sundara Kamakshi temple at Siru Karumbur
Location: The temple is about 400 meters from the Chenai – Bangalore highway at the SiruKarumbur junction between Ocheri and Kaveripakkam. The SiruKarumbur junction is 1 km after Ocheri junction; 2 kms before Murugan Idly Shop; and around 4 kms before Kaveripakkam while going from Chennai.
Link: Wikimapia location
Main deities: Lord Shiva here is called Sri Thirupuranthaga Easwar as Swayambu lingam and Ambal is Sri Sundara Kamakshi
The temple with great religious importance as well as beautiful icons is situated in a very beautiful ambiance amidst green fields. From the outside, it looks like a small village temple. Indeed it’s a small temple with just a Shiva and Ambal shrine, both not so big, but it is a hidden treasure trove for devotees, heritage and art lovers with so many unique features.
At the inner entrance to Shiva shrine there are icons of Sage Pathanjali on the right side and Sage Vyaghrapathar on the left.
On either side of the innermost entrance to the Shiva shrine there are icons of male and female versions of Purusha mirugas in the posture of doing poojas. They are considered to be present always and doing the daily poojas to Easwaran.
Though this is a Shiva Temple, importance is for Sundara Kamakshi Ambal and She is very beautiful, as the name signifies. Unlike Kamakshi ambal in other temples, here She is in a standing posture. Sri Adhi Sankarar had visited this place and installed the Sri Chakra in front of Her. The Srichakra has the presence of Ashtadhik balahars in it.
Kanchi Paramacharya, on visiting this temple during 1974 and 1978, got mesmerised with the Ambal and sat in meditation for 3 days within the Ambal shrine. As a remembrance of this event, the Maha Periyava’s big photo is placed at the place where he sat in meditation. In 1981, he himself conducted the Kumbabhishegam for the temple. Whenever he visits this temple, it was very difficult for him to move away from the temple, so much was the attachment for him with the Ambal.
The temple is being visited by Sri Jayendra Saraswathi Swamigal and Sri Vijayendra Saraswati Swamigal as well, on various occasions.
Whereas the goshta walls of the Shiva shrine looks normal like most other temples excepting for the rare Dakshinamoorthy icon with 63 Nayanmars in His Jadamudi, the Ambal shrine is totally different. It is built of green granite stones and its goshta walls are completely filled with exquisite carvings and very rare and special moorthies.
It is said that the ancestors of this village had kept the temple covered under sand for many centuries to protect it from the devastation of Malikkabur and later it was totally forgotten as well. In 1958, Sri Baskara Thondaiman, the then Collector of Vellore and a great devotee, took effort and uncovered the temple.
Neem and Bilwa tree:
Usually we see only neem tree growing together with banyan tree but here the neem tree is intertwined with a Bilva tree. Bilva tree represents Shiva and Neem tree Parvathi/Ambal. Here the Bilva tree branches into three like a Trishul, just at a height of about 10 feet from the ground. The branch of the neem tree is embracing the Trishul region. It reminds us of Parvati embracing Shiva. Pooja is done here by couples who wished to be blessed with children.