Sri Saneeswara Baghwan Temple – Kuchanur

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Reputation:

Though there is a shrine for Saturn in almost all temples, Kuchanur temple is exclusively for Sani Baghwan next to Thirunallar. Moreover, He exists of himself.

It is said that this is the place where Sani Baghwan himself got relieved of the Brahmmahathi dosha – a sin that affects a person for committing some serious crime.
A Shivalinga was growing upwards here and the growth was controlled by applying turmeric on the Linga. A very sacred place for relief from the adverse effects of Saturn. A large number of devotees visit Kuchanur to worship Sani Baghwan from Northern states too.

Temple is open from 6 A.M. to 1.00 P.M. and 4 P.M. to 8.30 P.M.

About Temple:

Kuchanur, a small village near Chinnamanur in Theni district, as does Thirunallar, has a separate temple for Lord Saniswara, unlike other places where He is part of the Navagrahas.

Legend has it that King Dinakaran who once ruled Kalinganadu with Mani Nagaram as capital incurred Sani Bhagwan’s wrath for 7-1/2 years. Dinakaran’s son Chandiravadanan on coming to know of it through an astrologer went to a dense forest and sat on a penance in the midst of Senbagam, Sandalwood and Kongu trees near the bank of Surabi river to invoke the blessings of Lord Saniswara to set his father free from the curse.

Moved by his prayers, Lord Saniswara appeared before him at a place called Senbaganallur and granted his prayers. The place later came to be called Kuchanur.

Kuchanur, a part of Chinnamanur Panchayat Union, is surrounded by channels and forests.

The moolavar (presiding deity) at the temple surfaced as a Suyambu and is in the shape of a linga, black in colour. Just adjacent to the moolavar, the urchavamoorthy (processional idol) finds a place.

He is taken out in procession once a year during temple festivities. A sub-temple dedicated to Lord Muruga (Subramaniaswamy Kovil) is located to the north of the Saniswarar sannidhi and next to it is one for Lord Vigneswara.

To the left is situated Landasanyasi sannidhi. A few yards from Sani Bhagwan temple, again on the banks of the river, there is a shrine for Sonai Karuppannasamy, besides a Kannimar koil and Nagar koil.

The river Surabhi, in keeping with its name, has water flowing throughout the year. Hence the name jeeva nadhi. It gets water from the Rajavaikal (channel) of Suruli river.

Devotees who visit the Sani Bhagwan temple have a dip in the Surabi river and proceed to offer worship to him. Poojas are performed in the early morning, during noon and in the evenings. Daily poojas and archanas are carried out according to agama sastras.

Only after feeding the crows that are around (crow is considered to be the vahanam (celestial carrier) of Sani Bhagwan) during uchikala poojas, prasadam is given to devotees.

At times when crows do not partake of the offering, the entire gathering including priests plead before Sani Bhagwan to forgive their mistakes.

It is said that there has never been an occasion when crows have not had the offering.

Ellu pongal (a mix of cooked rice and gingely powder) is a regular prasadam offered at the temple.

Every year festivals are held during the Tamil month of Aadi Saturdays during which devotees from far and near throng the shrine. Of the five Saturdays, the third Saturday has special significance since it is the day of festivity.

While not many may know about Kuchanur, devotees from southern parts of the State throng the temple during Sani Payerchi to seek His blessings.

Prayer commitments:
Devotees light lamps with pure gingely oil and feed the crows. They also undertake feeding the visiting devotees. Donate for the maintenance and renovation of the temple.
Reputation:
Though there is a shrine for Saturn in almost all temples, Kuchanur temple is exclusively for Sani Baghwan next to Thirunallar. Moreover, He exists of himself.

General Information:
Kuchanur is 30 kms from Theni, and 100 from Madurai. There are lodgings in Theni Town, the charges ranging from Rs. 200 to Rs. 500.
Bus facilities are available from Theni. The nearest railway stations are Theni, Dindigul and Madurai. Nearest Airport Madurai.

Festivals:
Adi festival (July-August) celebrated for five weeks. Also the Sani (Saturn) transit day is observed very devotionally occurring in every two and half years.

 

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