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Rare Idols

There are some idols of Vinayaka that are special by way of sculpture. These idols are special and have contributed immeasurably to the country's rich cultural heritage. Some of the rare Vinayakar idols in Tamil Nadu are: 

1. Niram Marum Vinayakar: 
This rare idol of Vinayaka is found in Keralapuram -- at the Mahadeva Temple beneath the 'Arasamaram'. The specialty of the idol is that it remains white in colour for six months starting from the Tamil month of Aavani, but is black in colour for six months starting from Masi. It is said that this idol is made of a stone known as Chandrakantha. Another speciality of the idol is that when it is white in colour, the front portion of the tree's branches are full of leaves while the back portion's leaves fall off. 

2. Then Urinjum Vinayakar: 
This idol is located in Saatchinathar temple, Thiruppurampayam. Made from sea-shore materials such as shells, foam and conches, the Vinayaka idol here is said to have saved the temple from pralayam. On the day of Vinayaka Chaturthi, the idol is seen to absorb abhishekam offered in the form of honey. The abhishekam, which starts at eight in the night goes on till dawn. 

3. Thiruparankundram Karumbu Vinayakar: 
This idol is located at Thiruparankundram. The Vinayaka of this temple holds a sugarcane with His two upper hands in the shape of a bow. The lower right hand holds the 'Dhantham', while the lower left hand rests on His thigh. Seated on a lotus, the Boothaganas and the Devas are seen above the idol. This idol does not have the 'Pasa Angusam'. The idol belongs to the Pandya period (6th century). 

4. Vennai Vinayakar: 
This idol is located in Chennai's Thiruvallikeni Parthasarathy Temple. He is also called Valampuri Vinayakar. He holds the 'Angusam' in the upper right hand and the 'Pasam' in the upper left hand. His lower left hand holds butter, while the long trunk touches the butter. He was adorned with butter and worshipped earlier, but now, it is not the case. 

5. Karpaga Vinayakar:
This idol of Vinayaka in Pillayarpatti, probably takes the cake in popularity. He has two hands with His legs folded. The 'Pasa' and 'Angusa' are not present. The special features of this idol: the left hand rests on the waist, while the right hand holds a Sivalinga. The tusk on the left is shorter than the one on the right. 

6. Naramuga Vinayakar:
This idol is human-faced and is found in Chidambaram. The same idol is also found in Thiruchenkattankudi. 

7. Mookaru Vinayakar: 
It is said that this Vinayaka can be kept at home and worshipped despite the fact that His idol is flawed. The trunk is seen completely severed in this type of Vinayaka idol, which is located at Velampoondi. Researchers have found a similar idol near the Thirumangalam bus stand in Madurai, with the broken head pasted on His shoulders.

8. Mottai Vinayakar: 
This idol is in Madurai at a place called Vilakkuthoon. The idol lost its parts due to invasion by Mughals. Since it is devoid of its face, hands and legs, it is called Mottai Vinayakar. 

9. Aadhi Vinayakar: 
The idol is located near Srivilliputhur in Thiruvannamalai in a temple. He was submerged in a temple tank and was brought out. He is very tall, measuring 17 feet, and researchers consider this idol to be the tallest of those found archaeologically.

10. Gangai Kanda Vinayakar: 
He is found in Kumbakonam's Nageswarar temple's 'Mahamandapam'. The idol was brought by Rajendra Chola I, when he visited the Ganges in the 11th century. The Devas are seen above the idol.

11. Thanthondri Vinayakar:
This idol is located in Marudumalai and it is not found anywhere else in Tamil Nadu. 

12. Vellaipillayar:
This idol is located at Thiruvalanchuzhi. Legend has it that during the churning of the milky ocean, poison ('Alahala Visham') was emitted. They believed that this happened because they forgot to worship Vinayaka. Therefore, the Devas and the Asuras created a Vinayaka with the foam of the sea, and He is the Vellaipillayar. There is no other temple housing such an idol anywhere else.

13. Sonapathrakal: 
In Thirunallar, Sonapathrakal is worshiped as Vinayaka. 

14. Thiruneelakanta Vinayakar: 
In Suchindram's Dhaanumaalayan temple, it is found that opposite to the Ganesha idol is a mandapa which contains the idols of Navagrahas with their respective vehicles. Above them is the Rasi mandala. No other temple of Vinayaka is constructed in this manner. 

15. Aadhiantha Prabhu: 
In Chennai's Madhya Kailasa Temple (Adayar), there is a copper idol with Hanuman in the left half and Vinayaka in the right half. A similar idol is found in Kandagiri in Salem.

16. Nagapasa Ganapati: 
Instead of holding the 'Pasa Angusam', Vinayaka holds a snake in the Sankaralinga Swamy temple. The same temple also houses a pit for snakes.

17. Mayapillayar: 
This idol is found in Tirupattur. The small idol which the children playfully worshipped, today reaches upto one's waist from the ground. There are reports too, that a snake twines around this idol at night. 

18. Padhiripilllayar:
Thirupadhiripuliyur has a Vinayaka who holds 'Padhiri' flowers in His hands. 

19. Kailasanathar Kovil Vinayakar: 
The idol in Kanchipuram's Kailasanatha temple is unique. His trunk faces upwards with a modaka in it. The temple was built by Rajasimha Pallavan and his son Mahendran III.

20. Arumuga Ganapati: 
This rare idol is found in Pondicherry's Manakula Vinayakar Temple. 

21. Oli Ezhuppum Ganapati: 
The sound of Om can be heard from the idol of this rare Ganesha. He is located in Panchupettai in Kanchipuram. A similar characteristic is found in a Murugan idol in Tirunelveli. 

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As always an excellent article..... - Nila, Not Given, 10/7/2005
the compilation of the rare vi..... - Sreevidya, chennai, 9/30/2004
Really informative and knowled..... - S Natarajan, Chennai, 9/11/2004
Posting comments option was no..... - Vani, Chennai, 8/22/2003
Interesting and very informati..... - B SUNDARAM, Not Given, 8/9/2003
22. Pathinaru Kaigal Kondavar: 
The 'Ucchishta Ganesha' in this temple is seen with 16 hands. He is located in Sankaralinga Kovil in Tirunelveli. 

23. Irukaikalilum Kozhukattai:
This idol of Ganesha has modakas on both His lower hands. This is located at Sukavaneswarar Temple in Salem.The idol has been praised by Avvaiyar.

S.Sowmya

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Published on 8th Aug, 2003

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