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Biggest Emerald Nataraja In The World - Uthirakosamangai Emerald Shiva Nataraja Murti

Uthirakosamangai Sri Mangalanatha Swamy temple in Ramanathapuram District in Tamil Nadu is famous for the emerald Nataraja. The temple houses a 6 feet single Stone emerald Nataraja murti which is the biggest in the world. Here are some important facts about this unique and wonderful temple.

Uthirakosamangai Emerald Nataraja Facts

  • This is the biggest Nataraja vigraham carved out of Emerald or Marathakam in the world.
  • The emerald vigraha or murti of Nataraja is covered with sandalwood paste throughout the year. The murti is only visible to public on the Arudra Darshan day in Margazhi month (December – January).
  • Exposure to light and sound is said to disturb the molecular property of emerald, therefore the vigraha is kept covered with sandalwood paste throughout the year.
  • People visiting the temple are asked not to make any noise near the murti. Even the sounds of anklets are prohibited near the Natarja sanctum.
  • The actual murti measures 5.5 feet and the rest is the arch.
  • The sandalwood paste is removed only for a few hours on the Arudra Darshan day.
  • Emerald Nataraja was installed first and then all around a Sanctum Sanctorum with a very small opening was constructed later.
  • The temple is located 32 km East from Paramakudi and 17 km west from Ramanathapuram.
  • As per Gem experts emerald is the one of the softest variety of gemstone and then how was it possible to carve the Nataraja murti out of the softest gemstone. This still remains a mystery.
  • The original name of the temple is Mangalanatha Swamy Temple
  • This is the place where Shiva transferred the secrets of Vedas to Parvati. Uthiram means (upadesam) kosam (secrets) Parvati (Mangai) hence this place is known as Uthira Kosa Mangai.
  • This is one of the oldest Hindu temples and there is a popular saying - Did the mud (mann) come first or is the Mangai (the Goddess the temple.)
  • The temple has a hall of Sahasralinga with thousand lingas enshrined in it.
  • At the entrance of the temple features exquisite stone carvings of Yali depicted with a rolling stone ball inside its mouth.
  • Goddess Parvati is worshipped here as Mangalambigai and Shiva as Mangalanathar. There are separate shrines for Ganesha, various forms of Shiva, Durga, Subrahmanya and Navagrahas.
  • The popular belief is that offering prayers to Goddess Parvati here will help in solving marriage related problems.
  • The temple is open daily from 5:30 AM to 11:00 AM and from 4:00 PM to 8:00 PM.
  • Screw Pine Flower or Ketaki flower is never offered to Lord Shiva but in this temple it is offered.