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History Of Thillai Kaliamman Temple At Chidambaram Temple

This history of Thillai Kaliamman Temple at the famous Chidambaram Temple In Tamil Nadu is associated with the Tandava dance performed by Shiva and Goddess Kali.

A local legend tells the story of Goddess Kali competing with Mahadev Shiva in dance. Goddess Kali was proud that she was all-powerful and began destructive activities. Bhagavan Vishnu and Narada, the celestial sage, appealed to Shiva to save the world from destruction.

History Of Thillai Kaliamman Temple At Chidambaram Temple

Shiva then appeared at Thillai and waged war against Kali. Shiva destroyed the army of Kali in no time. She then suggested that they compete in dance and decide who was the victor.

Both began dancing. One of the earrings of Shiva fell to the ground and He picked it up with his right foot and fixed it back in its place. On account of feminine modesty (which would be breached if she assumed such a posture) this extraordinary feat was impossible for Kali to perform and She had to accept defeat.

Goddess Kali was then asked by Shiva to proceed to the northern boundary of the Thillai forest. There she resides in a temple built for Her and is known as Thillai Kaliamman. Shiva was then requested by the celestials to make the Thillai forest his permanent abode.

Four Faces Of Goddess Kali In Temple

Another legend has it that there was once an argument between Shiva and Goddess Parvati as to who is superior Shiva (Purusha) or Shakti (Prakriti). In order to resolve the issue, they decided to hold a dance competition at Chidambaram with Bhagavan Vishnu, Brahma and other deities as witness. While they were dancing, Lord Siva was about to be defeated.

Shiva then performed ‘urdhva Tandava’ – raising one leg above his head. It could not be played by the women folk due to their modesty and shyness. Goddess Parvati could perform this posture and accepted defeat. Shakti thus accepted that both Purusha and Prakriti are equally important.

‘Thillai Kali’ is a deity in anger. This anger was pacified by Brahma by chanting the Vedas and also praising her. Because of the penance of Lord Brahma ‘Kali’ became cool. So that Goddess ‘Thillai Amman’ in this temple is with four faces.

Thillai Kaliamman Temple Timing

Morning Darshan and Puja Time – 6:30 AM to 12:00 PM
Evening Puja Time – 4:30 PM to 8:30 PM

Thillai Kaliamman Festival

Navratri Festival (September – October) is the most famous festival in the temple.
Another important festival is observed on the full moon day in Tamil month Masi (February – March).

Thailla Kaliamman Temple Contact Address

Arulmigu Sri Thillai Kali Amman Temple
Chidambaram - 608002
Phone - +91- 04144 230 251