The famous Hindu temple is located in the city of Kanchipuram, TamilNadu.
It’s co-ordinates are 12°50’26.5″N; 79°42’11.7″E!!!
Why this Temple?
The main reason to visit this place apart from divinity, is the architecture. The temple was most probably built by the Pallava kings. The architectural style used in sculpting is the ‘Dravidian architecture’.
When it comes to divinity, four worship services are offered each and every day.
The Kamakshi Amman temple at Kanchipuram is an ancient one and is associated with Aadi Sankaracharya of the 1st millennium CE. The temple is dedicated to Kamatchi, one of the goddess forms of Parvati. Instead of the tradition standing pose, the goddess is seated in Padmasana. “Padmasana is a yogic posture implying peace and prosperity”. The Goddess Kamakshi prevails in the form of Shakti.
The interesting fact is that, there are no other temples for Parvati other than this temple, while the city has hundreds of traditional temples.
Legends and Lore:
There are various legends that account for this temple. One of them according to Kamakshivilasa is that, the Goddess had to absorb all the other shakthi forms to give a boon to Kama, the Hindu god of love.
Another legend attributes it to the Raja Rajeswari pose of the deity that signifies an absolute control over the land under the deity’s control.
Legend has it that Kamakshi offered worship to a Shivalingam made out of sand, under a mango tree and gained Shiva’s hand in marriage.
The Old Temple:
Adi Peeteswari is what now known as for the original temple Kamakshi Devi temple. Adi Shankaracharya, the famous 8th-century CE scholar and saint, established the Sri Chakra at this original Kamakshi Devi temple in the trough-like structure in that shrine. This Sri Chakra soon became the All India famous Kamakoti Peeta. The Acharya’s Lalitha Trishati Bhashya comments Kamakoti Peetam as Sri Chakra.The Acharya changed the fierce form of worship into a sowmya form. The Devi in this original Kamakshi temple is called by various names like Kirtimati, Devagarbha in extant Tantric works like Tantrachudamani. She has four hands containing in each of them respectively, Ankusa, PAsa, Abhaya and a Kapala. This description corresponds to those extant old tantric works. Further, Girvanendra Saraswathi describes precisely this swaroopa as Kameswari.
The Modern Temple:
The present Kamakshi temple too, has a Sri Chakra which was established during the 16th Century by NrusimhAdvari, of the famous dathamAnji family. There is a stone inscription inside the new temple, near this Sri Chakra, which states this fact. It is noteworthy that Arunagirinathar a 15th Century Tamil Saint, sings in praise of the Goddess as devi of dark emarald complexion and the mother of Muruga of Kumarakottam. The Original Kamakshi Devi temple i.e. Adi PeeteswariKamakshi Devi temple is just adjucant to the Kumarakottam. Arunagirinathar mentions the Sri Yantra in the Kamakshi Devi temple, which can apply, during the 15th century, only to the original Adi Peeteswari Kamakshi Devi, which contained the Sri Chakra installed by Adi Shankara. Arunagirinathar does not make any reference to the new temple.