Koshta Murtis of Iraivan Temple

Aum Namah Sivaya.

One of the most important tasks our visiting Selvanathan Sthapathi has this time around is to participate in the installation of the Koshta Devata murtis, the directional forms of Siva. One of them has already been installed.

An Agamic temple such as Iraivan is in itself the body for Siva’s manifestation. It is considered that the temple is Siva in a five-headed form, Sadashivamurti, and each head or form is represented by a murti placed on the golden Vimanam, facing North, South, East and West. The Vimanam itself is the fifth head, more mystical and subtle, Ishana, “Ruler,” holding the power of revealment.

The others are Tatpurusha, “Supreme Soul” (the power of concealment); Sadyojata, “Quickly Birthing” (the power of creation); Vamadeva, “Lovely, Pleasing” (the power of preservation); and Aghora, “nonterrifying” (the power of reabsorption).

Our tradition says that the first four faces revealed the Vedas and the fifth, Ishana, revealed the Agamas. Below we bring you a link to a beautiful slideshow of this most traditional and commanding feature of Iraivan Temple.


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