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Sabhanayaka Nataraja Temple


The Nataraja temple spread over 40 acres is the main attraction of Chidambaram is a unique temple and is devoted to the art of Bharatnatyam. It is also one of the atypical temples where Lord Shiva is represented in the idol form rather than the usual lingam form. The temple has an outer enclosure adorned with four magnificent seven-tiered gopurams with finely sculptured icons depicting Hindu mythology. A black curtain hides the idol of lord Natraja and is lifted thrice a day for worshipping. Adjacent to the main shrine is the shrine of Lord Vishnu.

Nataraja Temple is a famous temple enshrining the Nataraja form (Dancing Posture) of Lord Shiva situated at the heart of the temple town Chidambaram. This ancient temple had undergone many renovations during the reign of Pallava and Chola Kings. It is said that Aragalur Udaya Iraratevan Ponparappinan had refurbished most of the parts and rebuilt some parts on 1213 AD at Chidambaram.

The idol in this temple is unique with adornments as a supreme dancer of Bharathanatya known as Nataraja. The cosmic dance depicted as Nataraja Nrutham represents the motion of the Universe sustained by Lord Shiva. The temple has attractive gopurams, many imposing inscription and carvings and five spacious mandapams (courts).

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