Mithranandapuram Temple Complex
From Hindupedia, the Hindu Encyclopedia
Mithranandapuram temple complex is actually a collection of temples and is situated very Near the Padmanabha Swamy temple, Thiruvananthapuram the capital city of Kerala. In side this compound there are temples dedicated to Lord Shiva, Lord Krishna and Lord Brahma. Though initially these were under the control of Sri Padmanabha Swamy Temple, later this temple complex became independent. It is believed that the Trimurthys conducted a great fire sacrifice here addressed to the Sun God. Another name of Sun is Mithra. Since this fire sacrifice pleased the Sun god, this temple complex is called Mithrananda Puram (The town which gave happiness to the Sun) It is quite interesting to note that the priests of Anantha Padmanabha Swamy temple stay in Mithrananda Puram. It is also known that the Vedic pundits, who assemble in Thiruvananthapuram once in 12 years for 'Murajapam'(a customary continuous chanting of vedic manthras), stay in this compound. From the very beginning, the administration of this temple was jointly supervised by the Travancore and the Cochin kings.
The path inside the complex leads to the three temples. First there is A Vishnu temple with a Garuda Statue just outside. Some people are of the opinion that this is in fact a Sri Krishna temple. The idol is in a standing posture and carries Conch, wheel, mace and lotus flower in his four hands. Ashtami Rohini, the birth day of Lord Krishna is celebrated in this temple.
Next to the Vishnu temple is the one for Lord Shiva. In the south western corner of this temple there is a Ganapathy temple also. Shiva rathri is celebrated as a great festival in this temple. Chanting of Rudram is supposed to be very dear to this God. Next to the temple is a temple for Naga-raja, which is becoming increasingly popular.
Slightly behind the Vishnu temple is the Brahma temple. Temples for Brahma are very rare in India. Possibly this is the only Brahma temple in India where pooja is being done like in any other temple. The Brahma statue is made of stone and has only one head instead of the four. And four hands. Inside the Brahma temple, there is a small Ganesa temple along with his wives. The main form of worship of this Ganesa is to cover it with appam. The head of Naduvil Madam, Thrissur also has an ashram to stay here. There is a belief that this temple for Brahma was consecrated here to ward off a Yakshi who was troubling everybody. Though in the initial days, women were not allowed in this temple, but now with some restrictions, they are allowed.
There is also A Krishna temple in the complex where it is believed Sage Vilwamangalam had his Samadhi. This is contested since the Krishna devotees of North believe that his Samadhi is in Mathura, near Brindavan. This temple is under the control of Naduvil Madam, Thrissur. In front of the main granite idol is a small metallic one, which is believed to be the idol which was worshipped by Sage Vilwamangalam. It is also believed that The Samadhi of the sage is below the Krishna's idol. Here again there is a Ganapathy temple attached to the temple.