After the train travel, which was one of the most comfortable travels in my life, I was rejuvenated. I took a taxi to my hotel. The streets of Chennai were welcoming. I could see many posters of Rajanikanth or talaiva and many posters of party members MLAs, and so on. I was amazed to see the respect with which the people treated film stars. I went to the hotel, which was pre booked and refreshed myself.
I had typical south Indian meal on banana leaf. It was a good experience. Then I set out to my first destination - the Kapaleeshwarar Temple Chennai. It was a temple dedicated to Lord Shiva in Mylapore, Chennai. I started from my hotel at three. It took me almost one hour to reach the temple (at about four).
Built by the Pallavas in the seventh century AD, the temple is very old and has many stories connected to it. The name of the temple is derived from the Sanskrit words Kapalam meaning head and Eeshwar that means God or Shiva in this context. Legend has it that when Lord Brahma went to meet Lord Shiva in his abode, the mount Kailash, the God of creation failed to show due respect to the Lord. Angered at this show of disrespect, Shiva plucked one of Brahma’s heads. In an act of severe penance, Lord Brahma came down to Mylapore and built the temple and a Lingam to please the Lord. “This temple called the Kailash of the south and has the same serene aura of the Kailash (abode of the Lord Shiva)”, says the priest of the temple as I was investigating about the temple. Many other stories include the lifting of the curse on Goddess Karpagambal, the fixing of the third eye of Shuckracharya, and many more.
The Kapaleeshwarar temple has a Dravidian architecture, with the gopuram overriding the street on which the temple is located. The temple, being a memorial for the Vishwakarmas Sthapathis, has two entrances adorned by a gopuram on either side. It was a good feeling and I felt closer to divinity as I circumambulated this ancient temple, thinking about the many great feet that would have walked the path I was going on.