Anaimalai Masaniamman Temple

Arulmigu Masani Amman Temple, often referred as Anaimalai Masani Amman Temple, is a highly revered shrine situated at Anaimalai, in Coimbatore District of Tamil Nadu. The temple, nestled amid grassland interlaced with criss-cross pathways and rivulets against the backdrop of Anaimalai Hills, is about 24 km south-west of Pollachi. It is situated at the confluence of Aliyar River and the Uppar stream
Anaimalai Masani Amman Temple enshrines Goddess Arulmigu Masani Amman as the presiding deity. The deity is seen in a lying posture measuring 15 ft from head to foot. The deity is depicted with four hands; two placed on the ground and two raised above. Other deities worshipped include Neethi Kal (stone of justice) and Mahamuniappan.

Legend has it that during Lord Ram wanderings in search of Sita, he stayed in Anaimalai in a graveyard.
Most noteworthy feature of the Arulmigu Masani Amman Temple is that it serves as a welfare government listening to the grievances of the public, as a clinical dispensary rectifying the physical ills of people and as a court of justice easing the suffering of men and women.
Hundreds of devotees flock to the temple, especially woman, during Tuesdays and Fridays. The annual Kundam Festival celebrated here is a major draw attended by thousands of devotees amid much pomp and splendor. 

History Of Masaniamman Temple

In the Sangam Era, Anaimalai was known as Nannanur and ruled by a chieftain called Nannan. There was a dense grove of mango trees belonging to him. Appointing checkpost officials, he had proclaimed punitive measures against trespassers. An unfortunate young woman who was bathing in the river Aliyar stumbles upon a mango fruit coming to her, floating on the water. Unable to resist temptation, she at once picked it up and bit it. The prying officials reported the news to the ruler.

The poor woman was produced before the chieftain with her clothes dripping water. She pleaded not guilty and prayed to the lord to be sat free.

She explained that she never committed any offence; if at all it was considered an act of stealth, it was more by chance than by choice. Although the father of the woman offered to give an image made of gold equal to her weight by way of compensation together with 81 elephants, the ruler did not relent and ordered her execution.

Filled with fury and indignation, the kith and the kin of the ill-faded woman took arms against the unscrupulous chieftain and killed him in a battle near Vijayamangalam. The body of the hapless women was buried n the graveyard. An image of hers was made and people started worshipping it every Thursday and Friday. Soon a temple was built for the women, commemorating her martyrdom.


Annual Festival (Kundam Thiru Vizha)

A land measuring 2.85 acres has been gifted to the temple. On this land in a particular place is dug up a fire-pit for the Kundam Festival. 

Kundam Festival associated with Mariamman temples is the most popular one in Kongunadu. Kundam Festival represents the Annual Brahmorchavam in this shrine. Every year on the New Moon Day of the Tamil Month 'Thai' the temple flag is hoisted. On the 14th day, at midnight, devotees hasten to the graveyard for special worship. 

An image of the deity is made out of the clay taken from the graveyard and prayer is offered to it. On the 15th day after fulfilling the formality of what is known as 'Kankan', 'Kumbhasthapanam' takes place. Special worship is performed at 3.00 A.M. 

On the 16th day comes the Chithira Ther Festival. After the car circumambulated the town, at 10.00 P.M. the holy fire of the 'Kundam' is lighted. On the 17th day at 9.00 A.M. devotees, in great excitement and frenzy jump into a fire-pit sprawling to a staggering length of 40 feet for fire-walking in fulfillment of their vows. 

On the 18th day, the flag is lowered. After anointment to the deity, is performed 'Mahamuni Pooja'.

The Temple Almanac

The following days are celebrated as holy ones in the shrine : Vaikasi Visakam, Adi Perukku, Adi Pooram, Tamil New Year Day, Amavasai, Vinayakar Chathurthi, Deepavali, Karthigai Depam, Markazhi Dhanur Pooja, Navarathri Etc.,

Renovation and Kumbhabhishekam

The Temple was renovated at a cost of Rs. 60 lakshs and the Kumbhabhishekam celebrated on 9-11-2000 in a grand manner.

Religious Significance

The Shrine serves as a welfare Government listening to the grievances of the public, as a clinical dispensary remedying the physical ills of the people and as a court of justice relieving the distress of men and women.
Devotees record their aspirations, claims and hopes on a piece of paper and submit it to the temple priest to be placed on the trident of the deity. It is firmly believed that the Goddess responds to their prayers within a period of 90 days. 

There is a stone image in the temple representing the Goddess of justice with the body of a serpent, popularly known as 'Neethi Kal' (Stone of Justice). People harassed by enemies, merchants meeting with loss in business or men and women who have lost their belongings take bath, sport holy ashes of the shrine and then grind chillies in the stone grinder of the temple and smear the paste on the so called 'Neethi Kal'. Barren women are blessed with offsprings. The special medicine given by the shrine relieves the gynaecological disorders of women.

Unique Features of the Deity

Nowhere in Tamilnadu, perhaps even in the whole of country can be found the reclining iimage of Goddess. In the Sanctum-Sanctorum, the sprawling image of Masaniamman lying on her back, measures 17' from head to foot. It is a giant-size stucco work painted in flamboyant colour. The deity has four hands - two placed on the ground and two raised above. While the two right hands hold a skull and a snake, the two left hands hold a tiny drum and a trident.

In front of the Sanctum Sanctorum is a niche, wherein is enshrined Mahamuniappan. The image is also painted in rich colours and fascinating to the eye.

Pooja Timing

Opening of the Sanctum Sanctorum 6.00 A.M.
Anointment and adornment (Abhishekam and Alankaram) 6.30 A.M.
Noon Worship (Uchikala Pooja)
12.30 P.M.
Abhishekam and Alankaram
4.30 P.M.
Evening Worship (Sayarakshai Pooja) 6.30 P.M. to 7.30 P.M.
Sannadhi Thirukappu (Closing) 8.00 P.M.

On the new moonday (Amavasai) worship and prayer start at 5.00 A.M. and last till 8.00 P.M. People not only from Coimbatore District but also from other districts and other states too converge on the temple for worship and prayer in thousands.

Worship Time

The Sanctum of the deity is kept open from 6.00 A.M. to 8.00 P.M.