Recently this Temple, The Rajeshwari (Parvati) Temple on the Girivalam Roadway, was renovated and painted in preparation for a just completed mahabishekam function. In addition to the paintings of the interior and exterior walls, some new murals were painted on each of the outside walls of the Shrine, by a local Tiruvannamalai artist. The paintings are of: Shiva and Parvati on Nandi, Parvati with the Sage Bringi, Lord Dakshinamurti, Lingodbhavamurti, and the Goddess Durga with her foot on the decapitated head of the demon Mahisha.
The stucco figurines adorning the gopuram are ancient and made in a pure Dravidian style. Just outside the Sanctum Sanctorum, there is a stela (stele) blackened by oil and upon which are Shiva and Parvati, sitting on the bull Nandi.
This Shrine was originally called the Aravan Temple. The reason for the original name is unclear, it could possibly refer to the snake (i.e. aravan) adornment that Lord Shiva wears on the stele. It could also refer to the name of a warrior from the epic Mahabharata, who was on the side of the Pandavas. In the epic, it is Aravan who offers sacrifice before the first battle. For this reason he is known for granting protection to devotees and as he supervised the fire, he is often invoked by devotees who are attempting firewalking. The name Aravan could also possibly refer to the name of a Siddha Purusha of South India.
Whatever the reason for the original name, traditionally this Temple is favoured by visitors who are seeking fulfillment of wishes or blessings in undertakings.
|Back of the Shrine with stucco figurines|
|View of Temple from the Girivalam Roadway|
|Front of Temple|
|Goddess Parvati with Sage Bringi|
|Lord Dakshinamurti with the four Rishis|
|Very nice Lingodbhavamurti|
|Lord Shiva, Goddess Parvati on Nandi|
|Goddess Durga on Mahisha's Head|
|Shrine with Stele at side|