Navagrahas temples are the nine temples dedicated to Navagrahas (nine planets or nine celestial bodies). The Navagrahas are believed to be the transmitters of Universal, quintessential energy or power. The Navagrahas are closely associated with the fixed stars in the Zodiac. The Navagrahas temples are located at different places in and around Kumbakonam sector of Tamilnadu.
The Navagraha temples are considered to be the best destination to get rid of from the influence of planets. And most of these Navagraha temples are dedicated to Lord Shiva and Lord Shiva is worshipped as the main deity. The only Navagraha temple dedicated to Grahas (celestial bodies) are Suryanar temple. The Navagraha Temples are:
- Suryanar Kovil (or) Sun Temple – Surya (Sun)
- Agneeswarar Temple, Kanjanur – Shukra (Venus)
- Kailasanathar Temple, Thingalur – Chandra (Moon)
- Vaitheeswaran Temple – Mangala (Mars)
- Thirunageswaram Naganatha Swamy Temple – Rahu
- Sri Dharbaranyeswara Swamy Temple,Thirunallar – Sani (Saturn)
- Naganathaswamy Temple, Keezhaperumpallam – Kethu
- Abathsahayeswarar Temple, Alangudi – Guru (Jupiter)
- Sri Swetharanyeswara Swamy Temple, Thiruvengadu Budhan Sthalam – Budha (Mercury)
Suryanar Kovil is located at Aduthurai, Tanjore district of Tamilnadu, dedicated to Sun God. Suryanar Kovil is the only temple where the eight other planets are also housed, and each planets are located in separate Sannadhis of the temple. The peculiarity of this temple is that the eight other planets here, faces towards the God Surya.
Agneeswarar Temple is located at Kanjanur, Thanjavur district of Tamilnadu, which represents the Navagraha Shukra (Venus). The presiding deity of kanjanur Agneeswarar Temple is Lord Shiva and the Thayaar of this temple is Goddess Karpagambigai (Goddess Parvati). The special feature of this temple is that the sage Parasara Muni was believed to be blessed by Lord Shiva with His divine cosmic dance.
Kailasanathar Temple is located at Thingalur, Tanjore district of Tamilnadu, which represents the Navagraha Chandra (Moon). The presiding deity of Thingalur Kailasanathar Temple is Lord Kailasanathar (Lord Shiva). The Moon god is located in a separate shrine in Kailasanathar Temple.
Vaitheeswaran Temple is located 7 Kilo meters from Sirkazhi, Chidambaram, and State of Tamilnadu, representing Mangala (Mars). Lord Shiva is the main deity of this temple who is worshipped as Vaitheeswaran, the god of healing. The specialty of this temple is that there is an Emerald Lingam which is known as Maragatha Lingam present in this temple.
Thirunageswaram Naganatha Swamy Temple is located at the town of Thirunageswaram, Thanjavur district of Tamilnadu, which represents the Navagraha Rahu. The presiding deity of Thirunageswaram Naganatha Swamy Temple is Lord Shiva, worshiped by the name Lord Nageswarar. The special feature of this temple is that, this is the only temple where Lord Raghu can be seen with His consorts. Thirunageswaram Naganatha Swamy Temple was believed to be built by Gandaraditya Chola, son of Parantaka Chola.
Thirunallaru Dharbaranyeswara Swamy Temple is located at Thirunallar, Karaikkal district, Pondicherry, represents the Navagraha God Sani (Saturn). The presiding deity of Thirunallaru Dharbaranyeswarar Temple is Lord Shiva, worshiped by the name Lord Dharbaranyeswarar. The deity Lord Dharbaranyeswarar is believed to be made of dharba grass. The center icon of the temple planet Saturn is considered as the door keeper of the temple.
Keezhaperumpallam Naganathaswamy Temple is located at Keezhaperumpallam, Nagapatnam district of Tamilnadu, which represents the Navagraha Kethu. The presiding deity of Naganathaswamy Temple is Lord Shiva, worshiped in the form of Lord Naganatha Swamy. The center icon of the temple Kethu is considered to be a shadow planet.
Abathsahayeswarar Temple is located at Alangudi, Valangaiman taluk of Thiruvarur district, Tamil Nadu, represents the Navagraha Guru (Jupiter). The presiding deity of Abathsahayeswarar Temple is Lord Shiva in the form of Lord Abathsahayeswarar. And the Navagraha Jupiter is worshiped in the form of Lord Dhakshinamurthy, the Guru.
Thiruvenkadu Swetharanyeswara Swamy Temple is located at Sirkazhi, Nagai district of Tamilnadu, represents the Navagraha Budha (Mercury). The presiding deity of Swetharanyeswarar Temple is Lord Shiva in the form of Lord Swetharanyeswarar. Thiruvenkadu Swetharanyeswara Swamy Temple is popularly known for “Agora Murthi”, a unique incarnation of Lord Shiva.