Friday, 27 October 2017

[] Abandoned and neglected temples - over 270 temples cleaned - old temples come alive [1 Attachment]


CHENNAI: Abandoned and neglected temples - In clean faith, old temples come alive :- Interestingly, IASSIM has cleaned more than 30 abandoned temples, where puja has now resumed

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Cleaned at least 270 temples 

CHENNAI: Abandoned and neglected temples always dominated their conversations but they didn't know where to begin. A senior pilgrim, who had visited many temples across India, suggested that they start turning their words into action by cleaning them.

To create awareness among people about their initiative, they began with a discourse of `Thiruvasagam', a collection of hymns composed by the 9th century Shaivite poet Manikkavasagar, at the Shiva temple in Vadapalani in 2001.

Sixteen years have passed, and today, the members of Indhu Aaalayangal Sutham Seiyum Iraipani Mandran (IASSIM) have cleaned at least 270 temples in the city and Kumbakonam so far.

The fourth Sunday of every month is used for cleaning temples in Chennai while the second Sunday of every month is used for cleaning temples in Kumbakonam.Why Kumbakonam? "It has a lot of abandoned and neglected temples," said B Sreenivasan, an IASSIM founder.

IASSIM has 800 volunteers from various walks of life.There are doctors, engineers, software employees and daily workers in the group. There is no funding. How do they take care of the expenses? "If there is a marriage or birthday in the family of a group member, he sponsors food. For the rest, we manage on our own," Sreenivasan said .

Cleaning old temples is not easy . But IASSIM's group of dedicated volunteers want to preserve our heritage thro ugh such temples. "We deci de on the temples to be clea ned at monthly meetings and information regarding this is sent to every member. We form a team based on their availability," said T Sarava nan, another IASSIM member.

Interestingly, IASSIM has cleaned more than 30 abandoned temples, where puja has now resumed.

"Among the 270 temples we have cleaned, 30 were totally abandoned. Puja resumed in all the temples after cleaning and minor renovation works by our teams," he said.

IASSIM won the REACH Heritage Award 2016 for its services. REACH Foundation is an NGO that focuses on the renovation and restoration of ancient temples in Tamil Nadu.

For those who wish to join as a volunteer or know more about this organisation click on the link below  


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