(Last Updated on : 12/09/2012)
Darbhasayana Seturama Temple is the last of the trio Rama Temples in South India. It is stationed almost adjacent to the Ramasvami temple is the shrine for Darbhasayana Seturama facing north. The bronze image of Rama is the special attraction in the temple. It was found in a well nearby with the line Darbha Sayana Rama inscribed on His crown and 'Tirupullani Setu Rama' etched at the base of the temple. The stone icons or the moolavar were therefore later made just like the Rama image in the temple at Tirupullani (Ramanathapuram district). However an episode of the Ramayana is closely connected with the Darbhasayana Seturama Temple. A well-known episode in the Valmiki Ramayana that Rama lay on a bed of Darbha grass (Darbha Sayana) on the sea-shore in order to appease the Lord of the ocean to secure a safe passage to Lanka. When the latter did not appear before Him, Rama was enraged and dispatched arrows aimed at the ocean. It was at that time that the Lord of the ocean (Samudra Raja) appeared before Rama and assured Him that it would be easy for His army to cross over the waters to Lanka. As the legendary story depicts the Samudra raja himself associated Lord Rama to cross the expansive limits of the Sea in his expedition in Lanka.
The image of Rama in Ponvilainda Kalatur is also a significant one. He is placed here in a reclining posture with His bow resting on His chest and the arrows laid to His right. The ever-vigilant Lakshmana stands with bow and arrows behind the recumbent posture of Lord Rama. Anjaneya is tucked in a posture of folded hands at the Lord's feet. Interestingly, next to the image of Hanuman is the icon of Samudra Raja also with His hands in anjali, paying His respects to Rama. This structural design bears the clear evidence of that legendary story with the Rama Temple of Darbhasayana Seturama Temple.