METTALA ANJANEYAR TEMPLE
As you travel on the Attur- Rasipuram road in Namakkal district, after Namagiripettai, you pass by a charming temple to Lord Anjaneya.
This is the famous Mettala Anjaneyar temple.
It is set in sylvan surroundings, against a backdrop of thickly forested hills that reach down to the road.
Mettala is the name of a pass between these hills and a village of the same name.
The temple is along the lines of a cave or rock-cut temple (more like a cavern).
The image of Hanuman carved on the rock is small. On the rocky ceiling above are carved images of the fish icon that identifies all temples built by the Pandya kings whose emblem was the fish.
The priest explains that the temple is more than a 1000 years old.
It is the only Anjaneyar temple where the Thee-midhi ritual (walking over live coals) is carried out every year in which hundreds of people participate.
Befittingly, there are a large number of monkeys all over the place. It is very amusing to watch them! They accept food or fruit or puffed rice from visitors.
This lovely temple is highly popular among motorists and truckers who unfailingly stop here to offer prayers.
Amazing is the fact that the temple is kept open throughout the day and night so that drivers of vehicles that ply on this route can obtain the blessings of Hanuman for a safe journey.
Equally surprising are the innumerable foot-high figurines of monkeys and Anjaneyars that line the back of this rocky temple!
The drive through this segment of the Attur-Rasipuram road is very enjoyable with forests hugging the road interspersed with villages and more hilly forest.
The temple is 8km. from Rasipuram and 6km.from Namagiripettai.