Basic information about the temple
|Moolavar:||Pasupateeswarar||Ambal / Thayar:||Santha Nayagi|
|Agamam:||Age (years):||Timing:||7 to 10 & 5 to 7||Parikaram:|
|Temple group:||Paadal Petra Sthalam (Kaveri Then Karai)||–|
|City / town:||Tirukondeeswaram||District:||Tiruvarur|
|Maps from (click):||Current location||Tiruvarur (15 km)||Mayiladuthurai (30 km)|
|Nagapattinam (34 km)||Kumbakonam (34 km)|
Sthala puranam and temple information
This place used to be known as Vilvaranyam, as it was a forest of Vilvam trees. Since the Vilvam is one of Siva’s favourites, He came here in the form of a swayambhu murti, so that humans would benefit. Around the same time, Parvati was destined to come to earth as a result of a curse by Siva, so She took the form of Kamadhenu. She would dig up various places in the earth with Her horns, and Her anxiety to locate Siva made her aggressive and ferocious.
When She dug up the earth here, Her horns struck the swayambhu murti, injuring the Lingam. Terrified, Kamadhenu poured milk over the Lingam to stop the bleeding. A scar – from Kamadhenu’s horn striking the Lingam – can be seen on the Lingam even today. Due to Kamadhenu’s worship here, Siva is called Pasupateeswarar. Because of this puranam, this place is considered a prarthana sthalam for the re-unification of estranged couples.
When Sage Agastyar came here to worship, he was running very high fever. Unasked, Siva cured the sage’s fever, and so He is known as Jurahareswarar here, and is depicted with three heads and three legs, on one of the pillars of the temple. Even today, this is a prarthana sthalam for getting rid of fevers, and the offering for this involves boiled rice and pepper rasam!
There are two interpretations of the word “kondi” after which the place is named. One refers to an aggressive cow, while according to the other, Kondi was Kamadhenu’s daughter who worshipped at this place. This gave the place its ancient name of Kondeeswaram. However, today this is corrupted and referred to as Tiru Kandeeswaram.
Jyeshta Devi (or Alakshmi) is regarded as Lakshmi’s elder sister, but is also feared, because she is responsible for negative effects and events (she is also called Alakshmi for this reason). However, at this temple, Jyeshta Devi is benevolent, and gives devotees what they ask for.
This temple is another fine example of the vavvaal nethi type of structure of the maha mandapam, where there are several interesting sculptures, including those of Jurahareswarar, Sage Abatsahaya and Kannappa Nayanar. The sthala puranam of this temple is also beautifully painted on the upper walls of the ardha mandapam.
The temple is located on the southern bank of the Mudikondan river. The core temple dates back to at least the 7th century, though the structural temple is clearly from later – possibly the late 10th century and after. One of the inscriptions in the temple also refers to the period of Krishna Deva Raya of the Vijayanagara Dynasty.
Interestingly, the temple’s Teertham – Ksheera Pushkarini (ksheera in Sanskrit means milk, referring to the sthala puranam and Kamadhenu, as mentioned earlier) – is shaped like a semi-circle (akazhi in Tamil), forming a sort of protective moat for the temple. There is no dhwajasthambam at this temple.
Other information for your visit
The temple priest lives on the street leading up to the temple, and is eager to welcome devotees. So if he is not at the temple, locals will point out his house, and one can request him to come to the temple to help with the worship procedures.
Located quite close by – within a 5 km distance – are the Madhuvaneswarar temple at Nannilam and Soundareswarar temple at Tirupanaiyur. Both are Paadal Petra Sthalam temples. There are also several smaller Siva and Perumal temples in and around this temple.
Venkatesa Gurukkal: 94430 38854