Basic information about the temple
|Moolavar:||Vaidyanathar||Ambal / Thayar:||Sivakami|
|Vriksham:||Veppa maram||Teertham:||Siddhamrita teertham|
|Timing:||6 to 12 & 4 to 8||Parikaram:|
|Sung by:||Temple set:|
|City / town:||Madavarvillagam||District:||Virudhunagar|
|Maps from (click):||Current location||Virudhunagar (46 km)||Theni (72 km)|
|Sivaganga (81 km)||Madurai (88 km)|
Sthala puranam and temple information
The sthala puranam here is quite similar to the one at Thayumanaswami temple at Trichy. A staunch Siva devotee lived here with his pregnant wife. The husband had to go away on some work, and the wife was living alone. As her due date was approaching, she sent for her mother to help with the childbirth, but because of delays, the wife left by herself, to her mother’s house. On the way, she developed labour pains. As she was alone, and not knowing what to do, she cried out to the Lord to help and protect her. Instantly, her mother was there, and helped with the delivery. The woman then said she was thirsty, at which the mother drew a line on the ground, from which a spring of water rose up. The mother told the daughter that this water would quench her thirst, and also be the medicine for her pain and the delivery related scars. Soon after, when the daughter was insensate, the mother disappeared. A little while later, the mother was back there, and when the daughter woke up, she thanked her mother for the timely help. The mother was very confused, as she had reached just then. It was only then that both of them realised that it was Siva who had come there in the form of the mother, to help with the childbirth. This incident is also considered one of Siva’s 64 Tiruvilaiyadals, and this temple is a prarthana sthalam for devotees to have a safe childbirth.
A group of traders bought pepper in Malai-Nadu (modern day Kerala), and took it to Madurai. Because pepper was heavily taxed, they falsely declared that they were carrying lentils (paruppu), which were not taxed. When they reached Madurai, they found that all the pepper had turned into lentils! They went to the Sundareswarar temple in Madurai, worshipped Siva there, and apologised for their act. They were advised to go to Madavar Vilagam and worship Vaidyanathar there, since pepper is a key medicinal ingredient, and Vaidyanathar is the Lord of all those things.
According to one version, the spring created by the Lord is called the Kayakudi Aaru, and taking a bath in this river is said to cure all pains and diseases. Another version says that the spring that came up is what is the temple’s tank today – the Siddhamrita Teertham.
It is said that Tirumalai Nayakar, the Nayak king of Madurai, suffered chronic stomach ache, which was cured only after he stayed and worshipped at this temple for 48 days. As a mark of his gratitude, he left behind the ivory palanquin he had used to travel, at the temple, and returned to Madurai on foot. After this, he also made it a practice to have his meal only after the uchchikala (midday) puja as announced by the tolling of the bell at the Madurai Sundareswarar temple, when the Lord had partaken of His neivedyam. He also built the Natarajar sabhai at the Madurai temple.
Unusually for Siva temples where the moolavar is named Vaidyanathar, Amman here is not named Thaiyal Nayaki, but Sivakami instead.
This is the largest Siva temple in the district, and is located on the outskirts of Srivilliputhur. The temple is mostly Pandya, to which the Vijayanagara Dynasty and Nayaks made improvements. The temple has extensive and incredible pieces of art in the form of paintings made from herbal dyes. These paintings depict the sthala puranam here, as well as various other stories from the Tiruvilaiyadal puranam. The temple also has a lot of Pandya style architecture, particularly on the pillars, and walls in the inner prakaram.
There are also several inscriptions in the temple referring to the Pandyas and the Nayaks. Pandya and Nayak inscriptions in the temple refer to various grants, and one Pandya inscription refers to the moolavar as Tirukkatraliswaram Udaiyar.
Other information for your visit