Vajrakandeeswarar, Veeramangudi, Thanjavur


The sthala puranam here is about Vijarasura, a demon, who harassed the devas and sages, but eventually sought mercy from Siva, right before he was overcome. Heeding the asura’s request, Siva is present here as Vajrakandeswarar. Worshipping Amman here is said to help the unmarried get married soon. But why is the Navagraham shrine here unique ,and what spiritual story is it connected to?… Read More Vajrakandeeswarar, Veeramangudi, Thanjavur

Rajagopala Perumal, Nallicheri, Thanjavur


The ruling Nayak king of the time was unable to proceed to Mannargudi for his daily worship of Rajagopalaswami there, due to cyclonic storms. So he spent the night here, and through various voices and signs, was informed that he needed to build a temple for Krishna as Rajagopalar, here. The place gets its name from one of the 64 varieties of trees, plants, herbs, etc, that Shakhambari Devi created for a special visit here. Whose visit was this, and why did it take place?… Read More Rajagopala Perumal, Nallicheri, Thanjavur

Tiruvengadamudaiyan, Ariyakudi, Sivaganga


Regarded as the southern Tirupati, this is a place where one can fulfil any prarthanas or prayers meant for Srinivasa Perumal at Tirupati. The prarthana sthalam here is about Sevukan Chettiar, a staunch Vishnu devotee despite being born in a Saivite Nagarathar family, who could not undertake his annual pilgrimage to Tirupati in one year. But what is special about the Garuda and the Aadi Swati nakshatram festival at this temple?… Read More Tiruvengadamudaiyan, Ariyakudi, Sivaganga

Ramar Padam, Idayanvayal, Pudukkottai


Located on the coastal path from Vedaranyam to Rameswaram are several sites connected with the Ramayanam. This is one of them, and happens to also be one of only three places in Tamil Nadu where the footprints of Rama are said to exist (the other two being a small shrine between Vedaranyam and Kodiakkarai, and at Rameswaram). Also nearby is a dilapidated temple from what appears to be the Chola period.… Read More Ramar Padam, Idayanvayal, Pudukkottai

Shanmuganathar, Kunnakudi, Sivaganga


This early-Pandya temple from around the 8th century is a classic example of a hill temple for Murugan. Stories of the curative power of this temple range from the time of epics, to as recent as the 18th century. Interestingly, the temple has seen contributions from the Cholas as well, despite its location. But what connection does Murugan’s vehicle, the peacock, have with this temple?… Read More Shanmuganathar, Kunnakudi, Sivaganga

Kudamadu Koothan, Tirunangur, Nagapattinam


Also called Arimeya Vinnagaram, this Divya Desam is also one of the 11 Nangur Ekadasa Divya Desam temples, all of which are connected with the 11 Rudra Peethams representing the fierce aspect of Lord Siva. Vishnu here is said to have come from Dwaraka, to quell Rudra’s anger. But what favouritism did Sage Uthangar accuse Krishna of in the Mahabharatam war?… Read More Kudamadu Koothan, Tirunangur, Nagapattinam

Mandirapureeswarar, Kovilur, Tiruvarur


This Paadal Petra Sthalam temple has several Ramayanam connections, including Rama praying here, asking for guidance on building the bridge to Lanka. This puranam is also the source of the Tamil name of this place – Usathanam. Another sthala puranam here relates to Garuda, and why as a consequence, the Lingam here is said to be white in colour. But what is the very interesting reason for this place being called Kovilur, and even Aadi Chidambaram? … Read More Mandirapureeswarar, Kovilur, Tiruvarur

மந்திரபுரீஸ்வரர், கோவிலூர், திருவாரூர்


இந்த கோவில் ராமாயணத்துடன் மிகவும் நெருங்கிய தொடர்புடையது. இத்தலத்தின் பண்டைய பெயர் திரு உசாதனம். தமிழில் உசவு அல்லது உசவுத்தல் என்பது எதையாவது விசாரிப்பது அல்லது கேட்பது. ராமர் இக்கோயிலுக்கு வந்து, சிவபெருமானிடம் இலங்கைக்கு பாலம் கட்ட ஆலோசனை கேட்டார், அதனால் அந்த இடத்திற்கு அந்த பெயர் வந்தது. பதிலுக்கு, சிவன் ராமருக்கு மந்திரோபதேசம் கொடுத்தார், அதனால் அவருக்கு மந்திரபுரீஸ்வரர் என்று பெயர் வந்தது. இங்கு ராமாயணத்துடன் வேறு பல தொடர்புகள் உள்ளன. சுந்தரரின் தேவாரம் ராமர்,… Read More மந்திரபுரீஸ்வரர், கோவிலூர், திருவாரூர்

Kolavilli Ramar, Tiruvelliyangudi, Thanjavur


Located near Kumbakonam, this Divya Desam is believed to have existed in all 4 yugams, and is said to have been built by Mayan, the architect of the asuras. We may remember the story from Vamana Avataram, of Sukracharya entering Mahabali’s kamandalam as an insect to block the flow of water, and how Vamana blinded him. What happened to Sukracharya after that? And why does Garuda hold Vishnu’s conch and discus?… Read More Kolavilli Ramar, Tiruvelliyangudi, Thanjavur

Koneswarar, Kudavasal, Tiruvarur


This Paadal Petra Sthalam is one of the 12 temples that are connected to the origins of Kumbakonam, where the mouth of the celestial pot fell, when broken open by Siva’s arrow. This is one of the 70 maadakoil temples built by Kochchenga Chola, but because the entrance to the upper level is on the southern side, one has to perform an entire pradakshinam (circumambulation) of the temple, before worshipping the deities. But why is this place also called Garudadri and Vanmeekachalam?… Read More Koneswarar, Kudavasal, Tiruvarur

கோணேஸ்வரர், குடவாசல், திருவாரூர்


கும்பகோணத்தின் தோற்றம் மற்றும் மகாமகம் திருவிழாவுடன் நேரடியாக தொடர்புடைய 12 கோவில்களில் இதுவும் ஒன்று. அந்த புராணத்தின் படி, பிரம்மா அனைத்து உயிரினங்களின் விதைகளையும், வேதங்கள் மற்றும் புராணங்களையும் சேர்த்து, ஒரு தொட்டியில் அமிர்த கலசம் என்று அழைக்கப்பட்டார். கும்பம் என்பது சமஸ்கிருதம் மற்றும் குடம் என்பது தமிழ், இந்த வகை பானைக்கு. இதனை மலர்கள், வில்வம், மங்கள வஸ்திரம், சந்தனம், மற்றும் புனித நூல் போன்ற பல்வேறு பொருட்களால் அலங்கரிக்கப்பட்டு, அதன் மேல் தேங்காய் வைக்கப்பட்டது.… Read More கோணேஸ்வரர், குடவாசல், திருவாரூர்

Brihan Madhavan, Kodaganallur, Tirunelveli


This Perumal temple on the banks of the Tambraparani is likely from the early Pandya period, though the inscriptions here are from the later Pandyas in the 12th and 13th century CE. The temple is most famous for the special pujas conducted for Garuda, who is depicted carrying the pot of nectar (amrtam) here. But what is the reason for the name of the place, and also why the temple is a sarpa dosha nivritti sthalam?… Read More Brihan Madhavan, Kodaganallur, Tirunelveli