Saturday, October 16, 2021

Athigai Veerattanathar Temple, Tiruvathigai

Location of the templeTiruvathigai
Lord Shiva known asAthigaiVeeratteswarar
Female deity known asTiripurasundari
PathigamThirunavukarasar, Sambandar, Sundarar
How to reach This shivasthlam temple is located 2 Kms south-west of Panruti on the north bank of river Kedilam. Town bus services from Panruti to Cuddalore goes via Thiruvathigai. One has to get down at Thiruvathigai temple bus stop and walk a short distrance to reach the temple. Anothar paadal petra sthalam Tiruthuraiyur is located at about 8 Kms. from Panruti.
Temple addressArulmighu AthigaiVeeratteswarar Temple
Panruti Post
Panruti Taluk
Cuddalore District
PIN 607106

Temple: This sivasthalam is one of the Atta Veerattana Sthalams of Lord Shiva where He vanquished the Thiripura demons (Thiripura Samharam). There are two prakarams in this temple. There is a gopuram at the entrance to the first prakaram and another gopuram at the entrance to the 2nd prakaram. Inside these 2 prakarams, the sanctum sanctorum of Lord Shiva and that of female deity is situated. There is no entrance in front of the sanctum. One has to get inside through the south side entrance. On the vimana above the sanctum, one can see the sculpture of Tripura Samhara Murthy with his 12 hands with a stance of Thiripura Samharam. The sivalingam inside the sanctum has 16 faces in it. There are scupltures of Thirunavukarasar and that of his elder sister Tilakavathy.

Legend: This shivasthalam is associated with the life of Thirunavukarasar. In the earlier part of his life, Thirunavukarsar was known as Vaageesar. He was a follwer of Jainism during the early part of his life and gave lectures in support of Jainism. His elder sister Tilakavathy was an ardent follower of Lord Shiva at Tiruvathigai and wanted her brother to become a Shiva devotee. She prayed to Lord Shiva daily for the fulfillment of her desire. Vageesar, also known as Darmasenar, was afflicted with an incurable disease and suffered a lot. At this juncutre, he came to Tiruvathigai to visit his sister. Tilakavathy convinced her brother that he will be cured of his diesease by praying to Lord Shiva. Vageesar visited the shrine of Lord Shiva at Tiruvathigai and composed Pathigams worshipping Him and requesting Lord Shiva to free him from the immense suffering. At the instance of Lord shiva, Vageesar took a dip in the well situated in the north prakaram and rank the water from the well. Vageesar was completely cured from his disease. It was Lord Shiva who called Vageesar by the name of Navukarasan for the first time. Since then Vageesar was known as Thirunavukarasar.

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