|Location of the temple||Tiruvirkudi|
|Lord Shiva known as||Veeratteswarar|
|Female deity known as||Elavaarkuzhali|
|Pathigam||Sambandar - 1|
|How to reach||This sivasthalam is located at about 10 Kms. from Yiruvarur. One has to travel on the Tiruvarur - Mayiladuthurai road upto Surakkudi and take a right turn there to reach Tiruvirkudi.|
Map showing location of Tiruvirkudi temple from Tiruvarur
Map courtesy by: Google Maps
Tiruvirkudi is one of Ashta Veeratta thalams of Lord Shiva.Jalandran was a demon king who became very strong, and captured all the 3 worlds. He wished to destroy the gods too, and advanced towards Shiva. Shiva destroyed Jalandran with a chakra (Discus) which he later gave to Vishnu. It is believed that Thiruvirkudi is the holy place where this took place, and it is here that Shiva is worshipped as Jalandran Samhara Moorthy. The bronze statue depicting the lord has Him in a standing posture, holding a discus in his hand. The main deity in the temple does not have a separate name, and is simply called Veerattaneswarar. The main deity is a lingam, while the Utsava moorthy is the bronze statue described above. The goddess is called Parimala Nayaki.
There are also other legends connected to this temple. Jalandran's wife Brinda is believed to have been a great devotee of Vishnu, and also a righteous wife. It is believed that Shiva was able to kill Jalandran only after Vishnu took Jalandran's form and deceived his wife, so that he would be deprived of her fidelity, thus rendering him mortal. When Brinda learnt of this ruse, she immolated herself, and Vishnu gave her the boon that she would appear as the Tulsi plant and would remain forever dear to him. Supporting this story is the sthala vriksham of this temple, or the temple plant, which is the Tulsi.
It is also believed that this is the place where Arjuna concealed his weapons during the year of concealment. He was granted a boon that the weapons would appear as snakes to anyone who approached them, and thus would remain safe.
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