Sri Neyyaadiyappar Temple, Thiruneithanam, Thiruvaiyaru - 275 Shiva Temples

52. Sri Neyyaadiyappar Temple, Thiruneithanam (Thillai Sthanam), Thiruvaiyaru (Chola Nadu - North of Kaveri):

Names of God : Sri Neiyadiappar, Sri Kiruthapureeswarar
Name of Goddess : Sri Balambigai, Sri Ilamangaiammai
Holy water (Theertham) : Cauvery.
Sacred Tree (Sthala Vriksham) : Vilvam.
Thevaram : Thirunavukarasar - 12 ; Sambandar - 5 ; Sundarar - 1
District : Thanjavur.
Location : Thiruvaiyaru.
Timings : 06:30 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. and from 05:30 p.m. to 07:30 p.m.

For Complete List of 275 Shiva Temples : Click Here

This is the 52nd sthalam on the northern side of river Cauvery. Thirunavukkarasu Swamigal and Thiruganasambandar has sung hymns in praise of Lord Shiva of this temple. Tillaistanam is a small village located adjacent to Tiruvaiyaru near Tanjore town in South India. The village has an important Shiva temple called as Neyyadiappar Temple. It is considered as the 52nd among the Tevara Paadal Petra Stalams (274 most important temples of Lord Shiva) located in Chola region north of Cauvery river.

The temple has a grand 75 feet five stories tower facing the east direction. Two small sub-shrines of Ganesha and Murugan are located at the entrance. The temple's area is huge and is spread across two acres. It is believed to have been built by the Cholas as the Chola inscriptions are found in this temple. However, few pillars in the temple are supposed to be of Pallava style; there is a possibility that even Pallavas would have contributed some sections of the temple during their rule. The Sri Lankan ruler named Kayavahu had the Lord of this site as his "Kula devta".

The temple has two prakaras. The sanctum sanctorum is facing the east direction. Lord Shiva in this temple is called as Neyyadiappar or Kritapureeswarar. He is found in the form of a moderately big Shiva Linga.

Facing the sanctum sanctorum the bali peetha, flag staff and Nandi mandapa are located. There is a small artistically beautiful inner tower at the entrance of the maha mandapa.

The Goddess Balambikai who also has a beautiful Tamil name, Ilamangai Ammai, is found in a separate shrine facing the south direction and is located in the outer prakara. A separate Nandi idol is located facing the Amman shrine.

The inner prakara has the sub-shrines of Ganesha, Subramanya-Valli-Devasena, Chandikeshwara, Lakshmi and Saraswati.

The koshta images of Dakshinamurthy, Vishnu, Brahma and Durga are found on the wall around the sanctum sanctorum. Dakshinamurthy is found in the standing posture which is unique. All the koshta images except Durga appear to be very old. The exterior wall of sanctum sanctorum as well as the vimana have not lost the antique beauty yet.

A separate Ganesha idol is located at the entrance of Ardha Mandapa. Bhairava, Surya, Anugraha Bhairava, Chandra and seven Shiva Linga idols representing Sapta Stana sites are all located in the inner prakara..

History / Legend:

Mother Balambika, as the name suggests is ever young in appearance. This is the only temple in the hymns of Tirunavukkarasr praising Ambika for Her beauty. Lord Iyarappar visits this temple thrice a year from Tiruvaiyaru. Of the Sapthasthana (seven important temples of the district) Thillaisthanam is the seventh. During festival days, devotees can enjoy the darshan of the seven palanquin processions simultaneously in this place. Saint Sundarar had included this place in his Thevaram hymns. Arunagiriar had praised Lord Muruga of this temple in his Tirupugazh hymns. The place is praised by other poets as Pugazhendi and Ottakoothar. The sculpture of Nardana Ganapathy does need a mention. Lord Dakshinamurthy graces the devotees in a standing form. Pallavas had paid their due share for the renovation of the temple. Kings of Sri Lanka had worshipped Lord as their Kuladeiva-family deity.

A cow in this region was habitually pouring its milk at a specific place. The milk impacted by Sun heat and rain changed into ghee. When a shepherd tried to check the cow, it disappeared. He could not know that it was the very divine cow Kamadenu. When people came to the spot and dug the place, they found a Shivalinga here. The news reached the King. He built a temple, performed consecration and arranged abishek with ghee each day. The ghee abishek is followed even now. Ghee means Nei in Tamil, hence the name of the Lord Neiyadi Appar. The place has another story too. A Shiva devotee had the habit of picking the palak leaves (keerai in Tamil) while returning after lighting lamps in the temple. He told Lord one day that he was lighting lamps in the temple each day and sought his mercy as he was aging. Lord replied that what mercy remains to be shown to him as he had taken the Palak leaves grown in the temple as wage for the job, according to sthala purana.

People pray here for noble characters and to be free of greed not aiming at temple and others’ properties.

Location: This temple is located 2 Kms to the west from Tiruvaiyaru.

Temple Address & Contact Details:

Arulmighu Neyyaadiyappar Temple
Thillaisthaanam Post
Via Thiruvaiyaru
Thanjavur District
PIN 613203
Phone: + 91 4362 260 553.

Glimpse Of Sri Neyyaadiyappar Temple:

Sri Neyyaadiyappar Temple, Thiruneithanam, Thiruvaiyaru - 275 Shiva Temples
Sri Neyyaadiyappar Temple, Thiruneithanam, Thiruvaiyaru - 275 Shiva Temples
Sri Neyyaadiyappar Temple, Thiruneithanam, Thiruvaiyaru - 275 Shiva Temples
Sri Neyyaadiyappar Temple, Thiruneithanam, Thiruvaiyaru - 275 Shiva Temples
Sri Neyyaadiyappar Temple, Thiruneithanam, Thiruvaiyaru - 275 Shiva Temples
Sri Neyyaadiyappar Temple, Thiruneithanam, Thiruvaiyaru - 275 Shiva Temples
Sri Neyyaadiyappar Temple, Thiruneithanam, Thiruvaiyaru - 275 Shiva Temples
Sri Aiyarappar Temple, Thiruvaiyaru, Thiruvaiyaru - 275 Shiva Temples

51. Sri Aiyarappar Temple, Thiruvaiyaru, Thiruvaiyaru (Chola Nadu - North of Kaveri):

Names of God : Sri Panchanatheswarar, Sri Iyareesar, Sri Sembonsotheeswarar
Name of Goddess : Sri Dharmasamvarthini, Sri Aramvalartha Nayagi
Holy water (Theertham) : Surya Pushkarini.
Sacred Tree (Sthala Vriksham) : none.
Thevaram : Thirunavukarasar
District : Thanjavur.
Location : Thiruvaiyaru.
Timings : 06:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. and from 04:00 p.m. to 08:30 p.m.

For Complete List of 275 Shiva Temples : Click Here

This is the 51st sthalam on the northern side of river Cauvery. Moovar has sung hymns in praise of lord Shiva of this temple. Thiruvaiyaru is about 15 Kms from Thanjavur and got its name due to the 5 rivers that flow through this town. The five rivers are the tributaries of the Kaveri and form a sort of network around this town. The main temple here is to the lord who shares the name with the town - Panchanadeeswarar in Sanskrit, or Ayyaarappan in Tamil. The story of how the temple came into being is an interesting one. A king’s chariot once got embedded in the ground. While digging around the wheels of the chariot to get it out, they chanced upon a lingam. A wise minister advised them to dig further, but carefully, and they were rewarded for their efforts with the idols of the goddess Dharmasamvardhini, Vinayaka, Muruga, and also a Nandi. To top it all, they also found a Siddhar (saint) deep in meditation underground. The saint advised the king to build a temple at the same place, and also told him to dig under the hoofs of the Nandi where he would find the wealth needed for building the temple.

This Shivasthalam is one of the 6 most sacred places on the banks of river Cauvery which is considered as equivalent to the temple at Varanasi. The other 5 shivasthalams are Tiruvenkaadu, Tiruchaaikkadu (Chaayaavanam), Mayiladuthurai, Tiruvidaimarudur and Tiruvanchiam. Tiruvaiyaru is one of the big and famous temple for God Shiva and is known as Dakshina Kailasam. Covering an area of nearly 15 acres with 5 prakarams and a 7 tier Gopuram (Tower), the sculptural work in this temple is of special importance. More than 70 stone inscriptions from the Chola period have been found inside the temple. The samadhi of Saint Tyagarajar, one of the foremost composers of Carnatic music is in Tiruvaiyaru.

Thirunavukarasar went on a pilgrimage to Mount Kailash to have a darshan of God Shiva. In view of the hardships faced on his way, Tirunavukarasar found it very difficult to continute his journey to Mount Kailash. With his divine intervention, god Shiva made Tirunavukarasar to submerge himself in a pond and asked him to take his bath in the pond. When Tirunavukarasar emerged from the pond, he was transported miraculously to Tiruvaiyaru and god Shiv a blessed Tirunavukarasar with a vision of Mount Kailash at Tirvaiyaru.

The Thiruvaiyaru temple is one among a group of seven, collectively known as the Saptha Sthaanam temples. These temples are unique, for they are related to the marriage of Shiva’s foremost attendant, Nandi, and the part that Shiva played in this marriage.

Nandi was born to Siladha Maharshi and performed great penance to his favoured deity, Shiva. Shiva was so pleased with his worship, he not only made Nandi his prime attendant, He also got him married. The marriage itself took place at Thirumazhapadi near Thiruvaiyaru, and Shiva took his devotee around these seven temples as part of the Sapthapadi. Every year, this occasion is celebrated in April/May with the idol of the Lord starting out in a beautifully decorated glass-encrusted palanquin from Thiruvaiyaru, and taking a round of these seven villages. At each village he is received at one boundary by the Lord of that village and accompanied by him to the next village, where he is received by the next one. In such a way, he completes a full circle and returns to Thiruvaiyaru. These seven temples are: 1. Thiruvaiyaru, 2. Thiruchotruthurai, 3. Thiruvedikudi, 4. Thirupponnthuruthi, 5. Thillaisthanam, 6. Kandiyur and 7. Thiruppazhanam. All these temples are situated around Thiruvaiyaru and it is possible to visit all these temples within 4 hours.

The Dhyana Mandap – Meditation Hall – of the temple is built with lime and palm jaggery – Karuppati in Tamil. Deep pits were dug to store these materials. The wages for the workers were paid in gold and silver, it is said. These precious metals too were put in two pits and the workers were allowed to take what they could carry. These pits still exist in the temple.

History / Legend:

Mother Goddess in the temple is praised as Aram Valartha Nayaki in Tamil and Dhrma Samvardhini in Sanskrit meaning Mother who upholds Dharama. It is the strong belief of Hindus that women are better guardians of Dharma than men. As Mother of all beings in the world – Jagan Matha – She is pursuing Her devotees to follow the path of Dharma. To emphasize the fact that every day is a Good Day, the wedding festival for mother is conducted on Ashtami nights. There is generally a belief that Ashtami – eighth day of new moon or full moon fortnights is not an auspicious day. But with the gracious look of Mother, what we call inauspicious becomes auspicious.

A priest of the temple could not be present for his puja duty in time. It was reported to the king. He rushed to the temple to check but was astonished to see the priest on duty doing abishek to Lord. The priest returned to the place only next day from his Kasi pilgrimage. The king and people were more surprised to know the truth and understood that it was Lord Aiyarappar, in the form of the priest, was conducting pujas for Himself. Lord Aiyarappar is always with those who keep Him in their heart and soul.

It is note worthy that devout Saivite Saint Appar – Tirunavukkarasar worshiped here and had the Mount Kailash darshan from here. He had his holy bath in the Manasa Sarovar at Kailash and returned from the Tiruvaiyaru tank. This Surya Pushkarini Theertha is all sacred.

Mother Dharma Samvardhini is praised as Lord Mahavishnu in this place. Hence, there are no Vishnu temples around this place.

Prohibition to circumambulate the shrine: Lord Shiva in the temple is a swayambumurthy. It is believed that His long and thick turf is spread throughout the place behind the shrine. As a devotee cannot afford to tread on the Jatamudi of Lord, circumambulation is prohibited.

Lord Dakshinamurthi in the prakara has a special significance. Lord Vishnu had worshiped Him. He is only Guru in Tamilnadu worshiped by Perumal-Vishnu. He is praised a as Soouru Hari Shivayoga Dakshinamurthy. In the place of Muyalagan – symbol of ignorance – we usually see under His feet, there is a tortoise. The architectural skill of the temple is such that multiple echoes could be heard if one loudly calls Aiyarappa standing at a particular place. Foreign engineers had tried to find out this miracle but could not till this day.

Of the Navagraha importance, the place belongs to Sun. He is facing west. The temple has five corridors-prakaras. Devotees choose the prayer hall (Mukthi Mandap) for mental piece.

The names Nandeeswarar and Nandikeswarar are mistook as one name and deity. Indeed, they are different from the other. Nandeeswarar is the bull vehicle of Lord Shiva commonly called Nandhi. Nandikesar is the founder of the Tiru Kayilaya Parampara-dynasty. Dharumapuram Adheenam and Tiru Avaduthurai Adheenam belong to this heritage.

Nandikesar was born to Sage Siladha with four hands. The sage placed the child in a box and opened it then. It was beautiful child with two hands. He left the child in Tiruvaiyaru. Lord Shiva performed abishek to the child with the breast milk of Mother Ambika, the foam from Nandhi’s mouth, nectar-amirtha- Saiva Theertham and Surya Pushkarini Theertham – totally five items – hence, the Lord of the temple is praised as Aiyarappan – Lord of five theerthas.

Location: This temple is located 10 Kms to the north of Thanjavur. Town bus Bus facilities from Thanjavur are available.

Temple Address & Contact Details:

Arulmighu Iyaarappar Temple
Tiruvaiyaaru Post
Tiruvaiyaru Taluk
Thanjavur district
PIN 613204
Phone: +91-436 -2260 332, 94430 08104.

Glimpse Of Sri Aiyarappar Temple:

Sri Aiyarappar Temple, Thiruvaiyaru, Thiruvaiyaru - 275 Shiva Temples
Sri Aiyarappar Temple, Thiruvaiyaru, Thiruvaiyaru - 275 Shiva Temples
Sri Aiyarappar Temple, Thiruvaiyaru, Thiruvaiyaru - 275 Shiva Temples
Sri Aiyarappar Temple, Thiruvaiyaru, Thiruvaiyaru - 275 Shiva Temples
Sri Aiyarappar Temple, Thiruvaiyaru, Thiruvaiyaru - 275 Shiva Temples
Sri Aiyarappar Temple, Thiruvaiyaru, Thiruvaiyaru - 275 Shiva Temples
Sri Aiyarappar Temple, Thiruvaiyaru, Thiruvaiyaru - 275 Shiva Temples
Sri Aiyarappar Temple, Thiruvaiyaru, Thiruvaiyaru - 275 Shiva Temples
Sri Aiyarappar Temple, Thiruvaiyaru, Thiruvaiyaru - 275 Shiva Temples
Sri Aiyarappar Temple, Thiruvaiyaru, Thiruvaiyaru - 275 Shiva Temples
Sri Aiyarappar Temple, Thiruvaiyaru, Thiruvaiyaru - 275 Shiva Temples
Sri Abadhsahayeswarar Temple, Thiruppazhanam, Thiruvaiyaru - 275 Shiva Temples

50. Sri Abadhsahayeswarar Temple, Thiruppazhanam, Thiruvaiyaru (Chola Nadu - North of Kaveri):

Names of God : Sri Aabathsahayeswarar
Name of Goddess : Sri Periyanayagi
Holy water (Theertham) : Cauvery, Mangala Theertham (not existing now).
Sacred Tree (Sthala Vriksham) : Kathali (Plaintain), Vilwa.
Thevaram : Thirunavukarasar ; Sambandar
District : Thanjavur.
Location : Thiruvaiyaru.
Timings : 06:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. and from 04:30 p.m. to 08:30 p.m.

For Complete List of 275 Shiva Temples : Click Here

This is the 50th sthalam on the northern side of river Cauvery. Thiruganasambandar and Appar has sung hymns in praise of lord Shiva of this temple. The temple has two Raja gopurams (towers) one located outside and another interior. Both the towers face the east direction. At the entrance of the inner tower, the big idol of Raja Ganapati along with a Shiva Linga is found.

The sanctum sanctorum has slightly tall and thin Shiva Linga named 'Aapatsahayar'. The entrance of sanctorum has two small idols of Ganesha and Subramanya. At the entrance of ardha mandapa, there is another idol of Ganesha. Also, the south facing shrine of Goddess Tirumananayaki aka Shivasundara Nayaki who is found standing on Shiva Linga peetha is located here.

Nandi and bali peetha are located facing towards the sanctum sanctorum. There is no flag staff found in this temple.

The vimana of sanctorum and the outside wall are very attractive with a lot of artistical-ly beautiful bas-relief sculptures. Ashta Dikpalas are found as koshta idols which is rare. Dakshinamurthy, Uma-Maheshwara, Ardhanareeswara, Pasupati, Gajasura Samhara, Ashta Lakshmi, Appoodhi Adigal, Veenadhara Shiva, Maha Vishnu and a lot more bas-relief sculptures are found on the walls and vimana that surround the sanctorum.

The temple has two prakaras (corridors). The first prakara has sub-shrines of Devarikashta Vinayaka - a beautiful Ganesha sculpture with two arms, Gaja Lakshmi and Venugopala. The statues of Sapta Matas, Sapta Lingas, the Shiva Linga installed by Vishnu, Bhairava, Surya, Chandra and Ganesha are also located in the mandapa that is full of pillars.

The second prakara is broad and has huge exterior walls. The sub-shrine of Subramanya and importantly the shrine of the Goddess of the site, Periya Nayaki, a big idol found in the standing posture facing the east direction are located in the second prakara.

The idol of Adikara Nandi - Nandi with two folded hands and legs like human being is also found in this temple.

The holy tank and holy trees are also located within the temple complex.

The Navagraha shrine has all the planets facing towards the Sun (Surya) which is unique in this region.

You don't need to be a devotee to visit this temple; even if you love sculptures and art, please do visit this exceptionally beautiful site.

History / Legend:

As per the legend, Chandra -the Moon God and Agastya worshiped the Lord in this site. As per another legend, Lord Shiva collected fruits in this site and sent them for Nandi's marriage. Hence, this place is called as 'Tirupazhanam' (Pazham means fruit in Tamil language).

Lord Vishnu installed a Shiva Linga idol in this site and performed pooja. His consort Lakshmi came in search of him to this site. Hence, the place is also called as 'Prayanapuri' and the Lord is called as 'Prayanapureeswarar'. As per another legend, Lakshmi worshiped Lord Shiva in this site; after getting his blessings, she left for his abode. Hence, the site got the name 'Prayanapuri'.

A Brahmin lad, Sucharitra by name, lost his parents and kept visiting various temples. When he stayed in this site for a night, Yama appeared in his dream and informed him that he would die on the very fifth day. The boy was extremely afraid of this dream and started praying to Lord Shiva in this site. He ordered him (as asareeri - just voiceover without appearing in person) to go to Tiruvaiyaru to get rid of this danger. As the Lord saved this boy from danger, he is called as 'Aapatsahayar' ('Aapat' means danger and 'sahaya' means one who helps).

Another interesting legend states that Kaushika Rishi had his ashram in this place. He got his partition of Amrita and had kept that in a pot in his abode. The demons tried to steal the pot. Lord Shiva sent Ayyanar and Kali to kill the demons and save Amrita. The rishi performed abhishek to Shiva Linga idol with the same Amrita.

Location: Located at Tiruppazhanam, 4 Kms in the east direction from Tiruvaiyaru on the Tiruvaiyaru - Kumbakonam road. It is about 3 Kms to the west of another paadal petra sthalam Vadakurangaduthurai.

Temple Address & Contact Details:

Arulmighu Aabathasagayanathar Temple
Tiruppazhanam Post
Via Tiruvaiyaru
Thanjavur district
PIN 613204
Phone: +91 9994389328 and +91 4362 326 668.

Glimpse Of Sri Abadhsahayeswarar Temple:

Sri Abadhsahayeswarar Temple, Thiruppazhanam, Thiruvaiyaru - 275 Shiva Temples
Sri Abadhsahayeswarar Temple, Thiruppazhanam, Thiruvaiyaru - 275 Shiva Temples
Sri Abadhsahayeswarar Temple, Thiruppazhanam, Thiruvaiyaru - 275 Shiva Temples
Sri Abadhsahayeswarar Temple, Thiruppazhanam, Thiruvaiyaru - 275 Shiva Temples
Sri Abadhsahayeswarar Temple, Thiruppazhanam, Thiruvaiyaru - 275 Shiva Temples
Sri Abadhsahayeswarar Temple, Thiruppazhanam, Thiruvaiyaru - 275 Shiva Temples
Sri Abadhsahayeswarar Temple, Thiruppazhanam, Thiruvaiyaru - 275 Shiva Temples
Sri Abadhsahayeswarar Temple, Thiruppazhanam, Thiruvaiyaru - 275 Shiva Temples
Sri Abadhsahayeswarar Temple, Thiruppazhanam, Thiruvaiyaru - 275 Shiva Temples
Sri Abadhsahayeswarar Temple, Thiruppazhanam, Thiruvaiyaru - 275 Shiva Temples
Sri Abadhsahayeswarar Temple, Thiruppazhanam, Thiruvaiyaru - 275 Shiva Temples