14. Sri Bhramapureeswarar Temple, Sirkazhi - 275 Shiva Temples (Chola Nadu - North of Kaveri):Names of God : Sri Brahmapureeswarar, Sri Thoniyappar, Sri Sattainadhar
Name of Goddess : Sri Periyanayagi, Sri Thirunilai Nayagi
Holy water (Theertham) : 22 Theerthams including Brahma Theertham.
Sacred Tree (Sthala Vriksham) : Parijatham, Pavalamalli.
Thevaram : Sambandar - 67 (Sambandar's birthplace) ; Thirunaavukarasar - 3
District : Nagapattinam.
Location : Sirkazhi.
Timings : 06:00 a.m. to 01:30 p.m. and from 04:00 p.m. to 09:00 p.m.
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This is the 14th sthalam on the northern side of river Cauvery. Saint Thirunaavukarasar and Thiruganasambandar has sung hymns in praise of Lord Shiva of this temple. This temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva located in Sirkali, Tamilnadu, India. The temple is incarnated by the hymns of Thevaram and is classified as Paadal Petra Sthalam. Sirkali Bhramapureeswarar is an ancient temple complex with 3 different Shiva Shrines. The Bhramapureeswarar shrine is housed in the lower level. The second level houses Periyanakar with Periyanayaki on a Thoni, hence the name Thoniappar. Sattainathar/Vatukanathar is also housed here. From the steps leading to the Toniappar and the Vatukanathar shrine, one can grasp the entire layout of this vast temple, its gopurams and mandapams. There are 22 Theerthams associated with this shrine. Three different forms of Shiva are worshiped here, the Shivalingam (Bhrammapureeswarar), a colossal image of Uma Maheswarar (Toniappar) at the medium level, and Bhairavar (Sattanathar) at the upper level.
History / Legend:During the Maha Pralaya floods calamity destroying the world, Lord Shiva clothed with 64 arts, using a boat of Ohm Moola Mantra was travelling on the flood waters with Mother Uma. He saw this place-Sirkali unaffected by the floods and alive. He chose this place and stayed with the name Thoni Appar-God with the boat. Mother took the name Tiru Nilai Nayaki. Lord Brahmma worshipped Lord Shiva here in the form of Linga-Brahmma Pureeswarar, as Sattinathar destroying pride and arrogance. Lord graces here in three forms as as Brahmma, Vishnu and Shiva. They granted darshan to child saint Gnanasambandar. The place is revered as Gurumurtham. Lord Sattai Nathar is in the top tier blessing devotees with Lord Bhairava attributes.
Lord Vishnu had to face adverse dosha for punishing emperor Mahabali. To prove that Shiva and Vishnu are not different but one, Shiva wore the skin of Vishnu as a shirt. Mother Mahalakshmi misunderstood this as Shiva had destroyed Vishnu and stopped wearing flowers in Her head. As a custom in the temple, women coming to this shrine avoid wearing flowers in their heads. Men should come to the shrine without shirts. As Lord Shiva is the supreme head of all Laws-Sattam in Tamil, He is praised as Satta Nathar. Hence, people involved in litigation seek His blessing to win their cases.
Sirkali is the place, where Lord taught spiritual lessons to Mother Parvathi during the Maha Pralaya period. This is the 11th Shakti Peetas where Mother graces as Mahalakshmi. Worshipping here relieves the devotee from pride and arrogance. Sirkali is the only temple where Brahmma-Saraswthi, Shiva-Parvathi and Vishnu-Mahalakshmi and the procession deity bless the devotees from the sanctum sanctorum as in Mount Kailash.
Sirkali is also a place of Lord Bhairava importance as in Kasi-Varanasi. Lord Bhairava graces in the temple in His eight forms as Asithanga Bahairava, Guru Bhairava, Chanda Bhairava, Krotha Bhairava, Unmatha Bhairava, Samhara Bhairava, Peeshana Bhairava and Akhala Bhairava. The place is as great as Kasi. Devotees cannot enter the shrine wearing shirts. Special pujas are performed here on Ashtami days-eighth day of new moon or full moon fortnight.
The Jeeva Samadhi – monument of Sattai Muni Siddha one of the 18 siddhas is in the temple with a peeta-stage above. People can have the darshan of Lord from this platform. Abhishek is performed here on Fridays. Punugu-a cosmetic paste is applied at 12.00 p.m with garland of Vada-Vadamala. Pulse porridge is offered as nivedhana.
Sage Romasa performed penance in Mount Kailash on Lord Shiva. He prayed to Lord that He should grant the Kailash darshan to people of South. Meantime, a contest arose between Vayu and Adisesha about their might. Adisesha covered the whole Kailash. Vayu could not move the mount. At the request of Devas, Adisesha slightly raised one of his heads to yield in to Vayu. Thus a small part of the mount was brought to this place by 20 birds. A king Kalavithu by name was sad as he had no child. He came to this Chinna Kayilai-Small Kailash, worshipped Lord and got his boon realized.
This is a three tier hill temple. Lord Brahmma Pureeswarar and Mother Tirumalai Nayaki bless the devotees from the base temple. This is praised as Lingamurtham. Six pujas are performed here a day. Lord Brahmma became proud thinking that He was greatest among the Murthis. To teach Him a lesson, Lord made him forget the Pranava Mantra. Realizing His folly, Brahmma worshiped Lord Shiva here and got his memory restored. As Brahmma worshiped here, the place is known as Brahmmapuram and Lord as Brahmma Pureeswarar.
In the middle temple Mother Uma and Lord Maheswarar bless the devotees. He is also praised as Thoni Appar. Four pujas are performed in this temple. This part of hill is known as Thoni Malai.
Tirugnana Sambandar one of the Saivite Gurus was born to Shivapada Hrudayar and Bagavati Ammai. He is regarded as the incarnation of Lord Muruga. He is praised as Ilaya Pillayar-younger son. He came to Brahmma Theertham with his father. The father left the boy on the bank of the tank and went for a bath. Hungry child began to cry for food. Lord Shiva asked Mother Parvathi to feed the boy. Mother not only fed the little boy with milk but with wisdom too blended in the milk. Sambandar was happy and sat on the steps of the tank with the milk spots on the face. Shivapad Hrudayar blamed the boy for accepting the milk from somebody. When the father was about to beat the boy, he showed upwards the divine parents who fed him. Shivapada Hrudayar’s joy knew no bounds to hear the truth. The little child’s first hymn “Thodudaya Sevian” was born here to enrich the spiritual literature of Tamil. Gana Sambandar had sung 67 pathigams of 10 verses each, Tirunavukkarasar 3 pathigams and Sundarar one pathigam on Lord of Sirkali temple.
Brahmmotsavam in the temple begins on the Chithirai Tiruvadhirai day in April-May. The event of Mother Uma feeding Gnanasambandar is celebrated on the second day. The milk fed to the child saint is offered as Prasad. Consuming this milk ensures salvation to the devotee, it is believed. Oil abishek is offered to Lord Uma Maheswarar in the hill temple on the first day of Tamil months Chithirai (April-May); Aadi (July-August); Aipasi (October-November); Thai (January-February) and on Karthikai Deepam in November-December, Margazhi Tiruvadirai in December-January and Shivrathri in February-March. Special pujas are performed on Aadi Pooram in July-August, Navrathri in September-October, Thai new moon day in January-February, Vaikasi Moola Star day in May-June, Aani Rohini Star day in June-July and Sadayam Star day in Aipasi in October-November.
Those involved in litigations and seeking child boon pray to Lord and Mother in the temple.
Location: Sirkazhi can be reached by road from Chennai and from many other parts of Tamilnadu. It is 260 Kms from Chennai by road, 17 Kms from Chidambaram and 58 Kms from Kumbakonam. Another Paadal Petra Sthalam Tirukolakka is situated at a distance of about 1 Km. from this temple.
Temple Address & Contact Details:Arulmighu Brahmapureesar Temple
Phone: +91 4364-270235, +91 94430 53195.