30. Sri Neelakandeswarar Temple, Thirumannippadikkarai, Eluppaippattu, Mayiladuthurai (Chola Nadu - North of Kaveri):Names of God : Sri Neelakndeswarar, Sri Mutheeswarar, Sri Parameswarar, Sri Mahatheeswarar, Sri Padikarainathar
Name of Goddess : Sri Amitha Karavalli, Sri Mangalanayagi
Holy water (Theertham) : Brahma, Amirtha theertham.
Sacred Tree (Sthala Vriksham) : Iluppai.
Thevaram : Sundarar
District : Nagapattinam.
Location : Mayiladuthurai.
Timings : 07:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. and from 03:30 p.m. to 08:00 p.m.
For Complete List of 275 Shiva Temples : Click HereThis is the 30th sthalam on the northern side of river Cauvery. Sundaraar has hymns in praise of Lord Shiva of this temple. The temple has a three tier Rajagopuram. Lord Valampri Vinayaka worshiped by Draupathi is in the prakaraa along with Idampuri Vinayaka by the side. It is a rare chance for the devotees to worship two Vinayakas same time. It is believed that any undertaking after worshiping the twin Vinayakas will be successful. As the region is dense with Iluppai trees, the place is named Iluppaipattu. The place is also named Pazhamanni Padikkarai and Madhukavanam. The Shiva temple where Lord hid the sword of Arjuna – Tiru Val Oli Puttrur – Where the sword was hidden – is just 3 km from this place.
10 day Chithirai Brahmmotsavam in April-May, Shivrathri in February-March and Tirukarthikai in November-December are the festivals celebrated in the temple.
History / Legend:During the churning of the milk ocean, serpent Vasuki used as the rope, was exhausted and spit its deadly venom. To protect the Devas and the world, Lord Shiva devoured the venom before it started spreading. To protect Shiva from the effect of the poison, Mother Parvathi pressed the neck of the Lord from behind so that the venom did not reach the stomach and made it stay at the neck itself. As Mother Parvathi stopped the poison from mixing with the Nectar, She is praised as Amirtha (nectar) Valli. She has her shrine behind Lord Shiva’s. As Mother Parvathi saved Her husband, married women pray in the shrine for the longevity of their husbands and thereby their mangalsutras. Mother’s left hand points to Her feet.
Generally, temples – Shiva temples – have only one presiding deity. Rarely, there are two in some places. But this temple has five shrines for Lord Shiva – 1) Neelakandeswarar, 2) Padikarai Nathar, 3) Magadeeswarar, 4) Parameswarar and 5) Muthugiriswarar worshiped by Dharma, Arjuna, Bheema, Nakula and Sahadeva respectively. Ambika shrines are there for Neelakandeswarar and Padikarai Nathar. Mother Mangalambikai shrine is with Padikarainathar facing south. The Linga worshiped by Bheema is with 16 stripes as Shodasalinga. People worship here to have the 16 types of wealth. Though all the Murthys in the temple are considered presiding deities, prominence is for Neelakandeswarar and Padikarai Nathar. Nandhi, the bull vehicle of Lord Shiva is before these shrines only.
Lord Muthugiriswarar, worshipped by Sahadeva is facing south. Those aspiring to master in astrology and scriptures pray here.
Towards the end of the seven and half year rule of Saturn-Sani Bhagwan in his life, Emperor Nala was visiting Shiva temples. Before visiting Tirukadayur temple, he came to this temple and felt the impact of the effect of the planet reducing considerably. It is believed that worshiping here would greatly reduce the adverse effect of Sani Bhagwan during such times.
During their exile, Pandava brothers stayed in this place for some time. They could not get Shivalingas for their worship here. They lit lamps in the Iluppai nuts and worshipped the Lord in meditation. Lord granted darshan to them individually. They prayed to the Lord that He should grace all devotees from this place. He appeared then as five Shivalingas as prayed by the Pandava brothers. Hence, there are five Lingas (Panchalingas) in separates shrines in the temple.
For remedy from illness, to achieve promotions in job, people pray in this temple. They pray in the shrine of Lord Shodasalinga to achieve 16 types of wealth.
Location: This temple is 16 Kms on the west direction from Vaitheeswarankovil by road. It is situated near Manalmedu at Eluppaipattu. Bus facilities are available from Mayiladuthurai and Vaitheeswaran Kovil.
Temple Address & Contact Details:Arulmighu Neelakandeswarar Temple
Phone: +91-92456 19738.