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DHINAM ORU KOVVIL -7

SRI. PARAITHURAI NATHAR TEMPLE, THIRUPARAITHURAI, TRICHY-639115.


This Temple is situated at about 22kms from the heart of Trichy city on the TRICHYKARUR Highways Road. It is just about a km from the Upper Anaikat across river
Cauvery (known as Mukkombu).The temple is 1000-2000 years old.Main deity is
Paraithurai Nathar-Tharukavaneswarar and female deity is Pasumpon
Mayilambikai.Sthala Vritcham is Parai tree and Theertham is Akanda Cauvery.
The Lord of the temple is praised in the hymns of Saint Tirugnanasambandar. This is the 3rd temple on
the southern bank of Cauvery praised in Thevaram hymns. Lord graces here as a swayambu Linga. The
rays of Sun fall on the Lord on 18th Purattasi (September-October). Lord Shiva as Bikshadana graces in
the Mandap as a procession deity. The 12 zodiac signs are drawn on the roof of the
mandap. Worshipping Lord Shiva and Lord Bikshadana standing under the zodiac sign would relieve
the devotee of all the adverse effects caused by planets, it is believed. Lord Bikshadana also has His
place in the prakara-corridor. In days of yore, the region was a jungle dense with Parai trees from
where the Shivalinga was found and the temple built here. Lord was named Paraithurai Nathar. There
is a Shivalinga under the Parai tree behind the sanctum sanctorum. It is said that Lord appeared from
this place. Mother Pasumpon Mayilambikai and Lord Nataraja grace from their shrines in the prakara
facing south. During the Vaikasi (May-June) Brahmmotsavam, Lord Nataraja comes in procession not
accompanied by Ambica. The system seems to be different here.The temple is praised in the hymns of
Saints Gananasambandar, Tirunavukkarasar and Arunagiriar. The Cauvery near the temple is revered
as Akanda (wide) Cauvery. The river bifurcates at a distance of 2 kms from here as Cauvery and
Kollidam. Kadai Muzhukku, a bath in Cauvery at Mayiladuthurai on the last date of Aipasi (OctoberNovember) is taken by devotees while the first on the first Aipasi takes place in Paraithurai. It is the
firm belief of the devotees that this bathing would cleanse them of their sins. Lord Muruga with His
consorts Valli and Deivanai grace the devotees from a shrine in the prakara sung by Saint Arunagiriar
while Lord Dandayuthapani wearing sandals graces from a shrine nearby. Those seeking wedding
matches worship Varahi, one among the Saptha Kannikas offering abishek and lighting lamps.

The region was once known as Tharukavanam. The sages of the place were too
proud that they were supreme in all aspects. Their wives excelled them in pride
thinking that they alone were chaste and most beautiful. Lord Shiva and Lord
Vishnu decided to teach them a lesson. Lord Shiva took the form a handsome
beggar Bikshadana while Vishnu appeared with alluring beauty as
Mohini. While the Rishis were enticed by the beauty of Mohini and followed
Her, the Rishi Patnies (wives) followed the beggar shedding their chastity
pride. Seeing their wives following a beggar, the Rishis understood that there
was some magic and began to chase the Bikshadana and fought him with all the
skills they had but failed and were defeated. They understood that the
handsome beggar was none other than Lord Shiva, fell at His feet and begged
His pardon. Lord Shiva became their Guru and appeared here as a
swayambumurthy.
I have visited this temple twice or thrice.