This Shivastalam is located 10 km south of Tiruvidaimarudur – on the road between Kumbhakonam and Karaikkal. Tirunallam is considered to be the 34th in the series of Tevara Stalams in the Chola kingdom located south of the river Kaveri. Worship offered here on Tuesdays and Fridays is considered special. Natarajar here, is of significance. Shiva here is referred to as Umaikkunallaar in the Tevaram hymns.
Location: Konerirajapuram near Kumbakonam, Aaduturai
Shiva: Uma Maheswarar
Ambal: Mangala Nayaki
Theertham: Bhrama Theertham
It is believed that Bhumidevi was instructed by Mahavishnu to build this temple, hence the name Bhumiswaram. It is also believed that a certain king Pururavas was cured of leprosy here, and in return gilded the temple vimanam with gold, and instituted the Vaikasi full moon festival.
This temple was built by Sembiyan Mahadevi the Chola queen (of Gandaraditya). Images of Gandaraditya Chola and Sembian Mahadevi as well as several inscriptions are seen here in this temple. These images are about a 1000 years old. Sembiyan Mahadevi is believed to have provided for the upkeep of the temple and for the performance of the daily rituals.
This temple is also known as Gandaradittam. The inscriptions here are of great value as they offer an insight into how, the various sections of society then were involved collectively and separately in the day to day activities of the temple. Inscriptions speak of musicians, persons who prepared sandal paste, watchmen, reciters of hymns, managers, accountants, dyers, blacksmiths, etc.
The niche images of Nataraja, Dakshinamurthy, Lingodbhavar, Ardhanareeswarar in this west facing temple are all of great beauty. The mukhamandapam in front of the sanctum is known here as Pugazhaabarana mandapam. Bronze images of Natarajar, Kalyanasundarar dating back ao the 10th century are of great beauty here.
This is regarded as a fully developed early Chola temple. It is well preserved, and it has the finest and richest collection of bronze images.
The Chola king Kadaraditya Cholan and his wife Sembian Mahadevi were pious and asked the Sthapathi* to make a Lord Nataraja’s statue in five metals or pancha loha which is tall and appealing . The Sthapathi was an ardent devotee of Lord Shiva and was very happy with the King’s order.
The Sthapathi is a person who works on art of making icons, with the required quantity of metal, i.e. copper brass & lead in the ratio of 82%, 15%, & 3% respectively is collected in a crucible and heated to get converted into liquid form. Simultaneously the karu (mould) is also heated. The mould becomes red hot. It is then buried in the ground up to the mouth of the mould, to get firm upright position. The hot liquid metal is poured into it. The mould is allowed to cool gradually. Then the wire bindings and iron rods are removed. The mould is broken open. Now rough metal image is obtained. Then it is chiseled, filed, and engraved to get fine ornamental statue.
The Sthapathi after receiving the order, works hard and presents the statue moulded to the king. The Kandaraditya Chola king isn’t happy and asks him to make a Nataraj statue which is more alive, tall and appealing. The Sthapathi shows three casts of Nataraja which came upto 3 feet height but the King rejected them and gave him last chance to make it and ordered to chop his head if Sthapathi fails.
The Sthapathi was very depressed as he had just a day more to present his work. He was praying lord Shiva to make his work appealing to the king and was thinking about how to start casting Nataraja. An old man and his wife came near him and asked for some water to quench their thirst. The Sthapathi wasn’t in the mood to offer water and said them ” There is no water”. The old man asked him to offer something to drink as they had walked all the way in a sunny day. The Sthapathi lost his patience and said “If you really want to drink something, drink the molten metal”.
The old man immediately took the pot and drank the molten metal giving a little to his wife. Before the sthapathi could recognize what has happened, there emerged two statues, one of large Natraja and other his wife Parvathi. The Chola King walked in the same time and was extremely happy to see the statues. The Sthapathi was speechless by God’s love and affection and couldn’t believe that God had come himself to help him make the icons and saved his life.
Later, Sthapathi conveyed the whole incident to the King. The Chola King called his tale a lie and raised his sword furiously which struck the lifted right foot of Natarajar’s Icon . Blood spurted out and splashed on the King who developed leprosy. The Lord then appeared to all present there as Vrishabharoodar and told the King “ I am here in the form of Lingam as Vaidyanatha .
Six worship services are offered here each day. This temple has about 21 vaahanams used during festivals. The annual Bhrammotsavam in Vaikasi, Kartikai Deepam, Arudra Darisanam, Sivaratri, Aadi Pooram, Navaratri and Skanda Sashti are the festivals celebrated here.
The god here is believed to be curing all diseases .
How To Reach:
This sivasthalam temple is located 8 Kms from Aduturai railway station which is on the Mayiladuturai – Kumbakonam section of the Southern Railway. Nearest town is Kumbakonam. Tirukkaruvili Kottittai sivasthalam is 2 1/2 Kms from here.
Gnanaskanda Gurukkal Phone: 0435-2449800, 0435-2449830