2. Once Lord Vinayaka was praying to Lord Shiva At that time , the serpent around Lord Shiva’s neck took pride that Vinayaka was worshipping him too. Enranged at this. Lord shiva cursed that all serpents will lose their power.On the repentance by the eight great snakesrahu and kethu, the lord directed them to worship on shivarathiri and get released from the curse.As directed by him.Rahu,Kethu and the eight great snakes worshipped Thirupamburanathar at midnight on Mahasivarathiri and were released from his curse.
3. Legend has it that when Adhiseshan.who supports the world on himself felt over burdened and ill.Lord Shiva directed him to worship him on mahashivarathri night in the following order: First ,at Nageswarar at Kumbokaonam next Naganathar at Thirunageswaram and finally at Thirubampuram. Adhiseshan didso and got back his strength.Because of this ,all snakes in this place are considered the devoteed of Lord Shiva and legend has it that they do not bite anyone here.
4. Brahma created Tilothama ,as the most beautiful of all women .Since he was her creator, she considered him her father and went round him in worship.but Brahma to savour her beauty ,created for himself four heads to look at her as she went round him. Getting afraid of this, Tilotham fled skyward,but, Brahma started at her with a face on top too.Upon her prayers to Lord Shiva, the Lord removed the top head of brahma and also cursed him to lose his powers of creation.Acting on the advice of rishis,Brahma reached Thirupamburam with his consort,created a theertham there, worshipped the lord for one year and got released from the curse.
5. Indra, the king of Devas ,was crused with a thousand eyes all over his body for his illicit cou[ling with Ahalya ,wife of sagge Gauthama.Heeding tha advice of the Devas ,he came to Pamburam and worshipped there for 12years .The Lord appeared before him in the first segment on Mahashivarathiri and gave him from release from the curse.
6. Similarly,Goddess Uma playfully closed the eyes of the Lord while in kaliaya.Since this Darkened the world and every being was stopped from pursuing its vocation, the Lord got angry and cursed the Goddess to leave him. Repenting for her mistake, the Goddess was directed by him to worship him at Pamburam for 12 years. After she thus completed her penance, She was relieved from her curse in the fourth segment of Mahashivarathri.
7. Once, in Kailaya, the Sage Agasthya countered the argument of Devas and other RIshis who claimed that Sanskrit was unequalled, by saying that Tamizh was a great as Sanskrit. Lords Shiva and Vishnu agreed on this, albeit silently. But, the Devas and rishis, cures Agasthya to become dumb for disrupting their say. On his prayer to Lord Shiva, he was directed to visit Thirupurambam and worship there for one year for restoration of his speech. Agasthya did so and Lord Shiva appeared before him in the first segment of Mahashivarathri and cured him. He was also diected to leave foe Podhigai hill and help Tamizh grow.
8. During the yagna by Dakshan, Lord Shiva was ignored for distribution of alms, while all other Devas were given theirs. Getting angry at this, the Lord in the form of Veerabhadra, cut off Agni’s hand and kicked him down. Realizing his mistake, Agni prayed to the Lord and he directed Agni to pray to him at Thirupurambam. Agni worshipped at Thirupurambam for three years and got relieved from the curse.
9. Dakshan, the father of the 27 stars, gave them all Chandran (the Moon God). He gave this daughter. Uma, in wedlock to Lord Shiva. After all this, he conducted at Maha Yagna to which he did not invite Lord Shiva, nor did he give the alms due to Lord Shiva. Angered by this, Lord Shiva created Veerabhadra, who destroyed the Yagna Mandapam and decapitated Dakshan. To pacify the Lord, Brahma and other Devas including Indra, placed the head of a goat on Daksha’s body and revived him. Devoid of this arrogance, Dakshan prayed to the Lord to rid him of his sins. The Lord told him to worship at Pamburam for twelve years for ridding him of his sins. Dakshan did so and got released from his sins in the fourth segment of Mahashivarathri.
10. The holy river Ganges, being the repository of the sins of all those who bathe in her, could not bear the burden of them any more and sought relief from them. Lord Shiva recommended this temple quoting the relief be gotten by Adiseshan, Brahma, Indran and Dakshan. Hence, Gangadevi dwelt 30 days in Kaveri in Mayiladuthurai in the month of Aipasi and reached Thirupurambam in the succeeding month of Karthigai. She worshipped her for sixteen years and in the second segment of Mahashivarathin the month of Maasi, got rid of all her sins.
THE LEGEND OF THE TEMPLE (Adhiseshan performing pooja)
Apart from the 18th century scripted legend of this, there are many notes and anecdotes about this temple in other books as well. Hearsay anecdotes abound and it is quite possible there is more than one legend for this temple.
“Twelve ancients reached the heavens by worshipping at Pamburam”
Adhiseshan Brahma, Parvathi, Sge Agasthya, Agini, Ganges, the sun and the moon, Dhakshan,Sunithan-a north Indian King and the chola king – Kochengatchozhan are the twelve referred above.
11. Suryan, the Sun god, went about asking the rishis of Naimisaranya the source of his light. They told him that only sage Vyasa could answer him, and upon his doing so, sage Vyasa told him to go to Thirupurambam temple and worship the Lord there. Surya went to Kashi, took a holy dip in the Ganges, then travelled to Mayiladuthurai to worship Mayuranathar and then reached Thirupamburam. He worshipped the Lingam worshipped by Adiseshan, with a thousand flowers everyday for twelve years. The Lord appeared before him in high high moon on a day in Chithrai month and granted him the boon to be forever bright. (Some of the songs about Suryan worshipping the Lord have been lost to us forever. This legend is given on the basis of the retrieved details).
12. Vanathara, the wife of Brahaspathi, in his absence, begot Budhan in an illicit relationship with Chandran. Learning of this, Brahaspathi cursed Chandran to fall ill with tuberculosis. Indran, the other Devas and Chandran requested the rishis to suggest ways of absolving this curse. The rishis advised Chandran to worship Pamburanathar and Chandran did so with a thousand flowers daily for twelve years. He was absolved of his disease at noon on Thai Poornima Day.
13. A north Indiian King, Sunithan, who has very generous, pious and just, suddenly was afflicted with a disease called Muyalagan which is accompanied by fits. On the advice of sage Vashistra, he reached Mayiladuthurai, bathed in the river Kaveri there, and then reached Pamburam. On finishing his bath in theertham and getting on to the banks, his disease vanished. He stayed on in this place for one year and built the Nrutha Mandapam, Artha Mandapam and Maha Mandapam. He also performed the restoration of the temple of the Goddess. According to the temple history, he also contributed the four towers, the surrounding walls, the three praharas, the steps to the Brahma Theertham, while also giving gifts to the local Brahmans and gifting dancing girls to the temple.
14. Kopperunchozhan, a Chola King, due to previous karma, was afflicted with leucoderma, and felt very disheartened. He worshipped sage Vashishta, who advised him to take a holy dip in the theertham and then pray to Pamburanathar. He did so and was cured of his disease. Immensely pleased by this, the king stayed here for three years and contributed tall towers, mandapas, steps to tanks, flower and other gardens and laying of streets and other facilities. He had Lord Sadashiva installed in the temple, created the Sivaganga Theertham and with great pleasure, had the name Silandhisozhapuram given to the place.
Snakes are supposed to come and worship in the sanctum sanctorum, especially on Sundays, Tuesdays and Fridays, and this can really be seen by those with good karma. Some unusual and wondrous tidbits: A sudden whiff of fragrant jasmine or fragrant screw pine (thazhampoo) can be felt when ther is movement of snakes within the temple: Snakes in this place, considered devotees of Lord Shiva, do not bite any one. The plant Agathi doesn’t bear flowers nor do the aerial roots of the banyan tree touch the ground in this place