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1 Mar 2021

Arunajadeswarar temple, Thirupananthal near Kumbakonam, Thanjavur district

Arunajadeswarar temple is located at Tirupananthaal near Kumbakonam in Thanjavur district of Tamil Nadu, India on the banks of the Kollidam river.
The presiding deity Shiva is Aruna Jadeswarar and His consort is Periya Nayaki.

Digital sketch by Sumathi

The Lord Iswara is said to have preached to Goddess Parvathi here, after her penance in the palm tree grove and hence the Lord is worshiped as Gnana Guru in this temple. The Devi is positioned such that her right ear is facing the Lord.

The matted spreading locks of Siva is said to be symbolic of his immense, deep, complete knowledge.  The lingam in this temple is seen with matted locks signifying this.

The sthalam is also known as Thadagai iswaram.
The Lord is also worshipped by other names - Senchadaiappar
The goddess is also known as Brhannayagi
Sthala Vrksham (sacred tree) - Panai (Palm)

Thadagai iswaram
A devotee by name Thadagai regularly worshipped the Siva linga by offering garlands.  One day as she was garlanding the Lord, her sari slipped off her shoulder and she was forced to hold on to it with one hand.  Try as she could, she could not reach with one hand to place the garland.  Seeing her plight, the Lord leaned over to accept the garland.  As a result the Siva linga was seen in a leaning posture.  Several devotees including the king tried but were unable to straighten the Lingam.  Kungiliya Kalaya Nayanar, one of the 63 Saiva Nayanmars tied one end of a roped around the Lingam and the other round his neck.  He persisted in pulling hard at the rope in spite of danger to his own life.  The pleased Lord straightened hinself.

Thirugnana Sambandar sang
"ThaNpozhil soozhpananthaal thiruthaadagai eecharame"

Since Lord Chandran (moon) worshipped the Lord Senchadaippar to rid himself of his dosham (sins), it is considered auspicious to worship the Lord on Mondays and on Chathur dasi in the month of Maasi.

Other deities: Ganesha as Ananda Vinayaka, Durga, Naga kanni (In this temple the female naga is worshipped unlike most other where the male naga is worshipped).

Raghavan, Sakthi Vikatan, 5 Nov 2019
images - PuthuyugamTV -