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327/365 – Thirukkadaiyur

Thirukkadaiyur is a temple town on the east coast of Tamil Nadu, about 300 km south of Chennai and 15 km north of Karaikal.

The original temple, Thirukkadaiyur Mayanam now called Thirumeignanam built in circa 11th century AD was ravaged by sea and is in ruins now. Another temple on an identical plan was built later and is now thronged by people who pray for long life.

Legend  

Mrikandu  

This is one of the holy places of Saivism today. Legend has it that Mrikandu, a sage and devotee of Lord Siva, prayed to God to bless him with a son.

God appeared and gave him a choice to select the type of child he wanted – An honest responsible and virtuous son who will live only for 16 years or a son who would live for 100 years but whose behavior is bad. Mrikandu chose the former.

Markandeya  

The boy, named Markandeya also grew up to be an ardent devotee of Siva. The destined time came, when Yama (the lord of death) tried to snatch the life of the boy.

Markandeya went to the temple and clutched at the Siva Lingam in a bid to escape death. Pleased by the boy’s belief, Siva rescued him from death, incarnating him as Kalantaka (the ender of death).

Temples  

Most of the temples are known either by the name of the Lord or His Consort. Nataraja is the name that rings in the mind when the word Chidambaram is uttered.

Similarly, the name Madurai brings memories of Meenakshi. However, there are a few temples that are well known for the Lord and his Consort and Tirukkadaiyur is one among them.

The Amritaghateswarar – Abirami Temple of Tirukkadaiyur is associated with the legends of Markandeya and Abirami Battar.

Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thirukkadaiyur

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