This is the 31st Devaram Paadal Petra Shiva Sthalam in Thondai Nadu (Now this place is called as Ozhinthiyapattu). Thiruganasambhandar has sung hymns in praise of Lord Shiva of this temple.
Iraivan: Sri Arasilinathar, Sri Aswatheswarar, Sri Arasileswarar
Iraivi : Sri Periyanayagi, Sri Azhakiyanayagi
Vinayaka of the temple is praised as Lord Varasiddhi Vinayaka. The Rajagopuram of the temple is of a 3 tier structure.
Sage Vamadeva visited many Shiva sthalas seeking relief from a curse he incurred. When he came to this place, he relaxed for a while under an Arasu tree thinking how pleasant would it be if Lord Shiva was there under the tree. Knowing the Sage’s wish, Lord appeared there as a swayambumurthy, relieved Vamadeva of his curse. The sage immediately had a bath in the nearby spring, installed the Linga and worshipped.
As Lord appeared under an Arasu tree, He is named as Arasaleeswarar and the place Arasili. In the days that followed, the Shivalinga in the place had disappeared. The region was under the rule of Chalukya king Satyavradhan. He was a staunch Shiva devotee. He had no issues. He created a garden, installed another Shivalinga in the place and was worshipping.
One day his servant found the plants without flowers and informed the matter. The king did not take it seriously. The servant had to repeat the news next day too. To catch the flower thief, the king closely watched the place in the wee hours and found that a deer was happily eating the flowers. The king was angry that an animal ate the flowers meant for Shiva Puja and shot an arrow. The deer escaped and hid in the hole in the Arasu tree. The king shot an arrow at the tree. The tree bled.
The king thought that the animal was wounded and looked into the hole but found a Shivalinga only and not the deer. It was the Linga that disappeared long back. The king bowed before the bleeding Lord and sought his directions. Lord appeared before the king and said that the deer was indeed himself. He blessed the king with children. The temple came into being with the efforts of the king.
Lord Shiva as a small swayambumurthy Linga graces the devotees under a Rudraksha (108 beads) Pandal – tent. The arrow scar on the Linga is still visible. Both as a mark of respect to the Lord and as if to cover the scar injury, a turban tied on the Linga during the pujas. Saint Sambandar stayed here for a while and sang Pathigams – set of 10 verses. Mother Perianayaki graces from a separate shrine facing south.
Lord Dakshinamurthy graces from the Goshta wall. The depiction of Muyalagan, symbol of ignorance is under the left leg of the Lord holding a serpent against the traditional right. Lord Nataraja graces above in the Ananda Thandava (blissful dancing) posture. It is said that Lord Dakshinamurthy symbolizes Peace and Lord Nataraja Bliss telling mankind that they have to practice Ananda-bliss through Silence-Peaceful state of mind. It is a rare portrayal of Lord Shiva’s Upadesa as Dakshinamurthy combined with the bliss embodied in Lord Nataraja.
Lord Mahavishnu graces on the ghoshta-wall around the sanctum sanctorum facing west. Lord Muruga with his consorts Valli and Deivanai, Bhairava, four Saivite Saints are in separate shrines in the prakara. The temple was built by the kings of Salukkiyars.
In the outer prakaram, Naalvar Vinayagar, Sandikeswarar, Vallidevasena Sri Subramaniyar, Navagrahas, Kala Bairavar and Suryan. There are lot of sudhai Sirpam and paintings around the entrance and prakaram walls. Ambal is in a separate Sannadhi facing south with Simha vahanam.
Dhwajasthambham with Nandhiyamperuman facing Moolavar is in the front mandapam through a salaram. Entering artha mandapam shall be through south side entrance. Moolavar is very short and avudaiyar is also at the lower level.
There are many old Tamil inscriptions around the Karuvarai walls. These Tamil inscriptions belong to Vikrama Chozha Devar, Kulothunga Chozha Devar period. During their period this place was called as “Oimanattu Thiruarasili” and “Jayankonda Chozhamandalathu Oimanattu Vijayarajendra Chozhavalanattu Peruvembur Nattu Thiruarasili”
There is a Thiruganasambhandar madam built by "Srimathi Jayalakshmi” on the left side of the temple and seventh day’s festival is sponsored through the interest from a deposit made by her.
Temple Opening Time
The temple timings are 7-12 am and 4 - 7pm.
The Lord of the temple is praised in the Thevaram hymns of Tirugnanasambandar. Says the saint, Arasili is the abode of Lord who drove away Kala the God of Death, who conquered cupid (Manmatha) the deity of passion and lust, living on the alms offered by others, wearing Kondrai flower and tortoise garlands and sacred ash sprayed over his body.
This is the 31st temple in the Thondainadu region praised in Thevaram hymns.
It is believed that performing abishek to Lord with the leaves of Arasu tree would bring back the positions lost by the devotee earlier and also reward with promotions.
Realizing their wishes, devotees offer vastras to Lord and Mother and do Angapradakshinam-rolling around the prakara.
10 day Vaikasi Brahmotsavam in May-June, Maha Shivrathri in February-March and Tirukarthikai in November-December is the festivals celebrated in the temple.
Sri Arasaleeswarar Temple,
Phone: +91- 4147 - 235 472
This Shivasthalam temple is located 12 Kms from Pondicherry. Reach Ozhinthiyapattu village by travelling on the Pondicherry - Kilianur - Tindivanam route. A small branch road at Ozhinthiyapattu leads you to the temple. Another Paadal Petra Sthalam Irumbai Maakaalam is situated at a distance of 5 Kms from here.
Nearest Railway Station & Airport is located at Pondicherry.