Thursday, January 5, 2017

Mariamman Temple, Irukkankudi, Virudhunagar

Mariamman Temple, Irukkankudi, Virudhunagar
Mariamman Temple is located in Irukkankudi Village in Virudhunagar District of Tamilnadu. Mariamman is the Moolavar in the temple. This Temple attracts thousands of devotees daily. The number of devotees visiting Irukkankudi Mariamman Kovil increases in Aadi month especially on Fridays. The last Friday in Aadi month is highly auspicious in the temple – the Utsava murti – the murti (idol) used for festival purposes - is taken on Vrishaba Vahanam (Devi mounted on bull) from the village side to the main temple located in between the two rivers of Arjuna and Vaippar. The belief is that Goddess Mariamman cures physical illness and provides good health. Thousands of people with eye-ailments have found relief here.

Legends
Villages found Swayambu idol of Amman:
This happened 300 years ago between Arjuna and Vaippar rivers. A priest – Poosari – woman filled her basket with the cow dung she gathered and was prepared to go home with the basket but could not lift it alone. She asked others to help her. They too could not lift the basket. She herself was influenced by the power of Goddess and exclaimed that Amman was under the ground where the basket was placed and ordered them to take her out and build a temple. The villagers found the idol of Mother Amman, built the temple and are doing the pujas. Since then, she is the deity for the villagers taking care of their welfare.

Pandavas stayed in this region during their exile:
During their forest life, Pandavas were in this region, they came to the foot of this hill for a bath.  But there was no water anywhere. Arjuna prayed to Mother Ganga and pierced the earth with his arrow from where sprang the Arjuna river. Pandavas had a pleasant bath.
Origin of Vaipparu:
The river flowing on the south side is called Vaipparu.  This also has a puranic story.  A hunter, Sambugan by name performed severe penance standing in the midst of fire north of Shivasailam at the foot of Pothigai hills. This penance caused a death in Ayodhya when it was under Lord Rama’s rule.  Angry Rama marched with his army and killed Sambugan. He restored the man to life who died in his land. 
This event is described in the Utharakanda of Ramayana. Incurring the sin of killing Sambugan, Rama installed a Shivalinga in Shiva hills, worshipped Lord Shiva and got relieved of the sin. Lord Rama then reached the Western Ghats with his army. One Shambavan in the entourage told Rama that Sage Agasthya had hidden a pot in this place containing waters of all holy rivers. 
Rama was happy. He hit the hidden pot with an arrow from which a river sprang up. Vaippi means hidden. As the river flew from Vaippi, it is known as Vaipparu. Vaipparu flows through Karivalam Vandha Nallur, Sattur, and Kollampatti and joins Arjuna River in Irukkankudi and flows further through Muthulapuram and Vilathikulam before reaching the ocean.
Amman appeared from Sivayoga Gnana Siddhar Samadhi:
Another legend has it that Sivayoga Gnana Siddhar, an ardent devotee of Goddess Amman, got a boon from her that she will appear at the spot where he will attain Samadhi.
The Temple
The sanctum sanctorum is under a beautiful vimana. Traditionally, Mother Mariamman appears in a sitting posture with left leg folded and the right hanging. It is vice-versa here. The Artha Mandapam and Maha Mandapam are close to the sanctum. Sri Nandeeswara and flag post-Kodimaram are in a line. Lord Vinayaka is under the Arasa Maram. On the west are Vazha Vandha Amman and Rakachi Amman. Pechi Amman and Muppidari Amman are in separate shrines on the northwest. Kathavarayan and Vairavamurthi are in the east. Karuppusamy is in southeast corner. Devotees worship all these deities and Mariamman in order.

Mother Mariamman is between two rivers, Arjuna and Vaipparu praised equal to Holy Ganga. Hence, Amman is praised as Irukkankudi – between rivers – Mari Amman. The devotee thus gets the benefit of bathing in two Gangas. Arjuna springs from the Mahalinga Hills in Vatrayiruppu.

Temple Opening Time
The temple is open from 6.00 a.m. to 1.30 p.m. and from 4.00 p.m. to 8.00 p.m.
Festivals
Aadi festival in July-August is grandly celebrated in the temple.
Prayers
The temple is famous for curing various diseases. People have found relief after visiting the temple. The main offering in the temple is body parts made using silver foil. Devotees have found relief to various eye ailments and stomach related disorders. Those suffering from impaired vision, stomach pain and other troubles, small pox, pain in hands and legs pray to Mari Amman for relief. Realizing their wishes, devotees perform abishek and aaradhanas to Amman.
Contact
Sri Irukkankudi Mari Amman Temple,
Irukkankudi, Sattur,
Virudhunagar District
Phone: +91 – 4562 259 614 / 259 864
Mobile: +91 – 94424 24084
Connectivity
Irukkankudi is 8 km east of Sattur on the Thiruchendur road. Town bus facility is conveniently available from Sattur to reach the temple. Nearest Railway Station is located at Sattur and Nearest Airport is located at Madurai.

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