Thalapureeswarar Temple, Thiruppanangadu – Legends
Sage Agasthiyar worshipped Shiva here:
During his journey in south, Sage Agasthya desired to worship Lord Shiva in this place and did so with his mind set on the Lord. Lord told the sage through a voice that he was there as a Swayambu Linga nearby under a neem tree. He saw another sage Kottai Muniswarar (Yogananda Muniswarar) in meditation. When enquired about the Linga, the Sage showed Agasthya the Linga and turned into meditation again. But Agasthya had no water to perform the puja. Knowing the Sage’s difficulty, Lord poured the Ganga water on his head which also became a holy spring named Jada Ganga Theertham – spring that came from the tuft of Lord.
When Agasthya wanted fruits to offer the Lord for Nivedhana, Lord dropped the palm fruits. Pleased with the pujas of Sage Agasthya, Lord granted darshan to him. As Lord dropped palm fruits, He is also named Thalapureeswarar, Thalam-Palm tree. It is said that while leaving this place Sage Agasthiar advised Sage Muneeswarar to look after this Shiva temple. In front of this temple, there is also a separate small temple for “Sri Kottai Muneeswarar”.
Sage Pulasthiyar worshipped Shiva here:
It is said that after some time, Sage Pulasthiar had also visited this place and installed a lingam on the banks of river Palar and worshiped it. At a later date, this lingam is believed have been discovered by a Chola king who brought it to this temple and installed it next to the lingam that was installed by Sage Agasthiar.
Lord Shiva served food to Sundarar & his followers:
Saint Sundarar was on his way to this place from Kanchipuram. When it was midday, he and his followers were hungry and became tired. Lord Shiva came there as an old man and served them food. Sundarar asked him for water. The old man said that he and his men would have it and moved. A spring came up there with sweet water. When Sundarar asked him who he was, the old man simply disappeared saying he was a resident of Panangadu who earlier stopped his marriage. Sundarar, with the privilege of a friend sang in praise of the Lord in funny words. The spring created by the Lord is a little away from the temple. It never goes dry. Special pujas are performed here as “Kattamudhu” during the Brahmmotsavam festival. It is believed that Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvathi blessed Sundarar with their dharisanam. In his hymns, Sundarar refers to this place as “Vanparthan Panangattur”.
As Palm trees were around this place and as the Sthala Vriksham is also Palm tree this place named Thirupanangattur. As this place is closer to Vempakkam (Vanparthan), this is called Vanparthan Panangattur.
Jada Gangai Theertham:
Another legend is that once, a staunch devotee called Panangkattu Thambiran prayed to Lord Shiva to provide drinking water to the local people. Lord conceded to his request and water started flowing from the lord’s head. This water was stored in a nearby tank called “Jada Gangai Theertham”. This is being used by locals even today.
People worshipped Shiva here:
It is also said that lords Brahma, Mahavishnu, Indiran and Sage Kannuva have worshiped Lord Shiva of this temple.