Monday, April 25, 2016

Parasunathar Temple (Pazhayarai Thenthali), Pazhayarai

Parasunathar Temple (Pazhayarai Thenthali), Pazhayarai
Parasunathar Temple is a Hindu temple located at Muzhaiyur near Kumbakonam in the Thanjavur district of TamilnaduIndia. The temple is dedicated to Hindu God Shiva. The main deity, Parasunathar, is a Swayambu lingam with eight stripes with Ambal Gnanambikai. Nandhini, daughter of Kamadhenu worshipped here. Parasuramar worshipped here to clear off the sin due to the killing of his mother.

The city of Pazhayarai was once an important town in the Chola Empire. The temple was visited by the Saivite sage Thirunavukarasar. Hymns in praise of the temple have been sung by Thirunavukarasar, Appar and Sundarar; Pazhayarai city, surrounded by Pazhayarai Vadathali in the north, Arai Metrali in the south and Thenthali in the south. This is the birth place of Mangayarkarasiyar, a saint amongst the 63 Nayanmars. It is one of the Thevara Vaipu Sthalam at East of Patteeswaram.
According to Hindu mythology, the sage Parasurama came to Muzhayur for release from the Brahmmahathi dosha that afflicted him for killing his own mother as instructed by his father Jamadagni.  He installed a Shivalinga here, worshipped and was released of the evil aspect.  Hence, the Lord is named Parasunathar. Nandhini, daughter of Kamadhenu worshipped here.
Greatness of Temple
Muzhavu is a drum instrument used for making announcements of royal and official orders also used in temples for festival and Puja announcements.  There were people who were skilled in using this instrument for singing Veda hymns.  It is said that the Boodhaganas – army of Lord Shiva – use to sing Vedas on Earth with this instrument on Akshaya Tthritiya day. The Boodhaganas jump to height of 10,000 yards high while playing this instrument.
Thrithiya worship: 
Special pujas are performed during the Thrithiya days (3rd day from New Moon or Full Moon days).  Besides the special Akshaya Thrithiya day falling in April-May, this puja is followed during all Thrithiya days with ghee rice offered to Lord Shiva.  It is said that this puja is performed as a treatment to indigestion, diabetics, blood pressure etc.
Devotees also make garlands made of the pearls of Pomegranate Fruit (Madhulai) and offer it to the lord for development of fallow lands, idle money and other still properties. On the day, Panchamurthis – fives Gods - Lords Vinayaka, Parasunathar, Gnanmbikai, Subramaniar, and Chandikeswara are taken procession.  Special pujas are performed in the temple for those who had lost their money for standing surety for others.  Devotees offer jasmine garlands made by them to the Lord. They don’t buy these garlands.
The Temple
The west facing Temple at Pazhayarai Thenthali is under renovation. Among the murthis on the Goshtams, those of dancing Ganesa and Ardhanari are worth mentioning. The temple presided by Lord Parasunathar with his Consort Gnanambikai was in a bad condition.  Due to the painstaking efforts of the local people, the Rajagopuram is under renovation.  Also cleaning the temple (Uzhavarapani – weeding out the thorny bushes on the ground) is also on.

The main deity, Parasunathar, is a Swayambu lingam with eight stripes with Ambal Gnanambikai. Parasunathar Lingam belongs to the Beejakshara Linga form. It is round in shape with eight corners. In the sanctum sanctorum, in the place of Lingodhbava, Sri Arthanareeswarar graces the devotees. In Tamil the Linga is praised as Neenda Kombu Nedundhidai Linga. There are shrines for Nardana Ganapathi, Uthishta Ganapathi, Appar, Sundarar and Tirugnanasambandar.
In the place of Lingothbava, Lord Arthanareeswarar graces the devotees from the sanctum sanctorum.  Lingodhbava is the form of Lord Shiva whose feet and head was sought by Lord Brahmma and Lord Vishnu. The Parasunathalingam belongs to the Beejakshara Linga group, meaning a round base with eight corners facing west. This is one of the sacred Shiva Shrines praised in Thevaram hymns.
The hymns sung by Sambandar, Appar and Sundarar belong to the Vaiputhalam classification.  Vaiputhalam hymns will have mention of two sacred places in one song.  The other significance in the temple is that Lord Muruga is holding the trident in between the two fingers in the left hand, attributed to Shakti instead of his Vel weapon.
Temple Opening Time
The temple is open from 6.00 a.m. to 11.00 a.m. and 4.00 p.m. to 8.00 p.m
In older days, the Akshaya Tthritiya festival was conducted in a grand manner as the Kumbakonam Mahamaham festival.  Many from the north also thronged here then. During this festival the Lord would be garlanded with gold coins.  This reputation dimmed later.  Efforts are on to rebuild the reputation again.
Akshaya Tirthiyai, Mahasivarathri in Masi (February-March), Margazhi Tiruvadhirai (December-January), Panguni Uthiram (March-April) and Tirukarthikai in November-December are the festivals celebrated in the temple.
Excellence in education, removal of obstacles in marriage talks and child boon are the prayers submitted by devotees to the Lord. On the Akshaya Thrithiya day falling in the month of Chithirai (April-May), devotees make garlands of jasmine flowers with their own hands and offer them to the Lord.
Sri Parasunathaswami Temple,
Muzhayur, Thanjavur district
Phone: +91 4374 267 237
This temple is located 6 km away from Kumbakonam on the Kumbakonam - Aavoor road and around 2 km away from the Patteeswaram temple. The temple is 3 km away from Darasuram. Town bus facilities are available from Kumbakonam, Darasuram & Thanjavur. Nearest Railway Station is located at Darasuram, Kumbakonam & Thanjavur. Nearest Airport is located at Trichy.

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