Mahalingeswarar Temple, Thavasi Medai – Legends
Odukkam Thavasi Medai:
As Maharshi Bharadhwaja performed penance sitting on a platform with concentration on the Lord controlling all his senses, the place is known as Odukkam Thavasi Medai. Odukkam-controlling the senses; Thavasi-one performing penance and Medai-platform.
Reason behind the partition in plantain leaves:
On his way to Ayodhya from Lanka with Mother Sita and Lakshmana, Sri Rama relaxed in the hermitage of Sage Bharadhwaja here. While taking food there, Sri Rama drew a line across the leaf to share it with Sri Anjaneya to acknowledge all the services he rendered during his difficult days in search of Mother Sita and in the battle against Ravana. Both dined on the same leaf sitting opposite to each other. It is said that since the event, plantain leaves began to grow with this partition line.
Magam Star Temple:
Also, the sage is one of the five sages who installed Mother Meenakshi in Madurai. His reputation is beyond the power of words. Despite high power gained through intense penance, the sage was all humble in nature. The two Peetas at the entrance of the temple are said to be Bharadhwaja himself sitting there to have the touch of the feet of devotees on his head. Born in the Magam Star, special pujas are performed in his favour on this day. It is believed that many noble souls and sages partake in the pujas invisibly. It is advised that those born in Magam star should take Sage Bharadhwaja as their Guru and worship Lord Shiva with abishekams and archanas on Magam star days, Panchami, Sashti, Ekadasi, Dwadasi, Pradosham and monthly Shivarathri days to sustain a happy and prosperous life.