Tuesday, November 30, 2021

Adi Kumbeswarar Temple, Shenbagapuram – Legends

Adi Kumbeswarar Temple, Shenbagapuram – Legends

Once, Sage Narada visited the celestial court of Lord Shiva at Mount Kailash to present to him a fruit, the Gyana Pazham (the fruit of knowledge). Lord Shiva intended to share the fruit among his two sons, Ganesha and Murugan but the sage Narada was against the idea of cutting it. Lord Shiva decided to award it to whichever of his two sons first circled the world thrice.

Accepting the challenge, Karthikeya started his journey around the globe on his mount peacock. However, Ganesha, who surmised that the world was no more than his parents Shiva and Shakti combined, circumambulated them. Pleased with their son's discernment, Lord Shiva awarded the fruit to Ganesha. When Kartikeya returned, he was furious to learn that his efforts had been in vain.

He left Kailash and took up his abode in the Palani hills in South India. Lord Ganesha felt that he ought to have yielded to his brother and sacrificed the fruit for his brother. Lord Ganesha was unable to bear the separation from his brother. Hence, he decided to perform penance for offending his brother. He could not be stopped by his parents. So, Lord Shiva advised him to perform penance in this place dense with Shenbaga trees.

Lord Shiva came to this region to protect his son at the request of Mother Parvathi. Lord Shiva set himself in five places in the form of five Lingams representing the Pancha Boodhas (water, fire, space, wind and earth). The five temples housing these Lingams are situated around Shenbagapuram. They are;

1.    Shenbagapuram Thirumoolanathar Temple

2.    Mohanur Adi Kumbeswarar Temple

3.    Singamangalam Shivapureeswarar Temple

4.    Killukudi Agastheeswarar Temple

5.    Anaikudi Somanathar Temple

Astonishingly, there are no temples located between these temples and this temple confirming that these five Lords stand as protectors to Vinayaga of this temple. Lord Shiva conferred the title of Eshwara to Ganesha after his penance and requested his son to raise as a Swayambhu Moorthy in this temple and bless the devotees in his place. Thus, the Vinayaga came to be called as Adi Kumbeswara. The shape of the Vinayaga is slightly irregular in this temple.