'Thirumana Thiruthalangal', is a book written by Ms.Meera Nagarajan, the Managing Director and CEO of the company. The published chapters from the book narrate the importance on worshipping at various temples that are known to bless for an early marriage to a bride or groom.

Sri Maappilai Swami - Thiruvezhimizhalai (Thiruvarur district)

History of the Temple:

Sage Kathyayana didn't have offspring. He did penance along with his wife Sumangalai praying to Lord Siva. Ambikai appeared before him as Annapoorni and asked him what boon he wanted. The sage requested that Ambikai should be born to him as his daughter. Ambikai granted his wish and was born as his daughter and named Kathyayini. When Kathyayni attained marriageable age, the sage requested Lord Siva to marry her. The Lord agreed and married Kathyayini. At that time, the sage prayed to the Lord to make the place his abode and to appear in wedding costume. The Lord agreed for his wish. He is portrayed in wedding costume. He got the name "Maappilai Swami" because of this.


The Lord is portrayed with a flower bouquet in his right hand and a bamboo in his left hand. Those whose marriage is getting delayed will be blessed with an early marriage if they pray to the deity here, it is firmly believed. Mappillai Swami is portrayed with Ambikai to his right. But, at the moolasthanam, Balambikai is to the left of Lord Siva behind the lingam. Lord Siva is portrayed in two different ways at the same sthalam! At the prahara, Thyagaraja and Kamalambikai are portrayed in the same peedam. In between, Mahavishnu is portrayed along with Ambikai. Dakshinamoorthy is installed next. He is portrayed in a sitting posture with His right leg placed on a lotus. But unlike in other temples, there's no banyan tree behind Him. He is called Aadhi Dakshinamoorthy. Those with nervous problems pray to Him.

Usually, in Siva temples, Nandi and kodimaram will be placed in front of Siva. But here, Siva is portrayed as lingam, facing moolasthanam. There's another Nandi installed under the steps leading to sannadhi. Usually, in all temples, Ambal or Swami will be popular. But here, Veezhilinathar, Maappilai Swami, Moolanathar and Nataraja are the main deities. In the evening, the first service is offered to Maapilai Swami, then to Nataraja, Moolanathar and Veezhilinathar in order. The mandap, facing Siva sannadhi is designed as a wedding dais. The pandalkal is at its northeast corner and arasanikkaal is in the arthamandap. The belief is that after praying to Maappilai Swami, if we go around the pandakkal, the marriage will be settled soon.

Debt of Lord Shiva:

Everyone knows the story that Mahavishnu borrowed from Kubhera for his marriage with Padmavathy when he took the Srinivasa avtar. Lord Siva of this sthalam also faced a similar situation. He also borrowed money. He descended to the Planet Earth as Pitchandavar and begged. He married Ambikai with that money. On the fourth day after the marriage, He again went begging to meet the expenses for maruvedu. As He incurred debt for the expenditure for marriage, He is called Manakkadan petra Sivan. In commemoration of this incident, He is taken out as Pitchandavar on the previous day and fourth day of the thirukalyanam during the Brahmotsav in the month of Chithrai.

Lord who blessed with chakrayudham:

Once, Lord Mahavishnu lost his chakrayudham when he destroyed an asura. He did penance to Lord Siva to get back His chakrayudha. He offered thousand lotus flowers to Siva daily. Lord Siva wanted to put Vishnu to test and hid one lotus flower. Vishnu was confounded and offered his right eye as the thousandth flower. Siva was pleased and gave Visnu his Chakra. The urchavamoorthy here is portrayed with a chakra on his foot. Near Him, Mahavishnu is portrayed with His hands in receiving gesture. Mahavishnu is also portrayed wearing a Rudrakshamalai and sacred ash on his forehead!

There are no separate sannadhis for Navagrahas and Durga as Siva himself is believed to neutralize the doshams of various grahas of his devotees. At the moolasthanam, Annapoorni is installed to the left of Siva. She can be viewed only if we get inside moolasthanam. There's a separate sannadhi with a tower for Ambikai.

Siva who gave padikaasu:

Once, there was severe drought in this sthalam. At that time, Thirugyanasambhandar and Sundarar came here. They visited the temple daily and sang padhigam, praying to God to save the people from the drought. When they were returning from the temple, by God's grace, each of them spotted a gold coin on a step. They sold them off and bought food for the people. The peedam where Sambhandar found the gold coin is located near the kodimaram and the peedam where Sundarar found the coin is in the south prahara. Vinayaka who was a witness to this incident has His own sannadhi. He is called Padikaasu Vinayaka. Devotees believe that if they pray to Siva, placing a coin on the padikaasu peedam and then keep it in their home, they'll not have problem for food. Even today, this practice is in vogue.

Bat mandap:

The bat mandap in this temple is very famous. This spacious mandap without pillars in the centre stands a living proof for the eminence of the Tamils in the art of construction.

Route to the temple:

First go to Thiruvarur, from there to Poonthottam which is at 28 km distance. The temple is located at 4 km distance from here, which can be reached by an auto. Or you can travel by the bus that is going to Iravancheri from Kumbakonam. You've to get down at Thenkarai stop (26 km). The temple is nearby, you can walk the distance.