Of the six army camp temples (Aaru Padai Veedu) of Lord Muruga, this is the first temple. While Lord Muruga graces in a standing form in other five army camp temples, He graces in a sitting, wedding form with His consort Deivanai. Maharshi Narada, Indira the king of Devas, Brahmma the Creator are also around Him. Goddess of Wisdom Saraswathi without Her Veena, and Savithri are by His side while Sun, Moon, Gandharvas a community in the upper world skilled in the art of music, are above Him. The other vehicles of Lord Muruga, the sheep and the elephant are below Him. Only a scented paste called punugu is applied on the Lord as this is a cave temple.
Abishek is performed only to the Vel weapon of Lord Muruga as this is a cave temple. The Vel is taken to the Kasi Viswanatha shrine in the hill on the last Saturday of Purattasi month (September-October). This is the only temple where abishek is performed to Vel. More importance is attached to Vel as the Lord came to this place victoriously after defeating the demon Surpanma with the power of this weapon. Recently, a golden car has been made for the temple. As a prayer commitment to take Muruga in procession on this golden car, devotees may register in advance.
A curious feature of this temple is that the Gods Shiva and Vishnu face each other in the main shrine, and this is a rare thing in ancient Hindu temples. This is because Hinduism always held two distinct worshipping groups - Shaivites (worshippers of Lord Shiva) and Vaishnavites (worshippers of Lord Vishnu). Outside the temple there is a beautiful pond where, according to Temple tradition, the fishes are served with salt and rice flakes by the devotees. There is also a Vedic school adjacent to the banks of the temple pond.This temple was built by carving the hill.
In front of the Dwajasthambam or the Kodi Maram, one gets the magnificently carved Nandi, Mayil and the Mouse ( the vehicle of Lord Ganesha). This is a specialty of this Murugan shrine.Going inside, one can see the sannidhis of various Hindu Gods and Hindu Goddesses. Of special mention is the sannidhi of Saneeswaran without the other eight Grahas. Climbing a flight of six steps called the "Shadashara Padigal", one reaches the Ardha Mandapam. One gets to see the rock carvings of Mahisshasura Mardini, Karpaga Vinayagar, Andarabaranar and Uggirar.
There is also a rock carved sannidhi for Lord Vishnu and Goddess Lakshmi. Shiva in the form Sivalingam and Sathiyagireeshwarar sannidhis located here cannot miss the attention of the Muruga Bakthas visiting this Murugan shrine.
The Moolavar deity is also sculptured from a rock. Abhishekams for the presiding deity is done to the Murugan's Vel only.
There are five Theerthams, or divine water sources, in and around the temple, Saravana Poigai, Lakshmi Theertham, Saniyasi Kinaru (well), Kasi Sunai, and Sathiya Koopam.
From Madurai International Airport this temple is around 12 Km. From Madurai Junction it is 7.8 km and 14 km from Mattuthavani Integrated Bus Terminus. From Thiruparankundram Kovil Bus Stop it is 2 km.
Madurai International Airport is the nearest airport which is just 11.8 km from the temple.
Taxis and three wheeler autos are advisable to go to this locality.
- 5.00 A.M to 1.00 P.M, 4.00 P.M to 9.00 P.M
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