Abodes of lord Shiva

147. Arulmigu Velnadunkanni sameda Navaneetheswarar Temple - Sikkal

 
Moolavar   Navaneetheswarar, Vennai Lingeeswarar
Utsavar  
Thayar   Velnadunkanni
Kshethram  
Theertham   Kshera Theertham, Gaya Theertham, Lakshmi Theertham
Pose & Direction   Lord facing East and Lordess facing south
Vimanam  
Sthala Vruksham   Jasmine
Paadiyavar   Sambandar, Arunagirinathar
Travel Base   Nagapattinam
Nearest Railway Station   Sikkal
 

 

Location

The temple is located in the village of Sikkal, near Nagapattinam in Tamilnadu. It is 5 kilometers in the West from Nagapattinam and 18 kilometers in the East from Thiruvarur on the way to Nagapattinam. Nearest Railway Station is located at Sikkal

 

History

Once upon a time, Kamadenu was cursed by lord Shiva, when it ate meat. Later feeling guilty of its action, it got rid of its sin by taking bath in the holy water point of this temple and worshiped here, as told by Lord Shiva. After getting rid of the sin, Kamadenu offered its milk which later become Parkulam (literal meaning: the milk pond), which is located behind the temple. It is this holy water point (The Parkulam) of the temple where Vashista Maharishi performed a pooja here, by making a lingam with the butter from the Parkulam. After completing the pooja he tried to move that lingam, but it sticked to that place, and never moved. As a result Vashista Maharishi regarded this place as Sikkal. Here the Lord Shiva is called ‘Thiru Vennai Nathar’ (Vennai means butter) as he was made up of butter. Interestingly, Thirukkannankudi - a Vaishnava Divyadesam (near Keevalur nearby) has a legend associated with Vasishta offering worship to an image of Krishna which he had fashioned out of butter. It is also said that Lord Murugan had got his Vel (weapon) from his divine mother at Sikkal, to kill the Asura, Soorapadman in Srilanka. He performed Soora Samharam (literal meaning: killing Soorapadman) by setting up the base camp in Thiruchendur. Legend has it that Muchukunda Cholan, associated with the Tiruvarur legend built this temple. The swamy here unravels the problems of the devotees and hence the place is called Sikkal (Sikkal means problem in Tamil). The day before the ‘Soora Samharam’, Singaravelar (Lord Murugan) would get the “Vel” (a weapon) from Ambal and the following day he would quell Soora. Prior to this Singaravelar would appear indignant and he couldn’t manage the power of Vel and he started sweating. Even today, a day before Soora Samharam he will sweat and when they try to wipe the sweat using silk cloth it won’t stop. This is a wonder here and it is called “Sweating wonder”. Vishwamitra, Kaarthiyaayanar, Naradar, Muchukunda Chakravarthi have worshipped in this holy place. Devas worshipped Lord Muruga by offering him ‘tirisathai’ to protect them from the onslaught of Soorapadman. Hence, Lord Muruga put an end to Soorapadman and saved devas. The belief is that by offering the ‘Sathru samhara tiri sathai’ prayer to Lord Muruga, we will be relieved of enemies’ attack and reap benefits. Once devas complained about the troubles caused by Mahabali Chakravarthi of the Asura clan. So when Lord Vishnu took Vaamana avatar, it is believed that he came to this sacred place, worshipped Lord Siva and got power to annihilate Mahabali. Hence, Lord Vishnu of this place blesses the devotees with the sacred name ‘Kolavaamana Perumal’ from a separate sanctum. This temple is rich in history and legend. Sikkal is also closely associated with Ettikkudi and Enkan through the legend of a sculptor who carved the three Murugan idols of Sikkal, Engan and Ettukkudi are exquisite and carved by the same Shilpi. When he carved the idol with every detail of the 6 faces of the lord with separate ear ring holes, hands separate weapons and balanced on the single leg of the peacock with space below the claw. The king wanted to prevent any other replica so he obtained the thumbs of the Shilpi as a guarantee. Even with this lack of thumbs the Shilpi sculpted a replica at Ettukkudi for this the king removed the eyes of the sculptor. The Sculptor was directed by a divine voice to sculpt a more detailed Singaravelan at Engan when he received both his thumbs and vision.

 

Architecture

Sikkal Navaneetheswarar Temple is the main temple. The Singaravelan temple is found in the premises of Sikkal Navaneetheswarar Temple. The 7 tiered Rajagopuram that adorns the entrance to this temple is about 80 feet in height. Inscriptions from the Imperial Chola period and from the Vijayanagar period abound in this temple which covers an area of about 2 acres. The Karthikai Mandapam in the forefront exhibits a number of paintings depicting legends related to Subramanya. The Vinayaka of this place blesses the devotees in the name ‘Sundara Ganapathi’. Lord Muruga in the holy places, Ettukkudi, Enkan and Sikkal are alike in structure and so it is said, that these three images are sculpted by the same sculptor. On the North-western corner of the temple is a separate sanctum for Aanjaneyar. This is one of the 64 Sakthi Peetams of Amman. The four deities Lord Siva, Perumal, Murugan and Hanuman offering benedictions is a significant aspect of this temple. Arunagirinathar has sung ‘Thirupugazh’ celebrating Lord Muruga of this place. The temple is built on an artificial mound (a Maadakkovil said to have been built by the king Kochengata Cholan). Shiva's shrine faces east, while Singaravelar's and Ambal Velnedunkanni's shrines face south. The jewelry adorning Skanda is of great beauty here. Ganapati, Mahalakshmi, Nataraja, the sixty three Nayanmars, Bhairava, Surya and Chandra are also having Sannadhis at the respective places as per agamic standards. Plaster figures of Dhakshinamoorthy, Murugan, Natarajar, Thiyagarajar, Pathanjali, Viyakrapathar, and of Gajendra Motcham, penance of saint Dhuruva are present here. Beautiful painting depicting the marriage of goddess Parvathi is seen in Kalyana Mandapam. There is a beautiful sculpture of Vaikuntanathan seated in Perumal Sannidhi. Two cars with sculptures, kalyana chariot, and golden vehicles are present in this temple. Gold plated horse, peacock, goat and silver rishaba vehicle are present in this temple. Kalyana mandapam is found in front of the temple. It is full of artistic works. This mandapam is huge measuring 300 feet in length and 60 feet in width. It can accommodate more than 4,000 people. It was constructed in 1932. Karthikai Mandapam contains paintings from Kandapuranam. Abhisekam is performed to Singaravelar here during Karthikai festival. Sani Bhagavan is also in the koshtam along with usual moorthams. Lord Anjaneyar blessing the devotees has a separate Sannidhi in the North West corner of this temple. There is an Anjaneyar here who is very famous in granting our wishes in the outer praharam. The perumal Kolavaamana Perumal here is resting before he takes up the Vamana Avataram after praying to Lord Shiva. This is the adjoining complex. The scene where Lord Muruga gets vel from his mother Gnanambikai is spectacular. The front Mandalam (figure) of Lord Muruga appears bright like gold, due to sun rays falling on it. With music from four types of organs in the background and a smiling face, Lord Muruga returns to Somaskandhar Sannidhi very quickly like an arrow shot from a bow. Sweat appear like snow on the figure of Lord Muruga, even when cooled with peacock feather, and dried with silk and rose petals. Even if a part of sweat drops found on the walls of Sannidhi sprinkles, one will attain the benefit of this life. People pray to the Lord of this place to be relieved off from their hardships. Devotees perform archanas and offer vastras to Lord. Every full moon and New moon day ghee pasted to the moolasthanam (Navaneetheswarar) for rectifying our sins and get entire blessing of Lord Navaneetheswarar. This is the 200th Devaram Paadal Petra Shiva sthalam and 88th sthalam on the south side of river Cauvery in Chozha Nadu.

Arulmigu Velnadunkanni sameda Navaneetheswarar Temple
Sikkal, Nagapattinam - 611108
Phone: 4365 – 245 452 / 245 350
Temple Timings : 5.30 am to 12.30 pm, 4.30 pm to 9.00 pm