Saturday, October 5, 2013

Kalyana Avvaiyaar!

Sri Karapuranathar Temple Uththamacholapuram
There are a number of special temples for marriage prayers such as Thirumananjeri, Thiruvidanthai and Mudichur. But this temple in Salem District also famous for marriage is unique because here the prayers are placed before the tamil poet Avvaiyaar!

Kalyana Avvaiyaar!
Which temple is this? Why did it become significant for marriage prayers? Let us go back in time to find out!
Welcome to the Karapuranathar temple, Uthamacholapuram.


It is believed that Khara and Dushana, the brothers of Ravana performed penance here to get a vision of Lord Shiva. After many years when the lord did not appear, the brothers decided there was no point in living further and decided to burn themselves to death. As they lit the fire and were about to jump into it, Lord Shiva appeared before them. Kara worshipped him with joy and built a temple around the Swayambu moorthy and the place came to be known as Karapuram and the lord Karapuranathar.

A little boy called Gunaseelan once wanted to worship the Lord but the Lingam was too tall for him. After several attempts to garland the Lord, the boy was disheartened and started to weep loudly. Just at that moment a miracle happened! The Lord lowered his head to one side to allow the little boy to garland him. The boy was overjoyed and completed his worship with satisfaction. Even today, the Lord is found with his head tilted to one side and hence is also called "Mudisaithanathar".

Karapuranathar - The Lingam tilted to one side.
Marriage of Angavai & Sangavai:

Vel paari, one of the "Seven greatest bestowers" of the last Sangam Era had two daughters Angavai and Sangavai. The Chera, Chola and Pandya kings in their desire to expand their territory, lay siege on the territories of King Paari. After a long drawn war, Paari was killed treacherously. His death left the two girls orphaned and Poet Kabilar, a bosom friend of the King took them under his care. He approached several Velir kings to accept the girls as brides for their sons, but they refused, fearing the wrath of the Moovendar (Chera, Chola & Pandya). Kabilar handed over the girls to a brahmin in Thirukoilur and fasted to death. The place where he fasted to death is called Kabilar Kundru and can be seen till date in Thirukoilur. The brahmin thought the only person who could solve this problem and get the girls married was Poet Avvaiyaar and brought the girls to her.

Avvaiyaar approached Deiveegan and Yenadhi Kannan, the sons of Malayaman Thirumudi Kaari to marry Angavai and Sangavai. The young princes agreed to marry the girls provided the Moovendhars did not have an objection. Avvaiyaar came to Karapuram and worshipped Lord Ganesha and asked him to assist in convincing the Moovendhar. Lord Ganesha who is found in the name of "Vinai Theertha Vinayagar " in this temple wrote the marriage invitation on a palm leaf and invited the kings. The Moovendhars promised to provide consent if Avvaiyaar was able to make fresh leaves sprout from a dried palm tree at the temple. Avvaiyaar sang hyms in praise of Lord Karapuranathar and with his grace, the tree bore not just new leaves but also fruits.

The Moovendars happily consented to the wedding and Kanjamalai Karadi Siddhar who worshipped Karapuranathar in the form of a bear was the witness to this agreement. The Jeeva Samadhi of Karadi Siddhar is found in this temple.
The Jeeva Samadhi of Karadi Siddhar
Marriage Prayer at the temple:

Boys and Girls seeking good marriage alliance come to this temple with three garlands - One for Lord Karapuranathar, One for Goddess Perianayagi and the third for Avvaiyaar, preferably on the date their birth star occurs during the month. After performing archana to the God and Goddess, the garland that adorned the Lord in case of a girl and the Goddess in case of a boy is given to them. They wear the garland and go around the temple carrying coconut, flowers and a garland for Avvaiyaar. They garland Avvaiyaar,break the coconut and make sincere prayers for an early marriage. Soon the alliance is fixed, and they come back to offer new saree and the first invitation to Avvaiyaar.

Several marriages thus fixed also take place in this temple. Many love marriages happen here, as this is the temple where Angavai and Sangavai had overcome several obstacles to find a good groom. The temple actually has a notice board which gives the list of documents that are required to register a marriage!

Avani Moolam Festival:

One of the 64 divine acts (Thiruvilaiyadal) of Lord Shiva was carrying mud on behalf of an old lady called Vanthi who offered him Puttu ( a sweet rice dish) in return. This Avani Moolam festival is enacted on the banks of Manimuthaaru River every year. It is believed that the Pandya king took pearls from the Manimuthaaru and used it to garland Goddess Meenakshi of Madurai and these pearls still adorn the Goddess's neck. There is an idol of Vanthi in the Artha Mandapam at the temple.The symbols of Chera, Chola and Pandyas are also found here.

How to reach here:

The temple is on the Salem - Sangagiri Main Road near Ariyaanur.

Temple Timings:
7.30 am - 12.30 pm in the morning
4.30 pm - 7.30 pm in the evening

Contact Details:

S. Anandhan Gurukkal - 97887 18970

Goddess Periyanayagi


  1. Beautiful post, Padma. My son will love this. I came over from your link in the women bloggers' network on Facebook. I love temples and your blog URL is wonderful! :-) Avvaiyyaar is one of my favorite stories!

  2. Nice information on the temple.

  3. Great post, Priya. I have not posted a comment here for a long time, but do read all your excellent informative posts on temples. I do believe that these temples have special powers to grant boons to its devotees if the intent is sincere and the devotion pure.

  4. This is interesting. Thanks for sharing the info.

  5. You are doing great work by bringing the lesser known temples to the blog world. thanks

  6. You are doing great work by bringing lesser known temples to the blog world. thanks

  7. Salute to your hard-work and passion. Only because of your dedication we come to know several things that we might have not known usually.

    Nice write-up

  8. Salute to you hard-work and passion.

    Only because of you we come to know about several unique things that we could never come to know.

    Nice write- up!

  9. Hi,
    After reading sakthi vikadan about thirupattur bramapuriswarar started visiting frequently specially on sani pradosam and also visit new oldage temples.
    You r doing nice job that updating about new temples those who not known to people.