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90. Tirukkaaraayil


Location: Tirukkaaraayil near Tiruvarur
(Chola-South of Kaveri)
Shiva: Kannayira Natheswarar, Tyagarajar (Aadi Vitankar)
Ambal: Kailaya Nayaki
Theertham: Indra Theertham
Patikam : Sambandar
Travel Base: Thanjavur
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Description: This Shivastalam (Tirukkaaraivaasal) is regarded as of the 7 SaptaVitanka temples, housing shrines to Tyagaraja - Somaskandar associated with the Muchukunda Chola legend of Tiruvarur . Tirukkarayil is located 13 km south of Tiruvarur. The seven Vitankastalams are Tiruvarur, Tirukkuvalai, Tirukkaaraivaasal, Tirumaraikkaadu, Tiru Naagai, Tirunallaaru and Tiruvaimur.  This shrine is regarded as the 119th in the series of Tevara Stalams in the Chola Region south of the river Kaveri.

Legends: Indra is said to have worshipped  Shiva on a full moon night in the month of Virgo.    It is believed that Kadukkaai Pillaiyaar here, transformed a trader's cargo of nutmeg into Kadukkaai and then back to Kadukkaai, in a legend similar to that at Tiruppayatrankudi

The image of Tyagarajar is believed to be one of the 7 from which Indra is believed to have asked Muchukunda Cholan to pick the original image of Somaskandar worshipped by Mahavishnu. . Muchukunda Cholan is believed to have picked the right one, and Indra is believed to have rewarded him with all of the 7 images, which the latter installed at 7 different places within his territory, and it is these 7 temples which constitute the 7 Vitankastalams.

The Temple: Tyagarajar here is known as Aadi Vitankar and is associated with the Kukkuta Natanam dance.  The temple  covers an area of about an acre. The Indra Theertham is located to the North of the temple.

Festivals: Six worship services are offered here each day, and the annual Bhrammotsavam festival is celebrated in the Tamil month of Vaikasi.

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