Seated over a pond of poison
Lord Vinayaka at Perur.
AWAY FROM the din and noise of the industrial city of Coimbatore is a tranquil suburb called Perur, also known as Melaichidambaram,' famous for its religious and cultural heritage and rich history of over a thousand years.
The temple of Sri Patteeswarar is well known for its ancient sculptures and spiritual grandeur. The Lord of the temple was worshipped by Kongu kings, Cholas, Pandyas, Hoysalas, Vijayanagar kings, Madurai Nayak kings, Hyder Ali and Tipu Sultan till 1792 A.D.
A total of 24 epigraphical inscriptions are discovered in the temple, linked to the Cholas kings Karikala, Vikrama, Rajaraja II, Veera Rajendra and the Pandya king Veera Pandian. Sages Vyasa and Viswamitra and Lord Yama are said to have worshipped Lord Siva here.
The belief is that the temple and the deity existed during Kritha, Thretha, Dwapara and Kaliyugas under different names.
Before the start of the festivals, the temple authorities seek the blessings and permission of the powerful deity called `Patti Vinayagar' or Goshta Ganapathy who is said to be a `Swayambu murthy'. This Vinayagar temple is situated north of the Siva temple on the way to `Kanchi river' (also called Noyyal). Previously, there were 32 tanks in Perur. Brahmatheertham, Suryatheertham, Indra theertham, Yaksha theertham, Yama theertham, Nachu Poigai (the pond of poison), Singa theertham, are around the Siva temple. Lord Patti Vinayagar is believed to be seated over the pond of poison to ward off its ill effects. The existence of Yaksha theertham, Yama theertham and the pond of poison reminds us of the linkage of this place to the place of exile of the Pandavas referred to in the Mahabharata.
Apart from Vinayaka Chaturthi, Sankatahara Chaturthi the first day of every Tamil month, Adi Amavasya, etc. are the important festival days. The temple is now in a dilapidated condition and needs financial aid for renovation.
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