Pazhamudhircholai

Pazhamudhircholai

Other Temples, Madurai District

God

Balamurugan, facing east

Pazhamudhircholai is one of the six temples comprising the Arupadai Veedu Temples. An ancient temple which has been renovated and maintened well. Probably the smallest temple in size compared with the other 5 of this group. The temple is beautifully situated in the Azhagar Hills with greenery all around. The Holy water stream (Theertham) of Azhagar Kovil passes near here. Nearby is an Amman Temple, considered the guardian of the Theertham, which still does not prevent people from mindlessly polluting this beautiful area.

Holy Water – Noobura Ganga (Stream nearby)

Holy Tree –¬†Naaval (Jamun – Syzygium cumini)

History

Nakkeerar, head of the Sangam Era Poets was the first one to have mentioned the six important temples of Muruga without actually calling them as the Aaru Padai Veedu temples in his ‘Thirumurugatrupadai’. This was taken forward as the Aaru Padai Veedu Temples immediately afterwards by all. Tiruppugazh, Kandapuranam and other great works speak of the glory of these shrines. The six temples mentioned by Nakkeerar were Thiruparankundram, Thiruchendur, Pazhani, Thiruveragam (Swamimalai), Kundru Thoraadal (not specific to a single hill, but considers all hills in general as places where Muruga is present) and Pazhamudhir Cholai. Though Thiruthani is considered as the Fifth Padai Veedu, the other temples in Surulimalai, Ilanji, Kundrakudi, Vayalur, Viralimalai, Vaitheeswaram Kovil and Chennaimalai are held in equal reverence.

Legend

Avvaiyar is believed to have experienced Muruga’s intelligence here at Pazhamudhircholai when he came in the form of a shepherd boy and asked her whether she wanted hot fruits or cool fruits (Sutta Pazham Vaenduma, Sudadha Pazham Vaenduma?). He then threw down¬†some fruits which fell in the sand below. Avvayyar who took and blew on them to get rid of the sand realized the test she was subjected to by the Lord himself.

Directions

Pazhamudhircholai is about 24 Kilometers North East of Madurai in a separate road. Cross the Azhagar Koil and drive up the hills to reach this famous Muruga Temple. You could also walk up the 3 kilometers, only beware of the monkeys on the way who have been spoiled by tourists who feed them as if they cannot get food themselves in the forest. The best way to walk up is empty handed and the monkeys will not even care about you.

Stay and Food

Tea and snack shops available locally. We found the Masal Vadai particularly good in one shop.

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