Thiruchendur Murugan Temple – Temple Speciality
Usually the temples in Tamilnadu have their main entrance towers built on the eastern side of the temple. In Thiruchendur the main entrance tower is built on the west though this is not used as an entrance. This is because the temple is built on the sea shore and the sea is close to the eastern border of the temple. This is the only one among the six famous temples called 'Arupadai Veedu' not situated on the top of a hill.
Each of the six major abodes of Lord Muruga has an event mentioned in the Puranas (major religious texts). Thiruchendur is said to be second in importance among his six abodes. This place is also referred to by other names in religious poems and literature as Thirucheeralavai, Thiruchenthil, and Thiruchenthiyoor. The deity is worshipped by various names such as Senthilandavan, Senthilkumar, and so on.
The six Arupadiveedus are:
1. Palani (120 km west of Madurai)
2. Swamimalai (150 km east of Madurai)
3. Thiruthani (50 km from Chennai)
4. Pazhamudircholai (10 km north of Madurai)
5. Thirupparamkunram (10 km south of Madurai).
The devotees of Lord Muruga emphasize that Thiruvoragam, one of the four Padaiveedu referred to by sage Nakkeerar in his poem Tirumurukatrupadai is none other than Kumarakoil, also known as Kumarashetram by Keralites (Malai Nattavar). The temple is situated in the foothills of Velimalai also known as Velvi Malai, the southern tip of the Western Ghats.
The place is where Lord Muruga married his second consort Valli Devi. The marriage was love marriage (Kandarva Kalyanam). The "Thala Varalaaru" cites numerous names of places, river, water bodies, caves and Purana stories in support of this. Reference "The Velimalai Kumarakoil Thala Varalaaru" written by Annalar Adigal.
The temple is situated so close to the sea that waves from the Gulf of Mannar lap at the eastern perimeter wall of the temple. The devotees take a holy dip in the sea and the Nazhi Kinaru (small well), the source of fresh salt free water before entering the temple for worship.
The temple has devotees across the world including Singapore, Malaysia, America, Canada, London, etc. This temple plays a significant role in the faith of the world's Tamils.