The Viralimalai Shanmuganathar temple is a deity for God Muruga is located between Madurai and Tiruchi. The hill where the temple is situated is small and rocky. From the foot of the hill there is flight of steps that leads to the top of the hill.Between the steps there are beautiful mandapams for devotees to rest. There are ample of thick orchards on the hill and peacocks which abounds in the orchards. Great saints and yogis use to live in the form of Kura trees and worshiped God Muruga.
About the temple
The name Viralimalai was derived from the Tamil word Viravi, there is a statue of Kashyapa Muni and Narada Muni in the temple along with the sculptures of Arundhati and Vashishta.There are sculptures of Arumugan and Arunagirinathar on the pillars found on the way to the temple.Down the hills there is a sacred water tank called as Saravana Kottam at the end of the flight of steps.Navaratri and Shanmuga Moorty Mandapam can be easily seen which is adjacent to Sandana Kottam.Following the Navaratri Mandapam there is a south- facing Raja Gopuram.Shanmuga Moorthy Mandapam of this temple with a single prakara and the Utsavamoorthy gives darshan together with divas.In the western side of the prakara one can find the shrines of Vinayagar, Dakshina Moorthy, Agasthiyar and Arunagirinathar and on the northern side one can see the shrines of Chandikeshwar and Bhairavar. The Nagvagraha temple is located on the way to Garbhagriha where we can see inscriptions.
About the deity
Inside the sanctum sanctorum, God Muruga showers his blessings on the devotees. Kasi Vivam in the temple is called the sthala Viksham. The vision of the God inside the Garbhagraha is soul-stirring.The God is in the form of Arumugan, six-faced and with twelve hands seated elegantly on the peacock facing east.The divine consorts Valli and Deivannai stand on either side. As the Sivachariyar offers camphor, the devotees can see the three face at the back in the mirror and the other three can be viewed directly.
The legends apprise us that Saint Arunagirinather was directed in a dream to go to Viralimalai, which was situated amidst by the jungle in those days. Suddenly appeared a Veddor or a hunting tribesman who guided Arunagiri to large rock from where he could see Viralimalai hill. The Vedder vanished and then Arunagiri realized that his mysterious guide was none other than Lord Murugan himself. Today, that spot is marked by an ashram where bhaktas meditate for God Murugan's mercy. Sages and saints were in the form of Kura trees and worshiped the god of Viralimalai. Hence this place was called as Viravi Malai which later on became Viralimalai. One of the poet Saint Arunagirinathat has mentioned in his songs about the saints staying and worshiping God Muruga in this temple. Saint Vashistar's wife Arundhati forgets to nourish God Murugan when he was born at Saravana Poigai, this was the reason her husband assaulted her in return Vashistar was assaulted by God Murugan of the ill fate that he brought on his wife. As per the mythology both Vashishtar and his wife Arundhati prayed here in Viralimalai to ward off their curse.The saints Kashyapa Munivar and Naradar are believed to have offered their prayers here in Viralimalai to ward off curses.The typical Palayamkarar Karupamuthu Pillai always use to visit the temple on fridays.Once, during his visit it was raining heavily due to the rain there was flood and the tanks bunds broke away.The river Mamundi was flooded too and Karupamuthu Pillai was cut off from the mainland. Palayamkarar Karupamuthu Pillai did not had food to eat and cigars to smoke , he was in great misery as he was a chain smoker, God Murugan appeared before him and gave him a cigar with a matchstick. He also took him to the temple for darshan.From that day cigar is offered to God Murugan along with neiveidyam and given away as prasadam to devotees.In the temple there are about 207 steps in number.On the southern part of the foot hill Saravana Poigai, the Sthala Theertham is located, it is also called as Naga theertham.A Naaga (prathistai) is fixed at centre of the theertham. On the outside wall of the sanctum there are few inscriptions these contain certain information on the history of the temple
The Sthala Vriksham in this temple is Kasi Vilvam.
There is a daily puja performed about six times a day as per Kamika Agamam.
Thai poosam Pankuni Uttiram, Kanda Sasthi and Adikrittkai are the main festivals as in other Murugan temples.Muthu Pazhani Kaviirayar authored Viralimalai Kuravanchi, the Kuravanchi was staged regularly every year during festivals.
The temple is specially known for the peacocks which are found there in a huge numbers. There is a unique offering which is similar to the sandal paste offered to god Dandayudhapani during Arthajama pooja in Palani are the cigars.
During the rule of Ramachandra Thondaiman of Pudukottai the God is believed to have appeared in his dream and requested the offering of cigars for the Kalasandhi and Sayaratchai pooja. The king was cured of his disease after he offered Cigars to the Lord. There are many caves in which saints and yogis have performed penance.This is a place where the god blesses there devotees with the power to control the indriyas or senses.Rishis Narada and Kashyapa prayed to God Subrahmanya for getting their sins purified.The mute Sivchariyar obtained the power of speech after worshipping God Murugan, these are few marvels of this temple and has many more.
The temple can be located about 25 Kms from Tiruchy and 40 Kms northwest of Pudukottai.It is about 371 Kms from Azhankudi Viralimalai.
The nearest airport and Railway station is at Tiruchy.
Devotees visit this temple to seek fulfillment of the following:-
- To be relieved of curses
- Child Boon
- God for health
Shadaananam Chandana Liptha Gathram Mahorasam Divya Mayoora Vaahanam Rudrasya Soonum Suraloka Naatham Brahmanya Devam Charanam Prapadye
Meaning -I always take refuge in the 6 faced Lord Guha, who has sandal paste smeared over his body, who is broad-chested, whose vehicle is the peacock, who is Lord Shiva's son and who leads the army of the Devas.
Heyswami Natha Karunakara Dheenabandho Shree Parvatheesha Mukha Pankaja Padmabandho Shree Saadhi Devagana Poojitha Padha Padma Vallesa Nadha Mama Dehi Karaavalambham
Meaning -O! Merciful Lord Swaminatha, who cares for the poor, who is the sun to Lord Shiva's lotus face, whose lotus feet are acknowledged by Lord Vishnu and the others, Valli's Lord, please uplift me by lending me your hand.
Ariru Thadanthozh Vazhga Arumugam Vazhga Veppai Kooru Sei Thanivel Vazhga Kukkudum Vazhga Sevvel Yeriya Magnai Vazhga Aanai Thun Anangu Vazhga Maarila Valli Vazhga Vazhga Seer Adiyar Yellam
Meaning -Oh Muruga, we hail your 12 strong shoulders for they protect us from our enemies, we hail your 6 faces, we hail the Vel, your weapon that broke apart the Krounja mountain to reveal the asura in it. We hail the bird, the cock, that is part of your symbol in the flag. We hail your peacock, that takes you all over the world, we hail your consort Devyani, who was brought up by Indra's white elephant, Airavadam, we hail your other consort, the flawless Valli. And we hail your Bhaktas who worship you as a prayer.
Uruvai Aruvai Uladhai Iladhai Maruvai Malarai Maniyai Oliyai Karuvai Uyirai Gadhiyai Vidhiyai Guruvai Varuvai Arulvai Guhaney
Meaning -O Lord Muruga, you have form and you are formless, you have everything and have nothing, you who exist in the smallest, in flowers, in a bell's ring, in the light. You are the embryo, the life, destiny and fate. Bestow your blessings on us as our guru.
6.00 a.m. To 11.00 a.m.5.00 p.m. to 8.00 p.m.