Thiruchendur Murugan Temple

Thiruchendur Murugan Temple is a Hindu temple dedicated to Lord Muruga and one of the Arupadaiveedu (six major abodes) of Lord Muruga. It is located in the small town of Thiruchendur in the district of Tuticorin, Tamil Nadu.

Thiruchendur Murugan Temple is 55 km south-east of Tirunelveli, 40 km from Tuticorin and 75 km north-east of Kanyakumari. It is easily accessible either by bus or car. Frequent train services are available to Tiruchendur from the nearest railway junction, Tirunelveli Junction. This temple is the fourth Hindu temple in Tamil Nadu to get ISO certification. The Kumbabisheka for this temple was held recently in July 2009, after this many new schemes was implemented in this temple.

Each of the six major abodes of Lord Muraga 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 Thirucheeralaivai, Thiruchenthil, and Thiruchenthiyoor. The deity is worshipped by various names such as Senthilandavan, Senthilkumar, and so on. The six Arupadiveedus are: Palani (120 km west of Madurai), Swamimalai (150 km east of Madurai), Thiruthani (50 km from Chennai), Pazhamudircholai (10 km north of Madurai) and Thiruparamkunram (10 km south of Madurai).

Thiruchendur Murugan Temple has been in existence for millennia, according to the Puranas. Thiruchendur is merely a Tamil name given to this site due to the abundance of sandalwood paste in this temple. It is hailed as Sri Jayantipura in the scriptures. There is an expectional tradition of adhering to the Kumara Tantra instead of the Saivagamas, which makes this temple an exclusively Kaumara shrine. With the onslaughts of Saivism, however, this temple has still managed to resist the introduction of the Saivagamas, amazingly enough. The form of Lord Murugan in this temple has also been extolled in the Kumara Tantra. The Kumara Tantra describes the Lord of Sri Jayantipuram to wield a shakti(lance), akshmala(rosary), katibaddha(one hand resting on His hip) and ambhuja(lotus). This has certainly been morphed by Saivaites to make it seem like Lord Murugan is engaged in worshipping Lord Siva to absolve Himself of the sin of killing a Bramhana. This myth has no scriptural base and is pure hearsay. Surapadma was not a Bramhana. One can become a Bramhana via one of the following two methods. Firstly, by birth in which both of one's parents need to be Bramhanas. Surapadma's father was Rsi Kasyapa and his mother was Asuri Surasa. Secondly, one can become a Bramhana by one's actions. Clearly, Surapadma violated all the codes of conducts of a Bramahana by being egoistic, greedy, harsh in speech etc. This rules out the possibility of Surapadma being a Bramhana. Therefore, the proposition that the Lord incurred the sin of Bramhahatya is completely absurd and should be rejected.

Thiruchendur images -