Jai Sriman Narayana !!
Jaya Jaya Sankara Hara Hara Sankara !!
Picture courtesy: shaivam.org
Poruvil Perumai Puthiranmeithu Thanmai Alithan Yenapolindhu
Maruvu Makizhchi Yeidhavar Manaiviyarun Kanavanar
Arumai Uyirai Yenakkalithan Yendru Mikavu Akamalara
Iruvar Manamum Peruvakaiyeidhi Ariya Vinaicheidhar
Paranchothiyar/Thiru Chiruthonda Nayanar was born in Thiruchenkattankudi one of the flourished lands in Chola Kingdom. He has wide knowledge in diverse subjects of Ayurveda, Sanskrit and usage of weaponries. He was chief army personnel in the King’s army. In a short period of time he achieved great victory, the King was astonished and highly pleased at the valor and intelligence of Paranchothiyar. Later, he came to know about Paranchothiyar’s pure passion and devotion to Lord Shiva, King felt awful of sending a passionate devotee of Lord to the battlefield. He provided Paranchothiyar with lots of wealth and requested him to continue his service to Lord as he was always desired. Paranchothiyar returned to his hometown, he married to Thiruvenkattu Nangaiyar and settled in Thiruchenkattukudi.
The righteous couple, Paranchothiyar and his wife Venkattu Nangaiyar were zealous devotee of Lord and his devotees. The pious couple received the devotees of Lord with utmost reverence and served them with food. They untiringly served their guests with their needs. Shortly, Parachothiyar’s self-less service, dedication and devotion to Lord brought the attention of large number of villagers and they fondly addressed him ‘Thiru Chiruthondar’.
In due course of time, Venkattu Nangai gave birth to a beautiful male child. They celebrated the birth of the child in a grand manner. On this grand occasion the devotees of Lord were received with great honor and provided with alms generously. They named the child Chiraladevar and took good care of him with lots of love and affection. At the age three Chiraladevar was sent to school for learning art forms. In the meantime Thiru Gnana Sambandhar, one of the prominent Shivaite Saints visited Thiruchenkattankudi and worshippedLord Utharapathishwarar/Athivananathar/Brahmapurishwarar with his consort Goddess Kulikambal in this sacred land. Sambandhar paid a visit to the great devotee of Lord - Thiru Chiruthondar and accepted the honor. Sambandhar spent a few intense moments with Chiruthondar. Afterwards, he highly praised the self-less devotion of Chirthondar in one of his famous compositions.
Lords of Lord had another plan to test the devotion of Thiru Chiruthondar. Once, a Shivaite Saint arrived at the doors of Chiruthondar. Unluckily, Chiruthondar was not at home. Thiru Venkattu Nangaiyar received her gust with great reverence, but the Saint refused to enter inside the home as there were no male members at home. Thiru Venkattu Nangaiyar helplessly revealed her situation that her husband went out to look for a Saint to feed on that day. The couple was followed strict austerities for several years that they consume food only after feeding the devotees of Lord. That day Chiruthondar did not find any devotees, so he went out of the home looking for a deserving person to feed. The Saint agreed to stop for Chiruthondar’s arrival and informed her that he would be waiting in a temple premise in their vicinity.
In a little while, Thiru Chiruthondar got home waveringly unable to find any devotees of Lord to accept Biksha. His wife informed Thiru Chiruthondar about the Saint who was at their door minutes before. She requested him to search for the Saint in the nearby temple of Lord Shiva. Thiru Chiruthondar excitingly hurried to the temple and found the Saint relaxing under a tree. He prostrated before him and he introduced himself to the Saint. Chiruthondar earnestly requested the Saint to visit his home and accept their offerings. Saint agreed to pay a visit to his home, but he put forward certain conditions. The conditions were quite awful and odd to follow, but Chiruthondar was whole heartedly willing to serve his guest with anything. The conditions laid by the Saint were the food cooked must be meat of a child who has no impairment and it should be cooked by the parents of the child without any ill feelings. Chiruthondar was heartily accepted the conditions put forward by the Saint and returned home.
Thiru Chiruthondar arrived home with no distress or guilt. He informed Thiruvenkattu Nangaiyar precisely about the set of choices and cooking procedure for their guest of the day. He rushed to pick his son Chiraladevar from school. He brought the child home and gave him final bath. They both were immersed in preparing favorite meal for the devotee of Lord. They strictly followed the conditions put forward by the Saint. Finally, the time has arrived to serve the guest. Once again, the Saint asked the couple about all the body parts of the child has been cooked well. The couple secured the head of the child thinking that as it was no use to be served, but the Saint was not ready to spare that too. Soon their servant arrived from nowhere with the cooked head of the child. The Saint asked for someone to give company to have the delicious meal. Thiru Chiruthondar hurried out in search for a devotee of Lord. In a little while, he returned back with gloomy face and answered to his guest that he did not find any devotees. Immediately, the Saint instructed Chiruthondar to be seated next to him. Thiruvenkattu Nangaiyar served the guest and Thiru Chiruthondar with the meat of their one and only child. When Chiruthondar was about to put the food on his mouth, instantly the Saint took hold of his hands tightly and stopped the action. He insisted Chiruthondar to bring his son. The couple was alarmed, Saint patiently walked inside the home calling out for the child. Soon Thiruvenkattu Nagaiyar cried out of her heart calling for their dearest child. Alas! To everyone’s surprise they saw their child came running out of the house as if nothing has happened to him. The couple was in a rapture of joy and tears embraced the child. When they looked back for the Saint, they find him nowhere in the house.
Instantaneously, there appeared Lord Shiva with his consort Goddess Parvati and Lord Subramanya, they blessed the devoted couple and their lovely child.
Thiru Chiruthondar and Thiruvenkattu Nangaiyar continued their self-less service to Lord and his devotees for several years and attained the Abode of Lord Shiva. In the Tamil month Chithirai – Barani is widely celebrated as Guru Puja day, the day Thiru Chiruthondar attained Salvation.
Jaya Jaya Sankara Hara Hara Sankara !!
Jai Sriman Narayana !!