SRI VEDAPUREESWARAR TEMPLE, TIRUVERKADU
There is an interesting story in the scriptures about the Siva temple at Tiruverkadu.
There was a time when all the deities and devas of heaven and maharishes on earth assembled for the divine marriage of Lord Siva with Devi Parvathi. Not able to bear the weight of the dignitaries present there, the earth started tilting towards the north. Lord Siva, observing this imbalance, asked the sage Sri Agasthiya to proceed to South, leaving the wedding ceremony, but assuring him of the darshan at his place itself at the time of the marriage. The sage Agasthya also went to South to restore the balance and later the Lord fulfilled his promise to the sage by granting him darshan with his consort Sri Parvathi at Tiruverkadu in the wedding adornments.
This ancient temple at Tiruverkadu was consecrated by the hymns of Sri Tirugnanasambandar, one of the four prominent Nayanmars of Siva thus:
ஆழ்கடல் எனக் கங்கை கரந்தவன்
தாழ்விடை மனத்தாற் பணித்தேத்திடப்
பாழ்படும் அவர் பாவமே
This temple was also sung by Sri Arunagirinathar, who repents for his sins and begs the Lord to consider taking him as his devotee in Tirupugaz.
Of the very few places known to this writer, Lord Siva, called Sri Vedapureeswarar here, is seen in the human form with his consort Sri Balambal in wedding attire within the sanctum sanctorum, granting darshan to sage Agasthir behind his usual Lingam form. There is a separate shrine for Devi Balambikai in the standing posture here. The other place where Lord Siva is seen in the human form is at Suruttapalli, where the lord is in reclining form, tired after gulping the deadly poison to save all the heaven and earthly beings.
Tiruverkadu is also the birth place of Sri Murkka Nayanar, an ardent devotee of the Lord Siva and there is a shrine for him at the outer prakaram of this temple.
Tiruverkadu, most known for the famous shrine of Sri Devi Karumariamman is little known for this ancient Siva temple to most of the devotees. This famous temple is one of the six Siva sthalams in Chennai which were consecrated by the hymns of Nayanmars. The other five sthalams at Chennai are: Tiruvotiyur, Tirumylai, Tiruvanmyur, Tirumullaivayil and Tiruvalithayam (Padi)
Tiruverkadu is situated at a distance of 16 km west of Chennai and is reached by road. Frequent MTC bus service is available from the city.
A visit to this ancient Siva temple is sure to absolve all the sins committed and to purify the soul as sung by the great saint Tirugnanasambandar.