Author Topic: Kochengat Chozha Nayanar (One of the 63 Siva Saints)  (Read 1432 times)


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Kochengat Chozha Nayanar (One of the 63 Siva Saints)
« on: January 14, 2009, 11:19:16 AM »
There were two bhuta ganas in Kailash called Pushpadanta and Maalyavan. They had once quarrel with each other and each cursed
the other.  One was born as a spider inside the temple of Jambukesvara
in Tiruvanaikka, a Siva temple near Tiruchirapalli.  Another was born
an elephant in the nearby forest.  The spider used to make a web daily
around the Sivalinga inside the temple, as a shade from sun.  The other
who as an elephant used to bring a lotus everyday from the pond and placed it on the Sivalinga.  Everyday on seeing the cobweb, the elephant used to remove it with its trunk and then place the flower!  The spider
got angry and made a web before next morning.  Oneday the spider
wanted to punish the elephant and so it went into the trunk and bit the
elephant many times.  The elephant withered in pain and before its death, it smashed its trunk onn the floor with the result the spider also died.
The Lord of Tiruvanaika, Jambukeswara appeared and blessed both. The
Lord gave one more birth to the spider, since it was spider which bit the elephant first.  In the next birth, the spider became Kochengat Chozha
who was born with red bloodshot eyes, since his mother hung herself upside town just before delivery, to delay the birth of her son, to an auspicious time, several minutes later!

Kochengat Chozha grew as a great Siva bhakta.  He built several great
temples for Siva in Chozha Kingdom.  And it is he who built the famous
temple of Jambukeswara in Tiruvanaika.  Earlier, the Linga was only under a Jambu tree.  The goddess is called Akhilandeswari.  The Chozha
King saw to it that in each temple, the way leading to the temples had
high steps, so that elephants could not enter!  He is said to have constructed 70 temples for Siva during his tenure as king.  Saint Arunagiri Natha mentions this information in his famous Tiruppugazh.  The Chozha after his fruitful kingship attained Siva's Abode in his ripe age.

Tiruvanaika is one of the five temples, representing five elements.  This temple marks the element of water, Appu.  The Siva Linga is a very small form, and is constanly under one-foot high water during all seasons!

(Source: Sekkizahar. Periya Puranam. Tamil Verses. Book XII of Siva
Canons. Translation and Tamil rendering, my own.)

Arunachala Siva.