Melur, a small village in Thiruvallur District, is well-known to devotees of Siva and Parvati as it is home to the Thirumanangishwarar temple. The main entrance on the east side leads to the circumambulatory passage (prakaram) where the south-facing sanctum of Goddess Parvati, worshipped as Thiruvudai Amman is situated with a flag-post (dvajastambham) in front.
The large image of Thiruvudai Amman with a benign countenance is, according to tradition, made of one piece of a large stone. Goddess Parvati enshrined in the Adipurishwarar temple in Thiruvottiyur as Vadivudai Amman and the same deity enshrined in the Masilamanishwarar temple in Thirumullaivayil as Kodiyidai Amman are said to have been made from other parts of the same stone and are the three Shakti temples near Chennai. Thiruvudai Amman is known as Iccha Shakti (who fulfills the wishes of devotees), Vadivudai Amman is Gnana Shakti (who showers divine knowledge on worshippers) and Kodiyidai Amman in Kriya Shakti (helping supplicants in their actions).
Devotees worship in all the three Shakti temples on full-moon (Pournami) days, especially if it is on a Friday. Thiruvudai Amman is worshipped in the morning, Vadivudai Amman in the afternoon and Kodiyidai Amman in the evening.
The main sanctum with a Svayambhu (self-manifest) Siva Linga worshipped as Thirumanangishwarar faces east with a Vijayanagara stone mandapa in front and also a dvajastambham. The sanctum has an inner prakaram with pillars of the Chola era. Plenty of inscriptions are etched on the outer walls. The oldest of these is dated 1280 AD and belongs to the reign of Vijaya Gandagopala, a chieftain of the Telugu Choda dynasty. It records a gift of money to the image of Thiruppalaivanam Udaiya Nayanar in the temple of Thirumananga Udaiya Nayanar. Another epigraph of Vijayagandagopala’s reign is dated 1253 AD and records the gift of a lamp. There is also a Pandyan inscription which is unfortunately damaged.
Name of deity
Goddess Parvati is worshipped as Thiruvudai Amman Sacred tree
The Sthala Vriksham of this temple is the
Epigraphs of the 13th century are etched here
The writer is a historian who focuses on temple architecture