Tiruppatiripuliyur also known as "Tiruppapuliyur"
is located in Cuddalore New Town. The
sanctity of the place is due to the divine effulgence by which spiritual
attainments become easier. In Tiruppapuliyur, there is an old Shiva temple
dedicated to Lord Pataleswarar, which is referred to in the Thevarams.
Some sages prayed to Lord Shiva to show them a place where meditation could be done peacefully. They also prayed to the Creator of the Universe, Brahma, to give them guidance to locate such a place on earth. Brahma collected sacred grass (Darbha) and made a wheel out of it. He charged the wheel with sacred hymns and ordained it to stop at the appropriate place, where sanctity prevails for spiritual upliftment.
The sages followed the path of the wheel up to the northern bank of the sacred River Ganga where the wheel stopped and the place was called as "Naimisaranyam". The sages began to do penance and meditation. Saint Sutam, who was the chief disciple of Vedavyasa and a staunch devotee of Shiva, learned all 18 Puranas and led a life of great devotion. Suta Muni taught the 18 Puranas to sages, who inturn prayed to him to narrate the sanctity of a place liked by Lord Shiva.
At this Suta Muni narrated the story of the Patiri Vriksha, which is as good as the Kalpa Vriksha of heaven, as was told to him by Vedavyasa. He described Tiruppatiri- puliyur, the place that has been blessed with these trees and with numerous holy tanks where heavenly beings had taken their bath for getting rid of various kinds of sins and at last gained their desired objects.
There is the Shivakarai Tank, which is believed to have been dug out by Lord Shiva himself for the benefit of the earthly beings to wash off their sins. Other holy tanks are Dikpalaka, Dakshinapinakini, Kedila, Palodai, etc.
Near about these Teerthams, there is a forest known as "Kannivanam" (Kanni means virgin and Vanarn means forest), where the Virgin Mother had to undergo penance and where in the shrine of Lord Pataleeswara is situated. Devotees, who worship in the temple after taKing bath in the above tanks, attain salvation.
The Penance Of Goddess Uma
When Suta Muni said that Goddess Mother Uma had to do penance at Kannivanam, it aroused curiosity in the minds of the sages to know the reason why Goddess Mother had to come to the earth for meditation. Suta Muni narrated the incident.
The Legend goes like this in Kailash, the heavenly abode of Lord Shiva, Uma (consort of Lord Shiva) and Shiva played a game of chess. Uma won all the games and once Lord Shiva won it by playing a foul game. Uma objected to this and retired from the game and put up a proposal that there should be an umpire and that Lord Vishnu should be assigned this work.
Later on Uma went on winning the game and Lord Shiva directed Lord Vishnu to enjoy the mirth of it Shiva looked at Vishnu and gave him some directions, probably to give him a chance to win. Parvati immediately noticed this. At the end of the game, she wanted Maha Vishnu to declare who was the winner. Parvati was really the winner, but Shiva had requested that he should be declared the winner. Thus, Maha Vishnu was placed in a dilemma. Maha Vishnu replied that he was absent-minded and could not follow the game properly.
Uma then told Shiva that his eyes would never lie and she would test it by closing all the three eyes and see whether they glitter or not. If they do not glitter, the judgement will be in my favour." Saying this, Parvati put her hands sportingly on the eyes of Lord Shiva. Then a great gloom shrouded the Universe. All the creatures and Gods came in a deputation to Goddess Parvati to give them light. Then only did Parvati realise her folly committed out of fun, and released her hands.
On the request of Parvati, Shiva advised her how she could get rid of the sin. Shiva told her to visit the 1,008 sacred places of the earth dedicated to Lord Shiva, and worship at each place. Parvati came with her seven associates and bathed in all the holy rivers. One day she came to a place, now Tiruppapuliyur where there were many Shivalingams. As soon as Devi entered the garden, she felt some sensation, in her left eye and left arm, thereby indicating the place where she had to remain and conduct penance.
Air: The nearest international and domestic
airport is at Chennai,
192-km from Cuddalore.
Rail: There is a railway station at Cuddalore and centralised railway reservation facilities are also available here.
Road: Cuddalore is well connected by road with all the places in the state and Pondicherry. For local transportation, tourist taxis, auto-rickshaws and city bus services are available.
Accommodation is available at the moderate class and small budgeted hotels and lodges in Cuddalore.