History of this Kshetra
The Puranic basis of the history of this kshetra
When in days of yore lord Brahma had the fore-knowledge of the approaching deluge of the universe, became perplexed and much concerned as to how to recreate all the species of beings that would soon be annihilated at the deluge. He extolled Sri parameswara and acquainted him with the inpending deluge and how the entire universe would be obliterated. He was also concerned with the problem as to how he would be able to engage himself in the creation of the universe. Sri Parameswara asked some nectar and make a pot out of it. Sri Parameswara said that he would supply him with the nucleus seeds of all the species of beings to perpetutate the art of creation of the worlds. After filling the pot with the seeds of all species, he should decorate the same with coconut, mango leaves, Kusagrass and sacred thread and place the Vedas and Agamas on all sides and worship the pot with bael leaves-Bilwa-then he should deposit the pot at a suitable spot at the top mount. During the deluge the pot would float and move towards the south along with the floods. When the pot retains its stationary position after the deluge, Sri Parameswara said that he would visit the place. Brahma Deva did accordingly and waited for the deluge and the floods to sweep the world.
Soon deluge overwhelmed the entire universe with the oceans merging together and ravaging all alike. There was torrential rains and excruciating commotion in land and atmosphere and hurricanes enveloped and ravaged the entire area, the south and Brahma began to move towards stagnant at Kumbakonam. Brahma Deva was happy to see the pot still and stagnant at a place without any mnovement. Sri Parameswara who was observing this from the Himalayas took his followers. Arriving a Thirvidaimarudur the hunter said that his intention was to hit the pot with an arrow and cause the ambrosai drain on all sides Chasta who was nearby offered him an arrow which could not serve the purpose. yet the hunter aimed the arrow but did not hat the target. Advancing westwards the Lord took up a dart and aimed at the pot where upon it split the target into two and the ambrosia flowed on all sides upto a distance of five crasas. The materials that adorned the pot like bael, coconut, kusagrass and the sacred thread scattered on all sides and soon they materialized as lingas, The linga that appeared from the suspended network of fibre was called Chikkesa, from the bael Vilvanesa, from the coconut Narikelesa and from the sacred thread Yagnopaveetesa. the place from where the dart was aimed came to be called as Bhana Puresam. the neck of the pot which was separated from it and hurled to a distance of more than a crosa fell at a place to be called Kodavasal. Sri Kiratamurthi determined that the earth should form as two curvatures to support the gathering ambrosia as receptacles. Those two spots are the Maha Magham Tank and the Potramarai ambrosia to make it as a linga and soon with a flash of efflorescent flame he merged into the linga. Thus the Lord established himself in this kshetra even before the creation of living beings of the universe and hence he is called Sri Adi Kumbheswara.
How Brahma Deva worshipped
Witnessing the spectacular way in which Sri Parameswara merged into the pot to become the linga, Brahma Deva began his rigorous penance to inaugurate the creation of the universe. Soon Sri parameswara along with Sri Ambal appeared before Brahma Deva and blessed him. Greatly delighted to celebrate a grand festival was blessed, Brahma Deva decided to clebrate a grand festival to honour SRi Adi Kumbeswara. He inaugurated the festival on the Asvati constellation of the first part of the lunar month of Masi with the ceremonial hoisting of the flag. The Lord and Sri Ambal were taken in ceremonial processions both in the mornings and the evenings on sacred mounts like, Karpagam, Bhoota, Chandr aprabh, risabha, Mountain, chariot and horse for about eight days. On the ninth day the Lord and Sri Ambal were decorated to got in procession in a Chariot fashioned like Mt. Meru. On the tenth day the Panchamurthis went in a grand procession to Maha Magham Tank to take the ceremonial bath. This is the Masi Magham festival as inaugurated by Brahma Deva and it is being continued even today.
How Kanda got mantrasakti
Before making ready for the warfare with Surapadma, Kanda decided to tattain the blessings of his parents. he thought that Kumbakonam the place of origin of the vital energy of human beings should be the suitable place for getting their blessings. Soon he reached the kshetra and prayed to Sri Ambal for a suitable tirtha for purificatory bath and Sri Ambal created a location is just beside the Rajagopuram to the north east. After taking the ceremonial bath in the tirtha, Kanda worshipped the Lord and Sri Ambal. they in turn extended to him the vision of the Eternal spirit- the divine from as mani fested as the universe and blessed him for victory in the adventure. Kanda also appeared in his manifestation with six faces and twelve hands and requested Sri Ambal for some of her mantrasakti by way of equipment for the war with Surapadma. Sri Ambal bestowed him with all the appurtenances requested of her. this incident is inscribed just at the enterance of the Kattagopuram to the right side.
Boons that Brahma Deva requested the lord for the humans
The expert artisan of the Fine Art of creation of the universe became exceptionally compassionate towards the humans and entreated the lord Adi Kumbeswara for several boons towards the redemption of the humans from the clutches of sins enveloping them. 1. He who worships you once shall have all prosperity in life and he who ever worships you shall get all prosperity and eternal liberation, reaching the abode of the Supreme as well. 2. He who lights a ghee-fed lamp[ at your shrine shall have Sarupyaform of liberation-becoming the form of the Supreme. 3. He who undertakes renovation work in your temple shall have anything and everything to his hearts content. 4.He who worships you at the Masi Magham festival shall be redeemed even frm Brahmahatti Desha. 5. He sho worships you at the Masi Magham festional shall live like Lord Vishnu. He who has contributed to this festival shall reach at-one-ment with the Supreme-Sayujya-identity with the supreme. 6.He who laid the first step towards the Maha Magham tank to have a ceremonial bath at the tank, but could not, due to his sudden and unexpected death, shall derive the merit of having performed an Asvamedha yaga.7. He who worships you from the flag-hoisting day until the Tirthahavari, however violent and tyrannically rude and unjust he may be, you should be gentle and gracious and compassionate towards him.
Those who attained blessedness In order that Brahma Deva should pursue his work of creation of the universe, Sri Parameswara destined that the sacred pot containing ambroa\sia and the nucleus and primal seeds of all the species stayed at this place and subsequently got destroyed and flowed on all seides thereby rendering the Vicinity of this place as the most sacred kshetra. The pre-eminent among those who worshipped in this kshetra was Brahma Deva.
One Chandi who perpetrayed several crimes and sustained enormouse sins because of his violent and unjest behaviour atlast reached the Maha Magham tank, took the purificatory bath and worshipped the Lord and attained liberation. Once when the ruler of Kalinga, Viravarman got violent conclusions of grief as his consort begot a child sans eye sight, he was advised by the sage Chandilya to visit this kshetra and the king did accordingly and worshipped the Lord here and the child gained its eye sight. Once Kartavirya, the king of Kekaya was much prosperous though otherwise he had a great regret, he had no son. The sage sakalya advised him to visit this kshetra and worship the Lord here. As advised by the sage, the king visited this Kshetra, had the purificatory bath at the punya tirtha and worshipped the Lord. Soon a son was born and he was much delighted and finally he attained liberation. So also a brahmin Sudharman by name and Dharma Bhahu and his wife sulochana, worshipped in this kshetra and attained beatitude. The Saivaite saints like Thirugnana Sambandar, Thirunavukkarasar, Sundaramurti, Sekkizhar who sang the praise of the Lord had been blessed. Arunagirinathar and Meenakshisundaram Pillai were also blessed here.
Entreaties and redemption
Those who worship the lotus feet of the self-originated Lord and the Sakti peetesvari Sri Ambal are sure to sustain a good lot of efficacious merits in life. 1. He who adorns Sri Ambal on Fridays of Avani month with flowers and vermillion, shall have all prosperity in life. 2. He who adorns Sir Ambal with a garland of flower shall have uninterrupted descendents in his clan. 3. Bhavishyotara and Brahmanda Puranas aver that should anyone in his lifetime decorate Sri Ambal with a crown made of Hibiscus shall attain majesty and grandeur of Kubera. 4. Brahma Deva worship[ped the pot containing nectar with bael-Bilva and was blessed by the lord of this Kshetra. He who worships the Lord, originated from the pot of nector, with bael leaves, shall be blessed like Brahma Deva. He who adorns the Lord with a garland of bael and worships with all his heart will be absolved of all his sins. 5. He who takes bath at the Kura tirtha created by Kamadhenu and anaoints Sri Ganapathi with butter and worships Sri Ganapathi and Sri Adi Kumbeswara shall be absolved of all curses and other disabilities.
6. By anointing Sri Ganapathi with butter and worshipping Sri Ambal and Sri Kirtamurti, onec an beget progeny.