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Pazhamudircholai Murugan Temple – One of the Six Shrines of Muruga in the Arupadaiveedu Temples in Tamil Nadu

Pazhamudircholai Murugan Temple, also known as Solai Malai Murugan Temple, is located near Madurai in Tamil Nadu and is one of the six shrines of Subrahmanya in the Arupadaiveedu Temples. The temple is unique as Muruga appears with his consorts – Devasena and Valli – in the sanctum sanctorum. Legend has it that it was at Pazhamudir Cholai Tamil poetess Avvaiyar had darshan of Murugan.

Story of Pazhamudircholai Murugan
Legend has it that once Avvaiyar stopped to rest in a forest during her travel. A tired Avvaiyar was happy to see a fruit tree nearby. She asked a boy who was sitting on the tree to shake down some Jamun (Naaval or njaval Pazhams).

To the surprise of grandmother Avvaiyar, the boy asked whether she wanted cold or hot fruit – in some stories it is Sutta Pazham (cooked fruit) or Sudadha Pazham (uncooked fruit).

Avvaiyar was amused by the question. She did not understand what the boy meant. So she asked the boy to give her some hot fruits.

The boy shook down the fruits.

Avvaiyar picked up the fruits and blew them to remove the dust.

The boy then asked her whether it was too hot that she was blowing them.

Avvaiyar now realized that the boy had earlier meant ripe fruits to hot fruits and unripe one to cold fruits.

When Avvaiyar looked up, the boy was missing. She then realized it was Muruga who was testing her.

Muruga then gave darshan to Avvaiyar here.

The place gets the name from this legend – Pazham (fruit), Udhir (to shake down), solai (grove).

The murti of Muruga is four-armed and he holds a bronze spear. He is flanked by Valli and Devasena.

The most important festivals in the temple include Vaikasi Vishakam, Aadi Krithigai, Skanda Sashti and Panguni Uthiram.

Subsidiary deities in the temple include Vithaga Vinayaka (Ganesha) and Rakkayi Amman. The sacred temple tank is known as Noopura Ganga.

The ancient temple of Kallazhagar temple is located downhill on the way to the Solai Malai temple.

Naaval Tree that gives fruit during off season

The naaval tree in the temple is unique. Usually naaval trees yield fruits in July – August months. But the tree in the temple yield fruits during October – November (during Skanda Sashti festival). It is believed that the episode of Avvaiyar and Muruga happened near this tree.

Pazhamudircholai Murugan Temple is located at Alagarkoil, which is around 21 km from Madurai.