Visited on: November 2, 2015

Location

About 40 kms from Coimbatore and 10 kms from Tiruppur. Nearest airport is at Coimbatore. Nearest Railway station is at Tiruppur.

General Information

Moolavar
Sri Avinasi Appar / Sri Perungkediliyappar
Ambal
Sri Karunambikai / Sri Perungkarunai Nayaki
Theertham
Kasi Kinaru (well), Naga Kanni Theertham, Iravata Theertham, Kashi Gangai Theertham in the form of a well
Sthala Vriksham (Sacred Tree)
Pathiri Tree
Pathigam (Hymn) rendered by
Saint Sundararamurthy Nayanar (Sundarar)
  • This is one of the 276 Devara Paadal Petra Shiva Sthalams and 1st Shiva Sthalam in Kongu Nadu.
  • The Moolavar is Swayambumurthy (self-manifested).
  • Vinasam in Sanskrit and Tamil means perishable. Avinashi means imperishable (eternal).
  • The colloquial name of this temple is Karunaiyaathaal Temple.
  • Avinashi is referred to as Dakshin Kashi (South Varanasi).
  • The historical name of the place is Tirupukkoliyur. Thiru meaning grace of God and Pukkoliyur meaning a place of refuge. It is said that once Devas took shelter in this temple in fear of Asuras.
  • The main tower (Rajagopuram) is 7-tiered and is more than 100 feet in height.
  • The temple is a protected monument under the Archaeological survey of India.

History of the Temple

The temple belongs to 10th century CE. The present structure of the temple was originally built by the Kings of Chola, Hoysala and the Mysore dynasties. The main tower was first built during the period of King Sundarapandian and later reconstructed by the King of Mysore.

Legend

The Lord Avinashilingeswarar enshrined in this temple is believed to be an offshoot of the one in Kashi (Varanarasi). For this reason, Avinashi is also known as Dakshin Kashi.

As per the Tamil saying “Kasiyil Vasi Avinashi”, it is believed that devotees looking to seek the blessings of Lord Shiva in Kasi-Varanasi, can do so by worshipping Lord Avinashilingeswarar in Avinashi.

The Theertham (holy water) in the “Kashi Kinaru” and the idols of Lord Avinashilingeswarar and Lord Bhairavar are said to have been brought from Kashi. Bathing in the Kashi well in this temple on new moon day (Amavasya) is considered to be auspicious.

It is said that the temple has a close relationship with the Mysore Royal family. In the early days, it was customary for the king-designate to go to Kashi, bring a Lingam from there and perform poojas in this temple before assuming power and stately responsibilities.

The legend is that Goddess Karunambikai did her penance and worshipped the lingam under the Pathiri Tree here. The Pathiri tree of this temple would blossom only during the Brahmmotsavam festival and not during other days of the year. According to this temple Sthala Puranam, this shows the devotion of the tree to Lord Shiva.

According to scriptures, it is said Sage Vasishta worshipped in this temple to seek respite from the adverse effects of Sani Bhagwan (Planet Saturn). It is believed that he installed an idol of Sani Bhagwan in this temple. This idol is now worshiped as Anugraha Murthy.

The lord of this temple is also known as Brahmapureeswarar because it is believed that Lord Brahma worshipped here to seek atonement for his sin.

Lord Ram, Iravath (Lord Indran’s white elephant), Thadagai and Naga Kannigai are also believed to have worshipped Lord Shiva here.