This qaint little village is about a kilometer from Sirkazhi. You should ask for directions. And not too many will know the name Kolakka. You should ask for Osai Nayaki Temple. They will give you directions to get to a road (depending on where you ask), and then tell you, just follow the road until you hit the temple. Just do that. You need to follow the winding road for about a km, and this little temple pops out of nowhere. There is no big Raja gopuram – so do not use that as a landmark to search for.
This beautiful little temple, which is the 15th in the Paadal Petra Sthalam list, is one of the cleanest temples I have seen. Very nicely maintained. When we entered, there was a young man (barely in his early twenties), who was the Sivacharyaar. He was going around to the various sannidhis and doing Neivedhyam with one small brass vessel. From the old ages, this has been the practice. The Sivacharyaar brings the food to be given to the God from his own house. And in a lot of not-so-well-to-do Sivachaaryar families/temples, that is their food for the day/meal.
The temple itself looks super old. At the minimum proof, we know it is atleast 1300 years old (since Sambandar lived in the 7th Century). The temple existed at that time. So it should be older than that. Unfortunately, the age is showing. It looks like the temple has not had a kumbabhishekam in a while. Paint is peeling off. There are parts of some walls that are in rubbles.
The Shivan is of course majestic. Big lingam. Ambal is even more majestic. Draped in beautiful 9 yard saree, She just looked amazing. There are other sannidhis around the temple. There is Somaskandar (Muruga in kid form between Shiva-Parvathy), Saneeswarar, Suryan, and Mahalakshmi.
Sthala Varalaaru (Story of the place)
This is the first paadal petra sthalam for Gnana sambandhar, our child saint. He walked with this father to this shrine from Sirkazhi. On reaching here, he started singing on the Lord (who was then called Sapthapureeswarar). The Lord, feeling sorry for the little child (on a big mission) clapping his hands and singing, gave him a pair of Gold Cymbals (Jaalra). Gold cymbals do not produce much of a sound (due to its malleable nature). The Goddess interjected and gave it divine sound. It is due to this, the Lord became known as Thaalapureeswarar. And the Goddess as Osai Kodutha Nayaki (or Osai Nayaki, as the locals have shortened it).
The other mythological story for this temple is about Mahalakshmi. She is believed to have done tapas here to get reunited with MahaVishnu. And when that happened, the God and Goddess gave all devotees here dharhsan in Thirumana kolam (Marriage form). Hence the name of the temple as Kolakka.
To be continued —
Coming up – Thirukadayur, Thirukudandai Keezkottam (Nageswara Swamy Kovil – Kumbakonam – #27), Kudandai Kaaronam (Someswara Swamy Kovil – Kumbakonam – #28).
More information about Kolakka can be found here.