South of River Kaveri, hemmed by a deep forest of various herbs and shrubs, located near the ancient town of Nannilam, Thiruvarur District of Tamil Nadu, The Madhuvaneshwar Temple stands as a symbol of ancient magic. The shrine is dedicated to Ascended Master Prakasa Nayanar and the linga in this temple is of a swayambhu origin. The temple stands as one of 275 Padal Petra Sthalams described by the Nayanars.

The temple has been praised by Tiru Gnyana Sambandar and Sundara Murti Nayanar in their poems. Sundarar wrote almost eleven verses praising this temple. Here, Lady Parvati is called as Madhuvana Nayaki. This ancient forest, being a shelter of many sages and wondrous beings got the name. the Forest of Nectar and Devaranyam – Forest of Gods.

It’s one of the earliest temples built by Chola rulers. Kocchenganan Chola built the main shrine, it has two Prakasam (Vimanas) and a 30 ft tall two-tier temple tower. The temple is surrounded by Ksheera Pushkarini and Soola Tirtha. During the period of the Vijayanagara Empire, Emperor Sri Krishna Devaraya made some renovations to this temple as well as donated some land in 1517 after the victory over Thirumalairayan of Udayagiri, Odisha.

-Viswanath Venkat Dasari.