Tirunakkara Mahadeva Temple

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The Tirunakkara Mahadeva temple is located in Kottayam on the Ernakulam Tiruvanandapuram railway line. South of Kottayam is the Shivastalam Ettumaanur and north of it is Vaikom.
Legend has it that a local ruler was an ardent devotee of the Vadakunnatha temple at Thrissur and that he would make frequent trips to Thrissur from Kottayam. Such trips became harder as the king advanced in age.
During one of his trips, he had a dream in which Shiva of the Vadakkunnathan temple told him that he would manifest himself in the Tirunakkara hill in Kottayam.True to the dream, a plough struck rock on the Tirunakkara hill and blood started oozing out; further careful excavation yielded a buried Shivalingam and a Nandi.
 
The theme of this legend is seen at several Shiva temples all over the land, where the Shivalingam is regarded as a self-manifested one and not one created with a chisel. This temple celebrates its annual festival during the first ten days of the malayala month of Meenam
 

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