Thiruvettazhaigaya Ayyanar of Peyadi kottai
Peyadi kottai is 27 km from Avudayar Koil and is in the border of Pudukottai and Ramanathapuram districts. The Pambaru which is dry passes through this village. There are lots of bushes with Indian date palm, People send their cattle to graze here. One day a dalit youth belonging to Kulathoor had brought his cattle to graze here. He was trying to cut a fruit of date. By mistake his knife fell on a rock and it started bleeding. He was fear struck and swooned. In his dream he saw an Ayyanar who told him , “ I am thiruvetazhagiya Ayyanar. I have been brought out by you. I want you to be my priest. Daily offer me pongal.” The Dalit youth was very poor. So he requested the cattle owners’ wife for a little rice. Then he would milk some cow and make Pongal and offer it to the God. The land lord wanted to find out what he was doing with the rice and followed him one day. Being a devout man, he was thrilled by the sight that he saw. When he asked the labourer , he told everything to his master. The master then undertook to give rice, milk and firewood so that the labourer can offer Pongal without any problem. After this the villagers started visiting the temple. When their cattle got sick, if the labourer brought some mud from the temple and applied to the cattle, they got cured. Some higher caste people did not like to get sacred ash from the Dalit labourer. So they appointed a higher caste priest. The ayyanar started appearing as a snake before the high caste priest.
Then the villagers appointed a Brahmin to worship the God. The Brahmin with his daughter used to go daily with his small daughter and offer worship. One day while coming he locked his daughter inside the temple. When he went back and tried to open the temple, he heard a voice, “Your daughter is safe with me. Come tomorrow morning.” Unconvinced the Brahmin went on hitting the temple door with his head. Angered by this Thiruvettazhagiya Ayyanar, cut his daughter in to small pieces and threw them out of the temple. The Brahmin cursed the God, “ You are a debased one. Only a man of the lowest caste will now look after you. No one else will do it.”
From then onwards till now only people of Dalit caste come as priests to the temple. Opposite his temple there is a pond. On its shore there is small temple housing Karuppar, Kali Pechiyamman and Sonai. It seems these four Gods came to take sea bath and were going towards the sea. Thiruvettazhagiya Ayyanar made them stay there. There is a big pillar in the temple complex. This is Periyannachami and near him Kammalachi Amman resides in a small room. Kammalachi Amman had seven brothers. She fell in love with Periyannachami .Since they thought that her brothers would not agree to the marriage, they decided to elope to nearest town. They were caught near Thuvettazhagiya Ayyanar temple and were beheaded. Ayyanar made them as Gods and asked them to be with him. Since Ayyanar thought Kammalachi Amman died because of Periyannachami, he told him that , he would stand bare without any roof and suffer the rain and Sun’s heat. That is why till to day there is no roof over Periyannachami.
People believe that Ayyanar looks after their cattle and crops. If there is some disease to the cattle, they pray and leave a calf to the temple. If there is some problem to the crops , after the harvest without measuring a part of the harvest is given to Ayyanar.
Fridays and Tuesdays are suitable days for Ayyanar and Karuppar. Ayyanar is a vegetarian and only pongal is offered to him. Animals are sacrificed before Karuppar. Karuppu does not allow the meat of sacrificed animals to be taken out of the village. So whatever be the number of animals sacrificed, it is handed over to the local villagers.
On Chithra Pournami day Milk Kavadi is offered to Ayyanar. On that day there is also bull taming sport. In the month of Ai (July-August) the horse idol offering takes place. These horses are made in a village of Chenganam. The temple offers only two horses but people offer large number of horses. These are brought from Chengamam village with great fan fare.
Opposite Karuppar is Sonai chami. If any baby is born in the village, on the thirtieth day Ear and nose ornaments are offered to Kammalachi Amman and a cock is offered to Chonaichami. People believe that if this is not done , these gods would pinch the babies and will not allow them to sleep. Since Kammalachi Amman died due to love failure, it seems she does not allow girls to take bath after offering Turmeric paste. If some body does it , they will suffer with skin disfigurement. Even the Thali in this village is tied on a red thread.