Karaikkal Ammeiyar

Karaikkal Ammeiyar

Karaikkal Ammeiyar

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Karaikkal Ammaiyar (Tamil: காரைக்கால் அம்மையார், which means the revered mother from Karaikkal), one of the three women amongst the sixty three Nayanmars, is one of the greatest figures of early Tamil literature. Her birth name was Punithavati, born at Karaikkal, South India, and probably lived during the 6th century. She was a great devotee of Lord Shiva.

Early life

Punithavathy was born in Karaikkal, a maritime trading city in Chola nadu to Danathathan, a famous merchant. From childhood Punithavati grew up in a religious atmosphere and worshipped Lord Shiva diligently. She chanted the five letter mantra Namasivaya and also attended to the needs of Shaiva devotees.

When she grew up as a charming young girl she was wedded to Paramathathan, the son of a rich merchant in Nagapattinam. Even after marriage she continued her chosen religious life. Shaiva devotees who visited her home were lavishly fed and were given clothes and jewels according to their needs.

Divine miracle

A hungry Shaiva devotee came to her residence one day. As the luncheon was not ready at that time, she gave the devotee one of the two mangoes that her husband (Paramathathan) had sent home, earlier that day, to be kept for him. Later, when her husband came home she served him the one left mango that she had. The mango was very delicious and hence her husband requested for the other mango also to be served. Punithavati was in a dilemma now. She prayed to Shiva and...
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