Presiding Deity: Sivalokanathar
Holy tree: Pungai
Holy water: Rishaba theertham, Devendra theertham, Nandanar theertham,
Hymns: Sung by Thirugnanasambandar, Sundarar, Thirnavukkarasar
Nivedhana: Pure rice (also called Havis)
Those afflicted by Naga dhosha (anger of the snakes), Kalathra dhosha ( risk to the life of the wife), Papa dhosha (effects of sins committed) visit this temple for a dharsan of the Lord and the Goddess so that they will be relieved of the afflictions ensuring safety. Lord Sivalokanatha blesses them with his pardon. In turn, the devotees offer clothings to the Lord and the Goddess.
Specialities of the temple:
Nandanar, adored as one of the 64 Nayanmars, was worshipping the Lord from outside the temple as he belonged to the backward community having no rights of entry to the temple. To grant him a dharsan, the Lord ordered his vehicle Nandhi to move to avoid obstructions to Nandanar to see him clearly. The Nandhi in the temple will be a little away from the sanctum sanatorium. The tongue of the Nandhi would not be hanging out of the mouth as generally seen in the Siva temples. Also there is no nose rope to the Nandhi.
After enjoying the Shiva Darshan in Thirupunkur, Nandanar desired to visit Chidambaram. But others refused to grant him leave for the journey and said that he can go only after digging and silting the tank. Nandanar sought Siva’s grace. Lord Shiva ordered Vinayaka to do the job, which Vinayaka executed within a night itself. It is said that Lord Shiva also collected a wage from Nandanar. For digging a tank for a devotee, the Vinayaka here is called Kulam Vettiya Vinayakar. The place is named after Holy Tree Pungu as Thirupunkur. Puja time is from 6.00 a.m. to 11.00 a.m and 4.00 p.m. to 8.30 p.m.. The temple is open during these hours.
Thirupunkur is 15 Kms north of Mayiladuthurai, 3 Kms from Vaideeswaran Koil. Accomodation is available in Mayiladuthurai. Buses are plying in short frequencies from Sirkali and Mayiladuthurai. Mayiladuthurai is the nearest Railway station. Nearest airports are Trichy and Chennai.
10 days before Vaikasi Vishakam are days of festivities in the temple.
Tradition has it, that a beauty contest arose between Shiva and Parvathi. Parvathi said that he would ask her brother Vishnu about it. Vishnu sought the opinion of Brahma. Brahma took a Dharba grass, rolled it and threw it away saying that the answer would be available at the spot where the grass fell. The Dharba fell in Thirupunkur. Here Shiva grants dharsan with five beautiful faces.
Wife looks beautiful to the eyes of the husband. Husband looks handsome to the eyes of the wife. Husband and wife separated due to any reasons will be united if they visit this temple.