Vyaghrapaada Muni

The sage with tiger’s feet

Vyaghra pada muni :

Vyaghrapada was a great devotee of Lord Shiva. He lived in a thillai forest near Chidambaram.

 He used to collect flowers in the morning for his daily puja. Seeing that birds and bees suck nectar from the flowers, he wanted to get flowers even before dawn so that they are untouched and fresh. For this purpose he had to go deep into the forest in near darkness. This involved walking over thorns and sharp stones. Consequently his feet were affected so badly that even his overall health deteriorated.  Seeing his plight Lord Siva gave him legs of a tiger to manage the rough conditions of the forest. Hence the name Vyaghrapaada .Vyghra – tiger: pada – foot.

Vyaghrapada lived in Chidambaram for many years. He was a contemporary of Sage Patanjali. Shiva eventually gave his darsan as Nataraja and both Vyghrapaada and Patanjali attained mukti.

From one of the pillars in the Azhagiya Nambi Temple, Thirukkurungudi – one of the 108 Vaishnvite Divya Desams.

Interestingly, though this temple is a Vaishnavite Divya sthalam, it has also many Shaivaite elements as the sculpture above.

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