22. Kulacchirai Nayanar
In devotion to Siva Bhaktas, Kulacchirai Nayanar excelled. He was born in Manamerkudi, in the Pandyan kingdom. This place was frequently graced by Siva Bhaktas. Kulacchirai Nayanar was the leader as well as the supporter of the people. To him adoration of Siva Bhaktas was equal to adoration of Lord Siva Himself. He saw no difference between Siva Bhaktas and Siva.
He was the Prime Minister of the Pandyan king. Yet, he regarded himself as the slave of Siva Bhaktas. He was the richest man in the place: yet, to him wealth was only dust. Nothing belonged to him: it was the property of Siva Bhaktas. Even Sambandar extolled his virtuous qualities in a song.
Nayanar was an able soldier and administrator. Yet, his mind was ever absorbed in the Lord. He helped the queen in stemming the tide of the evil influence of Jainism. Nayanar invited Sambandar to Madurai to fight this evil influence. The Jains set fire to Sambandar’s camp. Sambandar sang a song. The fire was extinguished. The Pandyan king had high fever, which the Jains could not cure, but which was cured by the sacred ash which Sambandar applied on him. Sambandar argued with the Jains and defeated them. Kulacchirai sent the defeated Jains to the gallows. He served the Siva Bhaktas and finally attained Siva’s Abode.