There are various incidents that show Lord Shiva’s liking for Sundarar’ music.
The innocent lord also came up with many pranks to force him into singing.
Sundarar asks for a gold coin
Once, Sundarar halted at Tiru Pachilasramam.
Here, he desired to own a gold coin. So he requested the lord to grant his wish.
Lord Shiva was reluctant at first.
So, to coax his lord, Sundarar sang a Padigam and thus uplift his mood.
Enthralled by the melody, the lord at once presented a heap of gold before him.
Such was the lord’s love for Sundarar’s music.
Lord Shiva forces Sundarar to sing
This time the lord devised a new plan to hear Sundarar sing.
On reaching Vridhachalam, Sundarar expressed his desire to have gold coins.
The lord took the opportunity to his advantage.
He first generously granted 20,000 gold coins making his devotee happy.
However transportation was a major concern for Sundar.
It is unsafe to carry such valuable gold via forest route.
So, He requested the lord to directly transport the coins to his hometown, Tiruvarur.
Lord Shiva’s instructions
The lord had his conditions though.
He first instructed Sundarar to cast the coins into the Manimukta River.
He further added-
“Do not worry.
You shall retrieve your coins in the northern tank at Tiruvarur”
On hearing the lord’s words, Sundarar was relieved.
Also, to identify his gold, Sundarar kept with him a small gold sample.
Sundarar loses the gold
Finally, Sundarar and his wife Paravayar reached their home at Tirivur.
Immediately, Sundarar dived into tank to retrieve the gold as instructed by the lord.
But to his sheer dismay, the gold was nowhere to be found.
After enough searching, Sundarar sat down disappointed.
Pained by this episode, he composed a soulful Thevaram much according to Lord Shiva’s wish.
The lord was just waiting for this opportunity and this is why he had directed the entire pastime.
Thus Sundarar kept singing with complete rapture.
As Sundarar finished his song, he got back the gold.
But now there was a new problem.
The new gold was much inferior in quality than the previous version.
This time again the lord did not leave this opportunity. He wanted to hear another song from the mouth of his devotee.
In this manner, both the lord and his devotee enjoyed mutual talks through their sweet quarrels.
They thus introduced a higher form of devotion to the common man.
After Sundarar finished singing, the lord returned the original coins as a replacement.
Such was the lord’s love for Sundarar’s music.
Lord Shiva concerned about Sundarar
Once Sundarar was out on a pilgrimage.
The entire devotee community accompanied him. After a long tiring journey, the devotees began to feel the pangs of extreme hunger and thirst.
The lord who knows the heart of his devotees had formerly made all arrangements for their food and drink.
He had already constructed a well and in the guise of a Brahmin stood waiting for his devotees.
Now Sundarar and his entourage of devotees saw the Brahmin. They eagerly entered the lodge and accepted his hospitality.
Lord Shiva serves his devotees
The lord in the guise of a Brahmin took complete use of this opportunity and served his devotees.
He had also made provisions for their rest.
As the devotees sat to eat, the food kept on replenishing with each serving. All were amazed to witness this miracle.
After a satisfactory meal, the devotees proceeded to take rest.
Suddenly, the lord in disguise disappeared from the scene.
All stood astounded.
Immediately, they realized that their Lord who was so concerned about their welfare had personally come to their rescue.
Recounting this event, they shed tears of love thanking the lord for his kindness.
Touched by the lord’s ways, Sundarar also sang a soulful Theveram describing this entire episode.
Lord Shiva begs food for Sundarar
On a similar visit to Tirukachur, Sundarar rested outside the temple in a famished state.
The lord quickly understood his devotee’s plight.
So, He assumed the guise of a Brahmin and said- “O gentlemen, it seems that you are hungry. Please wait while I make arrangements for your food.”
So, saying the lord left the place.
The merciful lord then went door-door begging alms to provide for his devotee.
Lord Shiva simply forgot his eternal position just like a concerned father thinks for his son.
He then offered the food to Sundarar and his devotees.
As Sundarar sat to eat, the Brahmin mysteriously disappeared leaving the devotees in a mood a deep quietude.
All kept thanking the lord for his causeless kindness.
As a reminiscent, Sundarar composed a Thevaram describing this event in detail.
Thus, through every incident the lord kept showing that he is eternally present with his pure devotees irrespective of good or bad circumstances.
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