Lord Shiva is a swayambumurthy in the temple. There are five Shivalingas in the temple worshipped by the five Pandava brothers, Dharma, Bheema, Arjuna, Nakula and Sahadeva.
During their exile, Pandava brothers stayed in this place for some time. They could not get Shivalingas for their worship here. They lit lamps in the Iluppai nuts and worshipped the Lord in meditation. Lord granted darshan to them individually. They prayed to the Lord that He should grace all devotees from this place. He appeared then as five Shivalingas as prayed by the Pandava brothers. Hence, there are five Lingas (Panchalingas) in separates shrines in the temple.
Neelakandeswarar Temple Thiruneelakudi
The Linga is a Swayambu – that which exists of itself. The body of the Linga is rough and not soft. The leaves of the Vilwa Tree have five petals against the usual 3 petals found in this tree generally. It is here Rishi Markandeya got the boon of Chiranjeevi status – total freedom from death. There are two Goddesses here, Oppilamulai Amman in a wedding pose and Bakathapeeshtapradayini – gracing the devotee of his/her desires, in a penance pose. It is on this holy soil, Dakshayini joined the Lord again after returning from Daksha Yaga.
Varuna , angels worshipped here. Brahma, Devaganda, Vasishta, Soorapanma, Kamadenu performed penances here and got relieved of sins. A place praised in the hyms of Appar Swamigal in his Thevaram. When the Jains tied Appar and threw him, he worshipped Neelakandeswara in his celebrated hymn Kallinodu Aman Kaiyar in this temple. A celebrated Shiva sthala having holy springs Brhmma theertham, Ksheeragundam, Devi theertham and Markandeya theertham. The antiquity of the temple goes back to more than 2000 years.