By Swami Harshananda
Tiruppāḍ literally means ‘holy songs’.
Kāraikkāl Ammaiyār (5th century A. D.) was one of the sixty three Nāyanmārs. She was known earlier as Punītavatī, the only offspring of a merchant, Dhanadattan. She had been married to Paramadattan, a rich merchant. She was a great devotee of Lord Śiva endowed with mystical powers.
Later on, she became a wandering minstrel, singing devotional songs on Śiva. These songs collected together are now known as Tiruppād.
- Nāyanmārs means Śaiva saints.
- The Concise Encyclopedia of Hinduism, Swami Harshananda, Ram Krishna Math, Bangalore