Kanchipuram is famous as a city of Thousand Temple, located 75 km from Chennai is a host to 15 Divya Desam temple of the 108 Divya Desams the holy abodes of Sri Vishnu. Sri Ulagalantha Perumal Kovil has the significance that this temple enshrines three Divya Desams Thiruneeragam, Thirukkaragam, and Thirukaravanam in its precinct.
Kanchipuram Divya Desam Temple are:
- Sri Varadharajaa Perumal Temple
- Sri Yathothakaari Temple
- Ashtabhuja Perumal Temple / Sri Aadhikesava Perumal Temple
- Sri Ulagalantha Perumal Temple
- Sri Jagadeeshwarar Temple
- Sri Karunakara Perumal Temple
- Sri Thirukkaar Vaanar Temple
- Sri Vaikunda Perumal Temple
- Sri Pavala Vannar Temple
- Sri Pandava Thoodhar Temple / Pandava Thoothar Perumal Temple / Pandava Dhootha Perumal
- Sri Nilathingal Thundathan Perumal Temple / Nilthingal Thundam Perumal Temple / Chandrasoodeswarar Perumal Temple
- Sri Aadhi Varaha Perumal Temple
- Sri Azhagiya Singar Perumal Temple
- Sri Deepa Prakasar Perumal Temple
- Sri Vijayaraghava Perumal Temple
1) Tirukkacchi – Sri Varadharajar Temple Varadaraja Perumal Temple:
Tirukkacchi Sri Varadharajar Temple Varadaraja Perumal temple is dedicated to Lord Vishnu and one of the 108 Divya Desams the holy abodes of Lord Vishnu located in a part of Kanchipuram called the Vishnu Kanchi that is a home for a lot of famous Vishnu temples and one of the greatest Hindu scholars, Ramnujacharya is believed to have resided in this temple.
The temple itself is on top of Hastigiri hill, which is believed to be Indra’s elephant Airavata. There is a hall of 100 pillars and the sculptures on each pillar are stunning. Stories and legends from Hindu mythology are depicted. Once in 40 years, the holy tank, Anantha Theertham is emptied and a wooden idol of Lord Attigiri Varadaraja is taken out from under and worshipped by millions.
The next festival will be in 2019. There is a legend of a prince from Ayodhya and his wife who were turned to lizards by a curse. On praying at this temple, they regained their human form. People who suffer from skin ailments or those who have inadvertently killed animals like lizards or snakes should offer worship at this temple as Prayaschittam.
2) ThiruVekka – Sri Yathothakaari Temple:
Sri Yathothakaari Temple is revered as one of the 108 Divya Desam Temple of Lord Vishnu. Dedicated to the holiness of Lord Vishnu stands the Yathkothkari temple, one of the oldest temples in the city of Kanchipuram. There are mentions about this temple in Silappatikaram (2nd-3rd century), Patanjali and Tolkāppiyam (3rd century). This is the Birthplace of Poigai Alwar, who was one of the famous Vaishnavaite poets of the 7th century.
The temple is one among the 108 Divya Deshams mentioned in the Divya Prbandham by Azhvar saints. The Pallavas are believed to have constructed the shrine, with contributions from the Cholas at the later stage. The inscriptions on the walls indicate the gifting of land, gold, lamps, etc by the various Chola kings.
Legend of Sri Yathothakaari Temple: The legend about the origin of the temple is associated with Goddess Saraswathi. Angry at Brahma for having chosen Lakshmi as superior over her, Saraswathi, tried to disrupt his ‘yaagam’ by taking the form of the fast-flowing river of Vegavathi. During this time, Vishnu stopped her by sleeping across the river and blocking its flow.
Saraswathi, on seeing Vishnu in her path, accepted her defeat. As Vishnu interfered with the path of the river, the presiding deity thus got one of his names, Thiruvekka.In another legend associated with the temple, both Kanikkannan and his mentor Thirumalisai, were banished by the Pallava king whose orders they did not obey.
Thirumalisai, an ardent devotee of the Lord here asked the Bhujangasayana Perumal to accompany them. Their departure left Kanchipuram in darkness. Realizing his mistake, the king prayed to Bhujangasayana Perumal to return along with his two devotees. Since the deity obliged the wishes of his devotees, he is called Yathothkari Perumal.This temple is part of Kanchipuram Divya Desam Yatra.
3) Thiru Ashtapujagaram- Ashtabujam Sri Aadhikesava Perumal Temple:
Adi Kesava Perumal temple is revered as one of the 108 Divya Desam Temple of Lord Vishnu. In the holy city of Kanchipuram, stands the Adi Kesava Perumal temple, where the divinity of Lord Vishnu is worshipped. The temple was praised in the hymns of the Alwar saints as the 108 sacred abodes of Vishnu, making it one of the Divya Desams.
The shrine is the birthplace of Ramanujan, a revered Vaishnavite saint, credited with popularising Vaishnavism in the country. It is said that Ramanujan transferred his powers to an idol and gave it to his disciple before his death and it is this idol that is installed in the temple. The gold-plated shrine in front of the hall of Ramanuja is the contribution of the Maharaja of Mysore.
Legend Of Adi Kesava Perumal Temple The legend regarding the temple revolves around the Boodha Ganas, who requested Lord Vishnu to relieve them from a curse by Lord Shiva. Vishnu created a spring here through a serpent named Anantha. He gave his darshan to the Bhoodha Ganas from the bank of the Theertha which relieved them of the curse. To show their gratitude, the Bhoodha Ganas erected this temple for Adi Kesava Perumal. This temple is part of the famous Kanchipuram Divya Desam Yatra.
Temple Timing: Sri Adi Kesava Perumal temple timings are 6:30 AM to 12:00 Noon and from 4:00 PM to 8:30 PM. After the Thirumanjanam of Lord Ramanuja, the clothes of the idol are given as prasadham to the devotees. It is believed that this cloth will cure many diseases.
4) Thiru Ooragam – Sri Ulagalantha Perumal Temple:
Thiru Ooragam Sri Ulagalanda Perumal temple, is revered as one of the 108 Divya Desam Temple of Lord Vishnu situated very near to the Kanchipuram bus stand, is one of the most important temples of Kanchipuram, the city of thousand temples. The temple is famous for the gigantic image of the main deity. The main shrine of the temple is dedicated to Trivikraman. Vamana is an incarnation of Lord Vishnu. When Vamana took a large image of himself, he is referred to as Trivikrama. Lord Vishnu has taken 25 incarnations. Of them, you can find temples mainly for three incarnations Rama, Krishna, and Narasimha.
Ulagalanda Perumal temples for other incarnations are found very rarely. This is one of the rare temples dedicated to the Vamana (Trivikrama) incarnation of Lord Vishnu. In the main shrine, you can find 35 feet long idol of Lord Trivikrama in a standing posture with his left leg raised aloft to indicate that his one step has measured the sky.
His right leg rests on the head of Mahabali (the demon king). The deity is made up of stucco (sudhai in the Tamil language). You can also find the Utsava idols of Lord Vishnu along with his consorts Sri Devi and Bhoo Devi in the same main shrine. The God in this main shrine is also referred to as Peragathan, and this main shrine is considered as one of the 108 Divya Desams (108 most popular temples of Lord Vishnu).
On the right side of the main shrine, there is a shrine referred to as Ooragam dedicated to Lord Vishnu on top of snake Adi Sesha. The word Ooragam refers to the serpent. The temple has three roundabouts (prakaras). The second prakara has a shrine named Neeragam where Lord Vishnu is referred to as Tiru Niragathan aka Jagadeeshwara.
The Lord is seen in a standing posture with four arms. The Lord is found along with his consort Nilamangaivalli or Nilamangaivalli Nahiar. Only the Utsava idols (metal idols/procession idols) are seen here and the whereabouts of the main stone idols are not known. This shrine is considered one of the 108 Divya Desams.
The third prakara has another shrine named Karagam. Lord Vishnu referred to as Karunakara is seen seated on Adi Sesha along with his consort Padmamani. This shrine is considered a separate Divya Desam. The details of the original temple and stone idols are not known; only utsaval idols are present now. The third prakara also houses another shrine Tiru Kaarvanam, where you can find Lord Kaarvannnan aka Navaneetha Chora (Vishnu) in standing posture with four arms under the Pushpaka Vimana.
His consort is found along with him and is called Kamalavalli. This is another separate Divya Desam. Only Utsava idols are present here and the whereabouts of the main idols are not known. There is a separate shrine dedicated to Goddess Aaranavalli Thayar in this temple. This architecturally beautiful temple has the unique feature of having four Divya Desams in the same complex.
5) Thiru Neeragam – Sri Jagadeeshwarar Temple:
Sri Jagadeeshwarar Temple is revered as one of the 108 Divya Desam Temple of Lord Vishnu. There are four Divyadesams in a single temple complex. Lord Vishnu took the Vamana avatar to stop King Mahabali’s attempt to acquire Indra’s swarga lokam and restore Indra’s powers.
When King Mahabali promised to give 3 feet of land to Lord Vishnu who was disguised as a dwarf Brahmin, Lord Vishnu measured the earth and sky with one foot, the heaven with the second feet and asked the King were to keep the third feet. Since the King was an ardent devotee of Lord Vishnu he asked the Lord to keep the third foot on his head and the Lord did accordingly and sent the King to the nether world, thereby fulfilling his purpose of taking the Vamana avatar.
The Lord took the form of Ulagalandha Perumal to fulfill the King’s wish to see the Lord in full form. The Lord also appeared in a smaller form as Adiseshan. The Lord here is also known as Ooragathaan. The Lord is more than 30ft high with the left leg at a right angle parallel to the ground and the right leg on Mahabali’s head.
The two steps taken by the lord are indicated by the two fingers stretched out in the left hand and one finger on the right hand as questioning the King were to keep the third foot. Sri Jagadeeshwarar Temple is one of the 108 Divya Desam Temple of Lord Vishnu
6) Thiru Kaaragam – Sri Karunakara Perumal Temple:
Thiru Kaaragam, Sri Karunakara Perumal Temple is revered as one of the 108 Divya Desam Temple of Lord Vishnu , situated in Kanchipuram. Sri Karunakara Perumal temple is within the Thiru Ooragam (Ulgalantha Perumal) temple. Sri Ulagalantha Perumal Kovil has the significance that this temple enshrines three Divya Desams – Thiruneeragam, Thirukkaragam, and Thirukaravanam in its precinct.
Legend of Sri Karunakara Perumal Temple As per Hindu legend, sage Garga performed his penance at Sri Karunakara Perumal temple and obtained knowledge. The place thus derived its name Garagaham, which later became Kaaragam.
Info on the deity – Specific to the temple deity The Moolavar of this Sthalam is Sri Karunakara Perumal. He is found in a standing position facing his thirumugham in the South direction (the direction that belongs to the cool breeze). The Perumal in this sthalam is Karunakara Perumal. He is giving his Seva on facing South direction, which is said to be the direction that belongs to the cool breeze.
He is found along with Padmamani Naachiyaar also known as Ramamani Thayar and explains to the world that he is the Megham (Clouds) that brings rain to this world to enrich the wealth of the world. Since he shows Karunai (Courtesy), the Perumal is called “Karunakara Perumal”.The temple is revered by the verses of Tirumangai Alvar.
7) Thirukkaar Vaanam – Sri Thirukkaar Vaanar Temple:
Thiru Kaarvannam,Sri Thirukkaar Vaanar Temple is revered as one of the 108 Divya Desam Temple of Lord Vishnu situated in Kanchipuram. Kaarvannam,Sri Thirukkaar temple is within the Thiru Ooragam (Ulgalantha Perumal) temple.
The legend behind this Divya Desam is that Kaar, black clouds as Sri Narayana Himself. The clouds give the rain to the world. It is explained that Sriman Narayanan himself is the black cloud Sri Thirukkaar vaanar Temple is one of the 108 Divya Desam Temple of Lord Vishnu.
Temple location In the heart of the Kanchipuram town and on way to Kamatchi Amman temple.
Temple Timings: The temple is open from 6:00 AM till 12:00 Noon and from 4:00 PM till 8:00 PM.
8) Thiru Kaarvaanam – Thiruparameshwara Vinnagaram Sri Vaikunda Perumal Temple:
Sri Vaikunda Perumal Temple A part of Vishnu Kanchi and one of the 108 Divya Desam Temple of Lord Vishnu located in Kanchipuram, is the Vaikunta Perumal temple, where the divinity of Lord Vishnu is worshipped.
The temple is believed to have been built by the Pallava king Nandivarman II (in the 6th century. Later the Cholas and Vijayanagar kings contributed to expanding the temple structure. Sri Ramanujar and Sri Manavalamamunigal are said to have been to the shrine. The temple is praised in the Divya Prabandha, the Tamil compilation of verses of the Azvar saints.
Legend Of Sri Vaikunda Perumal Temple: The ruler of this region of Vidharba Desa, King Virocha due to a curse in his previous birth, did not have an heir. A staunch Shiva devotee, he prayed to Lord Kailasanatha in Kancheepuram. Lord Shiva blessed him that the Dwarapalakas of Lord Vishnu would be born as the king’s sons.
Though born to the royal family, the young princes continued to be devotees of Lord Vishnu and conducted a yagna for the welfare and prosperity of the people. Pleased with them, Lord Vishnu granted them darshan as Vaikundanatha Perumal.This temple is part of Kanchipuram Divya Desam Yatra.
Temple Timing: 7:30 AM to 12:00 Noon and 4:30 PM to 7:30 PM Thiru Parameswara Vinnagaram temple witnesses large crowds during Vaikunta Ekadasi celebrations
9) Thiru Pavala Vannan – Sri Pavala Vannar Temple:
Sri Pavala Vannar Temple one of the 108 Divya Desam Temple of Lord Vishnu located In Kanchipuram, stands the two temples of Pachai Vannar and Pavalai Vannar, two shrines standing opposite each other, two places of holiness where the Lord is mentioned by his color.
He is seen in emerald green at the Pachai Vannar and coral colored at the Pavalai Vannar. The temple of Pavalai Vannar was praised in the hymns of the Alwar saints as the 108 sacred abodes of Vishnu. Though Pachai Vannar temple is not mentioned in the hymns, both these temples are believed to constitute the Divya Desam. The temples are said to have been built by the Pallava king Nandivarman II, with later contributions from Cholas and Vijayanagar kings.
Legend of Sri Pavala Vannar Temple: The legend regarding the Pavala Vanna Perumal temple revolves around a yagna conducted by Lord Brahma. Goddess Saraswathy, angry that she was not a part of it, sent demons to create obstruction. Lord Vishnu, battled the demons and ensured that the yagna proceeded smoothly.
The God here is coral in color. In the Pachai Vanna Perumal shrine, it is believed that the Lord gave a boon to Sage Bhrigu that Mahalakshmi will be born as his daughter, hargavi. Subsequently, Lord Vishnu married Bhargavi at this sacred place. In this temple, the Lord is emerald green in color. This temple is part of the famous Kanchipuram Divya Desam Yatra.
Temple Timings: Sri Pavalai Vannar temple timings are 7:00 AM till 10:00 AM and from 5:00 PM till 7:00 PM. Though Pachai Vannar is not a Divya Desam, both these temples are usually considered as a single Divya Desam and worshipped together. Devotees believe that if one visits one temple, visiting the other is ma
10) Thiru Paadagam – Sri Pandava Thoodhar Temple:
Sri Pandava Thootha or Thirupadagam is one of the 108 Divya Desam dedicated to Lord Vishnu. In the land of thousand temples, Kanchipuram, stands the ancient temple Pandavathootha Perumal Temple or Thirupadagam dedicated to Lord Krishna. Here, Lord Krishna is worshipped as Pandava Thoothar Perumal and his consort Lakshmi as Rukmini.
Believed to have been built by the Pallavas of the late 8th century AD, with later contributions from Medieval Cholas and Vijayanagar kings, the temple is considered one of the three oldest temples in Kanchipuram. It is one of the 108 Divya Desam dedicated to Lord Vishnu. The temple is maintained and administered by the Hindu Religious and Endowment Board of the Government of Tamil Nadu.
Many years after the Kurukshetra war, King Janamejaya, the great-grandson of Arjuna, went to Sage Vaisampayana to hear the story of his ancestors. Sage Vaisampayana told him the story of how Lord Krishna on his mission to avoid the war had gone to Duryodhana as an envoy of Pandavas.
On being humiliated, Krishna revealed his celestial form, the Vishwaroopa to the blind Dritharashtira, father of the wicked Duryodhana and warned him of the consequences. After hearing the story, Janamejaya keen on having the darshan of the Lord in his celestial form performed severe penance at this place. Pleased with his devotion, the Lord rewarded him with his darshan.This temple is part of Kanchipuram Divya Desam Yatra.
Temple Timings: 7.00 AM to 11.00 AM and from 4.00 PM to 7.30 PM. People born in the Nakshatra of Rohini are said to get prosperity and well-being by visiting the temple of Sri Pandava Thoothar Perumal.
11) Thiru Nilathingal Thundam – Sri Nilathingal Thundathan Perumal Temple:
Nilthingal Thundam Perumal temple (also called Chandrasoodeswarar Perumal temple) is one of the 108 Divya Desam dedicated to Lord Vishnu. The temple is located in a shrine in Ekambareswarar Temple, the largest temple in the town of Kanchipuram.
It is one of the 108 Divyadesam dedicated to Vishnu, who is worshiped as Nilathingal Thunda Perumal and his consort Lakshmi as Nilathingal Thunda Nayagi. Six daily rituals and two major yearly festivals are held at the temple, of which the Vaikunta Ekadasi festival, celebrated during the Tamil month of Margazhi (December – January), is the most prominent.
The temple is maintained and administered by the Hindu Religious and Endowment Board of the Government of Tamil Nadu. Unlike other Vaishnavite temples where a Vaishnavite priest officiates, the temple has a Saiva priest as it is inside a Shiva temple.
Legend of Nilthingal Thundam Perumal Temple:- Parvati the consort of Shiva was doing penance under the temple’s ancient Mango tree near the Vegavathi river. In order to test her devotion, Shiva sent fire on her. Goddess Parvati prayed to her brother, Vishnu for help. Vishnu took the crescent from Shiva’s head and reflected the rays which then cooled down the tree as well as Parvati.
Shiva wanted to test Parvati again and sent the river Ganga (Ganges) to disrupt her penance. Parvati prayed to Ganga and convinced her that both of them were sisters and so she should not harm her. Subsequently, Ganga did not disturb her penance and Parvati made a Shiva Linga out of the sand to get united with Shiva. Shiva came to be known as Ekambareswarar or “Lord of Mango Tree” and Vishnu as Nilathingal Thundam.
As per Hindu legend, Parvathi was doing penance at this place to attain the blessings of her husband Shiva. She sought the help of Vishnu to help her in the cause. Vishnu appeared as Vamana with a conch and disc and radiated light as the moon. It is believed that Vishnu appeared for Chandra (moon) and Shiva.
As per another legend, when Devas (celestial deities) and Asuras (demons) were churning the Ocean of Milk, Vishnu helped them as a tortoise Kurmaholding the mount. The snake Vasuki used as a rope for churning emanated poison that turned the skin color of the tortoise from blue to black. Vishnu reached out to Brahma for resolution, who advised him to worship Shiva. It is believed that Sun and Moon are the two eyes of Shiva. He opened his left moon eye to ease the pain of Vishnu with the cold lunar rays. On account of it, the presiding deity came to be known as Nilathingal Thunda Perumal.
12) Thirukkalvanoor – Sri Aadhi Varaha Perumal Temple:
Sri Aadhi Varaha Perumal Temple is one of the 108 Divya Desam dedicated to Lord Vishnu and is situated inside Sri Kamakshi Amman temple in Big Kanchipuram. It is placed on the right side of the Garbagraham of Ambaal (Moolavar sannadhi). In this Sthalam the Moolaver is Sri Aadhi Varaha Perumal. Lord Vishnu is found in a standing position facing the West direction. Thayar of this sthalam is Anjilai Valli Naachiyar. Found in next maadam in the next wall to Sri Aadhi Varaha Perumal.
Legend of Sri Aadhi Varaha Perumal Temple: Once, when Kamakshi and Sri Lakshmi were taking bath in Kama Koshtam, Emperumaan saw them by hiding behind a pillar and hearing what they were speaking. Parvathi, who resembled “Kamakshi” found that Sriman Narayanan is watching them and so she gave the punishment by first making him stand and then sit and finally to Kidantha stage. Because of this, he is found in all the 3 Sevas (i.e) Nindra, Irundha and Kidantha Seva on the Northside of the pond of this Koil. Since Sriman Narayanan saw them taking bath without knowing them, Parvathi kept him the name as “Kalvan” and this Divyadesam is called “Thirukkalvanoor”, the One and Only Divyadesam among the 108 Divyadesam where the almighty is seen in a very small form as Adhivarahar.
13) Thiru Velukkai – Sri Azhagiya Singar Perumal Temple:
Sri Azhagiya Singa Perumal Temple is situated in Kanchipuram, Tamil Nadu. Sri Azhagiya Singar Perumal Temple , is revered as one of the 108 Divya Desam Temple of Lord Vishnu . and also named as ‘Thiruvelukkai’. Sri Azhagiya Singa Perumal Temple has a four-tiered Rajagopuram (temple tower).
The presiding deity of Azhagiya Singa Perumal Temple is Lord Sri Azhagiya Singar, in Yoga position, facing the east direction. There is a separate shrine found for Goddess Amruthavalli, the consort of Lord Sri Azhagiya Singar and for Garuda, the vehicle of Lord Vishnu. Sri Azhagiya Singa Perumal Temple is glorified in Nalayira Divya Prabandham, the old canon, and the hymns were sung by the saints namely Peyalvar, Bhoothathazhwar, Thirumazhisai Azhwar and Thirumangai azhwar.
Sri Azhagiya Singa Perumal Temple is built in a Dravidian style of architecture and the walls are surrounded by granite. The Pushkarani (temple tank) of Sri Azhagiya Singa Perumal Temple is called as Kanaga Saras and Hema Saras Pushkarani. The Vimanam (the tower above the sanctum sanctorum) of Sri Azhagiya Singa Perumal Temple is called Kanaka Vimanam.
The mythology says that Goddess Lakshmi (the consort of Lord Vishnu) and Goddess Saraswati (the consort of Lord Brahma) had a tough argument on who is superior among them. They decided to make it clear by asking Lord Indira, the king of celestial deities. Lord Indira gave the judgment that Goddess Lakshmi is the superior Goddess.
Goddess Saraswati was not satisfied with the decision and asked Lord Brahma about this, and Lord Brahma too chose Goddess Lakshmi to be the Superior Goddess. Goddess Saraswati got disappointed and started avoiding Lord Brahma. During this crucial time, Lord Brahma did severe penance towards Lord Vishnu and performed an Aswametha Yagna which is usually done along with His consort Goddess Saraswati.
This bought the anger of Goddess Saraswati to the peak. Goddess Saraswati decided to disturb the yagna of Lord Brahma and interrupted it in various ways but Lord Vishnu prevented it every time. And Goddess Saraswati sent a demon called Kapalika to disrupt the Yagna. Lord Vishnu took the form of Narhari to kill the demon. This is the place where Lord Vishnu resided happily and hence this place is called as ThiruVelukkai, where Vel refers to “wish” and Irukkai refers to “residence”. It is said that Lord Vishnu appeared to the sage Bhrigu Maharishi in the form of Azhagiya Singar.
14) Thiruthanka – Sri Deepa Prakasar Perumal Temple:
Sri Deepa Prakasar Perumal Temple is revered as one of the 108 Divya Desam Temple of Lord Vishnu located In the holy city of Kanchipuram. Perumal temple is dedicated to the Lord as the light or Jyoti. He is believed to dispel darkness from the lives of devotees.
The temple of Deepa Prakasar was praised in the hymns of the Alwar saints as the 108 sacred abodes of Vishnu, making it one of the Divyadesams. This place is said to be the birthplace of the great poet and devotee of the Lord, Vedanta Desika. He has a separate shrine in the temple. The icon of Desikar is believed to be installed by his son Nayinar Varadhachariar.
Legend of Sri Deepa Prakasar Perumal Temple: The legend regarding the Deepa Prakasar Perumal temple revolves around a yagna conducted by Lord Brahma. Goddess Saraswathy, angry that she was not a part of it, sent demons to create obstruction. The Asuras stopped the passage of light to disrupt the yagna. Since he appeared as a column of light to defeat the demons the Lord is called Deepa Prakasar Perumal. This temple is part of the famous Kanchipuram Divya Desam Yatra.
Temple Timings: Sri Deepa Prakasar Perumal Temple timings are 7:30 AM till 10:00 AM and from 5:00 PM till 7:00 PM.
15) Thiruputkuzhi – Sri Vijayaraghava Perumal Temple:
Sri Vijayaraghava Perumal Temple is one of the 108 Divya Desams of Lord Maha Vishnu situated 15kms away from Kanchipuram.Thiruputkuzhi-Sri Vijayaraghava Perumal Temple is one of the 108 Divya Desams of Lord Maha Vishnu situated 15kms away from Kanchipuram.
This is one of the Thondai Nadu Divya Desams closely related to the great epic Srimad Ramayanam. Here Lord Perumal appears as Sri Vijayaraghava Perumal, as the Moolavar in Amarnath Thirukkolam facing the East direction. Thaayar here is named MaragathaValli, has her own temple. Thirumangai Alwar wrote 2 pasurams.
Special Rituals/ Prarthana performed in temple In Sri Vijayaraghava Perumal Temple, ladies who don’t have children, give the dhal, (Paruppu) to Madapalli (the place where the Lord’s food is prepared). After it’s given, the dhal is soaked inside water and it is tied around their stomach and said to sleep. After waking up from their sleep, if the seed buds, it is confirmed that they will give birth to a child.
Info on the deity Specific to the temple deity in Sri Vijayaraghava Perumal Temple sthalam, the Moolavar is Vijaya Raghava Perumal. He holds Jatayu in his hands. Both the Naachiyaars, are found on both sides, but in the opposite manner. Moolavar is found in a sitting position facing the East direction. Prathyaksham for Jadaayu (Eagle) and Thaayar is Maragathavalli Thayaar. She has her own temple.
Sri Devi in the Left to the Lord: A unique feature Sri Vijaya Raghava Perumal is seen in a sitting posture, having the bird (Jataayu) on his thigh. Not able to bear the smell caused by the final rites and because of the flames that arose out of the cremation of Jaatayu, Sri Devi Thaayar is said to have moved to the other side of the Lord.
At this temple, the Goddess is seen to the left of the Lord Vijayaraghava with her head slightly turned in the Lord’s direction (in all Divya Desams, Sri Devi Thaayar is seen to the right of the Lord). Also, the Thaayar Sannidhi is to the left of the Lord. In all Divya Desams, the Thaayar Sannidhi is always to the right of the Lord.
Legend of Sri Vijayaraghava Perumal Temple: Legend says that Sri Rama left all of his properties and went to the forest as ordered by his father. While in the forest, Sita spots a golden deer and requests Rama to catch it for her. The deer however is a demon sent by Ravana to lure Rama and Lakshmana, so that he could carry away Sita. With Rama and Lakshmana out in search of the deer, Ravana abducts Sita and takes her along with him to Lanka. On the way to Lanka, Jatayu the vulture stops Ravana and fights with him to release Sita, but Ravana cuts Jatayu’s wings and he falls down to the earth.
When Rama and Lakshmana come there in search of Sita, they find Jatayu mortally wounded in the forest. Jatayu tells them about Ravana and Sita and then dies. Sri Rama then performs the last rites for Jatayu. As suggested by Jatayu, the Perumal here gives his Seva in the form in which he performed the final funeral of Jatayu. For water needed for the rites, Lord Rama shot an arrow and created a spring, now called Jatayu Pushkarini. Tiru in Tamil is an honorific prefix, Pul means bird (a separate family of eagle) and Kuzhi the pit. The place is thus named Tiru Pul Kuzhi-Tiruputkuzhi.