Thiru Adhanur near Kumbakonam is one of the 108 Divya Desams.dedicated to Lord Vishnu. Andalakkun ayyan temple here is one of the Vaishnava navagraha parihara sthalams around Kumbakonam. It is a Guru parihara sthalam. The main deity in this temple is Andalakkumayyan. He is present here facing East in Kidantha Kolam and Bujanga sayanam. He has been worshipped here by Brighu Maharishi, Kamadhenu, thirumangai Azhwar and Agni. His consort here is Ranganayaki Thayar also known as Kamalasini.The utsavar is Ranganathar. Adi pooram, Brahmotsavam in Vaikasi and Pavitrotsavam in Avani are some of the important festivals in this temple.
The devas due to a curse lost all their strength, wealth & power. Soon, Asuras defeated the Devas and took control of the world. Indran then appealed to Brahma and Brahma said that he can regain all that he has lost by churning the celestial ocean to obtain Amrutham or the holy nectar. Since this was an arduous task and could not be accomplished by the Devas, Vishnu suggested them to take the Asuras into confidence and enlist their participation also in this task. Asuras agreed to the same on the condition that they would be also be given a portion of the Amrutham.
The Ocean was churned by using Mount Mandara as the pole and Vasuki – the king of serpents – as the rope. The Devas held the tail end and the Asuras held the other end and started the churning. However the Mount mandara started to sink and Vishnu in the avatar (incarnation) of Koorma or tortoise balanced the Mount Mandara on his back and prevented it from sinking. As the Ocean was being churned, Vasuki started spitting deadly poison known as Ala kala Visham. This poison was so deadly that it could destroy the whole world. Shiva came to the rescue by consuming the poison. Paarvati then held His throat and stopped the poison there. Shiva’s throat became blue due to the poison and since then He has also been known as Neelakantan; Neela, meaning blue and kanta, meaning throat.
These hurdles they were facing, was worrying the Devas. Sage Narada told them that they were facing these obstacles because they had not prayed to Lord Vinayaka before they started the churning. Lord Vinayaka must always be invoked before starting a new venture. Hurriedly, the Devas and the Asuras made a small vigraham or idol of Vinayakar using the froth from the ocean. They prayed to Vinayakar and resumed the churning. Now they did not face any hurdle. This is the Vinayakar that is installed at Thiruvalanchuzhi.
Dhanvanthari then appeared from the Ocean with the Armrutham. With the help of Vishnu, the Devas consumed the same. The Asuras were denied their share as they were tricked by Vishnu, who in His avatar as Mohini, undertook the task of distributing the Amrutham amongst the Devas and the Asuras. Thus Indran got back his power and wealth.
Kamadhenu was one of the several precious treasures that surfaced during the churning of the Celestial Ocean. Kamadhenu is a cow that has powers to fulfill the desires of her owner. Kamadhenu was an ardent devotee of Vishnu and wanted to have darshan of the Lord. After visiting several temples, her wish was finally fulfilled here at Thiru Adhanur. Aa in Tamil means cow and hence the name Adhanur. An idol of Kamadhenu is in the Garbagraham. There are also idols of Brighu maharishi and Agni. Agni, who had tried to help Lord Shiva get rid of his brahmahathi dosham had himself contracted the dosham and did penance here at Thiru Adhanur to get absolved of the brahmahathi dosham. Read my posts on Thirupattur Brahmapureeswarar, Bithchandar Koil and Thirukandiyur to know how Lord Shiva contracted Brahmathi Dosham.
Another version is that Indran was absolved of his sin when Mahalakshmi, who had incarnated as Brighu Maharishi’s daughter married Lord Vishnu and gave darshan to Indran at Thiru Adhanur.
Another interesting story is about Thirumangai Azhwar’s experience at this place. Thiumangai Azhwar had undertaken the task of constructing the wall of the Srirangam temple and was on a trip to mobilize funds. At Thriu Adhanur, he met a person who claimed to be a messenger of the Lord. This stranger had a measuring bowl (marakkal) in his hand. He said that by reciting the name of the Lord and holding the empty measuring bowl he could get whatever he desired. Thirumangai Azhwar requested for payment of the wages for the labourers at Thiru Adhanur. The stranger laid a condition that he would measure sand with the empty measuring bowl and pay as wages. The sand would turn into gold for the sincere workers and for the others it would remain as sand. When the sand was measured and given to the labourers many of them found that it did not turn into gold and remained as sand. Thirumangai Azhwar was intrigued and started going after the stranger who had by now left the place. He soon found this man in the temple and was pleasantly surprised that it was the Lord himself who had come in guise of the stranger. The Lord gave him darshan with the marakkal (measuring bowl) in His right hand and an ezhuthani and olai (pen and palm leaf used as writing pad) in His left hand.
Thiru Adhanur is just about a kilometer from another Divya Desam, Thirupullaboothangudi. It is 11 kms from Kumbakonam and 5.5 Kms from Swami Malai. There are buses that ply every half an hour from Swami Malai and Kumbakonam to Thiru Adhanur.
Other Temples nearby:
Temple timings: 7.30 AM to 12.30 PM & 5.30 PM to 8.30 PM
Thiru Adhanur Divya Desam
Via Pullam Boothankudi, Papanasam taluk
Temple Priest: Sri. Seshadri Bhattachariar
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