Aravindalochanar, Tholaivillimangalam, Thoothukudi
Basic information about the temple
|Moolavar:||Aravindalochanar||Ambal / Thayar:||Karunthadankanni|
|Vriksham:||Teertham:||Varuna Teertham, Tambraparani|
|Timing:||6 to 12 & 1 to 5||Parikaram:|
|Temple group:||Divya Desam||–|
|Sung by:||Temple set:|
|City / town:||Tholaivillimangalam||District:||Thoothukudi|
|Maps from (click):||Current location||Thoothukudi (36.7 km)||Tirunelveli (39.8 km)|
|Kanyakumari (92.3 km)||Nagercoil (93.7 km)|
Tholavillimangalam is located 29km from Tirunelveli and 8km from Srivaikundam.
Sthala puranam and temple information
This is the ninth of the Nava Tirupati sthalams, and is dedicated to Ketu. Together with the adjacent Srinivasa Perumal temple, it is one of the Irattai-Tirupati temples, and the two temples together are considered as one Divya Desam temple. (The only other instance of more than one temple being considered as a single Divya Desam is the Thanjai Mamani Koil, a set of three templesin Thanjavur – Neelamega Perumal, Manikundra Perumal and Thanjai Yali Koil.)
Sage Athreya Subrapathar had started a Veda patasala here for the young children. One day when he was cleaning the yaga sala, he came across a balance (tharasu) and a bow. When he touched them, they became a man and his wife. The two prostrated to the sage and told him that as per a curse by Kubera, they had been turned into a balance and a bow. They also said their saba-vimochanam had been achieved by the sage touching then as destined by Kubera. After this they attained paramapadam. In Tamil, balance is also called thula, and the bow called vil. The town got its name from this, as thulam-vil-mangalam, which over time has become Tholaivili mangalam.
Perumal as the balance treats everyone equally. Thayar, like the bow, teaches eka-patni dharmam. Only with this kind of blessing was Lord Rama able to lift the bow and break it.
As the Lord himself depicts the planets, there are no Navagraha shrines in any of these temples. Devotees come and pray here for relief from Navagraha dosham.
The Garuda Sevai utsavam in the Tamil month of Vaikasi (May-June) is a sight to be seen! The utsava murtis from all the 9 Nava Tirupati temples are brought on their respective Garuda vahanams. Nammazhvar also comes on an Anna Vahanam (swan shaped vehicle), and his pasurams for each of the nine temples are recited. Then the murti of Nammazhvar is taken through the paddy fields in the area surrounding the temple.
Other information for your visit
In the Tamil month of Margazhi (December-January), these temples open relatively early (some even at 5 or 5.30 am), and close by 11. Some others are open till 1 or 2 pm.
We visited temples in the following order, which enabled us to complete all these temples (plus 4 Nava Kailasam temples) between 5.30 am and 2 pm, in the month of Margazhi starting at Tirunelveli: Srivaikuntam, Alwartirunagari, Tirukolur, Thenthirupperai, Perunkulam, Tholaivillimangalam (2 temples), Tirupuliangudi and Natham (Tiruvaragunamangai). Our trip was not rushed at all, and we had ample time at each of these temples.
Budget and mid-range accommodation is available at Tirunelveli. If coming down on the East Coast Road, then some limited options may also be available at Thoothukudi (Tuticorin) and Tiruchendur.