Prananatheswarar, Tirumangalakudi, Thanjavur
Basic information about the temple
|Moolavar:||Prananatheswarar||Ambal / Thayar:||MangaLanayaki|
|Vriksham:||VeLLerukku||Teertham:||Kaveri, Mangala Teertham|
|Timing:||6.30 to 12.30 & 4 to 8.30||Parikaram:|
|Temple group:||Paadal Petra Sthalam (Kaveri Vada Karai)||–|
|Sung by:||Temple set:|
|City / town:||Tirumangalakudi||District:||Thanjavur|
|Maps from (click):||Current location||Kumbakonam (15.2 km)||Mayiladuthurai (23.2 km)|
|Tiruvarur (40.3 km)||Ariyalur (56 km)|
Tirumangalakudi is located very close to Aduthurai, on the way to Tiruppanandal.
Sthala puranam and temple information
Sage Galva, through his yogic power, learnt that he would be affected with leprosy. So he prayed to Navagrahams to protect him, and they obliged. However, this caused resentment in Brahma, as be felt he alone was in charge of humans’ destinies. As a result, he cursed the Navagrahams to be afflicted with leprosy. The Navagrahams prayed to Brahma to withdraw his curse, but that was not to be. However, Brahma guided them to pray to Prananatheswarar at Tirumangalakudi. The Navagrahams did accordingly, and also installed a shrine for Vinayakar and built a temple as well. Eventually, Lord Siva blessed them and they were relieved of Brahma’s curse. As a mark of gratitude, the Sage Galva built a temple for the Navagrahams at the place they undertook their penance.
Kulothunga Chola’s minister – Aalaivanar – built this temple from taxes he collected, but without the king’s permission. The king ordered the minister’s head to be severed, after which the remains were brought to Tirumangalakudi for final rites. The minister’s wife pleaded with Lord Siva at this temple to resurrect her husband, and He obliged. Elated at being back alive, the minister embraced the Lingam and called him Jeevanayakam (the Tamil equivalent of Prana Natheswarar). The Lord also acceded to the couple’s request, to bless devotees coming here with a happy wedded life. For this reason, the mangala saradu (thread) is given to lady devotees as prasadam.
An interesting feature of this temple is that several key aspects of the temple have the name “Mangalam“, meaning auspicious, in them. The place is Tirumangalakudi, another name of the moolavar is Mangalanathar, Ambal is Mangalambikai, Vinayakar is Mangala Vinayakar, and there are the Mangala vimanam and Mangala Teertham as well.
While the height of the Lingam varies across temples, the one at this temple is relatively shorter than most others. It is said that this is to enable Agastyar (who is considered short in stature) to perform oblations to the Lingam here.
There is no separate Navagraham shrine at this temple. The belief is that Suryanar Koil (where the Navagrahams each have separate shrines) is itself the Navagraham shrine of this temple. Therefore, the general custom is to worship at this temple and then proceed to the nearby Suryanar Koil.
This temple houses an emerald idol of Natarajar (maragatha Natarajar), and is one of very few temples to do so. There are, in fact, two Natarajar murtis in the temple. Also, Lakshmi and Saraswati are in place of the Dwarapalakas, and Saraswati is seen without her veena.
Other information for your visit