Basic information about the temple
|Moolavar:||Andalakkum Aiyan||Ambal / Thayar:||Bhargavi, Ranganayaki|
|Vriksham:||Punnai, Patali||Teertham:||Chandra Teertham|
|Timing:||7 to 12.30 & 4 to 8||Parikaram:|
|Temple group:||Divya Desam||–|
|Sung by:||Temple set:|
|City / town:||Adhanoor||District:||Thanjavur|
|Maps from (click):||Current location||Kumbakonam (11 km)||Thanjavur (36 km)|
|Ariyalur (39 km)||Mayiladuthurai (46 km)|
Adhanoor is located a few kms west of Kumbakonam, just off the road from Kumbakonam to Swamimalai.
Sthala puranam and temple information
This is a Guru parikara sthalam and one of the Vaishnava Navagraha Sthalams, a lesser known set of Navagraha sthalams around Kumbakonam.
As Kamadhenu came out of the ocean of milk before Lakshmi, she felt she had preference in order of honour and worship. To teach her a lesson, Lord Vishnu gave here a marakkal (a cylindrical container to measure grains, also called padi) and asked her to fill it with aiswaryam (wealth). Kamadhenu was unable to do so due to her envy, while Lakshmi was able to do so with just one Tulasi leaf, after praying to Lord Vishnu. Kamadhenu surrendered to the Lord and performed penance, giving the place its name Aathanoor, or the place (oor) where the cow (aa) performed penance (than).
Lord Vishnu was once annoyed with the Nityasuris in Vaikuntam, and so he left the place and came to earth without Lakshmi or Adiseshan. Seeing him sleep on the ground, Lakshmi sent Adiseshan to take care of him. Adiseshan came and worshipped Vishnu and asked him to bless him by sleeping on his coils. The Lord performed Samasrayanam to Adhiseshan here in Adhanoor.
Lakshmi once gave Sage Brighu a garland that would never fade, which he in turn gave to Indra, who put it on Airavata (the celestial white elephant). Airavata unwittingly trampled on it, angering Sage Brighu who cursed Indra. Indra went to Lakshmi for pardon and a solution, and she asked him to go to Aadhanoor to do penance. Later, Lakshmi was born as a child in the leaves of the temple tank, and sage Brighu brought her up. Hence she is worshipped as Bhargavi (daughter of Brighu). Many years later, Lord Vishnu came down to marry her, and on that occasion, Lakshmi forgave Indra. Even now, devotees can see Indra worshipping Vishnu and Lakshmi at this temple.
Tirumangaiazhvar was constructing the prakarams at Srirangam but was short of funds. He had a dream in which he was asked to go to Aadhanoor to get the funds. He did so, and found a businessman and asked him for funds. The businessman agreed, on the condition that he would pay the labourers with sand measured out of the marakkal that he had. When work started, Tirumangaiazhvar noticed that some workers received sand, but for a few, the sand became gold. Curious, he chased the businessman who entered the temple, but Tirumangaiazhvar could not spot him. Instead, he had darshan of the Lord Ranganathar with a marakkal and an ezhuthaani (carving pen). The businessman was Lord Vishnu himself!
Sage Brighu, Kamadhenu (the cow), Tirumangaiazhvar and Agni have worshipped here. Sage Brighu, Kamadhenu and Tirumangaiazhvar all have shrines in the temple, with Tirumangaiazhvar in the sanctum.
The legend according to locals is that idol has been growing in size over the years.
This is only one of two Divya Desams (the other being at Srirangam) where devotees can worship Thirumana Pillars on either sided of the lord inside the Sanctum.
Other information for your visit
Read this external post. According to this, the bhattar and the temple staff (paricharakar and meikavalar) are woefully paid. I consider this a case that requires support, and request devotees to do their part. Thank you.
In addition to several other smaller and/or interesting temples, there are 4 Paadal Petra Sthalams and 2 Divya Desam temples in the vicinity, including this temple. These are:
Vilvavaneswarar, Tiruvaikaavoor, Thanjavur
Saatchinathar, Tiruppurambayam, Thanjavur
Vijaya Natheswarar, Tiruvijayamangai, Thanjavur
Ezhuthari Nathar, Innambur, Thanjavur
Andalakkum Aiyan, Adhanoor, Thanjavur
Valvil Raman, Tiruppulaboothangudi, Thanjavur