Basic information about the temple
|Moolavar:||Mummurti Vinayakar||Ambal / Thayar:||–|
|Timing:||to & to||Parikaram:|
|Sung by:||Temple set:|
|City / town:||Thandangorai||District:||Thanjavur|
|Maps from (click):||Current location||Thanjavur (13 km)||Kumbakonam (33 km)|
|Ariyalur (38 km)||Perambalur (63 km)|
Sthala puranam and temple information
The original name of this village was Thandankurai, which has come to be known as Thandaangorai over a period of time. The name Thandankurai is likely connected to the Tevaram pathigam connected with the Kailasanathar Siva temple in this village.
Thandangorai may well be regarded as the land of yagams, learned brahmins and proficient vedic pundits. The village used to be (and to some extent continues to be) inhabited by a number of vedic scholars.
One of these was a local person called Appadurai Deekshitar (also called Appayya Dikshitar, due to his proficiency with conducting yagams), an exponent in performing yagams, who is best known for having performed three Garuda Sayana Yagnas (which are reckoned to be among the most difficult ones to perform), for which he was honoured by Kanchi Maha Periyavaa.
The Garuda Sayana yagam is difficult for many reasons. Firstly, it involves using 365 stones – one for each day of the year – of the exact same thickness but different shapes, which are all specified. It needs to be done without any interruption; if even for a day there is any stoppage, what was done prior is invalidated and is of no benefit.
Appardurai Deekshitar was a local brahmin, from a poor family. Nonetheless his erudition and vedic prowess enabled him to conduct the yagam thrice, as if once was not sufficiently difficult. It is said that he would finish one day’s yagna and leave, and somehow, funds for the following day’s proceedings would invariably arrive from some source or the other.
The temple houses three Vinayakar vigrahams – one each representing Siva, Vishnu and Brahma. Interestingly, and despite being a Vinayakar temple, the deity’s vehicle outside the garbhagriham is the Nandi, which is Siva’s mount.
Opposite the Vinayakar temple is also a jiva samadhi for Sri Sachidananda Swami, a saint and mystic who made this place his home and eventually attained mukti here.
The temple is located about 200 metres away from the Kodandaramar temple of Thandangorai, which itself has an interesting history, as does the Kailasanathar temple, whose location today was not its original location (this used to be a Siva temple located in the middle of a full-fledged Agraharam, with four “mada” streets in the four cardinal directions).
Uniquely and interestingly, this is also one of the very few villages that has, or is able to identify, a nakshatram (birth star) for the village itself! In the case of Thandangorai, its grama nakshatram is Swati.
The village is also noted for the Pidari Amman temple for Ooradachi Amman. Interestingly, this Pidari Amman is the kula deivam (family deity) for most of the brahmins in this village.