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108 Dhivya Desam - Thirukkottiyur

Location :  Thirukkottiur near Karaikkudi
Perumaal :  Uragamellanaiyaan, SowmyaNarayanaPerumal
Thaayaar :  Thirumaamagal Naachiyaar
Theertham : Deva Pushkarini
Paasuram :  PeriyAzhwar, ThirumangaiAzhwar, BhootattAzhwar, PeyAzhwar, ThirumazhisaiAzhwar
Vimaanam : Ashtanga Vimanam
Travel Base : Karaikkudi

Description: This Dhivya Desam is located at Thirukkoshtiyur , at a distance of about 10 km from Thiruppattur near Madurai. This temple is known for its association with Ramanujar, who revealed the significance of the Narayana Mantram to the (for the benefit of the) surrounding humanity from the top of the temple tower here, against the wishes of Thirukkottiyur Nambi who had initiated him.

Deities: The Moolavar here is Uragamellanaiyaan in a reclining posture facing East, while the Utsavar is Sowmya Narayana Perumaal. Thaayaar here is Thirumaamagal Naachiyaar.

 

The Temple: This is a temple in four levels.  The first level enshrines Perumaal in a reclining posture, in response to prayers by Kadamba Maharishi. Four other shrines, Dakshineswara Narasimhan, Uttareswara Narasimhan, Ksheeraptinathan and Stita Narayanan shrines portray the 'Ninra, Irunda, Kidanda, Nadanda, Koottaadiya' (standing, sitting, reclining, walking, dancing) forms of Perumaal. The second and third levels enshrine the standing and sitting postures of the deity.

 

The Ashtanga Vimanam towers (96 feet) above the Rajagopuram, and is capped with a golden filial. The images depicting the destruction of Hiranya (the asuran) by Narasimhar are of great beauty. Other Dhivya Desams with Ashtanga Vimanams are Thirukkoodal and Parameswara Vinnagaram.

 

There is a shrine to Shiva (Sarabeswarar) in the form of a lingam here; the vimanam also has several elements related to Shiva.

 

There are also shrines to Samhara Anjaneya, Aandaal, Rama, Santanagopalakrishnan within the temple.

 

The festival images of Sowmya Narayana Perumaal and his consorts are of silver. There are also shrines to Yoga Narasimhar, Andal, Rama, and Krishna.

 

Legend: The name Thirukkoshtiyur stems from the legend that the Devas came as a congregation to worship Perumaal to request him to rid the Universe of the demon Hiranyakacipu. . This temple is considered equivalent to Badrinath and is referred to as the Badri of the South. PeriyAzhwar's poems refer to this shrine as Aayarpaadi, given that the festival commemorating the birth of Krishna was being celebrated here during the time of his arrival.

 

Festivals: Saturdays in the month of Purattasi are considered sacred here, and offerings of Pongal are made then. Six worship services are offered each day here. The annual Bhramotsavam is celebrated in the month of Chittirai and the Vasantotsavam in Vaikasi. Other festivals here are the Maasi Teppa Utsavam, Aadi Pooram, Pavitrotsavaam, Navaratri, Adhyayana Utsavam and Vaikuntha Ekadasi.