Yathothkari Perumal Temple
This is in Kanchipuram in South India. Kanchipuram is famous for two things one is a temple and the other is silk saree. This temple is one among the ancient and beautiful temple situated here.The temple finds mention in Perumpaanatrupadai written by Patanjali. There is a mention about the temple in Silappatikaram (2nd-3rd century CE), Patanjali Mahabharatham and Tolkāppiyam (3rd century BCE). The temple is revered in Nalayira Divya Prabandham, the 7th–9th century Vaishnava canon, by Poigai Azhwar, Peyalvar, Bhoothathazhwar and Thirumazhisai Aazhwar. The Azhwars have sung praise on the different forms of Yathothkari Perumal. The temple is classified as a Divyadesam, one of the 108 Vishnu temples that are mentioned in the book. Many Acharyas have also written songs on the various forms of God in this Temple.
The temple is considered the birthplace of Poigai Azhwar, one of the first three Azhwar saints. He was found in a small pond (called Poigai in Tamil near temple. The temple and the pond are thus considered holy as it is the birthplace of the saint.
Architecture of the temple
History of the temple
Once sage Bhargava had a son through Kanakangi, a celestial dancer. The boy was stillborn and was not fully developed during his birth. Kanakangi left his son under bushes and left to the celestial world. It is believed that the child was a divine incarnation of one of Vishnu’s weapons, the Chakra. By the grace of Vishnu and Lakshmi, the baby became alright and began to cry. A childless farmer couple who were passing by took up the child, named him Sivavakkiyar and started rearing him. Once the boy reached adulthood, he was skeptical about choosing between Saivism and Vaishnavism. He was defeated in arguments by Pey Azhwar. He became a devotee of Vaishnavism and the disciple of Pey Azhwar. Sivavakkiyar was also called Bhakthisarar and later as Thirumalisai Alvar.
Thirumalisai had a disciple by name Kanikkannan. He also had an old lady serving him – Thirumalisai prayed to the presiding deity of the temple and by the grace of Bhujangasayana Perumal, the old lady became a beautiful young lady. The Pallava king who was ruling the region at that time got attracted by the lady and married her. With time while the king was growing older, the lady remained young. He called up Kanikannan and ordered to sing the praise of him so that he also turned young. When he refused, the king ordered Kanikannan to be banished out of the country. Kanikannan explained this to his master Thirumalisai, who prayed to Bhujangasayana Perumal. When the king heard this, he ordered the three to be sent of the country, which they obliged. When the three left Kanchipuram, it was engulfed in darkness. Realizing his sin, the king worshiped Bhujangasayana Perumal to return along with his two devotees. Since the presiding deity obliged to his devotee’s wishes, he is called Yathothkari Perumal. Yathothka means as requested and kari denotes the person who accomplishes the task.One of the alwars, poet saints of the 7-10th century, Poigai Alvar was born at this temple.
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