108 Divya-deshams: Thirukazhicheerama


BY: SUN STAFF - 13.6 2024

Kazheesirama Vinnagaram - Thirukazhicheerama

A tour of the 108 Divya-desams, the divine abodes of Lord Vishnu and Lakshmi.

Kazheesirama Vinnagaram, also known as Tadalan Kovil or Tiruvikrama (Trivikara) Perumal Temple, is located in Sirkazhi, Tamil Nadu, in a location called Thdalan Koil. This Divya Desham dedicated to the worship of Lord Visnu as Trivikrama with His consort Loganayagi (Lakshmi).

Lord Vamana appeared at Thirukazhicheerama to quell the pride of the asura king Bali, and appeared to king Mahabali here. This pastime is also associated with Thrikkakara Temple in Kerala, Ulagalantha Perumal Temple, Tirukoyilur and Ulagalantha Perumal Temple, Kanchipuram.

Shrine of Andal

Thirukazhicheerama finds mention in Brahmanda Purana as Patalika Vanam and Uttama Kshetram. Lord Brahma once boasted about his long life, and the sage Romas wanted to suppress Brahma's thought, so he did severe penance at this place. Vishnu was pleased by the sage's devotion, and appeared before him. On further request from the sage, Vishnu appeared again as Trivikrama. He gave a boon to the sage that he would get a life longer than that of Brahma and blessed that with each falling hair of the sage, Brahma would lose one year.

Constructed in the Dravidian style of architecture, the temple is believed to have been built by Cholas, with later contributions from Medieval Cholas, Vijayanagara kings, and Madurai Nayaks.

Shrine of Loganayagi

The temple complex houses all its shrines within a large concentric wall pierced by a three-tiered rajagopuram. There are three major shrines in the temple - one for Trivikrama in the sanctum and two other shrines for Loganyagi and Andal. The temple has a rectangular plan with the sides of the temple covered by tall brick walls. The temple tank, Chakra Tirtham, is located behind the temple premises.

The Lord is praised here as Mann Alantha Tadalan, meaning the one Who measured the land. The name Tadalan is in honour of Tiruvikrama (Vamana), and the mulavar (prime deity) fixed in the central shrine is in this form. The presiding deity, Tiruvikrama, appeared for sage Ashtakoma.

Temple vimana

The sanctum is approached from the gateway tower past a flagpost, an altar, an elevated hall, and two other halls, Mahamandpa and Ardhamandapa. The sanctum houses the stone image of Trivikrama in standing posture along with various other metal images.

The shrines of Lokanayagi are located in the first sanctum, in the northwestern corner beyond the sanctum. The shrine of Andal is located on the other corner.

The place was in ruins for a time, and an old lady is believed to have placed the Deity in a pot of rice. When Thirumangai Alvar came to the place, the lady handed over the idol to him and Thirumangai is believed to have constructed the temple. V. V. S. Aiyar quotes that the 610th Tirukkural mentions the temple. Sage Vishvamitra conducted his yagna at this place and came to be known as Sidhasrama. It is also the place where Thirumangai Alvar arrived after coming back from North India, where he defeated Thirugnana Sambandar in debate.

Paramapada Vasal