The object of Lord in His Vamanavatara-Trivikrama Avatara was
to teach that wealth of even great kings should not land them pride and
arrogance. He took the Vishwarupa,
measured the space with His right Leg and the Earth with the right. He stood too tall touching both earth and
sky. In His extreme delight to bless
Emperor Mahabali, the illustrious grandson of Prahladha who was instrumental
for His Narasimha Avtar, Lord appears here with the conch in the right hand and
the discus in the left-vice-versa. This
is described as His teaching wisdom to devotees. His posture-left leg on the earth and the
right in the sky-appears as if He is asking where to place His foot for the
third foot of land due from Mahabali as promised to Him. Lord Brahmma is worshipping the foot in the
This is a very popular story of Lord Vishnu as a Vamana seeking
three foot step land from Mahabali, which he could not afford as Lord had
covered both earth and sky with two feet itself leaving no space for the third.
Sage Mrigandu wanted to have this Vishwarupa Darshan of Lord
and approached Lord Brahmma for His advice.
Brahmma suggested that the sage go to Krishna Kshetra (now Tirukovilur)
on the banks of Krishnabadra
River to realize his
wish. The sage along with his wife
Mitravathi came to this place and performed severe penance for the darshan of
Lord came to their abode in the guise of an old Brahmin and
begged for food. They didn’t have even a
single grain of rice to offer. The sage turned
to his wife. Mitravathi went in, took a
bowl in hand and prayed to Lord Narayana to fill the bowl with food if she was
the chaste wife of the sage. The bowl
was full of delicious food. Pleased with
their penance, Perumal granted His Vishwarupa darshan to the sage couple.
This is the holy place where the first three Azhwars-Poigai
Azhwar, Boodhathazhwar and Peyazhwar- met together incidentally by the grace of
Lord. It was night raining heavily. Poigai Azhwar sought a place in the Ashram of
Sage Mrigandu. He was shown a place to
rest down. After a little while,
Boodhathazwar came to the same place for a space. The first Ahwar shared the space just
sufficient for two to sit. The third
Azhwar-Peyahwar too came there. The two
shared the space with him sufficient only for standing. Suddenly, they were pressed due to the
presence of a fourth comer who was but Perumal Himself granting His darshan.
The songs sung by the three Azhwars how they were blessed with
darshan of Lord as lighting a lamp to dispense the rainy darkness, is chanted
even now by the devotees while lighting lamps in their houses in mornings and
The Three Azhwars attained salvation in this holy land. Lord Perumal is praised as Ulagu Alanda
Perumal-Ulagalanda Perumal as He sought a small piece of land measuring just
three feet. The idol is made of wood in
a standing posture, the tallest in the country.
Against the tradition, Perumal is holding the conch in the right hand
and the discus in the left. Of the 108
Divya Desas of Perumal, this is the only temple with Swayambu Vishnu
Durga. This is an important kshetra for
the Vishnavas and Hindus in general in the Nadu Nadu region. The tower of the temple is third tallest in
the state scaling 192 feet. Shukracharya,
(Venus in the zodiac sign) Guru of the Asuras, has a place in the temple.
It is noteworthy that the holy scriptures Nalayira Divya
Prabandam containing 4000 verses in praise of Lord Vishnu sung by 12 Alzhwars
from time to time at various places, began from Tirukovilur.
It is mostly in Shiva temples, we see Mother Vishnu Durga in
the prakaras. In Tirukovilur temple, Lord and His beloved Sister Durga (Maya
the feminine form of Lord Vishnu) are in shrines nearby to each other. Tirumangai Azhwar who generally praises Lord
alone in his hymns had made a devotional line to Mother Durga in one of his
verses. People pray to Mother Vishnu
Durga during Rahu Kalams on Tuesdays and Fridays for relief from the adverse
aspects of planets.
There is a 40 feet tall Garuda Pillar with a small temple built
on it opposite Perumal shrine. It is
believed that Garuda Bhagwan is worshipping Lord from this temple.
Of the Pancha Krishna Sthalas – Five great temples of Lord
Krishna- 1)Tirukovilur, 2) Tirukannapuram, 3) Tirukannangudi, 4) Tirukannamangai
and 5) Kabisthalam, Tirukovilur is the first.
Lord Krishhna in this temple, made of Salagrama stone, graces the
devotees from a shrine on the right side of the Gopuram entrance. The devotees must begin the worship from this
shrine and pass to the presiding Perumal only then. Great Vaishnava Acharya Manavala Mamunigal
also had rendered many hymns in praise of Lord Perumal.
According to scriptures and Tamil literatures. Sage Parasurama
and Sage Agasthya had performed penance at Tirukovilur. The puranic age Krishnabadra River
is flowing now in the name of Thenpennai.
Before butter (Vennai in Tamil) melts, Pennai (the name of the river)
melts, is an old saying.