Sunday, May 9, 2010

Thiru Mukoodal Appan Venkatesan

Lord changed his original Sayana Kolam to provide darshan to Thondaiman Chakravarthy in a standing posture
Tirupathi Lord sent his Original Conch and Chakra, to the king, which are now seen here at this temple
Varadar makes his annual trip to Thiru Mukoodal on Maatu Pongal day

Located about 70kms South of Madras, off the Chengalpet-Kanchipuram SH58 at the confluence of three rivers – Palar, Vegavathi and Cheyyar- is the 2000 year old Appan Venkatesan temple in Thiru Mukoodal. The temple is one km South of Pazhaya Seevaram Narasimha temple on the Salavakkam Highway.

The Story
Kanchi King Thondaiman invoked the blessings of Tirupathi Lord seeking Moksham. The Lord asked him to postpone his trip to Tirupathi as there was a battle to be undertaken at Kanchi and his presence was required there. As part of his best wishes, Lord Venkatachalapathy sent his Conch and Chakra to Thondaiman and helped him win the battle. To this day, the original Conch and Chakra of Tirupathi Lord are seen here at this temple.

When Thondaiman once again sought Tirupathi Lord’s blessings for Moksham, he was asked to go to Thiru Mukoodal. When Thondaimaan Chakravarthy reached here, the Lord who was in a Sayanam Posture stood up and provided darshan in a majestic standing posture. A delighted king called out to him as ‘Appa Venkatesa’ and that name has now come to stay.

Brighu Rishi

Lord Srinivasa provided darshan, facing North, to Brighu Maha Rishi who undertook penance here and hence he is seen in a standing posture facing Northern Direction.

Divya Desam connection

While this is not a Divya Desam, there are some interesting connections with Tirupathi and Oppiliappan Divya Desams. One finds Tirupathi Lord’s Conch and Chakra at this temple. Similar to Oppiliappan temple, Lord Srinivasa is said to have provided darshan to Markandeya Rishi (as Ranganatha in his sayana kolam) and to Bhoodevi as Kannan. Hence, Markandeya Rishi and Bhoo devi are seen by the side of Appan Venkatesan.

Equivalent to Kasi

Having bath at the confluence of the three rivers and undertaking Pitru Tharpanam on the river bank is said to provide Punyam equivalent to having bath in Kasi.

Kanchi Varadar’s annual visit to Thiru Mukoodal

The most popular event at this temple is the annual visit of Lord Varadarajan of Kanchipuram on Maatu Pongal day in January. On this evening, Lord Srinivasa of Thiru Mukoodal welcomes Salavakkam Perumal and Pazhaya Seevaram Narasimha as well as Varadar at this temple. Later in the evening, all these four deities go out on a street procession around Thiru Mukoodal.

Tri Murthy temple
This is a TriMurthy temple- Brahma, Siva and Vishnu. On the head is the matted hair and Netrikan (the third eye) that is symbolic of Shiva. One can see this matted hair at this temple only in the month of Karthigai. The Abhaya hastham Posture of the Lord seen with a Lotus flower is symbolic of Brahma. The Lord seen with a Conch and Chakra is symbolic of Vishnu.

Appar Thirunavukarasar has sung praise of the Lord. Hence, this is also referred to as the ‘Appar’ koil.


One of the distinguishing features at the Thiru Mukoodal temple is the large number of inscriptions across the entire stretch on the Eastern walls of the complex. Stories relating to our culture dating back to Raja Raja Chozha, details of lands donated to this temple, performance of daily poojas, festivals round the year have been clearly laid out.

The other interesting aspect was the Hospital and Vedic School that flourished at this place just behind the temple in centuries gone by. There was a full fledged hospital with a number of beds, doctors & nurses and a medicine center.

Vedic School
As seen in other temple stories in this region including Uthira Merur, this place too was renowned for Vedic Education where one was always a witness to vedic chanting and Prabhandham recitals. However, with passage of time, both of these have taken a back seat. The Hospital has been damaged to an extent of no revival.

The temple itself, which is now part of ASI and designated as a protected monument, is in fine shape but no more do we hear the constant vedic recital that was once symbolic of this place.


Having said that, Shri. Raghunathan Bhattar, the priest here, is a shining example of how priests should be. He must rank as one of the most devoted in a perumal temple performing poojas with utmost sincerity and devotion to the Lord.


Krishna Jayanthi
Vaikunta Ekadesi Garuda Sevai

Thiruvonam (Perumal’s star) is special every month

Quick Facts

Moolavar : Appan Venkatesan North Facing Standing Posture
Goddess : Alarmel Mangai (Separate Sannidhi)
Utsavar : Srinivasa Perumal

Temple Time : 830am-11am and 4pm-6pm

On Thiruvonam day every month, the temple will be open between 8am- 1pm and 3pm-7pm

On Weekends, temple will be open as above.

Priest: R. Raghunathan Bhattar @ 94437 78352

How to reach

1. Chennai- Tambaram-Walajapet- Pazhaya Seevaram. One has to take a right at Pazhaya Seevaram and cross the Palar Bridge to reach Thiru Mukoodal- 65kms

2. Chennai-Singaperumal Koil- Palur (SH57) - SH58-Pazhaya Seevaram. One has to take a right at Singaperumal Koil (45kms from Madras) on to the SH57. 12kms on this road, just after crossing the Chengalpet-Kanchipuram railway gate at Palur, one will join Chengalpet- Kanchipuram SH 58. 5kms on this road, one should take at left at Pazhaya Seevaram and cross the Palar Bridge to reach Thiru Mukoodal- 65kms

3. Chennai- Chengalpet-Kanchipuram Highway (NH45-SH58). Take a left at Pazhaya Seevaram to reach Thiru Mukoodal-72kms

It is better to take the third route. One can reach Thiru Mukoodal in 20minutes from Chengalpet.

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