The Kothandarama Temple is a temple dedicated to Lord Rama. It is located in Thillaivilagam in Thiruthiraipoondi. It is about 20 km from Thiruthuraipoondi. The majestic posture of Veera Kothandarama at Thillai Vilagam is similar to those at Mudikondan (Baalya Rama), Sri Vanjiyam (Hathambavur Rama), Madurantakam ( Eri Kaatha Rama) and Punnai Nallur (Saligrama Rama)
About The Temple
Legend has it that after defeating Ravana, and on his way back to Ayodhya, Rama stayed here in the ashram of Baradwaja Rishi. Just adjacent to the Kothandarama temple is the Chidambareswarar Umayambigai temple dedicated to Lord Shiva, where one also finds the idol of Nataraja. This temple is believed to pre date the Chidambaram temple and the two temples of Shiva and Rama are seen next to each other almost in the same complex with an entrance on the Northern side of the Rama temple into the Shiva temple. It is in this context that the place came to be referred to as ‘Thillai’ ‘Vilagam’. Traditionally Brahmins used to live south of the Vilagam. The Pancha Loka idols of the Thillai Vilagam Rama temple were found buried in the ground to the west of the temple in the early 19th century by Velu Thevar. The temple in its current form was built subsequent to that by Velu Thevar, whose clan are now the hereditary trustees of the temple (currently VG Sekar).
About the Deity
The Moolavar Rama is seen in a majestic posture sporting a handsome smile. To his right is Sita seen in a Kalyana Kolam. Kothandarama is seen providing a ‘Tribangi’ Seva here at this temple. The neck has one kind of a curve, the hip a different curve and the leg in a bent posture. The Moolavar idol of Kothandarama is believed to be at least a thousand years old. Rama is holding the bow in his left hand. On a close look at his hands, one is able to see the nerves, the ring and his sharp nails. One is also able to see the sharp distinctive fingers on each hand just like a human hand. In his right hand, is the arrow that contains the writing ‘Rama Saram’, the only one of its kind in a Rama temple. These writings refer to his philosophy of life – Oru Sol (Rama would not go back on the word he has given), Oru Il (Only one wife – he would not look at another woman) and Oru Vil (The special bow). Legend goes that he used his special arrow only thrice during his life. The first time was in Chitrakoodam to kill Kakasuran. The story goes that while he was resting on Sita’s lap, the asura took the form of a crow and pecked on Sita. As blood started flowing, a drop fell on Rama waking him from his sleep. Realising what had happened, he let go this special arrow at the asura ‘crow’. Surrendering to Rama, the asura gave away an eye in liberation of his wrong doing. Hence, to this day, crows cannot see straight.
The 2nd time Rama used the arrow to kill Vaali in Kishkinda and the third occasion was to kill Ravana in Lanka. Another interesting feature of the moolvar Rama is the distinctive marks. One is able to also see clearly the nerves and moles on the legs of Lord Rama. Also, one is able to see the knee cap on both the legs of the lord. On his left leg, one finds the Raksha bandhan tied by mother Kausalya when Rama was young to protect him from evil forces.
Legend and Stories
Anjaneya is seen next to Sita (who is seen in a Kalyana Kolam) in a Dasa Posture with his right hand close to his mouth in a posture of whispering something to Lord Rama. The story goes that Anjaneya was reminding Lord Rama of the promise to Baratha to return to Ayodhya at the stipulated time. Hearing this, Sita asked Anjaneya to carry curd rice to Bharatha with the message that they were on their way. On finding Baratha in a state of disbelief, Anjaneya lifted him on his shoulder and carried him to this region. It is at Mudi -Kandan (now Mudikondan) that Baratha found Rama’s hair and instantly recognised that his Lord was genuinely on his way back. It was at Mudikondan that Rama hugged his brother Bharatha in a happy gesture of meeting him again after many years.
Aadi Amavasai and Thai Amavasai days are sacred at this temple. Couples who bathe in the tank west of the temple on either of these two days are believed to be blessed with children. 11 days Rama Navami utsavam in Panguni- with Vahana procession on each of the days. On the 4th day is the Garuda Sevai. On the 10th day of the utsavam, Rama Pattabhibhisekam is performed with the Lord seen with a special crown. On the 11th day is the Vidayatri festival where Rama goes on a procession on ‘Deer Vahana’ the only one of its kind.
This is the only Rama temple where Moolavar Lord is seen holding an arrow with the inscription ‘Rama Saram’ bringing out Rama’s philosophy in life. ‘Deer Vahana’ Procession on the 11th day of Rama Navami Festival in Panguni is a special feature
There is a prevalent belief that presenting curd rice to Anjaneya at this temple would liberate the devotee from problem associated with marriage and navagriha dosham. The curd rice is packed on Anjaneya's body and is not distributed to the devotees.
The nearest airport is in Trichy. The nearest railhead is in Mannargudi station. Thillai Vilagam is off the Tiruvarur / Thiruthuraipoondi Muthupet highway 19kms West of Thiruthuraipoondi and 6kms East of Muthupet.Buses ply every 15minutes from Thiruthuraipoondi to Muthupet. One should get down at Gopala Samudram (17kms from Thiruthuraipoondi and 7kms before Muthupet). From here, mini bus will take one to the temple (2kms). One can also reach the temple from Pattukottai(35kms) or Vedaranyam (40kms)
Arulmigu Veerakothandaramaswamy Thirukkoil,
Thillaivilagam, Tiruturaipundi Taluk,
Tiruvarur District, Pin -614706.
Devotees visit this temple to seek fulfillment of the following:-
- To attain high positions in life
- For matrimony
- For family unity
Achutham Keyshavam Rama Narayanam Krishna Damodaram Vasudevam Harim Shridharam Madhavam Gopika Vallabham Janaki Nayakam Ramachandram Bhajey
Meaning -Oh Lord who cannot be perished, who also has names like Keshava, Rama, Damodara, Narayana, Sridhara, Madhava, Krishna, Ramachandra the beloved of Janaki, let me say your name regularly.
Vasudeva Sutham Devam Kamsa Chanoora Mardhanam Devaki Paramanandham Krishnam Vande Jagathgurum
Meaning -I bow to you O Krishna, the ultimate guru, Devaki and Vasudeva's son, and the destroyer of Kamsa and Chanur.
Adharam Madhuram Vadanam Madhuram Nayanam Madhuram Hasitam Madhuram Hridayam Madhuram Gamanam Madhuram Mathuraa Dhipate Rakhilam Madhuram
Meaning -Meaning - Sweet are Your lips, sweet is Your face, sweet are Your eyes, sweet is Your smile, sweet is Your heart, sweet is Your gait, O Lord of Mathura, everything about You is sweet.
Alokya Mathur Mukha Madarena Sthanyam Pibantham Saraseeruhaksham Sachinmayam Devam Anantha Roopam Balam Mukundam Manasa Smarami
Meaning -I think of this Balamukundan as the one who looks lovingly at his mother's face while taking milk from her, who has eyes similar to the red lotus, who is the embodiment of truth and intelligence and other forms.
6 am - 12 pm4 pm - 8 pm