|Srivilliputhur Divya Desam, Andal temple.en.wikipedia.org|
|Andal Temple, Srivilliputhur,Tamil Nadu .wikimapia.org|
|Andal and Perumal Anudinam.org|
Periyalwar an ardent devotee of Vatapatrasaayee, served the temple, by making elaborate garlands out of fresh flowers from the garden which he maintained exclusively for divine services. Andal, his adopted daughter, accidentally discovered on the the temple garden premises, was groomed by him with utmost care and as she grew older, took interest in her father's divine duties and offered him assistance. She was in the habit of wearing the garlands meant for god prior to offering them to the Lord. One day Periyazhvar was furious as, he was unable to stop this un-devotional habit of Andal's and he thought that would affect the sanctity of the holy place. Periyazhvar at last realized that the Lord himself preferred garlands which had been worn by Andal, and hence Andal's was referred to as 'Soodittanda Sudarkkodi'. Because of her utter and unalloyed devotion to Lord Vishnu since her childhood, It is believed, that Andal left her mortal body and merged with Sri Ranganathar (Lord Vishu) in the same place. Hence she is the main Goddess here with Ranganathar. The Andal Shrine, according to tradition, was built by Perialvar upon his return from Srirangam, with images of herself, Lord Rangamannar and 'Garuda' all installed in the same sanctum.
Andal is the author of Tiruppaavai, a scintillating collection of 30 devotional poems in Tamil sung especially in the month of Margazhi, the month considered auspicious for the observance of ''Paavai Nonbu".
|temple car festival, Sri Andal templw,Sri Villiputhur. www.inidhu.com|
This temple has one of the tallest towers (12 tired) in Tamil Nadu – 192 feet in height. In the north eastern part is the Vatapatrasayee temple, in the south western part is Aandal's temple The temple tower is the official emblem of the Government of Tamil Nadu. Inscriptions of Madurai Nayak period point out that this temple underwent major renovations in the 8th century. The flower gardens once groomed by Periyazhvar are between these two areas. There are shrines to each of the ten incarnations (avatarams) of Vishnu. The Andal shrine's roof is covered with the gold plated Pranavakriti vimaanam with stucco work depicting themes from each of the 30 Tiruppaavai hymns.
Incidentally Andal's shrine and the adjacent places were once the residence of Andal and Periyahwar , according the chief Bhattachariyar doing kayankaryam and pooja in the sanctum.
Annual festivals fall in the months of Aadi and Margazhi and Purattaasi. Margazhi festivals are celebrated with religious fervor. The annual car festival of Sri Andal Temple at Srivilliputtur in Virudhunagar district, is organised every year as part of Aadi Pooram festival, that attracts hundreds of devotees from various places. It occurs in the month of July. The temple follows Aarukala pooja - six worship protocol. Theertham: Tirumukkulam.
In Srivilliputtur there is the Madavar Vilagam Vaidyanathar (Lord Shiva) temple with a six feet high monolithic stone image of Natarajar considered to be a masterpiece. This temple was also patronized by the Madurai Nayak. Yet another attractions are the dairy products, in particular, mouth-watering ''Milk Govaa'' which is available in plenty and is tasty. In the adjacent areas of this temple town there are several milk dairies. Sweets made from milk are quality wise good and the rates are quite reasonable.
Sri Villiputtur is accessible by road from Virudunagar, Rajapalayam or Tirunelveli towns and also by train.