Tirukkarambanur - Uttamar Koyil

One of the 108 Temples & Celestial Abodes of Vishnu revered by the Tamil hymns of the Alwars of the 1st millennium CE

Location: Uttamar Koil (Bhikshandar Koil) near Tiruchirappalli
Chola Naadu)
Vishnu: Purushottaman
Taayaar: Poorva Devi, Poornavalli
Theertham:Kadamba Theertham
Paasuram :Tirumangai
Travel Base:Tiruchirappalli
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Description: Tirukkarambanur is located in Uttamar Koyil - also known as Bhikshaandaar Koyil , a village located on the railroad between Tiruchirappalli and Villuppuram. This is a unique temple in that it has shrines dedicated to Vishnu and his consort Lakshmi, Bhrahma and Saraswati, Shiva and Parvati.

This shrine is also known as Nepakshetram or Adimapuram. Tirumangai Alwar refers to 'Karambanur Uthaman' in a lone verse, where he states that Uthaman of Karambanur,  Perumal of Kurunkudi and Tiruttankaal, are none other than Ranganathar of Srirangam - in a decad of verses praising Srirangam. It is believed Tirumangaialwar  lived here, supervising the renovation of the Srirangam temple.

Deities: There are shrines here to all three of the trinity of deities revered in the Indian system of beliefs, namely Shiva and his consort Vadivudaiamman, Bhrama and his consort Saraswati, Vishnu and his consort (Purushottaman and Poornavalli).

Shiva is worshipped in the form of Bhikshatanar. Legend has it that the fifth head of Bhrama, which was pulled out by Shiva, stuck to his palms; and it was only after his  receiving alms from Mahalakshmi, that it came unstuck. The same legend is held at the Tirukkandiyur Divyadesam (where the presiding deity is known by the name Hara Saapa Vimochana Perumaal), adjacent to the Tirukkandiyur Veerattastalam of Shiva and at Tirukkurunkudi near Nanguneri - Tirunelveli. This temple also popularly goes by the name Bhikshantar koyil.

Bhrahma is regarded as a Guru - or teacher, and hence offering worship on thursdays is considered significant.

Another legend has it that Vishnu took the form of a Kadamba tree to which Bhrahma offered worship, offering water from his kamandalam. Legend also has it that Kadamba muni offered worship to Vishnu on the banks of the Kadamba theertham created by Bhrahma.

The Temple: Shiva's shrine is situated south of Vishnu's shrine, facing west. There is also a shrine to Dasaratha Lingam and Soundara Parvati. There are also shrines to , Andal, Varadarajaperumaal, Venugopalan, Rama, Vinayakar, Natarajar, Subramaniyar, Saneeswaran and Anjaneyar. The Bhikshatanar form of Shiva here is considered to be of great significance. Sanakar, Sanandanar and Sanatkumarar, as well as Kadamba Muni are believed to have worshipped the Trinity Bhrama, Vishnu and Shiva here here. Inscriptions from the period of the Cholas and Pandyas are seen here.

Festivals: The annual Bhramotsavam of Perumaal is conducted in the month of Chittirai, while that for Shiva is conducted in the month of Vaikasi The Maasi festival of the Tiruvarangam temple witnesses a procession of Ranganathar to the Kadamba theertham at this temple.

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