Religion

Andal & Aadi Pooram

श्री विष्णुचित्त कुलनन्दन कल्पवल्लीं
श्रीरङ्गराजहरि चन्दन योगदृश्याम्।
साक्षात् क्षमां करुणया कमलामिवान्यां
गोदामनन्यशरणः शरणं प्रपद्ये ॥१॥
⦁ श्री गोदास्तुतिः श्री वेदांत देसिका

Andal, the reincarnation of Goddess Mahalakshmi was born in a small town called Srivilliputhur, Tamil Nadu in the Tamil month Aadi and Pooram Nakshatram (astrological star). Periyazhawar was her father. She is also known by the names Goda, Nachiyar etc. Temple tower of Srivilluputhur is the one amongst the tallest in the country, 192 ft (59 m).

Swami Nigamantha MahaDesikan has composed Sri Goda Stuthi on Goddess Andal. In the above sloka, he metaphorizes Andal as the Kalpvruskha (the magical tree which grants all our wishes) in the garden of Devaloka. Andal was born in the garden of Vishnu-chitha a.k.a Periyaazhwar and married Lord Rangaraja, she is none other the Mahalakshmi seated on the lotus and grants all our wishes.

Andal was the only woman Azhwar (Alwar) amongst 12 Azhwars who propagated Bhakti movement with their Tamil hymns. All the songs of Azhwars were compiled, and it is called Nalayira Divya Prabanadham which are equivalent to Vedas and sung in all Vishnu temples in Southern India during the festivals and procession.

Andal was a passionate Tamil poet.Her love for Lord Vishnu made her tie flower garlands in a unique way and compose hymns being a child. While making the garland for the Lord, she used to adorn herself with the same and look at the mirror at her own beauty with the garland. Her father was offering these garland without her practice.

When Periyazhwar discovered what was happening, he was shocked and refused to offer the garland. That night the Lord appeared in his dream and commanded him offer the same garland adorned by Andal. Even today Andal’s garland are offered to Tirupathi Balaji, Madurai Kallazhagar, Srirangam Ranganatha during annual utsavams.

Thiruppavai is one her popular compositions, which has 30 songs and popularly sung in the Tamil Month Marghazhi. Another work of Andal was Nachiyar Thirumozhi, it has 143 songs. Purely through her devotion and love, Lord Ranganatha had ordered Periyaazhwar for make arrangements for her wedding.
Andal as bride and Periyazhwar as a father in law reached Srirangam and she disappeared in the Sri Ranganatha/Vishnu temple at Srirangam. Legend goes that she reached the doors of the sanctum sanctorum, where she merged with Lord.

Thousands of devotees and tourists from various parts of the country participate in the “Aadi Pooram” festival celebrated in the Andal Temple. The Kalyanotsavam (Heavenly Marriage) and Rathosthsavam (Chariot Festival) are important days in the celebration.

About Author

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Name : Venkatesh Suriyaprakash

Tinku Venkatesh is a management professional who has a good track record of implementing organizational change and development interventions. He holds a PDGM and Engineering Degree with specialisation in Biotechnology. He is deeply spiritual and he is in the course of learning as well as propagate the Santana dharma

Twitter id- @tweets_tinku

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