Thirumangai Azhwar divine pastime …. ……………………………………. ……………………………………. Kaayaa maram …. ( never to dry and remain green ) UUraa KiNaRu…. ( The well that got dried) Thola Vazakku (never ending legal issues)

 Thirumangai Azhwar, the last Azhwar was   affectionately  called as Kaliyan .
He was the valiant army chief of the then Chola King.
For his valor the king gifted him with a small territory to rule over. Hence, he was known as Thirumangai Mannan .
He was attracted to an apsara  Kumudavalli , daughter of a physician and expressed his desire to marry her.
Kumudavalli who appeared on  a divine plan  to this earth  to transform this valiant king to a  devotee , laid the condition that he should  serve  one thousand  vaishnavas every day  by offering Prasadam for one year.
Thirumangai Mannan fulfilled her condition and continued to do so even after his marriage as he got habituated in this wonderful kainkaryam of feeding  the vaishnavas.
In due course, his wealth diminished and as…….
Lord Krishna says in Bhagavad Gita,
when HE decides to bless HIS devotee,
HE takes away wealth and enacted a divya leela.
Due to his love for vaishnavas , our Azhwar resorted to stealing and plundering wealth from the rich and  egoistic  men   but  used the wealth for feeding Vaishnavas and renovating temples.
One day ,  Tirumangai Mannan comes to know through his friends that a newly wedded couple bedecked with precious  jewellery  were  passing through a forest in a palanquin and if they could plunder their wealth, they could continue with their cause of serving  vaishnavas forever.
 Overjoyed , Thirumangai Mannan along with his four friends  rush to the  place in the midnight ,  galloping  fast on his horse, who he calls as Aadalmaa.
He  way lays the divine couple who are resting  near a mandapam at “Thirumanankollai” and plunders their wealth. This precious booty is carefully put  over a cloth and  Kaliyan ties it .
Not being satisfied with the loot, he  advances towards them and tries to remove the Thirumetti of  ( Goddess) Thayar with all his might but  is unsuccessful.
Something draws him towards them for a second look . However  he manages and when he tries to lift the loot, he is unable to do so. He  suspects  the bridegroom for having put some charm on the loot  .  He threatens the handsome prince ( Lord)  Perumal who is disguised as the bridegroom with a sword to disclose the secret which is not allowing him to lift the loot .
Perumal  smiles at him .
He advises him to purify himself by having a dip at the  Kavery tributary  and return so that he can impart the secret to him.
Thirumangai mannan  politely obeys the advise .
He returns to  Perumal.
Lord  gives him the most sacred mantram, Thirumantram .
The moment Perumal whispers the sacred Ashtakshari Thirumantram , wisdom dawns on Kaliyan and he surrenders at the Lotus feet of the Divya Dampadhigal.

Thirumangai Azwar had  initiated  lot of services to  our LORD at Srirangam. The hundred pillar mandapam for the yearly festival adhyayana uthsavam was his contribution .

He also  built the north and south gopurams at Kulasekaran thiruveedhi            ( streets ) the fourth compound wall ( Mathil suvar) which is called Maharlokam .


This compound wall’s inner praharam is called “Aalinaadan veethi” that was the name of the place ruled by Azwar.

There is a big Garudazwar sannathi in this praharam.


The entrance is called Karthikai Vaasal to remember the birth star of our  Azwar .


 The Thirunadai malikai that joins the Chandra Pushkarani and Velli Azakiyan vasal was  also his contribution .

On total he  had completed eight major construction works in Srirangam.

The big question to the devotees  was where from he got this money for these construction work?”

1111It is told by elders that once Azhwar  sent his disciples to find out where from they could get money for carrying out this  huge work listed above  in the temple .

One of the disciples   understood  the task his master had  for them . 

He politely came  out and told 

……Master  I am told  that  there is  a golden  Buddha statue at Nagapattinam near Kanyakumari ..

 If  we could  somehow  possess  it,  we  would get enough money  for the construction work by selling  the same .


On further discussing about the whereabouts , they came to know  the statue was installed on top of the Vimanam and  any disturbance of the statue would damage the Vimanam .

Hence they had to find out a smarter  way to lift  it without damaging the vimanam.


To understand the exact shape of the statue  they had to find out the sculptor who  was assigned  that work .

Azhwar  with positive note  , sent his disciples to find out where the sculptor lived for more details  and decided to take his team to the place where the sculptor lived   .  

He  went in person with his disciples and stayed exactly opposite to the sculptor’s residence to gain his attention .

 Casually speaking to the sculptor  , He  revealed he was on a pilgrimage  and  was just waiting for the arrival of a ship to continue his yathra to Nagapattinam.

Thus he was able to gain his audience .


One day he wanted to draw the attention of the sculptor .

He  raised his  voice and said  ,

Am  shocked  !!!  How  and really how  could  the golden Buddha statue be stolen with such carelessness when the sculptor did a wonderful job in making it and installing the same with perfection?


There was a murmur in the room .

 The sculptor who heard this was perplexed . 

He  believed the words  he heard and  started cursing the helper who worked with him during the construction of the vimanam  as he  was the only one who knew the secret of making it and installing it over there .


Thirumangai Azwar  read the sculptors mood .

He asked the sculptor for his nervousness  and pretended that he was concerned for his labor .

He asked him to reveal  the helper’s whereabouts  so that he would go and search for him and punish him for his misdeed.


The sculptor innocently pleaded that  that he did not know his where about but was scared to meet the soldiers  .

  Gaining his attention further , Azhwar spoke to him pleasingly and requested him to tell him about the ( Vimana Makuta suthram) construction secret.

He assured him that he would find the sculptor and recover the statue from him which was explained . Assessing  the situation and taking leave he moved near the shores .


The same day a ship arrived . Azhwar boarded the ship  along with his disciples. Azhwar went to the Buddha Vihar with one of his disciples. Awaiting for the right time  they planned the next move . As he had already taken vital  clues from the sculptor  Azhwar managed to  remove the statue with ease .

 The golden  statue was glittering in the moonlight.  Azhwar  had a doubt ,  Buddha who renounced his princely home and kingdom would never wish to see himself in this  golden statue. And may be that was the reason the divine play is enacted …


Azhwar pleased with the success  decides that it will be better to travel alone  up to srirangam with the golden statue .

He advises his disciple to leave and would follow him soon .

Azhwar thus  walks  back to Srirangam.  As  he  approaches the holy place  Thirukkannangudi  near Nagapattinam   it gets  dark.

Feeling tired  he takes rest under  big tamarind tree.

He finds the field around the tree is  excavated  .

With no hesitation he buries the golden statue in the field  and commands the tree,  that even if he happens to  fall asleep, the tree must  be awake and take care of the gold  statue that has been buried .


 The  next morning the tamarind tree obediently  sheds it leaves upon him  and wakes  him up .

Azhwar pleased with the tree  blesses the tree as URangaa puLI

(It is believed that the leaves of the tree never closed after this divine  incident.)


As the dawn broke the  farmer arrives to water the fields .

Azhwar  a bit  confused , stops the farmer  by saying that the field belongs to him  warns him to move out of  the field .

The farmer a bit amused explains that  for generations the land belonged to his family. With confusion he gets the Elders of the village to prove the same  and object  Azhwar claims. 


The Elders demand  proof  from Azhwar about his claims   . Azhwar instantaneously submits  that the document is at Srirangam and the same will be made available  in a day  for which the elders agree .


Azhwar just wanted to snatch an opportunity to leave the place with the treasure that he had kept buried. 

It is said  due to this incident , at this place the law suits keeps on dragging.  Hence the name  Thola Vazakku. (means never ending)

Azhwar quickly proceeded to Srirangam .

Enroute he  looks for some refreshment . Feeling thirsty and  looking at a  woman drawing water from a well, he  requests to share some water to quench his thirst  .

The woman refuses to give water .

She replies  …

How can I trust you  as I just saw  you claim the land and who knows you may also claim this  well also as  your  property.



Azhwar , unhappy with her behavior  leaves the place  .

His  unhappiness indirectly cursed that the bore well would become dry and water would never flow from underneath. 

Thus the  well was called UUraa KiNaRu and always remained dry since then.

 Tired ,  Azhwar proceeds  inside the temple of Thirukannangudi .

As he is  exhausted  , he  relaxes  under a Makiza tree.

The Lordships are  now very concerned for Azhwar  .

thiruppulanee v

Lord  comes as as a traveler in disguise  and gives him food and water.

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Azhwar  who is terribly tired accepts the prasadam in  dazed condition .

He gains some energy and looks around to see that person but disappointed  as no one is around .

He blesses  the Makiza tree.

Thus the name of the tree becomes Kaayaa maram, never to dry and always to remain green and since then the tree is green .

 Completely refreshed now , Azhwar waits for the sun to set .


He leaves  to the field and takes  out the gold kept buried in the field  and  proceeds his journey to Srirangam.

On his way the all compassionate  Lord comes in disguise as a  traveler .



Azhwar impressed with his bewitching smile understands it was LORD himself  who had come to feed him.

Lord graces  Azhwar with his darshanam with His Sangu- Chakram  as desired by  him


Thirumangai Azhwar  spent his last days at Thirukurrungudi as per the command of  Lord Sri Ranganatha  and attained  salvation .



Adiyen Ramanuja dasan


Pics credits : Srikrishna akhilesh , google images, Lotus videos