Archives Thirumangai Azhwar

THIRUMANGAI AZHWAR

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Place

Other Names

Month Star Sign
Thirukurayalur Kaliyan, Aalinaadan, NaaluKaviPerumal,
Arulmaari, Parakalan, Mangaiyarkone
Kaarthigai Krithikai
(Krithikaa)
Saranga
(Bow)

ThiruvAli nAdu was part of ChOzhA kingdom. There, Ali nAdAr (belonged to the fourth caste), an Army General (ThaLapathi) of ChozhA king earned the king’s goodwill and respect with his devoted work. He and his wife, vallitthiru were blessed with a beautiful male child, whom they named neelan (due to his dark (neela mEga) colour. He was born in the year nala, on a karigai mAsam, kritigai nakshathram, full moon day and was an incarnation of the Lord’s SArngam (Divine bow). Neelan grew up a shrewd smart boy, learning Tamizh and Sanskrit and mastered them; became well versed in sword fight(vAL payiRchi)

Thirumangai Azhwar was an army general with the chOzhaa king of his time. To win kumudhavalliyaar as his bride the Azhwar made a promise to her that he will serve food to 1000 sri vaishnavaas every day for a year. Because of this Azhwar could not pay his dues to the king. The king imprisoned the Azhwar. The Lord of Kaanchi appeared in Azhwar’s dream and asked him to come to kaanchi for the money. Taking the king’s permission, the Azhwar travelled to Kanchi and secured the tax money for the king. In the mean time, the king came to know of the Azhwar’s sri vaishnavaa service and returned the tax money back to the Azhwar.

Azhwar spent all his wealth in the service of sri vaishnavaas. To continue with his service, he had to resort to robbery from the idle rich. One day, Lord Vishnu and thaayaar Lakshmi took to the path way frequented by the Azhwar, dressed as newly wed husband and wife. The divine couple with all the jewels was a target the Azhwar could not pass up. As the Azhwar took all the valuables away he tried to remove a ring worn in one of the toes. Azhwarhad to resort to biting the ring off from the Lord’s toe. At
this time he realized that the toes belong to none other than his Lord Vishnu. Then, it is said, the Azhwartook out his sword and demanded that the Lord grant him thiru mandhiram. This, the Lord gladly granted. 

It seems Azhwar and thiru Nyaanasambandar had a debate and the Azhwar was victorious.  At this occasion sambandar is said to have accepted that the title “naalukavip perumaaL” is fitting for the Azhwar.

Thirumangai Azhwar sang GREAT PASURAMS (on NARAYANAN’s name) and visited almost about 80 temples (out of 108 Divya dEsams). He built the fort and kOttai (ramparts) of Srirangam without affecting or spoiling ThoNdaradippodiAzhwAr’s nandhavanam. (“pAdi pAdi paraparappAi thirinthAr”) 
His compositions were : 

Prabhandam: 
periya thirumozhi (1084), 
thirukkuRundhaaNdagam (20), 
thiru nedundhaaNdagam (30), 
thiruvezhukooRRirukkai (1), 
siRiya thirumadal (40), 
periya thirumadal (78).

one of his periya thirumozhi pasurams: 

vAdinEn vAdi varundhinEn manatthaal
perun thuyaridum idumbaiyil piRanNdhu 
koodinEn koodi iLaiyavar thammOdu 
avar tharum kalaviyE karudhi
OdinEn Odi uyvadhOr poruLaal 
uNarvenum perumpadhan therindhu 
naadinEn nAdi nadi nAn kaNdukoNdEn 
nArAyaNA vennum nAmam. 

Meaning: Being born into this body, a reservior of profound sorrow, I am repenting, melting and crying, I am filled with pathos and self-pity;I have let myself run after beautiful women, seeking the sensual pleasures from their union; Through the grace of our Lord I have now realised that there is a greater goal and That will deliver me into eternal happiness; I have been searching for this state and have now found it in THE SWEET NAME NARAYANA. 

This pASsuram will bring tears to the eyes of any Vaishnava for AzhwAr’s Bhakti and love and his heart longing for the lotus feet of our Lord Narayana.

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