Thirukadalmallai SthalaSayana Perumal

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Sthala Sayana Perumal

Sthalasayana Perumal Temple (also called Thirukadalmallai) is at Mahabalipuram. It is one of the 108 Divyadesam dedicated to Vishnu, who is worshipped as Sthalasayana Perumal and his consort Lakshmi as Nilamangai Thayar.The utsavar perumal is known as ulaguyya ninraan. The festival deity is sported with a lotus bud in the hand, while the presiding deity is seen displaying Jnana Mudra. Pundarika rishi can be seen sitting at the lord’s feet in the temple. This place is the birth place of Boothathalwar.

Deity     : Sthalasayana Perumal
Goddess   : Nilamangai Thayar
Utsavar   : Ulaguyya Ninraan
Pushkarani: Pundareeka pushkarani & Garuda River 
Vimanam   : Thanganakruthi Vimanam or Aanatha Vimanam 

The place is also famous for its Adivaraha shrine near the seashore, where the Lord is known as Valavendai Gnanapiran or the Lord having His Consort on His right side unlike other places with His Consort on the left side like the nearby Thiruvidaventhai Divyadesam


Temple Gopuram

Mamallapuram sea region was once dense with forests. Sage Pundareeka was performing penance here. He saw lotus flowers in a tank nearby and wanted them to be placed at the feet of Lord Narayana in the Milk Ocean-Tiruparkadal. Picking up the flowers, he proceeded to Tiruparkadal but the sea obstructed his march. To make way, he began to dry the sea by removing the water day and night. This went on for years. Tired, he cried “Oh Lord Parandhama, if I am your true devotee, let the sea dry and make way for me and till such time I reach you these flowers should not fade off.” His mind was completely set on Lord. Perumal appeared before him as an aged man.

The old man asked the sage to get him food as he was hungry. He also advised him to stop his impossible task and do something worthwhile. The sage asked the old man to hold his flower basket and wait till he brought food for him saying that he was determined to see Perumal in Tiruparkadal, place the flowers at His feet and would not rest till then. The sage went to bring food for the old man.

Before he returned, Perumal wore all the flowers on His Thirumeni – body – and was in his reclining posture. It was a pleasant shock for the sage to see his Lord and begged His pardon for making Him carry the flower basket and also begged to allow him at His feet. As Lord gave darshan in His reclining position, He is praised as Sthala Sayana (reclining) Perumal


Pundareeka Pushkarani

The architecture depicts the Pallava style. This shrine was built by Pallava kings. Bhoothathazhwar was found in a tank that is opposite to the temple. As there were seven temples here, the place was then called Seven Temple City – Ezhu Kovil Nagaram in Tamil. All of them were swallowed by the fury of sea. Pallava king Rajasimhan built three temples then of which two were prey to sea fury again. The remaining one is the present Lord Sri Sthala Sayana Perumal temple. This is also under the attack of sea waves. Observing a possible future calamity, Vijaya Nagar king Parangusa built a temple within the city of Mamallapuram in the 14th century and installed Perumal. All pujas are dedicated to this Perumal only now. The temple also had expansions by Chola king Vikrama Chola (1118-35 CE) during 1120 CE


This is the avathara sthalam of Saint Bhoothath Azhwar.He was found in the temple pond.

Bhoothath Azhwar has sung 1 verse about the perumal and ThiruMangai Azhwar has sung 26 verses praising the lord.

புலன்கொள்  குவையோடு  
புழைக் கைம்மா கனிற்றினமும் 
நலங்கொள்  நவமணி குவையும்
சுமந்து எங்கும் நான்று ஒசித்து 
காலங்கள் இயங்கும் மல்லைக் 
கடல் மலை தல சயனம் 
வளங்கொள் மணத்தார் 
அவரை வளங்கொள் என் மட நெஞ்சே

Here, Thirumangai Azhwar refers to ships carrying heaps of Gold and loads of Gems along the shores of Maamallapuram, a place where, he says, one finds Lord Vishnu providing darshan.

Thirumangai Azhwar highlights the unique ‘reclining on the ground’ sayana posture of the Lord in his another verse ‘நன்னாத வாழ் அவுணர் தளசயன்னது உறைவாரை’.He says that among the many different Sayana Postures of Lord Vishnu, this is a special form, one of reclining on the ground.


Bhoothathazhwar Procession
Ulaguuya Ninran

Bhoothathazhwar Avatara Utsavam, the birth anniversary of Bhoothatazhwar is celebrated every year during the Tamil month of Aipasi (October - November). At around 10 am on the festival day, the festival image of the Azhwar is brought in a palanquin to the shrine of Nilamangai Thayar and then to Stalasayana Perumal. After recital of Periyathirumozhi of Thirumangai Azhwar, Kaithala Seva, a practise of providing a special gift to Bhoothathazhwar is performed. Bhootathazhwar also makes a trip to the Cave temple of Mahabalipuram. During the evening, the festival images of the presiding deity of Stalasayana Perumal and Bhoothatazhwar is taken around the streets of the temple

Maasi Makham . The Uthsava idol in the temple, known as "Ulaguyya Nindra Piran" along with His Consorts, and those of Valavendai Gnanapiran or Adivaraha and Sri Rama from nearby Padavedu temple, will be taken in procession to the seashore at Mahabalipuram where special Poojas will be performed and "Theerthavari" are offered

Temple Timings

Morning 6:30 to 12 AM

Evening 3:00 to 8:30 PM

Nearby Temples

How to Reach

The Temple is in Mahabalipuram on the East Coast Road 56 kms from Chennai.Frequent buses are available from chennai to Mahabalipuram Chengalpattu is the nearest railway station 36 kms

Where to stay

Mahabalipuram being a tourist place has lot of premium stay options.Chennai can provide various range from budget to luxury options.Chennai can be considered as base for visiting this temple and other temples in the proximity