Here is a writeup of Stalapuranam about Aranmula Thiruvaaranvilai, one among the 108 Divya Desams, written by Sri U.Ve.Vidwan Egai VedantaDesika Thatacharya Swami
Located about 10kms East of Chengannur Divya Desam on the Southern banks of the Pamba river is the Thirukuralappan Divya Desam in Aranmula. This Divya Desam is referred to as Thiru Vaaran Vilai and symbolises Arjuna’s thanks giving gesture to his sarathy (charioteer) Krishna who guided him through the Mahabaratha war.
Pandavas who visited different Divya Desams in Kerala built one temple each in these Divya Desams in the Chengannur- Changanacheri area. These temples (Divya Desams) are now popularly referred to as ‘Anj-Ambalam’ by the devotees here.
The Parthasarathy Perumal Koil in Thiruvaaranvilai in Aranmula was built by Arjuna, who came here at the end of the Mahabaratha war to undertake penance repenting for the killings of his relatives, especially his brother Karna, who he unceremoniously killed when his chariot was grounded to the earth. Brahmma is also said to have undertaken penance at this place wanting to have darshan of Lord Vishnu in his Vamana Avataram and as a thanking gesture for having secured back the Vedic Scriptures from the asuras. Tulabharam, an age old practice, continues to take place at this temple and one can see the big Tulabharam hanging as one enters the temple from the eastern side.
An annual boat race takes place at the Pamba River which runs right next to the Aranmula Divya Desam.
Nam Azhvaar’s praise
Nam Azhvaar in his Tiruvoimozhi verse refers to the Lord of Vaarinvilai as Govinda, Madhusudhana and Hari and to this place as surrounded by gardens, with non stop recital of Vedas.
கோவிந்தனை மதுசூதனை கோளரியை
ஆடும் பரவைமிசைக் கண்டு கைதொழுது
அன்றி அவன் உறையும்
பாடும் பெரும் புகழ் நான்மறை வேள்வி ஐந்து
ஆறு அங்கம் பன்னீர் வாழ்
நீடு பொழில் திரு வாரின்விளை தொழ
வாய்க்கும்கொள் நிச்சலுமே – Tiruvoimozhi 7-10-3
Name of the Lord and the place
Nam Azhvaar in his praise of this divya desam says that the place where Lord Thiru Kural Appan resides is Thiru Vaaran Vilai.
ஆகும்கொள் ஐயம் ஒன்றுயு இன்றி
அகல் இடம் முற்றவும் ஈர் அடியே
ஆகும்பரிசு நிமிர்ந்த திருக்குறள் அப்பன்
மாகம் திகழ் கோடி மாடங்கள் நீடு மதில்
10 day Brahmotsavam in January
Big Pushpa Abhishekam in May
12 day Kalapam Festival in November when the Lord is decorated completely with Chandanam is a beautiful sight to watch
In March every year, the Goddess(Devi) from Punnan Thottam temple, about a km east of this temple visits Lord Parthasarathy at the Aranmula Divya Desam and the two are seen together for a day.
Moolavar : Thiru Kural Appan East Facing Standing Posture
Goddess : Padmasini Thaayar
Azhvaar : NamAzhvaar- 11
Time : 5am-11am and 5pm-8pm
Priest : Krishna Kumar Namboodari @ 94471 16689 or 0468 2212170
How to reach Aranmula:
10kms East of Chengannur. There are state transport buses to this Divya Desam from the Chengannur bus stand, opposite the railway station. One can reach the temple in about 30minutes by bus.
Taxi to cover 6 Divya Desams. It is better to take a taxi from the railway station and cover the 6 Divya Desams in one half of the day. The taxi to cover Puliyoor, Thiru Chittaru, Aranmula, Thiruvanvandur, Thiruvalla and Changanacheri (Arputha Narayana Perumal) will cost Rs.1000/-. It will take about 20minutes by car to reach the Aranmula Parthasarathy temple from Chengannur Thiruchitraru Divya Desam. Almost the entire stretch runs alongside the Pamba river.
For car outside the Chengannur Railway Station, contact: Driver Mohan @ 99466 73868.