Presiding Deity: Vilakkoli Perumal
Other names: Deepaprakasar, Divyaprakasar
Goddess Mother: Maragathavalli
Holy spring : Saraswathi Theertham
Vimanam (Tower) : Srikara Vimanam
Other shrines : Lakshmi, Hayagrivar, Andal, Deepaprakasar, Alwars,
History: Garuda and Vedanta Desika
Brahmma, the creator of the world was sad that he had no temple on Earth and performed a great Yagna to realize his ambition. He did not invite his consort Saraswathi for the Yagna. Irate Saraswathi cursed that the Yagna could not proceed and there should be no light necessary for the conduct of the Yagna. The place became dark. Brahmma approached the God of Protection Vishnu to protect the Yagna, which he obliged in the shape of a torch. As the God here gave light (Vilakkoli) to Brahamma, He is called Vilakkoli Perumal, Deepaprakasar and Divyaprakasar. Vishnu also consoled Saraswathi
Being one among the 108 Divyadesas, it is here Goddess of Learning Saraswathi had the Darshan of the Lord here. The Grass called Darba grows in plenty here and hence the place is also called Thoopul and Thiruthanka the name representing the particular grass Darba.
Acharya Vedanta Desikan was born in this holy place and was also known as Thoopul Vedanta Desika. Thirumangai Azhwar has praised the shrine in two of his songs, called Mangalasasanam in Vaishnavism.
Desika’s mother prayed to this Perumal for a child. Responding to her prayer, the Lord of Tirupathi offered the bell in His hand as a child to her.
Following this story, there will be no ringing of the bell during Puja time in Tirupathi. Vedanta Desika, born in the year 1268 lived up to 1360 exceeding a century and was noted for his marvelous scholarship. He rendered in Tamil a number of Sanskrit works. His Adaikalapathu in Tamil was addressed to Lord Varadaraja Perumal of Kancheepuram. His illustrious son Nayina Varadachari built the Vilakkoli Perumal temple.
Desika’s shrine in the temple is just next to Goddess Mother. Also the idol of Hayagrivar worshipped by Desikan is still in the temple.
During the month of Vaikasi (May-June) the main festival is that Kanchi Varadaraja Perumal comes in Garuda Vahana to offer Darshan to Desika. In avani (August-September) Vilakkoli Perumal visits Desika. In the month of Margazhi (December-January) and Chitra Poornima day (April-May, Varadaraja Perumal calls on Desika and honours him.
The Puja time in the temple is 7.30 a.m. to 10.00 a.m. and 5.00 p.m. to 7.00 p.m.
The temple is just a kilometre from Kancheepuram bus stand. Phone No. 98944 43108. Nearest Railway station Kancheepuram and airport Chennai.