The Saranathan Temple is a Hindu temple located in the village of Tirucherai near Kudavasal, Tiruvarur district. The presiding deity is Vishnu who is known as "Saranathan". The temple is one of the 108 Divya Desams.
After the fall of the Vijayanagar empire in Tanjore, Azhagiya Manavala Naicker who ruled Tanjore planned to erect a temple for Rajagopala swamy in Mannarkudi. He appointed his minister Narasa Boopalan for this job. He was to get Blackstones from all possible places.
This minister was a great worshipper of Saranatha Perumal of Thirucherai and wanted to erect a temple for him too. So he ordered his men to unload one stone from each cart which passed Thirucherai. A spy of the king caught hold of this and informed the king. The angered king came for an inspection.
But before that in overnight Narasa Boopalan constructed this temple and to please the king he added a sannathi for Rajagopala swamy too and his plan worked and he was away from kings anger after that the king ordered to complete the temple with his money.Only Divya Desam where Lord Vishnu is seen with five Goddesses.
Inside the Moolavers Karbagraham, Saranathar along with his wives: Sridevi, Boomidevi, Neela devi, Mahalakshmi and Sara Naayagi gives away his heartfelt blessings.
Lord Sree Rama gives the devotees a very special dharshan here along with Sita Devi and Lakshmanan, all Azhwars and Sri Rama's kolam (ie) he poses as he was found in forest for 14 years.
Instead of the regular Abhaya Hastham, Perumal here poses a Padma Hastham. Out of 108 Sree Vaishnava Sthalams, only in this Kshethram, Rathotsavam is being celebrated on the Makara Pushyam Day.
Thirucherai Saranatha Perumal Temple - One of the Pancha Sara Kshetrams ( Saaranathan, Saara Nayagi, Saara Vimanam, Saara Theertham and Saara Kshetram - Hence Pancha Saara Kshetram ) is located around 15 KM from Kumbakonam and just 3 KM south of Nachiyarkoil, another Divyadesam in Kumbakonam, Tanjore District, Tamil Nadu, on the way from Kumbakonam to Thiruvarur.
Thirucherai is one of the oldest temples and is believed that it was there in existence from Dwabara Yuga, with the Grand Raja Gopruam with the height of 120 feet. When time came to destroy the whole world and to finish the yugam, Lord Brahma was worried and appealed Lord Vishnu to guide him a way to keep the tools which are needed for Srishti again and all Vedas safely.
Lord Hanuman (or) Aanchaneya blesses as from the west end of the pushkarani and Lord Vianayaka from the North eastern side.
The Rajagopuram is 120 feet tall and adjoining this is the first praharam and then is the Middle Gopuram. Next is the Thirukalyana Mandapam. From here Rajagopala swamy blesses us. Infront of this sannathi Thiruvenkatamudayam sannathi is situated.
After this Lord Sri Rama, Narashimar and Manavala Maamunigal sannathis are there.Inside the Moolaver's Karbagraham, Saranathar along with his wives: Sridevi, Boomidevi, Neela devi, Mahalakshmi and Sara Naayagi gives away his heartiful blessings. To his right Markanteya Maharishi and River Cauvery are found. Santhana Gopalan and Selvar are too found in this sannadhi.
Molavar - Saranathan
Utsavar - Mamadhalai Piran
Thayar - Sara Nayagi, Sara Nachiyar
Blessing Pose - Standing Posture Facing East
Kshetram - Pancha Sara Kshetram
Theertham - Saara Pushkarini
Vimanam - Saara Vimanam
Speciality - Pancha Sara Kshetram