Category Archives: Jigsaw Puzzles

ANdAL series 1

srImathE satakOpAya nama:
srImathE rAmAnujAya nama:
srImadh varavaramunayE nama:

ANdAL is the only female AzhwAr, born in srivilliputhUr, on an auspicious Tuesday, in the star of tiruvAdipUram, in the month of Adi. ANdAL, like her father periyAzhwAr, was very devoted to krishNa and went on to marry him. ANdAL composed tiruppAvai and nAchiyAr tirumozhi.

The puzzle below is the most popular photo of ANdAL, depicting periyAzhwAr finding her under a tuLasi bush(thiruthuzhAi bush), as well as her love for cows, as she wanted to be a cow herd girl, so that krishNa would relate to her and the very popular story of her wearing a garland set aside for perumAL, before perumAL had adorned it.

ANdAL classic photo

Classic Andal picture

ANdAL and kaRavaigaL (cows)

Andal with karavaigal

The story of ANdaL is that, her father periyAzhwAr, also known as vishnu chithan, was very devout towards krishNa and the deity of srivilliputhUr, srI vatapathrasAyI emperumAn. With great devotion, periyAzhwAr made a garland for vatapathrasAyi, everyday. periyAzhwAr would teach ANdAL all the stories of krishNa. ANdAL grew to be so fond of krishNa, that she treated vatapathrasAyI emperumAN to be krishNa himself, and imagined the temple of vatapathrasAyI to be krishNa’s house. With great love, ANdAL would adorn the garland her father made and look at herself, in a mirror (in olden days, the mirror would be to look into a well with clear water, to capture the reflection). One day, periyAzhwAr sees that ANdAL has been wearing the garland, before it is even offered to emperumAN and is very disappointed in ANdAL. The puzzle below captures what ANdAL sees in the mirror and the shock of periyAzhwar.

ANdAL sees kaNNan in the mirror

Andal Mirror

It turns out that emperumAn actually loves the garland that has been worn by ANdAL and commands periyAzhwAr to only bring the garland, if we worn by ANdAL. ANdAL goes on to marry srI krishNa, eventually.

srI krishNa kshEthrams – South (dhivya dhEsams)

srImathE satakOpAya nama:
srImathE rAmAnujAya nama:
srImadh varavaramunayE nama:

While krishNa was born in the North, the AzhwArs of the South enjoyed many different dhivya dhEsams where krishNa was the presiding deity or enjoyed the dhivya dhEsams themselves are krishNa kshEthrams. Below are the pancha krishNa kshEthrams in the Southern part of India. The processional deity (utsava mUrthy) goes by one of the names of krishNa, hence these places are called krishNa kshEthrams.

kapisthalam is in the thanjavUr district of Tamil Nadu. The name of perumAL here is – gajEndhra varadhan, in a reclining posture (kidandha tirukkOlam) with thAyar ramAmaNi.

mangaLAsAsanam by tirumazhisai AzhwAr.


thirukkaNNamangai is in the thiruvArUr district of Tamil Nadu, where bhakthavatsala perumAL is in standing posture (nindra thirukOlam) with thAyAr abhishEka valli.

mangaLAsAsanam is by thirumangai AzhwAr.

thirukannamangai 1

thirukkaNNangudi is in the tiruvArUr district of Tamil Nadu. The presiding deity is lOkanAtha perumAL/nIlamEgha perumAL in standing posture (nindra tirukOlam) with thAyAr lOkanAyaki (also known as aravindhavalli).

mangaLAsAsanam is by thirumangai AzhwAr.


thirukkaNNapuram is in the thiruvArUr district of Tamil Nadu. The presiding deity is sowrirAja perumAL in standing posture (nindra tirukOlam), with thAyAr kaNNapura nAyaki.

mangaLAsAsanam is by thirumangai AzhwAr, nammAzhwAr, AndAL and kulasEkara AzhwAr.


thirukkOvalUr is in the vizhuppuram district of Tamil Nadu. The presiding deity is thrivikrama perumAL in standing posture (nindra tirukOlam) with thAyar pUngoval nAchiyAr. thirukkOvalUr is famous for the meeting of the first 3 AzhwArs – poigai, bhUtham and pEy AzhwArs.

mangaLAsAsanam is by poigai, bhUtham, pEy AzhwArs.


krishNa kshEthrams – North

srImathE satakOpAya nama:
srImathE rAmAnujAya nama:
srImadh varavaramunayE nama:

krishNa is one of the 10 incarnations of the Supreme Lord – srIman nArAyaNa. Many places in bhAratha dhEsam are associated with krishNa in many different ways. Make the puzzles below that capture some of the place associated with krishNa, in the northern parts of bhAratha dhEsam.

mathurA is the birth place of krishNa. krishNa was born in a jail, as krishNa’s uncle kamsa heard a prophecy that the 8th child of his sister dhEvaki would be the one to kill him. In order to be aware of which child would be kamsa’s end, kamsa locked dhEvaki and her husband vasudEva in a prison in mathurA. Below is a puzzle of the krishNa temple in mathurA as seen today.

Due to the impending danger of kamsa, krishNa was moved secretly, as soon as he was born to gOkula, which was full of yAdhavas who would milk cows for livelihood. gOkula was managed by srI nandhagOpa and his wife yasOdhA mAthA. krishNa would enjoy his childhood as a cowherd and would take his cows for grazing in the forest of vrindhAvan. The puzzle below captures one of the many temples of vrindhAvan, as seen today.


rangaji mandhir – vrindhAvan

Rangaji Mandir Vrindavan

Later in his life krishNa moved to dhwArakA and established an island kingdom. Make the puzzle below to see how dhwArakA stand today.



Popular gOpurams

srImathE satakOpAya nama:
srImathE rAmAnujAya nama:
srImadh varavaramunayE nama:

srIrangam is the rAjadhAni (capital) of the srIvaishNava kingdom. srIrangam is filled with many gOpurams, spanning over the 7 streets (prAkArams) surrounding the main deity, srI ranganAtha, at the center of the temple. The below gOpuram, is the one at the east entrance to the temple, called veLLai (white) gOpuram. Put the puzzle together, to see how majestic it is.

Srirangam Vellai gopuram

srIrangam rAja gOpuram, was built in 1987 and dominates the view for miles around. This gOpuram is over 73 meters high with 13 tiers and is the first outer most gOpuram from the Southern side of the temple town. Complete the puzzle below to capture its beauty.

Raja gopuram

thirumalai is a dhivya dhEsam, standing tall in the mountains of thirumalA. thirumalai is celebrated as the dhivya dhEsam that is mid way between the world of the dhEvas (dhEva lOkam) and the world of humans (manushya lOkam) and is equally accessible to both and loved by all. Below is a puzzle capturing the different gOpurams in thirumalai.

Tirumala Gopuram

the mountains of thirumalai and the foothills of thirumalai

Tirumala Mountains

thirukkachi (kAnchipuram), located very close to the city of Chennai is very popular for bringing our pUrvAchAryas into sampradhAyam. It is always said that kAnchipuram has been instrumental in saving our sampradhAyam and bringing very important people to it, while srIrangam continues to sustain the sampradAyam. Below is an old style puzzle, in black and white, of the kAnchipuram vimAnam (gOpuram).

Kanchipuram Punaykoti