Kanakadhara stotram was first sung by Adhi Shankara. Here is the story of the cirucumstances that led to Adhi Shankara’s rendition of the stotram. Adhi Shankara visited the house of a poor Brahmin lady, and she did not have anything to offer to the Great Saint. Her family was living in penury and her husband himself sought alms in the village for sustenance. She was understandably very upset. She however sincerely searched her house for some thing worthy of giving to her guest. She found an Amla fruit and offered it with all humility and reverence to the Great Saint. Adhi Shankara in the meanwhile had nticed the condition of the household and their poverty. He was moved by the lady’s gesture.
Goddess Lakshmi appeared before him and enquired him about the reason for prayer after Adhi Shankara recited 22 shlokas in praise of Mahalakshmi. He pleaded and prayed to Goddess Lakshmi to show mercy on this Brahmin household and grant them riches. Goddess Lakshmi responded that the lady did not deserve it as she had not been benovalent in her earlier life and did not do participate in any charitable activity. Adhi Shankara accepted this but however argued the poor lady’s case by saying that she deserved the riches because even though she did not have anything in her present life she still gave away whatever she could and did it happily. He said that this act alone makes her deserving of the riches. Mahalakshmi was pleased with Adhi Shankara’s argument and immediately there was a shower of golden Amla. Thus the stotram came to be known as Kanakadhara Stotram. Kanaka is gold and Dhara is rain or shower.
It is important to note that reciting this stotram does not only address Dhanalakshmi, it is addressed to Ashta Lakshmi. Hence this stotram can be recited for attaining any good and fulfilling all wishes.
Angam hare pulaka bhooshanamasrayanthi,
Bhringanga neva mukulabharanam thamalam,
Angikrithakhila vibhuthirapanga leela,
Mangalyadasthu mama mangala devathaya.
Mugdha muhurvidhadhadathi vadhane Murare,
Mala dhrishotmadhukareeva maheth pale ya,
Sa ne sriyam dhisathu sagarasambhavaya.
Ameelithaksha madhigamya mudha Mukundam
Akekara stiththa kaninika pashma nethram,
Bhoothyai bhavenmama bhjangasayananganaya.
Bahwanthare madhujitha srithakausthube ya,
Haravaleeva nari neela mayi vibhathi,
Kamapradha bhagavatho api kadaksha mala,
Kalyanamavahathu me kamalalayaya
Kalambudhaalithorasi kaida bhare,
Dharaadhare sphurathi yaa thadinganeva,
Mathu samastha jagatham mahaneeya murthy,
Badrani me dhisathu bhargava nandanaya
Praptham padam pradhamatha khalu yat prabhavath,
Mangalyabhaji madhu madhini manamathena,
Mayyapadetha mathara meekshanardham,
Manthalasam cha makaralaya kanyakaya.
Viswamarendra padhavee bramadhana dhaksham,
Ananda hethu radhikam madhu vishwoapi,
Eshanna sheedhathu mayi kshanameekshanartham,
Ishta visishtamathayopi yaya dhayardhra,
Dhrishtya thravishta papadam sulabham labhanthe,
Hrishtim prahrushta kamlodhara deepthirishtam,
Pushtim krishishta mama pushkravishtaraya.
Asminna kinchina vihanga sisou vishanne,
Dhushkaramagarmmapaneeya chiraya dhooram,
Narayana pranayinee nayanambhuvaha.
Gheerdhevathethi garuda dwaja sundarithi,
Sakambhareethi sasi shekara vallebhethi,
Srishti sthithi pralaya kelishu samsthitha ya,
Thasyai namas thribhvanai ka guros tharunyai.
Sruthyai namosthu shubha karma phala prasoothyai,
Rathyai namosthu ramaneeya gunarnavayai,
Shakthyai namosthu satha pathra nikethanayai,
Pushtayi namosthu purushotthama vallabhayai.
Namosthu naleekha nibhananai,
Namosthu dhugdhogdhadhi janma bhoomayai,
Namosthu somamrutha sodharayai,
Namosthu narayana vallabhayai.
Namosthu hemambhuja peetikayai,
Namosthu bhoo mandala nayikayai,
Namosthu devathi dhaya prayai,
Namosthu Sarngayudha vallabhayai.
Namosthu devyai bhrugu nandanayai,
Namosthu vishnorurasi sthithayai,
Namosthu lakshmyai kamalalayai,
Namosthu dhamodhra vallabhayai.
Namosthu Kanthyai kamalekshanayai,
Namosthu bhoothyai bhuvanaprasoothyai,
Namosthu devadhibhir archithayai,
Namosthu nandhathmaja vallabhayai.
Sampath karaani sakalendriya nandanani,
Samrajya dhana vibhavani saroruhakshi,
Twad vandanani dhuritha haranodhythani,
Mamev matharanisam kalayanthu manye.
Yath Kadaksha samupasana vidhi,
Sevakasya sakalartha sapadha,
Santhanodhi vachananga manasai,
Twaam murari hridayeswareem bhaje
Sarasija nilaye saroja hasthe,
Dhavalathamamsuka gandha maya shobhe,
Bhagavathi hari vallabhe manogne,
Tribhuvana bhoothikari praseeda mahye
Dhiggasthibhi kanaka kumbha mukha vasrushta,
Sarvahini vimala charu jalaapluthangim,
Prathar namami jagathaam janani masesha,
Lokadhinatha grahini mamrithabhi puthreem.
Kamale Kamalaksha vallabhe twam,
Karuna poora tharingithaira pangai,
Prathamam pathamakrithrimam dhyaya
Sthuvanthi ye sthuthibhirameeranwaham,
Thrayeemayim thribhuvanamatharam ramam,
Gunadhika guruthara bhagya bhagina,
Bhavanthi the bhuvi budha bhavithasayo.