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Palakkad district

(a)Ottappilam taluk

For all sarpa-peedas or sarpa-doshas devotees approach Pathirakunnathu mana at Rayiranellur (near Vallapuzha). The ancient and famous Sree Mahadeva temple at Thiruvegappura (known as Asokaalaya) on the bank of Kunthipuzha a tributary of Bharathapuzha has three idols within the naalambalam ie, of Maha Siva (parvathi-parameswar) believed to have been consecrated by Garuda, of Sree Sankaranarayana consecrated by Adi Sankaracharya and Maha Vishnu.Separate sub-shrines also are there for Dakshinamoortthi, Rshabadeva, Vettakkorumakan etc. The important offerings are dhaara with rudra-sooktham, adakkari (made of rice, kernel of coconut and jaggery), paayasam and aikamathya pushpaanjali. The graama-kshethra of Sree Aadi Varaahamoortthi temple at Panniyiir (in Anakkara village) is perhaps the oldest temple in the state. The important offerings in the temple are abheeshta-siddhi pooja and thri-madhuram for kaarya-sidhi and deva-preethi respectively. The Njangattiri Sree Bhagavathi (Vaga-Durga) temple at Thrithala is one of the 108 Durga temples established by Lord Parasurama and the main offering is raktha-pushpaanjali. The Kai Thalitemple at Pattambi and Onga1lur Thali temple deserve special mention on account of their antiquity and archaeological importance. The Thiruvalayanad Bhagavathi (Bhadrakaali) temple at Kottapuram(Karimpuzha) is worshipped by ardent devotees, the main vaazhipaat being Daarika-vadha-paatt for kaarya-siddhi. The famous Thirumittacode Sree Anchu moorthi temple having four prathishtas ofMaha VishnU (one each by Dharmaputhra, Bheema, Arjuna and jointly one by Nakula and Sahadeva) and a Siva shrine. Each shrine is architecturally exquisite. It is one of the 108 Thirupathis of India and has found a place in the Divya-prabhanda of Alwars. The popular vazhipaats are paal-payasam, archana, dhaara and puramvilakku (lamp behind Lord Siva) meant for Parvathi. The Thrikkangode Rantumoortthi (Vishnu and Siva) temple at Manisseri is famous, where both idols are swayambhoo and are installed in one sreekovil but there are two separate valia-balikkalls. An important offering is sankhabhishekam. Many mentally ill persons affected with idiosyncrasy and who appear dull and moody perform bhajanam and take panchagavya as prasaada from this temple. It is said that these patients get cure by this vazhipaat. A large number of Bhadrakaali shrines are located in and around Ottappalam like Sree Mulayan kaauu, Sree Kil1ikulangara kaauu (Killikaauu), Chenakkathhur kaauu, Cherottur kaauu, etc. all having very powerful deities with vazhipaats of raktha-pushpaanjali, pattu-chaarthal (adorning the deity with red satin silk) and koottu-payasam respectively for the fulfilment of desires, for the cure of small pox, skin diseases etc, and for relief from sorceries and enemies. Of these Chenakkathhur kaavu is unique with 3 dwajas, one inside and two outside. In the ancient Sree Sankaranarayana temple, Panamanna (near OttappaIam) there are vazhipaats of chathussatha and kadali plantain for propitiating the deity for kaarya-siddhi. The ancient Sree Siva temple at Ki1likurissimangalam (near Lakkidi) is believed to have been consecrated by Sree Suka Brahmarshi. This temple has undeciphered inscriptions and has a valiabalikkall of more than 5 feet height, built as vazhipaat of Kalakkath Kunjan Nambiar. An important vazhipaatofthis temple is namaskaaram (feeding Brahmins with sanctified food). The Ayyapan kaauu, Cherplassery has a swaymbhoo-prathishta and attracts a large number of devotees, the main vazhipaats being ata, appam and pana-paayasam of which nootti-onnu-naazhi-ata (ata made out of 101 nazhies of rice) is unique. The thiyyat (a dance in the guise of god) is yet another important vazhipaat.

(b)Mannarkkad taluk

The Chemmannur Siva temple, known as Malleswaran temple on the plains of Malleswara hills and on the banks of Bhavani river, gives an insight into the traditional mode of worship of Adivasis of the Attappadi valley. The temple belongs to Irular tribe, but also worshipped by Mudugar and Kurumar besides other local people. In olden days a sila covered by a mulakkootu (bamboo fence) was considered as the temple. In 1982 a concrete sreekovil with sthoopa and mukha-mandapa has replaced the bamboo temple. Navagrahas also have been consecrated here. All prathishtas and poojas are still done traditionally by the priest of the community known as panali¬poojari, who owns the temple. The vazhipaat of the temple is peculiar as the devotee has to give Rs. 5 1/4 or Rs. 10 1/4 and the poojari does karpoora-aaradhana by chanting Om Nama Sivayah and names of other deities and gives bhasma as prasaada. Though the mode of worship is not as prescribed in scriptures, the priest does the pooja with full faith in the omnipotent power of the deity: In Mannarkkad town there are about eleven temples of which the Peranchath Siva temple is very ancient having a swayambhoo prathishta of about 8cm high with the sankalpa as Ardhanareeswaran. Another important temple is the Arakkurissi Udayarkunnu Bhagavathi (Bhadrakaali) temple which has a daaru-silpa idol about 7 feet high in lalithaasana pose. The famous Mannarkkad pooram is associated with this temple. The Mummurthi temple at Vatakkumannan in this town has the main deity Maha Vishnu besides other subsidiary deities of Siva (in Ardha-nareeswara sankalpa) and Durga (Vana Durga). Another unique temple is the Dharmar temple having a dwi-thala vimaana and has a number of idols in the sreekovilviz. Swayambhoosila of Siva, bronze idol of Maha Vishnu, bronze image of Dharmaputhra (in sitting pose) wooden images of Bhima and Arjuna (in standing pose), Nakulan (in sitting pose), Sahadevan (in kneeling pose), Veerabhadran (in standing pose) and Muthali Rowther (sitting on a horse). There are other smaller temples in the town of which the Mukkunnam (Swayambhoo) Siva temple, Ankaala Parameswari temple and the Ganapathi temple are important. Of the other ancient temples, the Keezhthrikkovil temple (Alanallur village), Enaani (Payyanedam village), Muthukkurissi Kiraathamoortthi temple, (Thachampara village) etc. are important temples dedicated to Siva. In, the Aryanambi Siva temple, (Kottappadam village) the idol is remarkable as it is mirror-type made in sila with the face of Siva; which implies the unified power of Sakthi and Siva. As such the sankalpa of Bhagavathi has greater importance as is evident from the Thaalappoli festival conducted in the temple. Devi temples are seen in certain villages of which thy more important ones are Kurumba Bhagavathi (Swayambhoo prathishta) in Payyanedom village, Vana Durga temple in Kumaramputhoor, Panakurissy temple and Karumalikkaavu Bhagavathi Kottappadam. Of these the Panakurissy temple deserves special mention as the idol is Chaamundi in fierce form made up of wood (Daaru silpa) in lalithasana pose. In the sanctumsanctorum there are idols of other deities, like saptha-mathrkkals (made in sila, of half foot height), Ganapathi and Veerabhadra. It is significant to notethat Chaamundi takes the first place in the row and it has a separate grilled entrance as in the case of some temples under Rurujith- uidhaana like Maataayi temple, Thirumandhamkunnu Bhagavathi temple etc. Another notable feature is the daaru-silpa image in the subshrine of Ashta-dik-paala (facing west) of 5feet high, besides a subsidiary shrine for Saastha with his two consorts Poorna and Pushkala (all in liriga form). The Kattussery Dharma Saastha temple at Karimba has similar prathishta of Saastha and his consorts, though the height of the central sila for Saastha is taller than the other two. There are several SubramaI?-ya shrines in this taluk of which the important ones are Mel-Thrikkovil Subramanya temple at Alanallur and Thuppanad Subramanya temple (Karimba village II). In the ancient temple of Thrikkalur subramanya the old idol was damaged in the Mappila riots of 1920. Only in 1981 the idol was replaced. Among the Vaishnavite shrines Njeralath Sree Rama temple (Alanallur village), Bheemanadi Mahavishnu temple (Kottappuram village), PaUikkurup Maha Vishnu temple, Kannamkurissi Sree Krishnaswami temple, and Chulliyeri Sree Rama temple (Karakkurissi village), Chethalloor Sree krishna temple, and Thrikkovil Sree Rama temple in Thachanattukara deserve special mention. The Thrikkovil temple, (a 'Keezhetam of Chethalloor Sree Krishna temple) has prathishta of Lord Balarama and is important.

(c)Palakk8d taluk

The Hemambika (Emur) Bhagavathi temple is unique with the kaippatthi (both hands) of the Goddess as the prathishta. A roofless temple with hands of Goddess as prathishta has been built on the eastem side of the tank which attracts a large number of devotees. The Goddess is worshipped in three ways, as Saraswathi in the morning, as Lakshmi at noon, and as Parvathi in the evening. The important vazhipaats are kalabhaabhishekam, nai-paayasam and nira-maala. The other notable Devi temples in this taluk are Thiruvalathur and Thirupurakkal (Vatakkanthara) temples and Manappugi kaavu. Of these the first one is more than thousand years old and was consecrated by Lord Parasurama. There are two shrines side by side facing west within the maryaada having separate sreekovils, namaskara-mandapa and dwajas apart from deepa-sthambas, aanakkottil, kootthambalam etc. The northern shrine is dedicated to Mahishaasura Marddini while the southern one relates to Annapoorneswari (swayambhoo). The main vazhipaat is katumadhura-paayasam. There are exquisite wood carvings in this temple. The Vatakkanthara Bhagavathi temple dedicated to Kannaki has the main vazhipaat of kadina-veti (fireworks). The Manappulli kaavu Bhagavathi temple is famous, the main offering being raktha-pushpaanjali and katumadhura-paayasam. The Viswanathha temple, Kalpathhi is six centuries old and is famous for rathhothsava (car festival) in the month of Thulam. The temple has a huge gopura of Tamil architecture. Dhaara is the main vazhipaat here. Sree Subramanya temple, Kotumba is an ancient temple. Both Sree Subramanya and His consort are the main prathishtas of this temple. The deities are very powerful and devotees seek the blessings of the deities for the fulfillment of any desire, particularly related to marriage and progeny. Many people who believe in astrology and having no horoscopes approach the temple for ascertaining the will of God and perform a function called puraketthi-nokkuka before getting engaged in marriage. The offering of the temple is panchaamrtha.

(d)Chittur taluk

The Amma Thiruvati temple at Chittur has two shrines. In the moolasthaana the Pazhaynnur Bhagavathi is installed while outside the maryaada in a separate shrine Chittur Bhagavathi (Bhadrakaali) is consecrated. Both these shrines have big wooden idols and always covered with the offering of chaanthaattam, which is the principal vazhipaat of the temple. The temple is open only on Tuesdays and Fridays and on special occasions like Mandala period, navaraathri etc. The Kongan pata festival conducted every year in the month of Kwnbham, commemorates the victory of desakkars over the militia of Kongunaatu (Coimbatore) of the Chola King Rajadhiraja. According to tradition Bhagavathi herself led the Chittur forces and slew the king and saved Chittur. She is regarded as the protector of Chittur desom. The Thrippallavoor Siva temple is more than two thousand years old and the idol is made of Rudraaksha-sila and was consecrated by Khara Maharshi along with prathishtas at Thrippalur and Ayilur temples. The temple has a marvellous outer wall of 18 feet high, believed to have been built by the Bhootha-ganas of Siva. This ancient temple faces west and has an exquisite granite pranaala depicting a Bhootha taking the water coming out of the chute by a sankh to his mouth. The important vazhipaats are mrthynjaya-homa and poorna-abhisheka. Tbe Thirukaachamkurissi temple, Payyalore (Kollengode) is an important Vaishnavite shrine, the deity being carved in wood in the form of Vishnu sitting on Anantha (the Serpent god) with Lakshmi Devi and Bhoomi Devi on sides. Another idol of Maha Vishnu with sankalpa as Sree Rama has also been installed in the garbha-grha. The temple has excellent mural painting depicting scenes from Ramayana on the walls of sreekovil, besides wood carvings at the front of sreekovil, namaskaara-mandapa and balikkalpura. The important Vazhipaats are pushpaanjali and paal-paayasam. The Cherapuram Siva temple ( in Elavally village) has a special prasaatdam of pancha-gauyam as a remedy for leprosy and bodily sores.

(e)Alathur taluk

The Thrippallavoor Siva temple, (In Erimayur I Village), an ancient temple, has a swayambhoo-prathishta and the important offering is dhaara. Within the same temple there are two other sreekovils dedicated to Maha Vishnu and Sree Naramsirhha moortthi, and also having separate namaskara-mandapas. The prathishta of Pookkulangad Bhagavathi (in the sankalpa of Laptha-Durga) is an excellent daaru silpa (wood carving) in sitting pose and having eight hands. The important offerings are nai-paayasam, archana, veti, nira-maala etc. The Siva temple at Vavunniapuram has three shrines facing east, two Siva shrines (northern: swayambhoo and southern: prathishta) and in their midst a Vishnu shrine. A peculiar feature is that these shrines are not in the same line but has a difference of about half a metre between each shrine in the order. The ancient Bhagavathi temple dedicated to Bhadrakaali is also an exquisite wooden idol (daaru silpa) with 8 hands, kireeta, weapons etc. The idols of Saptha-mathrkkals, Veerabhadran and Gatlapathi are also of daaru-silpa. The important offering is nai-paayasam. The Puthucode Annapoorneswari temple has thri-kaala pooja and Bhagavathi seva .as important vazhipaats. The food distributed to all freely with pulimkari and sata-saya-paayasam on festival days is famous. The Narasimhamoortthi temple, Rishinaradamangalam (Kannambra) dates back to about 2000 years and has a sila-vigraha of Chathur-baahu Vishnu. The important vazhipaat is paal-paayasam. The Saastha temple at Manjapra (In kannambra II village) commonly known as Ayyappankaavu, has a swayambhoo Saastha idol with his consorts Pool11a and Pushkala and has the important vazhipaats of neeraajanam and satha-sayam. Though known as Sree Dakshinamoortthi temple, (Kuthannur I village), this temple has the main prathishta of Maha Vishnu, The important offering is paal-paayasam. The temple belongs to the Sukapuram Sabha of Etappal where the famous Dakshinamoortthi temple is located. The Siva shrine is located outside the naalambalam. The Kizhakethara Bhagavathi temple, Mannathur Siva temple, Sree Amma Thiruvati temple, Tholaniir, Thrithamara Siva temple, and Sree Mannath Bhagavathi temple are also important in this village. The Keralapuram Viswanathha temple, Koduvayilr an ancient one has pooja system similar to that in the temple at Chidambaram. Navagraha prathishtas are also seen in this temple. The important vazhipaat is katu-madhura-paayasam. The Nochur Durga Parameswari temple at Kotuvayur has, a swayambhoo-prathishta. The important vazhipaat is satha-sayam. The Thiruvalayanad Bhagavathi temple associated with Zamorin of Calicut is an ancient temple at Kotuvayllr. The idol of Mathur Siva temple, Vantaazhi (Vantaazhi I village) was consecrated by Lord Parasunima and it is one among the list of 108 Siva temples. However, the present condition of the. temple is deplorable and no pooja has been done for the last two decades. The square sreekovil with a height of 58 feet, excellent adhishtaana, beautifully carved pranaala and valia-balikkall declare the past glory of the temple. In Kizhakkancherry village there are two ancient temples viz. Mangalam Anchumoortthi temple and Kotikkad Bhagavathi temple. The main idol of Sree Anchumoortthi temple is Maha Sudarsatla Chakra. The temple authorities report that the prathishia is swayambhoo and contains marking of dwa-daSa-thala, valaya-thrya, shal-kole, bindu etc. The remaining four shrines in the akatthe-balivattam of the temple are Maha Vishnu, Siva, Gapapathi and Hanuman with Veerabhadra and Subramnya. At the naalambalam there are other deities of Kaatthyaayani and Saastha. The daaru-silpa idol of Kaatthyaayani is unique as th.e goddess is in a dancing pose with only one leg touching the ground and putting a thilak on the forehead looking into a mirror held by the left hand. The important offerings of the temple are sudarsana-homa, thri-madhura and archana. The Kotikkad Bhagavathi (Bhadrakaap) temple (popularly lmown as Kotikkadu kaavu) is unique as it contains daaru-silpa vigrahas of saptha-mathrukkals of which the central figure of Vaishnavi is considered as the goddess Bhadrakaali. Besides, daaru-silpas of Veerabhadra and Ganapathi are installed here. For pooja there is a small sila-vigraha in the form of linga. The important vazhipaats are pushpaanjali, paayasam etc. The last one is a unique vazhipaat.The Thiruvara (Thiruuruva) Sree Mahadeva temple (in Kizhakkencherry village) is very ancient and is believed to be more than thousand years old. The important vazhipaats are elaneer-dhaara and pushpaanjali. the pranaala is supported by a bhootha. Another notable temple is the Thrippannur Siva temple datable to two thousand years back. The deity is worshipped as Kiraathamoortthi. The important vazhipaats are dhaara, archana and paayasam. The Sree Krishna - Ayyappa temple has both the idols within the naalambalam. The principal Vazhipaat is paanaka (made up of veya-payaar,jaggery, salt and dry ginger). the Ayyappa idol is swayambhoo. The Kattukulangara Bhagavathi (Bhadrakaali) temple has the idol made of wood. The principal vazhipaat is raktha-pushpaanjali.

Related Temple Vazhipaats in Districts

Thiruvananthapuram district

Kollam district


Pathanamthitta district

Alappuzha district


Kottayam district

Ernakulam district


Idukki district

Thrissur district


Palakkad district

Malappuram district


Kozhikode district

Wayanad district


Kannur district

Kasaragod district

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