Search Here For Previous Post

Friday, March 18, 2011

Nalambalam pilgrimage

Nalambalam pilgrimage

Nalambalam pilgrimage is is performed during the month of Karkitaka (July – August) . Visiting nalambalam is considered to be a sacred event during the Malayalam month Karkidakam. Nalambalam consists of temples of brothers Sri Rama, Bharatha, Lakshmana & Sathrughnan. Lord Vishnu’s incarnornations in the Threthayuga are supposed to be most important among the Avathars of the Lord. The Darshan of the four Lords, Sreerama, Lakshmana, Bharatha and Sathrughna, on the same day is called “Nalambalam Darshanam”.


The first temple to be attended is the Thriprayar –where Lord Siva is the deity-see the “Nirmalyam” at 3 AM there, and proceed to Iringalakuda to attend the “usha pooja” at the Koodal Manikya temple where Bharathan –a rare deity in temples is installed, then “Utcha pooja at Moozhikkulam Lekshmana Perumal temple comes as the third, then the fourth and last temple at Payammal Shatrukhna temple to attend “Deeparadhana” there.
The mythology behind Nalambalam Pilgrimage
Bhagawan Sri Krishna had four favorite idols which he worshipped every day which are Lord
Rama, Lord Lakshmana,Lord Bharatha, Lord Shathrukhna.
At the end of “Dwapara yuga” (Sri Krishna knew that the end was near and directed Sri utthavan to install his favorite idols (mentioned above) in suitable places. By the end of Dwapara yuga whole
Mathura was swallowed by the sea but these idols did not sink, they floated over the sea water all together. One Kaimal of Ponnani had a dream about the floating idols and he went to the sea shore. There the fishermen who got the idols handed them over them to him. Sri Kaimal installed them in four different places as per the directions of the astrologers’ advice.
Thriprayar temple at Thriprayar near Thrissur
The idol of Sree Rama was installed at this temple by the side of the river “Thivra” (Thiru purayar) meaning sacred river. One mythology about the temple is related to “Naranathu Bhrandhan” the eccentric philosopher of the old Kerala myths. One stone used for temple rituals (balikallu) was always found loose and unstable. When Naranathu bhrandhan paid a visit to the temple the riddle was brought to him, the eccentric philosopher got it settled after performing special poojas. That stone is still available in the temple premises. It is believed that the idols of the temple in the first time were not installed strictly as per the astrological rules and calculations. It is believed that Naranathu Bhranthan corrected the errors by installing the idols of Mother- Earth and Shree Bhagavathi at both sides of
Sri Rama idol.
The Thrippayar temple does not celebrate a temple festival as in the case of other temples. There are five poojas and three “Sreebali” (sacrifice related rituals) performed in the temple. The temple opens at 3 at the morning and remains open 12 at Noon. After Noon the temple opens at 4 PM and remains open for darshan till “Athazha pooja” at night. Darshan at 3 AM (Nirmalyam) and “Athazha sreebali” are considered very auspicious.
The performing art “koothu” is very much associated with this temple. The Koothu is extended to a twelve day performance. The Koothu performance starts on the first of Vrichika month.(November)
Koodalmanikyam Temple of Iringalakuda Near Thrissur
This is one of the most well known temples in Kerala built before the 15th century. This temple has Lord Bhartha as main deity and hence is a rarity. This temple has got much uniqueness. Once the ruling kings used to install granite slabs with his orders written, in this temple premises, the remnants of these stone slabs are still available. The flowers used for pooja are as usual but thetchi (ixora) and thulasi (ocimum sanctum) etc not grown in the compound. Incense sticks and camphor are not used for the pooja. There are no (chuttambalam)sub deities in this temple. The architecture used for the construction of this temple is typical Kerala style. The temple pond is also unique as but fish no other aquatic creatures are not available. The deity of Koodalmanikyam is considered as the incarnation of “Dhanvanthari moorthi” The saint of healing. Hence many people approach this temple expecting cure of their ailments.
Lekshmana Temple of Thirumoozhikulam
The deity of Lekshmana is also a rarity. It is situated at Moozhikulam between Alwaye and Mala. The Thirumoozhikualam Lekshmana Perumal temple had a superior status and it had a command over the other local temples. The deity of this temple Lakshmanan is said to be kind to those who suffer and the wish of the devotees get fulfilled. Devotees vouch of their wish getting good children by visiting the temple which is also claimed to ail illness of heart. There are idols of Siva as dakshinamoorthi (south side) Ganapati, Sri Raman, Seetha, Hanuman Ayyappa and Bhagavathy in this temple. The idol of Sri Krishna (as goshala Krishnan) is also seen here.
There is an order in visiting the deities of this temple according to which we should, enter through the eastern gate and first visit and pray to the main deity Lakshmana, after praying there then visit Ganapathy, Siva and other deities then come back to Lakshmana to offer a second prayer after the pradikshana visit Ayyappa and Bhagavathy and then Krishna, and final visit to Lakshmana’s steps to offer prayers before returning.
The Shatrukhna Temple of Payyammal
The Payammal temple is about seven kilometers from Iringalakuda Koodalmanikya temple in the Iringalakuda Mathilakam route. Shatrukhna is considered to be the reincarnation of the Sri Chakra in the hands of Mahavishnu.
There are three poojas performed at this temple which opens for darshan early morning closes the door by ten O clock in the morning. The second session starts in the evening and remains open for darshan for “deeparadhana” and “Athazha pooja” and closes at 7PM. A lamp is lighted behind the “sreekovil” which is square in shape and built in granite. Ganapathy is in the southern part (dakshina moorthi).
Ganapathi “homam” is a special offering conducted by the devotees.
Sudharshana Pushpajali and submission of Sudharshana chakram offered at this temple are considered to boost the prosperity of the family members. The five days’ temple festival starts at Pooyam star of the month of Kumbha.(Feb.1 of 2007). The Ramayana month is celebrated with gaiety in the month of Karkitaka (between July and August).

The four temples of central Kerala, thronged by Hindu devotees during the holy month of Karkitakam are centred round Ramapuram, within a distance of three kilometres. They are Ramapuram Sree Ramaswamy Temple, Koodappulam Sree Lakshmanaswamy Temple, Amanakara Sree Bharathaswamy Temple and Methiri Sree Sathrughnaswamy Temple. These temples together are called the Nalambalam.
The deities here are the four sons of King Dasaratha of Ramayana. Lord Ram, the eldest of them is the eighth avatar (incarnation) of Lord Vishnu, who is the Supreme God of the Hindus. Bharata , second amongst them, is the avatar of the Panchajanya (Conch held by Vishnu) .Lakshmana is the avatar of the Adisesha, the serpent of infinite measures and on whom Lord Vishnu sleeps in the Ocean of Milk. Satrughna (the One who is destroyer of enemies) is the twin bother to Lakshamana and the youngest .He is the avatar of the Sudarshana chakra held by Lord Vishnu.
Legend behind Nalambalam pilgrimage
Sreerama Temple Devasthanam, is said to be more than 1000 years old place of worship. The village got its very name “Ramapuram” after this Temple came into existence, together with the other brothers of Lord Sree Rama, namely Lord Lakshmana, Lord Bharatha, and Lord Sathrughna, that too, within a radius of 6 kms in the same Grama Panchayath, in Kottayam Dist., Kerala.
The Origin of this temple is based on a Legend.
After a long peaceful, beneficial, prosperous rule of AYODHYA, Lord Sreerama did not find mental peace and satisfaction. So, he handed over the kingdom to his sons and left the country, without informing anybody including his most beloved brother Lord Lakshmana.
Sree Rama proceeded towards South, through the old path, which he trekked in search of Sithadevi. At last he reached this beautiful place, with rattling canal on the right side, smiling paddy fields in the rear, surrounded by dense forest. He felt it an ideal place and started his meditation.
As Lakshmana, Bharatha and Sathrughna could not bear the disappearance of their beloved brother any longer, they also left Ayodhya and pursued the path of their brother, believing that their brother would have gone towards South. At last they found him. They said they would also sit near him. So, Lakshmana found at this wounderful land place at Koodapulam, Bharatha at Amanakara and Sathrughna at Methiri, which are equi distant from one another. As years rolled on, four temples rose in each place in their names.
It is the only place of worship or Temple Complex in India, where you can reach the four deities, which exist in a single village at a distance of total 15 kms. These temples situate in Ramapuram Grama Panchayat, in Kottayam District, Kerala State

No comments:

Post a Comment