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Ashtabandakalasham In Hindu Temples In Kerala

Ashtabandakalasham is a tantric kriya involved in the consecration of a murti or bimbam or vigraham in a Hindu temple in Kerala. In simple terms it is the fixing or sticking the murti to the peedam (stand or foundation) using a particular glue like substance. In tantric terms, the peedam represents moola prakriti and the vigraham represents Virat Purusha.

The name Ashtabandakalasham is because of the use of eight ingredients in making the sticky substance for fixing peedam and vigraham.

The ingredients for making the Ashtabandakalasham or the glue like substance include powder of Shankh six parts (aru bhagam), kolarakku four parts, kadukka two parts, chenchaliyam one part, kozhipparal one parts, perattumanal one part, nool paruthi one part and nellikai or gooseberry two parts.

All the ingredients except noolparuthi are powdered atop a granite stone. The powder is mixed with sesame oil (ellenna) and powdered again (idichu patham varuthuka). When it is pounded on granite stone, the mixture get hot and therefore it is cooled and pounded again. The cooling and pounding goes on for 30 to 40 days and then the perfect glue like substance is got.

Once the murti is consecrated using Ashtabandham ritual, tantric kriyas are held for three to eleven day.

It is said that once in 12 Ashtabandakalasham should be performed in a temple.