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Kumaranellur Temple Thrikarthika Festival – Kumaranalloor Devi Temple History – Story – Unique Rituals

Kumaranalloor Devi temple is famous shrine dedicated to Goddess Karthyayani and is located at Kumaranalloor village around 4 km northwest of Kottayam town, Kerala. Kumaranellur temple Thrikarthika festival 2021 date is November 11 to November 20. Thrikarthika is on November 19, 2021.

The main festival observed in the temple is Thrikarthika in Vrischikam month. Another important festival in the temple is Navratri. Pooram in Meenam month is another important festival here.

Thrikarthika festival is observed for 10 days. The festival begins on Thiruvonam nakshatra ends on Rohini Nakshatra. The most important day is the Karthika Nakshatra.

On the Karthika day it is usual to make a nivedyam (offering) in the temple for Udayanapuram Subramanya and Thrissur Vadakkumnathan. The story goes that the deities in these two temples were greatly charmed by the beauty of the Devi returning after her Karthika bath. They came out of the temples, got over the compound walls, and stood there looking at the Devi. The priests of the temple soon arrived in the temple searching for the deities, finally met them on the walls at the southern end of the Kumaranalloor temple. From that day onward, on Thrikarthika, puja is performed over the walls of the temple.

The temple is completely lit with traditional Kerala lamps on the day of Thrikarthika.

During the festival days, Kerala folk and traditional temple arts are conducted in the temple premises along with percussions like panjavadyam and chenda melam.

The temple is one among the 108 Durga temples in Kerala. Kumaranellur village is one among the 64 Brahmin villages in ancient Kerala.

The main deity of Goddess Karthyayani was faces east. The deity holds conch in her right hand and chakra or discus in the left hand. She wears chilambu on her leg and pearl ornaments around the neck. The sanctum sanctorum is circular – vatta sreekovil. There is a particular lamp in the mandapam with 24 diyas. Lighting this lamp is an important offering.

This particular lamp belonged to Chembakassery King who used to used it for Bhagavathy Seva. When Chembakassery King surrendered before Marthanda Varma, the lamp was place in the mandapam in the Kumaranalloor Devi temple.

The temple has a gold plated flag post – swarna kodimaram. The gold thazhikakudam of the temple was donated by King Uthram Thirunal Marthanda Varma who was the brother famous Travancore king Swathi Thirunal.

A two tier gopuram is part of the temple complex. In front of the gopuram slightly towards northside is the temple pond. Passing through the gopuram a devotee reaches the Anakottil.

Red shoe flower, male elephant, red color silk clothes and rathadav are not allowed inside the temple.

Kumaranalloor Devi Temple History

It is believed that in the beginning the shrine was a Shiva temple. Shiva was the grama devata of ancient Kumaranellur. Today, Shiva is an Upa Devata in the temple. A form of Sastha known as Manibhushan is worshipped on the west side pillar of mandapam. Another Upa Devata in the temple is Alingal Bhagavathy.

It is a rule in the temple that devotee visiting the shrine should first offer prayers to Shiva and Manibhushan before entering the main sanctum sanctorum to worship Kumaranalloor Karthyayani. Kalakkathu Kunchan Nambiar famous Malayalam poet, performer, satirist and the inventor of local art form of Ottamthullal had commented on this rule.

Kumaranalloor Devi Temple Story

It is said that an innocent priest of Madurai Meenakshi temple was wrongly implicated for stealing. Unable to bear the insult, the priest who was an ardent devotee of Godess Shakti left Madurai and visited numerous places. One day he reached Kumaranalloor and a temple dedicated to Kumara or Subrahmanya was under construction in the village. The priest realized the presence of Devi in the place and asked the Perumal to consecrate Devi in the temple instead of Subramania. But Perumal declined to entertain the priest stating that he had not seen the presence of Goddess Devi.

The temple authorities decided to go ahead with the prathishta of Subramania. But suddenly the entire area was covered in thick fog. People realized this as an indication of the presence of Goddess Devi. Karthyayani form of Goddess was consecrated in the temple.

The murti of Subramania meant for Kumaranalloor was later consecrated at Udayanapuram near Vaikom.

Even today a family member of the Madurai priest should perform puja at least one time in a day. Therefore a pujari from the family resides in the temple.




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