Friday, 17 August 2012


THIRUVANGAD SREE RAMASWAMY TEMPLE is one of the four Shrines dedicated to Lord Sree Rama in Kerala. The other three are at Triprayar, Thiruvilluamala and Kadalur. Located in an elevated plot of 2.75 hectares with an adjoining temple tank known as CHIRA which extends in an area of one hectare, the temple is within two kms away from Tellicherry Railway Station and Bus Stand. In between the outer wall and the Chira is a Gopuram, which was originally a seven storeyed structure which was destroyed during Tippu Sultan’s invasion.

According to legendary story this shrine was consecrated by a Rishi by name SWETHA MUNI. The legend is that AGASTHYA MUNI on his way to Kaveri River for offering his customary ablutions was once confronted by two demons namely NEELAN and SWETHAN. The Muni cursed them.On request for penance, they were advised to perform TAPAS at two Siva Temples. They were later known as Neelarshi and Swetharshi. The places where Neelarshi and Swetharshi performed their Tapas came to be known as Neeleswaram and Swetharanyapuram respectively. The latter was a dense forest at that time. The present name Thiruvangad must have been derived in this connection. It is said that Swetharshi consecrated a Vishnu temple also (dedicated to Sree Rama) at the site where he performed his Tapas.
Another version of the legend says that Siva Temple was consecrated by Neelarshi - a Shiva Bhakta and Sree Rama temple was consecrated by Swetharshi - a Vishnu Bhakta.
The chief deity carved out in Krishna Shila is Sree Rama reverently referred to by local people from time immemorial as Perumal.

Perumal is (Chathurbahu with four hands of Vishnu) with the mace held upside down in one hand and Abhaya mudra (sign of blessing and Moksha) in the other. It is believed that Sree Rama in 'POORNAROOPA' is depicted in the mood immediately after the killing of KHARA, THRISIRAS and DOOSHANA along with their fourteen thousand soldiers. It is also the belief that Seetha Devi was hidden in a nearby cave duringl the fight with Khara and others under Lakshmana's surveilence, which cave came to be known as POKKINASSERY, since the luggage (Pokkinam) of Sree Rama, Lakshmana and Seetha were safe deposited there.
Sree Hanuman is consecrated in front, slightly towards the left of Sree Rama; the pilgrims give equal importance to Sree Hanuman. The idol of Ramadasa Hanuman is made of Metal.
The other minor deities are Sree Porkali Devi in the Namaskara Mandapam, Sree Subramanyan near Thidappally facing West, Sree Ganapathy and Sree Dakshinamoorty in the South Nada, Sree Vana Sastavu in the Pichakathara, Sree Guruvayoorappan on the north side facing East and various Thevara Moorthies (condemned idols) on the north side facing West. It is said that the idols of some of these minor deities might have been transferred from the neighbouring temples for safe custody during Tippu’s invasion. The same may be the case of recent additions of Vana Sastavu, Maha Vishnu and Thevara Moorthi.
Age old items of Naivedyams (offerings) for Sree Rama are Neyyamruthu, Ney Vilakku, Payasam, Pushpanjali, Garland etc. and Avil (beaten rice) sweetened with sugar, banana and coconut scrapings for Hanuman. Special offering are Kalaba Charthu and Niramala with additional illuminataion and decorations.
Sree Porkali Devi is offered soaked rice as an inevitable naivedyam in accordance with the legend concerning the consecration of Sree Porkali Devi in the NAMASKARA MANDAPAM. The other minor deities mentioned above are offered Naivedyam as in other temples.
There are several authoritative references and records to suggest that the temple and its premises have witnessed the executions of several historical treaties and invasions. The earliest reference is possibly the inscription on the huge BALIKKALLU in front of the temple denoting the year of reconstruction of the temple as AD 826.

Thiruvangad Sree Ramaswami Temple is replete with sculptures wrought in wood. KIRATHARJUNEEYAM – the story of Arjuna's encounter with Lord Shiva who had appeared before him disguised as a hunter is depicted through the beautiful carvings on the twenty structures supporting the ceiling of the sanctum sanctorum. The Ceiling of the Namaskara Mandapam abounds in sculptural excellence. The wooden canopy of the ceiling has forty four images of Devi in different forms, in the lower belt. Above that on all sides is a panel covered with sculptures of birds with outstretched wings. Again, further above this panel of breathtaking beauty, we can see ten heads of elephants surrounded by men trying to chain the uncontrollable elephants. Over this panel is fixed the wooden ceiling with scenes from Ramanayam.
The story of Ramayana unfolds, commencing from the southern side from the childhood of Sree Rama beginning with the heroic deeds to protect sage Viswamithra's Yaga, Ahalya Moksham, Sita Swayamvaram and so on. On the westeren side can be seen Rama, Lakshmana and Sita in Panchavati, saffron Clad Ravana entering the parnasala, Seetha being carried away by Ravana in his chariot and Jatayu's fight with Ravana - all with exquisite workmanship.
In the panels that follow, we see Rama and Lakshmana wandering through the woods in search of seethe, the wounded Jatayu his face expressing the cruel treatment he received at the hands of Ravana, the headless Kabandha, the fight with Kabandha and his Moksham from the curse and regaining of original Gandharva form.
The figures on lthe northern side commence with Hanuman appearing before Rama and Lakshmana in the guise of a Brahmana. Recognising the brothers, Hanuman appears in his true form, carries them on his shoulders to Sugreeva; then follow the episodes of the pact betweeb Rama and Sugreeva, the fight between Bali and Sugreeva, Sugreeva's coronation, Bali's death and Sree Rama consoling Thara with his words of wisdom. On the northern side we see the episodes of Soorpanaka's appearance as Kaamaroopini, Lakshmana disfiguring her, the entry of Khara with his his huge Rakshasa army and the battle between Khara and Sree Rama leading to the death of the demon. Another panel running around, depicts the battle between Bali and Mayavi, Hanuman's entry to Ashoka vana, his meeting with Seetha Devi, handing over of mudra mothiram and Hanuman's return to Sree Rama.
Sree Rama's journey from KOSALA to LANKA and back has great significance from the viewpoint of emotional integration of people of different culture right from Kashmir to Kanyakumari and Gujrat to West Bengal, Assam and eastern states. Sree Rama, Seetha and Lakshmana are believed to have traveled through the entire length and breadth of ARYAVARTHA, as evidenced by the concerned local belief that a certain place acquired its name from certain episode related to one or other action of Sree Rama, Lakshmana or Seetha. The phenomenon can be seen to exist all over India in connection with many of our heroes in Ramayana and Mahabharatha. Repetition of the same episode in different version can be seen in other places.
Greek travelers have referred in the early centuries of their tour to Kodungallur as MUSSIRIUS which is MURACHEEPATTANAM mentioned by Valmiki in Ramayana while describing the allocation of Seetha’s search duty to Vanaraas by Sugreeva.
As already mentioned, the name Thiruvangad is derived from SWETHRANYA - a dense forest - where Swethamuni conducted his Tapas. With the establishment of this temple the dense forest acquired the divine status and came to be known as Thiruvangad (THIRU denoting sacred status and Vankad denoting dense forest).
There is and interesting hearsay about the outer wall constructed by Mr.T.H.Baber, then the Malabar Collector who was deputed by the British to quell the great Pazassi Thampuran. Mr. Baber entered the temple compound riding on his horse when an old man advised him to desist from going in front of Perumal on horse back and also to salute Perumal as a mark of respect, which went unheeded. When he reached the Eastern entrance gate of the temple the horse fell flat and could not get up in spite of Baber’s efforts to revive it; convinced of the greatness of the deity Mr.Baber constructed the compound wall and became a devotee.
In the second half of the 18th century when Tippu sultan attacked Kerala and reached the eastern fields in front of the temple, firing at the seven storeyed "GOPURAM", it seems a lady sweeper of the temple complained to the Lord about the impending disaster. It is said that she heard a voice asking her to look east words closing one of her eyes; on doing so she she saw muting in the enemy camp as a consequence of which Tippu had to retreat. This place is known as PERUMBORKALAM where Perumal with his entourage conducts the annual hunting (Pallivetta) on the night of 6th day during Vishu Mahotsavam.
It is also the hearsay that the woman sweeper lost sight of her eye with which she saw the mutiny in the enemy camp while the sight of the closed eye was in tact. The defective eye is said to inherit even to this day in atleast one member of the family of the woman sweeper.
Sree Porkali Devi of nearby Muzhakkunnu is the deity of the Namakara Mandapam. The story is that there was an argument between the Chief Priest (Mel Shanthi) and the Marar (the specialist in Vadhyam and pipe music) about the former’s ability to show Devi’s presence through his Thanthra sastra and rituals and the latter’s capacity to attract Devi with his pipe (shehnoy) music. Both were experts in their own lines of profession. The Chief Priest challenged Marar, which he (Marar ) accepted gracefully. While the Chief Priest was about to prepare the Naiveyam for Devi, the Marar played the pipe (with the help of Beejakshara Manthram concert). Devi’s presence was sensed by the Chief Priest, who due to lack of time could not prepare the Naivedyam and in haste has to offer the wet rice (uncooked) to the Devi. The Chief priest admitted the defeat over the Marar’s ability, and according to the condition of the bet, the Chief Priest entrapped the most powerful DEVI inside the present wooden enclosure. Since then the main offering to Devi is the wet rice.
The hearsay about those damages to one of the golden Pinnacles (THAZHIKAKUDAM) on the copper roof of the temple is that it was caused by robbers who unsuccessfully tried to scale the height of the temple using monster lizard and rope.
Reference has already been made to Pokkinassery and killing of Khara by Sree Rama. There is a belief that no story or play in any form pertaining to Khara Vadha can be staged in the temple compound because of an unfortunate experience a Kathakali artiste had in olden days. The artiste who mouthed Khara’s War cry against Sree Rama, found himself in the temple tank below the Gopuram due to some hallucinatory experience. The deity is believed to be established in a fierce mood immediately following the Khara Vadham.
Another hearsay is that the chief architect of this temple is PERUMTHACHAN (the celebrated authority on architecture and carpentry), referred to in the AYTHIHYAMALA of Kottarathil Sankunny, who has concealed a measuring scale (MUZHAKKOL) somewhere behind the artistic sculptures in the temple. The architect who can locate it, can claim the honour of MOOTHASARI Title of the area.
Vadakkedam and Kizhakkedam are the two Shiva Temples in the compound of which the former is the age old shrine where Swethamuni performed his Tapas. The divine power of Mahadeva in Vadakkedam was said to cause severe drought and crop loss in the eastern paddy fields of Vayalalam, Kodiyeri etc. The remedy suggested by the Astrologers was to establish another temple of Mahadeva opposite to Vadakkedam to offset or tranquilise the aggressive divinity and avert the draught. This may be to attract the attention of the people of the area to the prevailing severe drought detrimental to agricultural production and induce them to take up remedial measure in water conservation and drainage facilities which might be lacking in those days. Kunduchira dam for drainage might have been an after thought of this episode.
The sacred relation between TIRUNELLY Vishnu Temple in North Wayanad and this temple is well known. Some of minor deities of this temple are believed to have been brought from Tirunelly. Astrologers say that there is a physical connection between MAHA PANCHA THEERTHAM of Tirunelly and the THIRUVANGAD Temple tank of this shrine. At the flag hoisting ceremony of Vishu Mahotsavam, there is a customary question to be asked aloud, whether the flag of Tirunelly has been lowered. The flag can be hoisted only on receipt of an affirmative reply taken from a Brahmin who is entitle to get a monetary reward as a token.
In the olden days the Mahotsavam used to be of fourteen days duration, when the idol of Rama was taken round with pomp and Vadyam in grandeur on the head of a temple employee – moosad – through different villages. There was a long standing feud between this moosad of the temple and Kurungote Nair, a powerful local chieftain – Once when the entourage reached Kurungote Nair's area, he killed the "moosad" with his sword leading to chaos. Since then the Mahotsavam used to be conducted in the temple compound.
Sri Ramaswami Temple, Thiruvangad, is situated 1 k.m away Tellicherry town-Kannur.

The Executive Officer, Thiruvangad Devaswam,
Sree Ramaswamy Temple, Tellicherry 670103,
Kerala, India. Tel: 0490 2322599

Sree Dharmi Kulangara Balabadra Swami Temple -Mazhoor

Dharmikulangara Temple is located 5 km east of Taliparamba a scenic village called MAZHOOR near Poomangalam, the village is famous for the Dharmikulangara Temple, a highly reversed shrine dedicated to Lord Balram. The temple is now managed by Trichambaram Sree Krishna Temple Committee.

 The main deity in the temple is Balram, brother of Sree Krishna. Legends have it that, every year Balram visits Sree Krishna at Trichambaram temple and they walk together to Pookkothu Nada. At the Pookkothu Nada they rejoice, dancing and blessing thousands of devotees who attend the festival. Only after the arrival of Balram on the 14th day, regular pujas are offered to the deity. One of the days during the Utsavam time, Idols of Sree Krishna and Balarama are taken through the village on a procession called "Nadu Valam Vekkal". Only the eldest member of Namboodiri family is allowed to accompany the idols.
Lord Balarama or Balabhadra is the eighth avatara(incarnation) of Vishnu.He is also known as Halayudha. Balarama is described as being physically very strong, in fact 'bala' in Sanskrit refers to 'strength'. Balarama is the elder brother of Lord Krishna. Also he is acknowledged as a manifestation of Anantha or Adishesha, the divine serpent on whom Vishnu rests.

Balarama took birth as the son of Vasudeva and Devaki. Kamsa, the brother of Devaki and an evil king, was intent upon killing all the progeny of his sister because of a prediction that he would die at the hands of her eighth son. Kamsa thus threw his sister Devaki and her husband Vasudeva into prison, and proceeded to kill each of their children as soon as they were born.
In due course of time, Devaki became pregnant for the seventh time. However, this child was not destined to meet the fate of the six previous infants. The unborn child was miraculously transferred from Devaki's womb to the womb of Rohini, who had desired a child of her own. Thus Balarama's other name is also Sankarsana which describes the transfer of the child from the womb. The child was formally named Rama, but because of his great strength he was called Balarama (Strong Rama).

Thus, Rohini actually gave birth to Balarama and raised him. Balarama spent his childhood as a cowherd boy with his brother Krishna and friends. He later married Revati, the daughter of King Raivata, ruler of the Anarta province.

Balarama taught both Duryodhana of the Kauravas and Bhima of the Pandavas the art of fighting with a Gadha(mace). When war broke between the Kauravas and the Pandavas, Balarama was equally affectionate to both parties and so decided to be neutral. Eventually when Bhima (of greater strength) defeated Duryodhana (of greater skill) by dealing a blow below the navel with his mace, Balarama threatened to kill Bhima. This was only prevented when Krishna reminded Balarama of Bhima's vow to kill Duryodhana by crushing the very thigh he exposed to his wife Draupadi.

In the Bhagavata Purana it is described that after Balarama took part in the battle that caused the destruction of the rest of the Yadu dynasty, and after he witnessed the disappearance of Krishna, he then sat down in a meditative state and departed from this world by producing a great white snake from his mouth, and thus he was carried by Sesha in the form of a serpent.

Mazhoor Balabadra Swamy Temple

This is one of the rarest temple existing in the state of kerala. In opinion there is no temple devoted to balabadra swamy alone  in india. More over the diety in this temple is facing west side.

Balarama joins brother srikrishna (at trichambaram which is about 8 kms from mazhoor) from kumbham 22nd to meenam 6th (6th to 20th march) every year at trichambaram temple for the annual festival. On 22nd kumbham and 6th meenam 'thidambu nrutham' will be performed in the temple. Apart from this akshaya thrithiya day (birthday of lord balarama) is another important day for this temple.
Have palabhishekam and payasa nivedyam to balarama on full moon sandhya to have 'salsanthanam' (good children).
This temple is placed in Mazhoor. 2 Km from Kanjirakkad, Kanjirakkad is 4.5 Km from Thaliparamba towards Alakkode. Main Prathistha  Sree Balabadra Swami.Upaprathistas  Sree Ganapathy, Sree Thrishambalam Appan.

 Sri dharmikulangara balabhadra swami seva samithi
Ph: 94950 04205, 0460 2203057, 0460 2203236
Coordinates: 12°4'14"N   75°24'11"E

Peralassery Sri Subrahmanya Temple

Peralassery Sri Subrahmanya temple, located at Mundallur on the Kannur - Koothuparambu route, 15kms from Kannur, is one of the famous shrines in Malabar. Lord Subrahmanya, son of Lord Siva, is the presiding deity of this temple. The temple is said to be connected with the famous epic, 'Ramayana'. It is believed that it was here that Lord Rama along with Lakshmana halted on their way to free Sita from Ravana in Lanka. The temple also has a shrine for the serpent God and has a number of bronze and copper idols of snakes. The annual festival of the temple is celebrated for eight days. Kathakali, Chakyarkoothu, Ottanthullal, Parayan Thullal and Seethankan Thullal are the main art-forms performed during the festival.
Another important concert during the festival is a highly religious dance, ' Thidampunritham' performed by the priest.

The Peralassery Subramanya Temple, is located 15 kms from Kannur. It is also believed that people who visit Peralaserry temple must also visit the nearby Makrery temple. The main “vazhipaddu” or offerings in this temple are “Subramania Puja” and “Mutta Oppikal” (offering of eggs to the revered snake deity). The main deity of this temple is Lord Subramania.
The Peralassery Subramanya Temple, is located 15 kms from Kannur. It is also believed that people who visit Peralaserry temple must also visit the nearby Makrery temple. The main “vazhipaddu” or offerings in this temple are “Subramania Puja” and “Mutta Oppikal” (offering of eggs to the revered snake deity).
The main deity of this temple is Lord Subramania.

“Chuttambalam” has deities of Lord Ganesha, Lord Ayyapa.

The Stepped Pool/Tank or “Chira” of  the Peralassery Subramania temple is a magnificent structure.

The week long Kodiyettam festival associated with the Peralassery Subramanya temple is in the Month of December, every year.

How to get to Peralaserry Subramania Temple, Kannur, Kerala.

Nearest Railway Station : Kannur (Cannanore) 16 Kms away.
Nearest Airports : Kozhikode (Calicut),Karipur 110 kms.
                           :   Mangalore , about 140 kms.
Main Private Bus Terminal in Kannur: 16kms away.
Peralassery Sri Subramanyaswami Temple
Post Mundalore, Kannur, Kerala, Pin- 670622
Phone :0497 2827601