Significance of 41-day Sabarimala Mandala Kalam

Sabarimala Mandala Kalam 2023/24

The Lord Ayyappa temple at Sabarimala is an iconic temple situated deep throughout the forest amid 18 hills at an altitude of 4133 toes above sea stage. It’s located within the Pathanamthitta district of Kerala state. That is an historical temple whose earliest point out goes again to Treta Yuga, through the time of Lord Ram.

What’s Mandala Kalam – Makaravilakku Season?

The Sannidhanam or the principle temple is constructed on a 40-foot excessive plateau. The shrine was rebuilt in 1950 after a hearth gutted the premises and the stone picture of the deity was changed by a Panchaloha idol constructed from an alloy of 5 metals.
The temple opens for the primary 5 days of each Malayalam month. Throughout the Mandalakala season, the temple will stay open for 41 days, ranging from the primary of Vrischikam month, until the eleventh day of Dhanu month.

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Then the temple will probably be shut for 4 days, after which it would open for the 21-day Makaravilakku season. The end result of the season occurs through the Makara Sankranti when the Solar transits to the Makara constellation and enters Uttarayana or the north of the celestial sphere.
Solar in Uttarayana is mostly thought of the start of an auspicious time. Makara Jyothi is the star that seems within the sky throughout this time.
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When is Mandala Kalam 2023/24?

Makaravilakku is a light-weight or flame that seems thrice on the Ponnambalamedu hill, 4 km away from the temple to mark the event. The 2023 Mandalakala season begins on November 17, Friday and ends on December 27, Wednesday.

The Makaravilakku season begins on thirtieth December, Saturday and ends on twentieth January 2024, Saturday.

Tips on how to do the 41-day Mandalakala Vrutham?

Solely after enterprise a rigorous vrutham for 41 days does an individual turn into eligible for the darshan of Lord Ayyappa. The individual must be wearing black or darkish blue garments and carry an irumudikettu to climb the 18 steps to succeed in the abode of the Lord.
Throughout the vritham or the fasting interval, the individual is to guide a pious life. He/She ought to subsist on the only and minimal meals. The vritham is initiated by carrying a Mudra Mala. The individual fasting ought to rise up early, bathe in chilly water twice a day, not lower hair or fingernails, and chant swami saranam earlier than each dialog and on the finish of it. He/She must also be carrying easy garments both black or darkish blue.
The individual ought to chorus from indulging in worldly pleasures throughout this era. He/She shouldn’t get offended and stay calm all through. The concept is that to see god, one ought to rework oneself right into a god. As soon as the Mudra mala is worn, the individual begins the journey to turn into one with god. Earlier than ascending the 18 holy steps of Sabarimala temple which will get you a darshan of god, you’re informed ‘tatwamasi’, that means ‘it’s you’. That’s, the god you might have come to see is inside you.
The 41-day fasting interval transforms the devotee from human to god. It’s customary to revere each devotee making ready for Sabarimala pilgrimage as an avatar of the Lord himself. To ascend the 18 holy steps resulting in Lord Ayyappa, the individual ought to have irumudikettu.

What’s Irumudikettu?

Irumudi is a material bundle with two compartments. It’s carried on the top by the devotees and is of the colours of black or darkish blue. The entrance portion incorporates the pooja articles and the sacred choices to be made to the deity, like ghee-filled coconut, uncooked rice, jaggery or cane sugar, betel leaves, camphor, and so on., whereas the non-public belongings of the devotee are carried rear within the compartment.
The ghee coconut is an important. Generally known as Mudra Thenga, the skin of the coconut is cleaned completely, and the within is emptied by draining out the candy water by means of the attention of the coconut. Then the coconut is stuffed with pure ghee, which is used later for the abhishekham of the Lord.
The opening of the ghee coconut is then sealed. The ghee coconut represents the act of emptying oneself of worldly pleasures first after which filling the void with pure life drive. Bathing the Lord with the ghee quantities to merging one’s consciousness with the divine.
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The 18 Holy Steps of Sabarimala Temple

Ascending the Pathinettaampadi, or the 18 steps, is an important a part of the Sabarimala pilgrimage. The devotees begin the ascension to obtain the Lord’s darshan by inserting their proper foot on step one. The 18 steps are thought to indicate the 18 hills which encompass the Sabarimala temple. However, it’s revered far more for its religious symbolism.
The primary 5 of those steps are thought of to symbolize the 5 senses – imaginative and prescient, listening to, scent, style, and contact. The subsequent eight signifies the eight damaging traits of human feelings akin to want, anger, greed, lust, satisfaction, jealousy, envy, and boastfulness. The subsequent three symbolize the three Gunas or qualities – sattva (readability), rajas, (exercise), and tamas (inertia); and the final two steps denote the twins of data and ignorance.
It’s believed that solely after climbing these steps and going past all that they symbolize, one can detach the self from all worldly bonding and attain a state the place one can align with the supreme. For this, strict adherence to austerities through the 41+ day Mandalakalavritham interval is important.

Significance of Mandalakala Vrutham

As per mythology, Lord Ayyappa devised the 41-day vritham to guard his devotees from the evils of Shani or Saturn. The intense Dasha interval of Shani lasts for seven years throughout which the individual might lose his aptitude to maintain his hair and nails trimmed, might should undergo from chilly climate, be pressured into austerity, might lose property, and even resort to begging. An Ayyappa devotee can overcome these seven years and others by present process comparable penance through the 41 days ranging from Vrischikam.
It is a interval when the Solar is farthest at Daksinayana or south of the celestial sphere. This implies the affect of the Solar is at a minimal. Since Shani is the other of the Solar, it means the affect of Shani is at its peak. Underneath Shani’s affect comes bitter climate, laziness, dangerous meals, dangerous firm, cruelty, and sicknesses.
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For individuals with Medam Rashi, Karkidakam Rashi, and Thulam Rashi that is the time of kandaka shani. For Medam Rashi individuals there could also be issues with employment. For Karkidakam Rashi private issues might come up within the type of undesired and unsightly travels. For Thulam Rashi individuals, issues will come within the type of arthritis or from maternal relations.
Individuals with Midhunam Rashi are dealing with Ashtama Shani. They could encounter well being issues. These in Dhanu, Makaram, and Kumbam Rashis are going by means of sade saath and will face extra bills, failure, and lack of outcomes to efforts made.
For individuals in these Rashis, present process the 41-day vritham will carry wonderful advantages. For these belonging to different Rashis too, observing the penance will assist to mitigate the evil affect of Shani. The garments worn throughout this era ought to be both black or darkish blue as that’s the colour agreeable to Shani.
The vritham is noticed for upwards of 41 days because it takes round 40 days of disciplined observance for an individual to bodily and psychologically settle for the change that’s being evoked inside her or him.

The Science of Mandala Kalam

Black garments take up warmth and shield the physique from the chilly local weather. Black garments had been additionally used to carry again animal assaults through the lengthy trek by means of dense forests.

Significance of Black Colour in Astrology

Devotees put on rudraksha, spatika, tulasi, sandalwood, coral, and lotus beads as jewellery across the neck on the time of vritham. Rudrakshas management anger and convey down the strain. Tulasi chills the thoughts, sandalwood beads hold the physique hydrated, spatika beads take up toxins, coral beads make blood move easy whereas Lotus beads hold the pores and skin recent and wholesome.
The very best time to get up through the vritham interval is 4 within the morning which is known as ‘Bramhamuhurta’ the place the mind cells can carry out in increased magnitude and fill the physique with new life drive.
The smoke from burning camphor will clear the sinuses. Devotees worship Lord Ayyapan twice a day by lighting a camphor.
Coldwater baths make the bodywork more durable to take care of warmth. That and a gradual weight-reduction plan leaving out spicy, sizzling, and salty tastes and consuming solely sattvic meals, which is definitely digestible, raises immunity energy and improves psychological stability.
Strolling barefoot acts as a remedy of acupuncture and controls blood strain. Sleeping on the ground will relieve numerous illnesses within the physique as a result of earth’s inherent life drive.

Sabarimala – The Mount of Dharma

As per mythology, Shabari was a tribal lady, the daughter of a hunter. However, somewhat than observe the trail of her mother and father, Shabari sought information; she wished to know what Dharma is. Nonetheless, no rishi was ready to simply accept a girl from a hunter tribe as a pupil of holy scriptures, until she discovered Sage Matanga on the foot of Mount Rishyamukha. Sage Matanga accepted Shabari as a pupil and he or she spent the next years serving him.
The time got here for the sage to depart the fabric world. A tragic Shabari, who additionally had grown previous with greying hair, requested the sage to inform her the way in which to succeed in the place Sage Matanga was going. The sage requested Shabari to hold on doing what he did, to serve and worship Lord Rama, until the Lord gave her darshan. This was to be her dharma. For this, Shabari took residence atop the hill and began observing her charya.
A very long time after, Lord Rama did arrive, as he was on his approach to save Sita. There was a protracted line of sages, gurus, and different distinguished individuals who anticipated the Lord’s darshan. However the Lord selected advantage over pomposity and gave darshan to Shabari and granted her moksha. The hill the place she resided over time got here to be generally known as Sabarimala. She is the unique Dharma Sastha.

Lord Ayyappa as Dharma Sastha

As soon as upon a time, there was a feminine demon by the identify of Mahishi. After observing extreme penance, Mahishi happy Lord Brahma and gained from him the extraordinary boon that she could be killed solely by somebody who’s born to the Lords Shiva and Vishnu. Since two males can’t produce offspring, Mahishi patted herself on her cleverness and resorted to implementing her will upon the world.
On the identical time, someplace else, one other demon by the identify of Bhasmasura happy Lord Shiva by means of strict penance. From Shiva, the demon obtained the boon to show to ash any individual upon whom he positioned his hand. Having obtained the boon, Bhasmasura resorted to inserting his hand on Lord Shiva himself. Outwitted by the demon, Lord Shiva approached Lord Vishnu for assist.
Lord Vishnu assumed the type of Mohini, a bewitching magnificence, and appeared earlier than Bhasmasura. The demon was enchanted by her magnificence and obtained enslaved to her. So when Mohini positioned her hand over her head, Bhasmasura did the identical and immediately he turned to ash. An impressed Lord Shiva consented to a union with Mohini and thus was born Dharma Sasthavu.
This baby was later discovered by Raja Rajashekara Pandiyan, the King of Pandalam, on the banks of the Pampa River. The King, who was childless at the moment, adopted the kid and introduced him up as his son. As there was a bell tied across the neck of the kid when he discovered him, the king named the boy Manikantan, the one with a bell within the neck.
Someday afterward, the queen bore the King a son. Nonetheless, Raja Rajashekara Pandiyan thought of Manikantan to be the elder son and the subsequent king. The jealous queen, underneath the affect of a scheming minister, hatched a plan to have Manikandan killed. Pretending to undergo from a mysterious sickness, she had the doctor prescribe the milk of tigress as medication and wished Manikandan to carry it.
Although it saddened the King, younger Manikandan took up the duty and left for the forest. There he encountered the demon Mahishi. A fierce battle ensued and ended with him killing the demon. Having attained moksha by the hands of Lord Ayyappa, Mahishi changed into a good looking lady who desired to be close to the Lord eternally. The Lord, being celibate, mandated a sure distance to be noticed, and stated ‘So be it’. She is worshipped thus far as Malikapurathamma and resides slightly away from the Sabarimala temple. Supremely happy with the annihilation of the demon, the Devas assumed the types of tigers, using on whom Manikantan returned to the palace.
Along with his mission accomplished, Lord Ayyappa retreated to the divine mount of Shabari went into deep meditation, and left the fabric world. Earlier than leaving, the Lord had requested the King to construct a temple over there after the King wished permission for himself and different devotees to go to the Lord. Ayyappa agreed to present darshan supplied they observe penance for 41 days or extra, ranging from the primary day of Vrischikam earlier than coming to see him. Being a celibate, and out of respect to Malikapurathamma, he forbade ladies of mensurating age from visiting him.
King Raja RajasekharaPandian constructed the temple as desired by the lord as per the recommendation of sage Agastya, by which, the stone idol of the lord carved by Parasurama was consecrated on the primary day of the Malayalam month Makaram (which falls in the course of January). Since Sabarimala, the mount of Shabari, was already generally known as the mount of Dharma, Lord Ayyappa took the mantle of Dharma Shasta as effectively.

Significance of the 12 months 2023/24

On January 17, 2023, Shani moved to Aquarius or Kumbham Rashi, which is his personal home. Shani will keep there until March 30, 2025. So, Shani is predicted to stay calm and nice throughout this Mandala season. Because the lord of justice, Shani provides what one deserves. Good deeds will usher in good outcomes.

The Trek to Sabarimala throughout Mandala Kalam

There are three routes to succeed in the Sabarimala temple – The Erumeli route, the Vandiperiyar route, and The Chalakayam route. The Erumeli route is essentially the most arduous. Pilgrims should stroll about 61 kilometers barefoot over a number of days by means of forest and hill tracks to succeed in the temple. It’s believed that this was the route taken by Lord Ayyappa to succeed in the height.
The Vandiperiyar route begins on the 94.4 km stone on the Kottayam – Kumili highway. The temple is about 12.8 kilometers from right here. The third, the Chalakayam route, is the shortest and most most well-liked trek. Chalakayam is close to the Pampa river. Sannidhanam is simply 8 kilometers from right here.
Nonetheless, even the only route entails arduous trekking protecting steep slopes and rocky terrain. Individuals with issues within the coronary heart, or these affected by excessive strain are suggested to not make the trek. If the pilgrimage is important, then they’ll take the providers of ‘doli’ for a price. Doli service is the place two or 4 males carry the devotee seated on a chair mounted to 2 logs (doli) up until Sannidhanam.

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