Saturday, June 2, 2012

Kottiyoor Mahadeva Temple

Dakshaprajapathi was the son of Brahmadeva who had several Children and  the youngest was
Sathi Devi.From the childhood itself Sathi Devi adorned, and loved Lord Shiva  which increased
day by day and when she attained a young woman she had no other desire other than to marry
Lord Shiva.Lord Shiva was knowing about her intention and Love and when he understood
that her love towards him was extremely truthful he accepted her in marriage.
In the beginning Daksha  was in good terms with Lord Shiva and but gradually Daksha started to hate him.Daksha behaved arrogantly which Lord Shiva could not tolerate and he stopped 
all contacts with his father-in-law.
Once Daksha reached 'Deva Lokam' (place of Semi Gods) where Lord Shiva was also present 
there at that time.When Daksha Prajapathi entered all the Semi Gods and other dignitaries present there stood up in respect as Lord Mahadeva's father-in-law.Lord Shiva did not stand
to show his respect which Daksha could not tolerate.He thought that Lord Shiva did not show
respect to soil him in front of the Semi Gods and wanted to revenge Lord Shiva for the shame.
                                Daksha arranged a Yagna to be conducted in an elaborate manner in which
delegates form all the fourteen worlds would attend except Lord Shiva.He invited all the
famous Kings,other eminent people,monks,semi Gods etc but did not invite Sathi Devi and Lord Shiva.
Sathi Devi wanted to attend the Yagna which was  being conducted in an exuberant manner.She pleaded Lord Shiva to give her consent to go for it but  he tried in vain to dissuade her.At last Lord Shiva allowed her to go but told her not to loose her temper and to expect
disrespect only at Daksha's place.
When Sathi Devi reached the Yagna Place everyone of the  invited dignitaries were present and the Yagna was proceeding in full swing.When she entered there Daksha started to tease her with
all kinds of nonsense and bad words to insult Lord Shiva.She tried to defend him by answering
in a lovely manner but she could not withstand  his  continued assaulted words for a long time.All the
eminent gathering were hearing Daksha's cruel speech and Sathi Devi felt quite ashamed.She
felt sad about his contempt  defiance towards Lord Shiva and was unable to tolerate his stupid words in that anguish she jumped in to the pyre of the Yagna and  committed suicide.
It is also believed that  utilizing  her mental power she burned herself to death  without jumping in to the pyre.
The belief is that the Daksha's Yagna place was at  'Kottiyoor' in Kerala which is a pilgrimage center of Kerala of Lord Shiva Temple.
The belief is that at the place where Sathi Devi disappeared,  later  Lord Shiva's presence felt as 

self originated Shiv Linga.
After several years  that place  was covered with forest and Lord Parasurama tried to
conduct a Yagna there.He started a function which would extend for twenty seven days.But
this could not be completed because  Monk Durvasavu who was suffering from a  curse entered that holy
place and the Yagna had to be stopped.Again that place was covered by forest until the
time of Sankaracharya who revived the place.
A tribal youth tried to sharpen his arrow on a stone  and to his astonishment he found that the stone   started to bleed and he informed about this to nearby 'Nampoothiri Brahmin' who on further astrological investigation revealed that it was Dakha's Yagna place and the stone found was Shiv Linga of self origin.
Sankaracharya was invited to this place for further pooja activites.
Kottiyoor Festival is extended for twenty eight days.'Neerezhunnallathu,Neyyattam,Bhandaram Ezhunenellathu,Ilam neerattam,Kalam Varavu,Kalasattam' are the seven sections for the festival.(These are all traditional rituals)
           The festival is initiated by a ritual known as 'Prakuzham' which starts on 'Chothi star day' of Medam Month.
There are two  'Kottiyoor'. "Akkare Kottiyoor  and Ikkare Kottiyoor" Entrance to the Akkare
Kottiyoor is limited during festival days only.There is no temple at Akkare kottiyoor.The
pooja rituals are performed by 'Sankalpam'(Assumption ).
The Pooja rituals are vivid and varied other than in many other temples during this period.
There are several functions which are special here.
The Ghee Unction is an important activity and the devotees who attend this ritual will be blessed by the God.
A temporary Sanctum is made at Akkare Kottiyoor for the festival which is removed and 
put in the river is the final function of the festival.
There are four types of 'Aaradhana' (a pooja  ritual) known as "Thiruvonam Aaradhana,Revathy Aaradhana,Ashtami Aaradhana and Rohini Aaradhana".This year's
Aaradhana festival starts today.
Kottiyoor is situated in Kannur District.Kottiyoor can be reached from Thalassery.It is
on the way to Thalassery-Mananthavadi road.


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