Friday, August 29, 2014

Vadakkumnatha Temple, Thrissur

Vadakkumnatha Temple of Thrissur in Keala has some unique features and it is well known as 'Dakhina Kailasam' and also 'Vrishabhachalam'.Lord Parama Shiva,Goddess Parvathy,Sankara Narayana,Ganapathy,Sri Rama and Sri Krishna are worshiped in this temple.

The vast temple ground that  surrounds this temple which is known as 'Thekkinkadu Maithanam' (Thekkinkadu Ground) is the venue of the world renowned festival 'Thrissur Pooram' which is held every year during April-May in which millions of spectators and devotees from far and near participates.
It was 'Rama Varma Maharajah'  a ruler of Cochin Kingdom who  earned the title as 'Sakthan Thamburan' who cut down and cleared the Teak wood forest surrounded the temple which was thought to be sinful to be cleared till that period.Since it was the dwelling place of robbers and criminals Sakthan Thamburan ordered to cut down the trees and make that place clean.During his reign itself the 'Thrissur Pooram' was also started in which the deity of Vadakkumnathan Temple do not directly participates but the main temples participating in it are Paramekkavu Temple and Thiruvampady Temple.
The instumental Orchestra held at 'Ilajithara' known as 'Ilanjithara Melam' and  display of colorful umbrellas and changing them frequently by the two temple groups competitively which is known as 'Kudamattam'  is  marvelous to watch.
Vadakkumnatha temple was consecrated by Lord Parasurama and the temple was renovated during the period of 'Perunthachan'(historical Master Craftsman).The temple which is a classical example of Kerala Architecture is  situated in a compound of nine acres surrounded by stone walls and which have massive gateways known as 'Gopurams' has an important position among Shiva temples of India.
This is the only temple where the idol of Lord Shiva 'Shiva Linga' can not be seen by the devotees.The Shiva Linga is beneath a mound of Ghee which is 16 foot tall.The ghee which used for 'Abhishekam' (ablution) to the statue for centuries attained this shape which do not melt even in the summer.It do not have foul odor and do not attract insects of any sort including ants or flies.The devotees can see the  'Ghee mound'  adorned with gold crescents and gold serpent hoods.It is also believed that this represents the holy 'Kailas Mount' which is the sacred abode of Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvathy.
This temple has Mural Paintings which are depicting various scenes from

Ramayana and Mahabharatha on the walls inside the temple.The wood carvings on the shrine and the 'Koothambalam'(The enormous theatre to stage art forms like 'Koothu' 'Koodiyattam' etc) are also wonderful masterpieces.
In 2010 an ASI study revealed that one  of the paintings at Vadakkumnatha Temple  which was  thought as 'Vaishnava' till then  is  depicting  Lord Shiva.
One of the painting which was thought as 'Reclining Vishnu' is 'Reclining Siva' (Panivarai Shiva) with Parvathi Devi,Devi Ganga and other deities.
Adjacent to that panel another mural painting depicting 'Nataraja' which has twenty hands holding various objects  is also rare.
In 2012 Archaeological Survey of India has recommended 14 sites including Vadakkumnatha Temple to be included in the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

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