Sree Dharma Sastha Temple otherwise called Ayyappa Temple is situated at Aryankavu in Kollam area of Kerala. Aryankavu is found 79 km from Kollam and 35 km east of Punalur on the visitor of Kerala and Tamil Nadu. The name of place got from the mix of words Aryan (Lord Sastha or Ayyappa) and Kavu (holy forest). The Kavu (sacrosanct timberland) in which Aryan (Lord Ayyappa) abides is known as Aryankavu. Parasurama set up five temples committed to Goddess Bhadrakali in the beach front area and five Sastha temples in the sloping tracts for the wellbeing and flourishing of Kerala. Dharmasastha temple at Achankovil is one among them. The other four Sastha temples are situated at Aryankavu, Kulathupuzha (both in Kollam area), Sabarimala and Kanthamala (also called Ponnambalamedu) (both in Pathanamthitta locale).
About The Temple
The pratishta here is very unique in relation to that of Achankovil, Kulthupuzha and Sabarimala temples. Ayyappa is delineated as a young man sitting on an elephant with right leg hanging and left leg being in a collapsed position, alongside his partner Prabha on the left side and Lord Shiva on the privilege. As in Sabarimala, the temple too has 18 stages. Before, Women from 10 to 50 age gatherings were denied section to the temple.
Legend and Stories
In prior days the Sourashtrians sold silk dresses to the Trivancore ruler. One such specialist went to offer silk dresses to Trivancore with his virgin little girl. On his way he achieved Aryankavu by night, so he needed to stay there.The next morning in the wake of freshing up he was prepared to begin, when his little girl asked for him that she needed to remain back there and continue appealing to the Lord Ayyappan. She was awed by the Lord and committed to him. The general population of the place likewise recommended not to bring his little girl with, as it was a thick woods adventure and they guaranteed to deal with the young lady. The agent inspired by his little girl's bhakthi towards Lord Ayyappan, left her accountable for an archakar in that temple.
In the wake of finishing his business in Trivancore he returned towards Aryankavu. As he was nearing Aryankavu, a major one horned elephant came undermining towards him. The representative was frightfully perplexed of this sudden appearance of the elephant and began supplicating boisterously 'Ayyappa help and spare me'. Around then a well-assembled seeker showed up abruptly and yelled towards the elephant to go. On hearing that the elephant left like an enchantment The specialist was inspired and advised to the seeker," you have spared my life and my family like a divine being". In a token of gratefulness, the agent gave a rich silk fabric to the seeker. The seeker wearing the fabric around his neck asked the businessperson 'How would I look?'. The specialist answered 'You resemble an excellent bridegroom'.On hearing this seeker asked him, “will you wed your girl to me.?" For that the businessperson said "why not? you have spared my life and on the off chance that you wish I will wed my little girl to you".The seeker felt exceptionally cheerful and told that he will meet the specialist at the Aryankavu temple and he vanished. The agent was shocked that how could an outsider would realize that I had a girl for marriage and with disarray, he achieved Aryankavu temple.
In the meantime the temple's archakar had a fantasy in which Lord Ayyappan showed up and said “awaken my lover, a sourashtra specialist, is holding up at the passageway of the temple. As indicated by his desire I have joined his little girl Pushkaladevi with me. The young lady who was in your care is presently my better half and she is in a statue frame on the left half of me in the temple. I will show up alongside Pushkaladevi from today. Consistently I need the agent and his group to come here and commend this day as our marriage celebration. After that the Archakar woke up from his fantasy and went to the temple alongside individuals. There he saw the businessperson. As he opened the temple entryway he saw every one of the lights of the temple lit and a little statue of Pushkaladevi was seen close to the Lord, both in a wedded stance. The silk fabric given by the agent to the seeker was found around the neck of Ayyappan. On observing that the agent realized that it was the god who had spared his life in the timberland now his little girl was hitched to the god.
Around the same time the ruler of Trivandram had a fantasy in which master told every one of the happenings and needed him to treat the Sourashtra specialist and his group as his "Sambanthis" and approached him to be the relative for Lord amid his marriage. The lord hurried to Aryankavu and felt happy that his fantasy was valid. He treated the businessperson regally. He additionally needed the agent to accompany his kin consistently and praise this celebration. The lord requested that there ought to be an 'Eleven day stupendous celebration' consistently and the traditions of the Sourashtra must be taken after for the marriage. So from that point onwards and till date, each year the Government of Kerala's agents come here as Lord's relatives and the Sourashtra individuals as the sambanthi to the master, to celebrate. Consistently, on this occasion and all around finished Portrait of the last lord of Trivancore, Balarama Varma is kept. Prior to this photograph the engagement function happens. What's more, in the temple, there is a 11 day celebration, with every day in various stance of the ruler.
The most important festivals are Mandalapooja (during December-Januavary) and Thrikalyanam. It is believed that Lord Sastha married Pushkala, a girl belonged to Sourashtra Brahmin. Devotees from Sourashtra still visit the temple to participate in the Thrikalyanam (holy marriage) festival held every year. The rituals of the marriage festival are in accordance with the marriage rituals followed by the Sourashtra Brahmins. The other noted festivals of the temple are Painguni and Kumbhabhishekam.
How to Reach Aryankavu Dharma Sastha Temple
The nearest airport is Thiruvananthapuram International Airport. The nearest railhead is at Aryankavu, which falls under the Madurai railway division. The temple is located in the eastern side of Kollam district near the border of Tamil Nadu on the Kollam - Tenkasi national highway.
Aryankavu Ayyappa Temple / Sree Dharma Sastha Temple,
Kollam District, Kerala,
India, Pin Code – 691309.
Devotees visit this temple to seek fulfillment of the following:-
- For matrimonial boons
- For relief from Sani Dosham
Om Bootha Nathaya Vidhmahe Bava Nandhanaya Dheemahe Tanno Sastha Prachodayaath
Meaning -We worship Lord Shiva's son, Ayyappa. Salutations to Saastha (Ayyappa). May Ayyappa encourage our creativity.
Mattha Mathanga Gamanam Karunyamrutha Pooritham Sarva Vigna Haram Devam Sastharam Pranamamyaham
Meaning -I salute Lord Ayyappa, who has an elephant's gait, who is compassionate and who destroys all obstacles.
Loka Veeryam Mahaa Poojyam Sarva Rakshaakaram Vibhum Parvathee Hirdya Anandham Saasthaaram Pranamaamyaham
Meaning -I bend down to Lord Shastha, who defends Dharma and Sastra and who brings happiness to Parvathi's heart, the fearless warrior that protects all, who has great glory and who warrants great admiration and devoted worship.
Bhoothanatha, Sadananda, Sarva Bhootha Daya Para, Raksha Raksha Maha Baho, Sasthre Thubham Namo Nama
Meaning -I offer my salutations to Lord Sastha, the master of all beings, who is infinitely every happy, who is merciful towards everyone, I pray, protect me great hero.
The temple is open from 05:00 am to 12:00 noon and from 05:00 pm to 08:00 pm.