The Bhagavati Amman Temple is dedicated to Shakti and is located in Kottayam, Kerala, India.
About the temple
While entering the temple through the main gopuram, the golden Dhwajam or flag staff is visible. There is also the balickal pura with carvings of many sculptures including those of Ganapathy and Shiva and other saints on pillars. Inside the nalambalam, sreekovil and the main mandapam are surrounded by paths made of carved stones. The temple of Shiva is on the right side of the main sreekovil. Bhadrakali temple is situated on the south of the temple along with the full stretched surrounding path on carved stones for the whole.
About the Deity
Moolavar : Bhagavati Amman
Legend and stories
Legend has it that Sage Parasurama wished to create a Bhagavati idol with all supreme powers and created one such idol. The sage placed the idol of the Goddess in water (jalavasam) and went to perform penance in the Vedagiri hills. In the meanwhile, King Cheraman Perumal wished to build a temple for Lord Muruga in Kumaranallur and another temple for Mother Bhagavati in Vaikom. Around this time, the nose ring of Madurai Meenakshi went missing. The king ordered the priest Shanti Dwijan to recover the jewel within 41 days, failing which he will be beheaded. The priest could not find the jewel. On the 41st day, he fell at the feet of Mother Meenakshi meditating deeply in complete surrender. He then heard a voice that advised him to leave the place at once. The priest followed a bright light chanting the Mother's names. The light led him to the borders of Kerala and entered into the sanctum sanctorum of the Murugan temple in Kumaranallur before disappearing. King Cheraman was organizing the poojas in order to install Lord Muruga in the temple when he suddenly heard a voice saying "Kumaran Alla Ooril? meaning that Kumaran (Murugan) was not in that place. Hence, the place came to be known as Kumaranallur. The shocked king then decided that he would complete the installation of Bhagavati in Vaikon and return to Kumaranallur afterwards. At Vaikom too, the king could not carry out his plans due to obstacles. It was finally decided to install Bhagavati in Kumaranallur and Muruga in Vaikom. In the meanwhile, the idol made by Parasurama and placed in Jalavasam in Vedagiri hills also was found and brought to Kumaranallur. When the installation ceremony was nearing completion, an ascetic in saffron entered the sanctum sanctorum suddenly, installed the deity and disappeared.
According to the sthala purana (or history of the land), the ascetic was none other than Sage Parasurama. Shanti Dwajan, the priest from Madurai became the priest of this temple whose heirs stay near the temple and are conduct the poojas to this day.Kumaranalloor Devi temple is considered as one of the most important Devi temples among the 108 Durgalayas (Devi temples) in Kerala. The temple is said to be more than 2400 years old, as per historical and mythological evidences as well as other sources of information. The architecture of the temple is notable for the unique structure of the nalambalam and sreekovil both of which have been built in the sreechakra style (ring like object with a handle, which is placed in the right hand of the Devi). This kind of architecture is rarely found in temple architecture. Cheraman perumal was the ruling emperor of Kerala when the construction of a temple at Udayanapuram to install the idol of goddess durga began, while he commenced the construction of another temple at a place (which is later known as kumaranalloor) to install the idol of lord Kumara or Subramanian. Meanwhile, a disturbing incident took place at Meenakshi temple, Madurai in Tamil Nadu. The gem studded nose ring of devi was stolen or went missing. The king ordered an enquiry. At the same time, he ordered to kill the priest of the temple unless he could solve this problem within 41 days. Because, the nose ring would not be misplaced without his knowledge. However, the priest was innocent. He was confused and perplexed in this dilemma. He took refuge at the feet of Devi. As days and weeks progressed, the grief stricken priest spent his days and nights crying and praying. On the night of the 40th day, he slept at the doorsteps of temple, meditating and contemplating his fate that his life would reach an end on the next day. However, he had a dream that night. Devi appeared before him and ordered him to quit the place at once.
The perplexed and bewildered priest winked his eyes. He had seen a thejas (divine light) moving forward. He followed it without being aware of where he was going. The thejas led him a long distance and finally reached the place which latter became known as Kumaranalloor. At Kumaranalloor, the temple was under construction to install the idol of lord Subramanian or kumaran. The thejas entered into the sreekovil(sanctum sanctorum) of the temple. Moreover, it was at the prathista time (suitable time of installation) that the thejas entered the sreekovil. Then there was an asareeri (an inerporeal and divine voice), kumaran alla ooril', meaning, ˜this place is not for kumara'. This is, kumari's or devi's place. Hence it got the name Kumaranalloor. Perumal was disappointed and frustrated. He travelled to Udayanapuram to install the idol of Kumara, at the temple, which was under construction. On the way, Perumal encountered some obstacles but finally managed to reach Udayanapuram and install the idol of Subramanian at the sreekovil of the temple. Later, Perumal returned to Kumaranalloor with the devi's idol and began the preparation for installing it there. Yet another thought struck him that the idol has to be changed. There was an idol lying in water at vedagiri a nearby place. Perumal brought the idol from vedagiri. Maharshi Parasurama had supposedly made and worshipped the idol in past. At the time of installation, a Brahmin sage with matted hair, came and entered the sreekovil and installed the idol in a second. As soon as the installation of idol was done he vanished. To this date people believe that the Brahmin sage was Maharshi Parasurama. The Brahmin priest, who followed the thejas from Madurai, became the priest of the temple. His residence is known as Madurai illam. His successors worship the Devi even today. The temple is situated in area of 15,000 square metres. The main gopuram (entrance) of the temple faces towards the east, and high walls surrounding the temple with other three gopurams (entrance) in each direction (south, west and north).
The important festival of the temple is Thrikkarthika celebrated in the month of Vrischikam (November to December). On the Karthika day it is usual to make a nivedyam (offering) in the precincts of the Udayanapuram and Thrissur Vadakkunnatha temples. The story goes that the Gods in these two temples, greatly charmed by the beauty of the Devi returning after her Karthika bath. They came out of the temples, got over the compound walls, and stood there looking amorously at the seductive figure of the passing Devi, and the temple priest who ran helter-skelter in search of the Gods, finally met them on the walls at the southern end of the temples. Thenceforth, during Karthika, puja is performed over the walls of these temples. The display of lights in the evening, called Karthika Vilakku, is the highlight of this celebration.
This is the only Shakti temple in Kerala where Chokkapanai is burnt in Karthikai month. This is also called the Sabarimala of women as they follow some rules during the Margazhi month. The Nari Puja is dedicated to women considering them as Shakti Herself.
If you are traveling via car from Kottayam Railway Station and your destination is Meenkulathi Bhagavathi Amman Temple then it would take approximately 3 hour(s) 15 min(s); for you to reach your destination.The road distance or driving distance between Kottayam Railway Station and Meenkulathi Bhagavathi Amman Temple is 184 kms (114.00 miles). Please note that 1 mile is equivalent to 1600 m or 1.6 km.
Sri Chakulathukavu Bhagavathi Amman Temple,
Devotees visit this temple to seek fulfillment of the following:-
- To solve delays in wedding
- For excellence in education
- For relief from illnesses
- To have children
Sarva Mangala Maangalye Sive Sarvaardha Saadhike, Saranye Tryambake Gauri Naarayani Namosthuthe
Meaning -We offer you our salutations, Oh auspicious Naraayani, who is the good of all good, who can achieve everything and can offer refuge, Oh three-eyed Gowri.
Saranaangatha Dheenaartha Parithraana Paraayane Sarvasyaarthi Hare Devi Naaraayani Namosthuthe
Meaning -We offer salutations to you, Oh Narayani, who has the infinite power of creating, preserving and destroying. You are the basis and epitome of the 3 gunas.
Sarvaroope Sarvese Sarvasakthi Samanvithe, Bhayebhyastrahi No Devi Durge Devi Namosthuthe
Meaning -I offer my salutations to you mother Durga, who is present in all beings and has all power, save us from all our wrongdoings O mother of the universe.
Yaa Devi Sarva Bhooteshu Shakthi Roopena Samsthita Namastasyai Namastasyai Namastasyai Namo Namaha
Meaning -Salutations to the Goddess who resides as Shakti in all beings.
4 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.5 a.m. to 8 p.m.