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Makara Vilakku and Irumudi Yathra Celebrated at Arizona

by Webdesk


Phoenix, AZ (Jan 16): The auspicious ‘Makara Vilakku pooja and Irumudi Patha Yathra’ was performed in a traditional routine at the Mahaganapati Temple in Arizona here on Saturday, January  12 coinciding with the “Makara Vilakku”  festival at Sabarimala Sree Dharma Sastha Temple in Kerala, Southern Part of India.  Lord Ayyappan, Hindu deity, is considered to be the son of Lord Siva and Mohini (avatar of lord Vishnu).


The Temple is located in the dense, pristine forest of the Western Ghats. It is one of the most famous pilgrim centers in India situated in the Sabari Hills, towards the east of Pathanamthitta District in Kerala, India. Makara Vilakku is an annual festival held on Makar Sankranti day at the shrine of Sabarimala.


Irumudi Yathra and Mandala Vratham will become a blessing and an enriched devotional experience for devotees. People of all region visits the Sabarimala temple and there is no restrictions of caster or creed.
Makara Vilakku is a celestial star that is worshiped as a part of ritual in the Sabarimala Ayyappan Temple in the day of Makara Sankranti (winter solstice). Sabarimala Makara Jyothi is a natural light that appears three times at the time of Deeparadhana on the eastern horizon at Ponnambalamedu hills.

The Ayyappa devotees living here in Arizona also observe the rituals with the same ardor and devotion that they followed at the motherland.

At 1:00 PM, Temple priest and guruswami performed kettunira for a group of devotees, who undergone the ‘Mandala Vrithum’ by adorning tulasi mala with austerity.

The pilgrims clad in black vesti, barefooted and many shirtless started their five-mile journey at 3pm led by Guruswami, chanting 'Ayyappa Sarana Gosham', to have a “darshan” to Lord Ayyappa Swami. On their heads carried Irumudi – cloth bundles with two compartments containing sealed coconut filled with ghee and other puja items – the carriers who are also known as "swamy".

When the pilgrim’s procession reached at the temple around 5pm, the temple authorities and devotees accorded a splendid reception with chendamelam, muthukuda and thalappoli.

The Makaravilakku puja started at 4:00 pm with Ayyappa Sanklapam followed by ayyappa bhajans by Ayyappa Samaj Arizona, various abhishekams, rudram,  padipooja, deeparadhana, harivarasanam, prasadam and annadhanam.   

The entire atmosphere was charged with the devotion and Chanting of “Swamiye Saranam Ayyappa” rented the air as the special pujas, abhishekams and padipooja was performed. All eyes remained bonded to the idol with floral decorations.