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Ramaswamy Temple, Thriprayar

 
 

Thriprayar Ramaswamy temple is located 22 kms south west of Thrissur in between Kodungallur and Guruvayoor in the mid landmass of Chetuva.

In the distant past some fishermen got four idols from the sea. They presented them to a dynast called Vaikal Kaimal, who lived about 5 kms away form Thriprayar. Based on the astrological findings he arranged for the placement of the idols.

Accordingly the idols of Sri Rama, Bharatha, Lakshmana and Shathrugna were installed at Thriprayar, Irinjalakuda, Muzhikulam and Payamel respectively.

The Sree Rama idol was the most important of them. At this time a voice of an invisible being was heard saying that a bird would appear at the place where Sri Rama idol was going to be installed. Kaimal and his men waited for a long time for the bird but it did not appear. So they decided not to wait any longer and the idol was placed at Thriprayar with Vedic rituals. Soon after the placement the bird appeared. A big sacrificial stone was placed at the spot where the bird appeared. At the start this sacrificial stone showed a tendency to move and it was Naranathu Bhranthan who nailed and fixed it at the spot. A mark of a nail can still be seen gives credence to this belief. Near the main temple towards the north there is a small shrine of Sree Krishna.

Though there is no separate idol and placement for Rama’s best devotee Hanuman, it is believed that his presence is always there at the ‘mandapam’ of the temple. The offering of flattened rice (avil) made from dried paddy is meant for Hanuman. At the south west corner Ganapathy is placed and a shrine of Sree Sastha is also located near Ganapathy.

It is said that the western gate was closed by Sree Vilwamangalathu Swamiyar. With much difficulty he invocated and placed the Goddess of wealth (Sree Lakshmi) and Earth (Bhumi devi) on both sides of the main deity.

Firing crackers is an important offering to the deity. Theres is a belief among Hindus that if anyone sets apart some money as an offering to the deity for firing crackers, the delivery of a pregnant woman in his family will be easy and comfortable. Besides ‘Palpayasam’, smearing of the idol with sandal paste and ‘archanas are other important offerings to the deity.

‘Ekadesi’ in the month of Vrichikom (November-December) is one of the important days of the temple. Thousands of people gather there to witness the celebrations. A few elephants are brought to the temple for ceremonial procession. Variety entertainments last for some days. The celebrant who observes ‘Ekadasi’ finds it a holy day to have the divine sight at the temple especially in the evening.

On the day of Arattupuzha pooram in “meenam’ (March-April) Triparayarappan goes there in order to participate in the pooram. It is believed that in to witness the ‘Deva Mela’ all the gods and goddesses in addition to spirits and fairies present themselves at Arattupuzha.

If a person dies in a Hindu family atleast one member of the family should go to see the pooram of that year is a customary observance among Hindus of that place. Based on this belief pooram has got the colour of a village festival.

In the past according to the Hindu mythology, 108 gods and goddesses participate at the pooram. In the old palm-leaf records there are certain references which tell us that the pooram festival was started even before 583 B.C.

The best way to escape from the clutches of the frolicsome spirit is to worship Thriprayarappan and please him with the offerings. The name itself of the strong of the temple is known as ‘Chathan Bhandaram’. It is a common sight that people afflicted with spirits perform various kinds of offerings at the temple to get them eradicated from their bodies.

The temple was owned by three important ‘manas’ viz. Jyanappally, Chelur, and Punnappilli and the administration was carried out by Blahayil Nair. But unfortunately due to continuous conflict between the owners and Blahayil Nair, the government took over the charge of the temple. Later, it came undet the administration of the Cochin Devaswom Board.