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Friday, September 30, 2011

Urwa Shri Mariyamma Temple

Mariyamma Temple is about 5 km from Mangaladevi Temple in Mangalore city. The main deity of this temple is Goddess Mariyamma.

This temple was built by the Mogaveera Community around 800 years ago. Dedicated Goddess Mariyamma, It is believed that Mariyamma & Mangaladevi were sisters. Annual Maari puja and Dasara are the important festival celebrated here. In Urwa in the precincts of Mangalore, Legend has it that the Goddess appeared in the dreams of one of the Mogaveera staying in Urwa and asked for a residing place in the vicinity & so a temple was built for the deity, The Mogaveera’s have a unique way of thanks giving for this Goddess they make gold ornaments in the form of different variety of fish & the deity if adorned with it, it is one of the oldest & the best known temples in the district, needless to say it is the favorite Goddess of the Mogaveera’s. The gold pendants and necklaces they collectively offer are in the shape of fishes such as "bangude sara" (mackerel necklace), "bhutayi sara" (sardine), "seegadi sara" (prawn) and "maanji sara" (pam-fret).

Goddess Mariyamma, also referred to as the goddess of wealth.


The history of Goddess Shree Mariyamma can be traced back to nearly about 800 years. As per ancient folklore and the sayings of ancestors, a person from the ‘chulli Gurikara’ family living in the Mogaveera village of ancient Karnataka, had gone to the ghat area on business visit. While returning home, he felt that some divine power is following him and he also felt as if his body started to shake and shiver as if in a trance known as ‘Avesha’ meaning Goddess entering a human body and speaking through him. He later felt as if God said to him to take her along him to the place where he resides. He then reached Urwa and decided to build a temple to this Goddess. 

Knowing this all the villagers held a Meeting and consequently all the members of the seven pattanas of the Mogaveera Samaj held a meeting from Kudroli to Hosabettu. As per the decision taken by all, the Gram Patela (village head) of Boloor was made their head and he narrated the proceedings of the meeting and he also suggested a suitable place for construction of temple for the Devi. It was a vacant plot of land. In those days the Pottu Kumbaras used to perform poojas to Lord Eishwara (Shiva) in the nearby katte or gudi (monuments). And thus villagers of Mogaveera Pattanas installed the idol of Goddess Shree Maaridevi and started worshipping the Devi in the adjacent plot next to Eishwara Gudi. 

Despite their poverty, all the fishermen parted with one share of their income for the development of the Devi Temple. From then onwards, it became a custom to collect vanthige (monetary offerings) from the villagers of the pattanas. As proof of their devotion, their money was then utilized to decorate the Goddess with different varieties of gold coins on her neck. All the women, children without any age bar, co-operated in the construction of the Mariyamma Temple, by joining hands in this noble cause. They even carried bricks, stones and other building materials on their heads and walked all the way for one and half km from Boloor. 

From the time immemorial, whenever they faced a scarcity of fishes in the sea or any crisis, all the villagers of the seven paraganas meet at Yogettu and prayed to the Devi for a whole day, and miraculously the very next day they would get a bumper crop of fishes in the seas. To support this belief, they have a lot of evidence too. For instance whenever the sea became wild and rough and they could not venture into it for fishing, they would pray to Goddess Maariyamma and miraculously she would bless her devotees and the tidal waves would recede back into the sea and calm down the waters. Even during heavy rains lashing the seas, the fishermen without caring for their lives would jump into the seas with the belief that Goddess Maariamma would protect them by not allowing any accident to occur and thereby protecting the entire Mogaveera Samaja. 

Hence from the ancient times to this day, the Mogaveera Samaja has sacrificied everything at the feet of Goddess Maariyamma. As proof of this Sridevi Maariyamma has ordered the “chulli” family to participate and perform all the religious ceremonies and rituals of the temple even when they have any “Sutakas” (bad omens). All the religious ceremonies even today are being conducted by the Mogaveeras of the seven pattanas in sequence one after the other, annually.


Annual Maari puja (Month of Feb- March) 

Every year during the month of early March Mari Pooja is held with magnificent display. People gather from all nearby towns in Mangalore. Special Pooja takes place for 3 days. Preparation for the celebration of Mari Pooja starts almost from 1 week. This day the goddess will be decorated with Kgs of gold. 

As a famous quote in Tulu says "Kumble da bedi, Subrahmanya da there, Dharmastalada Lakshyadeepa, Kateelda aata, kudroli da dasara, naade de malla pudare padayenancha, Kudlada Mari Puje pudare padeyondunde." 

Which means Mangalore Mari Puja is as famous as any other festival like The Great Kumble Bedi Show, Subrahmanya chariot Pull, Dharmastala Lakshyadeepa, Kateel Yakshagana, Kudroli dasara. Just as every village has a Shiva temple; it is observed that for each village will have a Marigudi temple. Marigudi temple present at Urwa has its influence on five neighboring villages. Various puja's like Madastana, Kanchi Harake from children, Darshana Bali are performed during the annual Mari Puja festival.

Navaratri (Dasara) Festival: 

The auspicious nine Night's festival celebrated at Marigudi temple. Various Puja’s are offered during these days. All the devotees are served with afternoon Annadana Prasada.

How to reach:

The Mariyamma Temple is situated in Bolar, India, dedicated Goddess Mariyamma about 0.5 km from Mangaladevi Temple in Mangalore city. You can get there by convenient bus 31, 31A, 31B.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Mammiyur Sree Mahadeva Temple

Guruvayur is located 29 Kms North West to Thrissur Town of Kerala. The ancient Mammiyur Temple is situated at a walk able distance of 200 meters North West to the famous Guruvayur Sree Krishna Temple. The main deity is Lord Shiva in the form of Uma Maheswara. The temple is a part of the 108 Famous Shiva Temples in Kerala and one among the five Shiva Temples around Guruvayur, the others being Chowwallur, Perunthatta, Perakam and Parambanthali. They are believed to be the five faces of Shiva. Lord Vishnu is also given equal importance in a sanctum sanctorum near to that of Lord Shiva. 

This is the only Temple where Lord Shiva and Lord Vishnu are worshiped in equal status in pojas, rituals, thanthripooja, Rigveda dhara, murajapa, festival processions and in all respects. 

The upadevas are Sree Parvathi, Vigneswara, Subrahmanian, Ayyappa, Brahmmarakshassu, Bhagavathy, Naga and Rakshassu. This is a prominent Temple among the 108 Shivalayas consecrated and regulated by Lord Parasurama, the mythical founder of Kerala.

Temple History

The temples of GURUVAYUR – Sri Krishna Temple and Mammiyur have an inter connected legend. After the pilgrim city of Dwaraka became submerged in the sea, Sri Krishna decided to leave His mortal body at Prabhasa Kshetra in Sourashtra for His heavenly abode. According to tradition, it is believed that Sri Krishna Himself gave this idol which was at Dwaraka, to His foremost disciple and devotee, Uddhava and instructed him to entrust Brihaspathi (the Guru of the Devas) with the task of taking the idol to a suitable location. Uddhava was plunged in grief thinking of the fate that would befall the world in Kaliyuga during his absence. The Lord pacified Uddhava and promised him that he himself would manifest in the idol and shower his blessings on the devotees who take refuge in him. Hence the idols worshiped as Krishna even though it’s Vishnu’s Idol. 

Guru and Vayu went around the world in search of an ideal place. At last they entered Kerala through the Palakkad gap where they met Parasurama who was going to Dwaraka in search of the very idol they were bringing. Parasurama led Guru and Vayu to a lush green spot with a beautiful lotus lake (Rudratheertha) where they felt the presence of Lord Shiva. Lord Shiva along with Parvathi welcomed them and told them that this would be the ideal spot for installing the deity. Shiva permitted Guru and Vayu to perform the consecration rites and blessed them that henceforth this place would be known as Guruvayur (since the installation was done by Guru and Vayu). Shiva with Parvathi then left to the opposite bank of Rudratheertha to Mammiyur. The site that Lord Shiva chose for himself and his consort Sree Parvathi became Mahimayur, mahima evolving out of the status bestowed on Lord Shiva for voluntarily relinquishing his initial abode to accommodate Lord Krishna. This in course of time got colloquialised as MAMMIYUR.

The devotees who visit Sree GURUVAYUR – Sri Krishna Temple for darshan used to pay pranams to Sree Mammiyurappan by nodding towards North West direction at Bhagavathykettu in Temple. It is considered that any pilgrimage to Guruvayur Temple is complete only after a visit to Mammiyur Temple also.

Sree Guruvayur Temple is also having some ceremonial connections with Sree Mammiyur Temple. Sri Puzhakkara chennas Vasudevan Namboothiripad, The Thanthri of Sree Guruvayur Temple is also the Thanthri of this Temple and almost all the pojas and rituals in this Temple are regulated in tune with the pojas and rituals in Guruvayur Temple.

The walls are decorated with wonderful illustrations and exquisite sculpting depicting the epic sagas and other religious milestones. The temple is adorned with mural paintings with the images of Mohini.

Temple timings:

4.00 am to 12.30 pm and 4.45 pm to 8.30 pm.

Temple Custom:

1. Only Hindus are allowed to enter the temple.

2. The temple pond on the northern side is known as Rudhratheertham. Devotees can purify themselves by taking bath here and can enter the temple preferably with wet clothes.

3. Follow the temple rules and regulations, so that all can comfortably worship the Lord.

4. Do not enter the Nalambalam of the temple wearing shirt, banyan, pyjama, lungi, chequered cloths, chapels, etc. There are facilities to keep them outside the temple.

5. Do not take video camera, mobile phone, radio, tape recorder etc. inside the temple.

Temple Address:

Mammiyur Devaswom,
P.O Guruvayur - 680 101
Thrissur, Kerala, South India.