Sunday, 17 May 2020

Kadampuzha Devi temple, Kerala - consecrated by the great saint Sri Shankaracharya

 Kadampuzha Devi temple,mandirmandir.com
Kadampuzha in Malappuram district, Kerala, India has a famous Hindu pilgrimage center where there is a popular  temple dedicated to Goddess Parvati/Durga. Surprisingly, in this temple  there is no God's idol or a specified Srikovil/sanctum  as we would commonly find in all Hindu temples. Here, the deity is worshiped in a pit that is sanctified. The 'Prethista' of divinity was done by none other than the 8th century saint Sri Sankarar  There are small shrines for God Ganesha, Lord Sastha and serpent deities. There is a Shiva temple near by called 'Madambiyarkavu'.
 Kadampuzha Devi temple, Mallapuram, Kerala  nativeplanet.com
At the  Kadampuzha Temple that is said to have been founded  by  Shree Shankaracharya  of  Kaladi, a great Advaitha Philosopher and saint, the consecration was  done by himself  on the day of 
Saint Sri Shankaracharya  936.blogspot.com
Above image: Sri Shankaracharya was an early 8th century Indian philosopher and theologian  who proposed the doctrine of Advaita Vedanta.  He is credited with unifying and establishing the main currents of thought in Hinduism.  His  numerous works in Sanskrit discuss the unity of the Ātman and Nirguna Brahman "brahman without attributes". He wrote  amazing  commentaries on the Vedic canon (Brahma Sutras, Principal Upanishads and Bhagavad Gita) in support of his thesis. His mentor was Sri  Sri Govinda Bhagavatpadal who had his Ashram on the banks of river Narmada............

Karthika in the month of Virshchikam (November - December). A major festival is held on this day which  happens to be an auspicious one. 

Shree Shankaracharya, during his Deshadanam, a pilgrimage to holy places at various parts of the country, came to this place . He was on the way to the  Chottanikkara Temple and prior to that, he had been to Mookambika Temple for Dharsan and prayer.  While passing through this place  now known as Kadampuzha that was once a dense forest, he realized that he was unable to proceed further due to the presence of some kind of divinity in the vicinity.  Upon intense meditation, he realized that it was his ego that blocked his journey. The great  saint  attained the “Sarvaknanapeedhom” realized his folly and got rid of his ego and after this revelation  he approached the divinity there with all humility and humbleness. Standing there with his hands in supplication, he understood the  Divine Presence of the Devi and of Lord Shiva. He felt this sanctified place should be treated with utmost  reverence and devotion.
location map, Mallapuram dist. Kadampuzha. 
Being a great saint he found out that the Divine power is in the hole underground. Upon consecration of this place, he installed Lord Narasimha and Sudarshana Chakra in front of the Devi.  He also placed  Dharmashasta and Nagakanyaka on either side  of the temple.  Sri Sankarer also set certain guidelines  and customs with respect to puja protocols, rituals, festivals, etc.,  and as of today,   they are  done as per Sri Sankarer's  guide. 
The unique aspect of this temple is in the morning the Devi is worshiped Vidya Durga (Saraswati) bestowing knowledge and excellence in career to all; in the afternoon  as Vanadurga (Durga) in the Twaritha Devi form blessing the devotees with health, early marriage, and domestic harmony and in the evening as Aadi Durga (Mooladurga - Lakshmi) bestowing the devotees with wealth and overall prosperity. So, the main deity Devi - self-manifested divine power takes three forms during the day. But, there are no idols of the deity. 
The name Kadampuzha  has its origin from; Kadan Ambu Eitha Uzha – meaning, The Place where Kiratha Shot the Arrow. Kadan is Kiratha, Ambu is Arrow, Eitha is Shot and Uzha is Place.

This temple has a link with the Mahabharata. The legend has it Arjuna of the Pandava brothers (from the epic Mahabharata) wanted to learn about Divya Astharas (weapons) - part of archery. He came to this place to meditate on God Shiva and Goddess Parvati to learn the art from the lord. After several strugglespu through by the lord himself,  Arjuna, at last blessed with the knowledge of ''Astharas''
by the lord. 
The  Kadampuzha Devi temple and the near-by Shiva temple are being  managed by the  Malabar Devaswom Board.