Mandala Kalam, also called Mandalakala or Mandala Masam marks the beginning of the pilgrimage season of the renowned Sabarimala Temple in Kerala. The pilgrimage to the famous Swamy Ayyappan temple starts on the first day of the Vrishchikam month and ends on the eleventh day of the Dhanu month, according to the traditional Malayalam calendar. Mandalakala lasts for 41 days and coincides with the months of December and January in the Gregorian calendar. This is the time when devotees from different parts of the world throng the Sabarimala Sree Dharma Sastha Temple. Mandala Puja, which marks the end of the 41-day austerity by devotees of Lord Ayyappa, will be observed on December 27, 2022, and is an important ritual observed in the temple. As Mandala Kalam 2022 begins, know all about the rituals and significance of this day. Malayalam New Year 2022 Date: When Is Chingam 1? How Is This New Year Different From Vishu Festival? Everything To Know About Celebration in Kerala.
Rituals of Mandala Kalam
Several devotees observe a fast or Vrat for several days before the Mandala Kalam begins, which starts on November 17, 2022, while some even observe a strict fast or penance during the period of 41 days. Devotees refrain from consuming non-vegetarian food and wear a ‘Rudraksha’ mala during this period. People who visit the Sabarimala Temple wear black dhotis and offer an ‘Irumudi’ to Lord Ayyappa, which is a cloth bundle partitioned into two parts, which contain a holy coconut with rice and ghee.
Significance of Mandala Kalam
This is a period dedicated to the Sabarimala shrine which lasts for 41 days when devotees observe strict austerity. This fasting period is observed because according to legends, Lord Ayyappa meditated in the forests of Sabari Hills, where this temple is located after he killed the demon Mahishi. Millions of devotees visit the Sabarimala temple during Mandala Kalam and while there is no bar on people from any religion visiting, women aged 10-50 years are prohibited from visiting the shrine during this time period.
(The above story first appeared on OKEEDA on Nov 17, 2022 09:31 AM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website latestly.com).
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