Divya Desam shrines (dedicated to God Sri Vishnu) in the state of Kerala - 04

Please refer to my early posts on the Divyadesam shrines in the state of Kerala. The present post is the last one. An interesting feature of these  shrines in Kerala is of the 11  five were said to have been built by the Pandava brothers of the Hindu epic Mahabharata. All of them are located in this state in  Chennganur area. 

10. The Thrichittatt Mahavishnu Temple, Kerala:

Thrichittatt Maha Vishnu Temple, Kerala. en.wikipedia.org.

Thrichittatt Maha Vishnu Temple.findmessages.com

Closely connected with the legend of Mahabharata, the Thrichittatt Mahavishnu Temple (also called Thiruchenkundrur and Imayavarappan temple) in Alapuzha district  was  built by  Yudhishthira, the eldest of th Pandava brothers.  No other Indian states have  temples dedicated to God Vishnu built by the Pandava brothers of the epic Mahabharata. This temple in  the midst of serene greenery is  one of the five ancient shrines in the Chengannur area of Kerala,a uinque distinction other districts do not have in this state. The Pandava brothers, after emerging victorious in the Kurusherta war against their own  wicked cousins, became the rulers of Hastinapura.  Feeling uneasy and guilty  over the  killing of their own cousins and also the Guru Dronachariyar, they undertook the  pilgrimage down south  (during Dvapara Yuga  after the passing of Sri Krishna) to make amends for the sin and  for meditation on God Vishnu.  They found this area close to the river Chittar, a tributary of the river Pampa most suitable to spend their time. God'd consort name is Sri Rakthapankajavalli. 

Lloation map, Onmanorama Travel.com 

Yudhishthira  after renovation of the temple, had a  Thevara Moorthy of Lord Vishnu with a tutelary image of God Sri Krishna installed. The east-facing idol is  in a  standing posture  with four arms, each carrying  the  Shankh (Conch) in the upper right hand, Sudharshana Chakra (Discus) in the upper left hand, Lotus in the lower right hand. The lower left hand is free, normally Lord Vishnu idols generally have a Gada (Mace) in this hand. Stone inscriptions in the temple date it back to the Second Chera Empire (800 - 1102 AD).
The name of the temple tank is Amurtha Pushkarani in which the idol was worshiped. Normally,  if  the devotees worship it before entering the table, it is believed, they will be blessed.    Imayavarppa Perumal,  as the deity is known in this temple, is revered in Nalayira Divya Prabhandam, the 7th–9th century Vaishnava canon, by  Saints Azhwars of Tamil Desam and, among them, Nammazhwar was quite famous. At the Sri Ranganathar temple, Srirangam, near Tiruch, TN during the Vaikuntha Ekadasi  festival (Dec and January, Namazhwar Moksham is a popular religious event. 

the temple is built in Kerala style without an impressive gateway tower(gopurm). The central part of the temple that consists of  pillared halls Nallambalam and Namaskara (between entrance to the Nallambalam and the sanctum with a raised  square platform) mantap is square in plan.  People pray to god and prostrate before the deity in Srikovil (sanctum) and this tradition is followed in all south Indian temple. The Namakara mantap and the sanctum have a pyramidal roof.  The srikoil has just one door way as in other temples, no one is allowed expect the priests designated by the Dewasom board.  Close to the Namaskara mantap is the temple kitchen called  Thevrapura or Madapalli (as in Tamil). Here, the food offerings are prepared  with devotion to be offered to the deity  and demi-gods at a specified time.  The dwajasthambham /flag-mast facing the shrine is meant for raising the temple flag before the commencement of major temple festivals.  Festivals like Vaikunta Ekadasi and Thiruvonam draw  a large number of devotees. 


11.  Thripuliyur Maha Vishnu temple, Kerala:

Thirupuliyur Maha Vishnu temple, KLerala. /keralatemples.info/

Managed by the Travancore Dewaswom Board, Thrirupuliyar Maha Vishnu temple in Alappuzha District of Kerala  is believed to have been established by the Pandava brother Bheema of the Mahabharata.  His Gadda (heavy mace) is believed to be present here.  Here, Maha Vishnu  is worshipped as Mayapiran/Thripuliyoorappan and the consort's name is  Porkodi Naachiyaar  A famous Divya Desam shrine, it is also an old Hindu temple in Kerala. The deities are highly revered  for the mythological reason that both the God and Goddess were worshipped by  Sapta Rishis (seven sages) - Atthri, Vasishtar, Kaasyapar, Gouthamar, Bharadwajar, Vishvamitra and Jamadagni  did seva (holy services) to both  Maayapiraan  and  Porkodi Naachiyaar.  and they  are said to have  attained Mukti/salvation  through the Emperumaan.
Thirupuliyur Maha Vishnu temple, Bhima;s Gada (mace), Kerala.en.wikipedia org

Thirupuliyur Maha Vishnu temple,Kerala. hindutemples-india.blogspot.com/

The mythological legend has it that once  ruler  Virukshadharbi, the son of Sibhi Chakravarthy, ruled the land that appeared to be bereft of wealthy atmosphere because of flooding and other natural calamities. When the seven sages visited the king, the ruler wanted to present gifts to them to get back prosperity as the saints happened to be holy.  But the sages refused to accept them, suspecting his misrule.  Later the king  hid the gold coins inside the fruits and offered to them . The sages with their mystic power came to about the hidden gold coins and again refused to accept  them. Being intemperate and disrespectful to them , the king  had instigated  a demon through a yaagam  ( a ritual)  to kill the sages.  God  Sri Vishnu interfered and on his  order  demi-god Indira  killed the demon.   Later the sages did seva ( divine services to the god here and got salvation.
This temple, also in the Chengannur area of Kerala attracts lots of devotees during Vaikunthaekdasi and Thruvonam. The major offering to the deity is Chathusathm (sweetened rice), Palpayasam and Kadam payasam. For the offering of Chathusathem, minimum requirment is 40 kg of rice and the required number of coconuts, ghee and local jaggery.