Nalambalam

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'Nalambalam' is a set of four Hindu temples in Kerala. In malayalam, Nalu means four and Ambalam means Temple. These are the temples for the Rama brothers of Ramayana.

Nalambalam Yatra[edit]

Nalambalam Yatra begins from the Rama temple in Triprayar and ends up at Shatrughna Temple in Payyammal. It is customary to visit the four temples in the order Rama, Bharata, Lakshmana and Shatrughna respectively. A pilgrimage to these temples on a single day during the holy month of Karkkidakam believed to shower blessings and ensure prosperity. Starting from Thripprayar and ending in Payammel, through Irinjalakuda and Moozhikulam.

Thriprayar Sreerama Temple[edit]

Thriprayar Temple houses a 6 ft tall idol of the Lord, holding Shankha', Sudarsanachakra, Stick and Garland, in a very ferocious form facing east. He is seen in standing posture. Vedi Vazhipadu and Meenoottu are the main offerings. The temple is under the control of Cochin Devaswom Board, an autonomous body.

This temple observes SETHUBANDHANAM in every year in "Thiruvonam" day of Malayalam month "Kanni". The only place in earth wehere SETHUBANDHAN occurs in every year, in memory of those in RAMAYAN, is at Sree Raman Chira Chemmappilly. Chemmappilly is a nearby place to Thriprayar, 2 Kilometres apart from the temple. Whole arrangements are done by Thriprayar Devaswam.The temple is closed early after performing "Deeparadhana" and "Athazhapooja" (Evening and night poojas). At a time the early closin of Sreeramaswamy Temple is done only in two occasions in a year. One is for "Sreeraman chirakettu" (ie.Sethubandhanam)and another is "Arattupuzha Devmela"

Thriprayar is in the middle of Guruvayoor – Kodungallore route . Those who want to come via Trichur should reach Cherpu and proceed went wards to reach the east nada of the temple . Here is the famous Rama temple. This is the first temple to visit as part of Nalambalam Pilgrimage. Darshan is possible from 3am – 12.30pm and 5pm to 7.30pm . Meenuttu and Vedi are important Vazipadu.

Koodalmanikyam Temple, Irinjalakuda[edit]

Koodalmanikyam Temple houses another 6 ft tall idol of the Lord, seen in ferocious form, facing east, in standing posture holding the same things as seen at Triprayar. This is one of the rare temples where only one idol is there. The temple has a private devaswom.

This is a unique Vaishnava Temple and the second temple to visit. From Triprayar proceed in the Kodungallore route and divert from Edamuttam or Moonnupeedika. Irinjalakuda is about 20 km away from Triprayar. Darshan is possible from 3am – 12 noon, and 5pm to 8pm . Important Vazhipatus are Thamaramala, Brinjal Nivedyam, Vedi, Gheelamp, Meeunttu.

Moozhikkulam Sree Lakshmanapermal Temple[edit]

Thirumoozhikkulam Lakshmana Perumal Temple is the only temple in Ernakulam District, and the only one among the four temples, which belong to the 108 Divya Desams, praised by Azhwars. The temple houses another 6 ft tall idol, similar to the idol at Triprayar, holding Shankha, Sudarsana chakra, Mace and Lotus, in standing posture, facing east.

Moozhikkulam Temple is the third temple to visit and is dedicated to Lakshmana. This is in Ernakulam District near to famous Annamanada Mahadeva temple proceed alongs Vellankallore in Irinjalakuda route to Kodungallore and reach Mala, Annamanada and then Moozhikkulam . Darshan is possible from 4 to 12.30 and 5 to 8 .

Payammal Temple[edit]

Payammal Temple is the smallest temple, having the smallest idol, also similar to that at Triprayar. This is the way to praise them: First, we have to worship Hanuman. Then worship Rama at Triprayar during his nirmalyadarsanam. Then worship Bharata at Koodalmanikyam and Lakshmana at Moozhikkulam during their Usha Poojas. Then worship Shatrughna at Payammal during his Ucha Pooja.S

This is the last temple to visit. Reach Vellangallore and proceed went wards 4 km to reach Aripalam. Take right turn and reach the temple . Important Vazhipadu is Sudarshanan dedication . Darshan time is as given along temples.

How to reach[edit]

Thriprayar

By Road: Triprayar is freely accessible by road from Thrissur(25 km) and Guruvayoor.(24) By Rail: Thrissur.(25) Guruvayoor.(24) ByAir: Kochi 60 km.

Irinjalakuda

By Road: Irinjalakuda is freely accessible by road from Thrissur(22 km) By Rail:Irinjalakuda( 9 km) By Air: Kochi 46 km

Moozhikulam

By Road:Near Angamaly in Ernakulam district. The temple is around 50 km south of Thrissur town. By Rail: Angamali-8.7 km By Air: Kochi15km

Payammel

By Road: 8 km away from Irinjalakuda, 4 km away from Mathilakm. By Rail: Irinjalakuda 15 km By Air: Kochi 45 km

See also[edit]

Ramapuram in Kottayam district, Kerala is another place where temples of all four brothers are situated. The four temples of central Kerala, thronged by Hindu devotees during the holy month of Karkitakam are centred round Ramapuram, within a distance of three kilometres. They are Ramapuram Sree Ramaswamy Temple, Koodappulam Sree Lakshmanaswamy Temple, Amanakara Sree Bharathaswamy Temple and Methiri Sree Sathrughnaswamy Temple. These temples together are called the Nalambalam.

The deities here are the four sons of King Dasaratha of Ramayana. Lord Ram, the eldest of them is the seventh avatar (incarnation) of Lord Vishnu, who is the Supreme God of the Hindus. Bharata, second amongst them, is the avatar of the Panchajanya (Conch held by Vishnu) .Lakshmana is the avatar of the Adisesha, the serpent of infinite measures and on whom Lord Vishnu sleeps in the Ocean of Milk. Satrughna (the One who is destroyer of enemies) is the twin bother to Lakshamana and the youngest .He is the avatar of the Sudarshana chakra held by Lord Vishnu.

Visiting nalambalam is considered to be a sacred event during the Malayalam month Karkidakam. Nalambalam consists of temples of brothers Sri Rama, Bharatha, Lakshmana & Sathrughnan.

Devotees can get down at main bus stop of Ramapuram and hire a taxi/ autorikshaw to visit all these age old temples. Karkkidaka is the prime month suitable for Nalambala darsanam. For more details please visit www.nalambalam.org

See also[edit]

4 Set of Nalambalams in Kerala http://www.vaikhari.org/nalambalams.html

http://www.nalambalam.org/index.html