Gurunathanmukadi Sri Ayyappaguru
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|Gurunathanmukadi Sri Ayyappaguru Temple|
|ഗുരുനാഥൻ മുകടി ശ്രി അയ്യപ്പഗുരു|
|Location||Pathanamthitta district, Kerala, India|
Gurunathanmukadi Sri Ayyappaguru temple is situated on a hill in a beautiful landscape, near the banks of Achankovil River, on the opposite side of Pandalam Sri Valiyakoickal Dharma Sastha temple. The legend of Ayyappaguru temple is intertwined with Pandalam kingdom . The legend says when Sri Manikandan (young Ayyappa) was brought up at Pandalam palace, he learned ‘vidya’ from the guru called Sri Gurunathan who was an incarnations of Sivachaithanya and was a Mahayogi. Sri Gurunathan reached Pandalam as guided by Lord Siva in a dream.
With patronage and blessings of Sri Rajasekharan, then king of Pandalam, Sri Gurunathan established a gurukulam (school) on a hill and he became Gurukula Guru. He taught Manikandan various sasstras. Manikandan became an expert in combat art also. Gurunathan became very much pleased in the learning capability of Manikandan and rewarded him with his golden ‘Churika’ . Sri Manikandan cured the inborn deafness and dumbness of the son of Gurunathan as gurudakshina . Thus, Sri Ayyappa revealed his divinity to the world. Sri Gurunathan spent the rest of his life in the gurukulam hills and later entered into ‘holy samadhi’. This holy hill is now known as "Gurunathanmukadi".
Indeed, the hill has become a holy place due to the blessings of Sri Ayyappaguru and also due to the holy foot contact of Sri Ayyappa. In these holy hills there is a temple complex where idols of Sri Ayyappaguru, Sri Ayyappa, Lord Siva, Lord Vishnu, Sri Bhadra, Lord Ganapati, Sri Nagaraja & Nagayakshi are being worshipped according to religious rites. There are daily poojas, special offerings and yearly festivals. There is chirappu festival beginning from vrichikam 1st to Makaravilakku. This festival ends with a religious procession called ‘Varavelpu’ from Kanikkamandapam to the temple, which recall the incident that Guru accompanied Manikandan to the Gurukulam for the first time. This unique procession blended with Bhakti reveals the greatness of Ayyappaguru temple.
The temple poojas, offerings and festivals are conducted based on legendary and historical records. There is morning and evening poojas daily under the guidance of temple Thantri Brahmasri Subramanya Narayana Bhattathiri (Thekkedathu Illam, Tiruvalla). Annual ‘Prathishta kalasam’, festival kalasam and Sarpa pooja are performed yearly. Programmes like temple festival, Sapthaham, Parakkezhunnellippu are also conducted regularly. However unluckily we could not, so far, give enough publicity to the legendary importance of this temple complex, so as to attract the devotees from far and wide.
How to reach
The Road, Rail and Air distances to Gurunathanmukadi are listed below:
- 108 km to the north of Thiruvananthapuram, the capital city of Kerala
- 123 km to the south of Kochi, the state's commercial capital
- 55 km to the south of Kottayam
- 17 km from Chengannur railway station
- 18 km from Mavelikkara railway station
- 33 km from Kayamkulam railway station