Kottiyoor Vysakha Mahotsavam

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Kottiyoor Vysakha Mahotsavam
Kottiyoor Yajna bhoomi
Official name Vysakha Mahotsavam
Also called Kottiyoor Utsavam
Observed by Hindu
Type Religious
Observances Circumambulation of the Swayambhu linga through the sacred pond (Thiruvanchira)
Begins Swati in Saka Calendar:Vaisakha; (Gregorian Calendar: May–June)
Ends Chitra in Saka Calendar:Jyaistha; (Gregorian Calendar:June–July)
2015 date 31 May - 27 June
2016 date 20 May - 16 June
Related to Daksha Yaga

Kottiyoor Ulsavam or Kottiyoor Vysakha Mahotsavam (Sanskrit: वैशाख महोत्सव) is a 27-day annual pilgrimage observed by Hindus commemorating the Mythology of Daksha Yaga.[2] The pilgrimage is similar to the Kumbh Mela of Prayag, where ablutions are performed. The Vysakha Mahotsavam is a yearly pilgrimage like the Hindus' Sabarimala Pilgrimage or the Muslims' Hajj Pilgrimage, where devotees, travelling from multiple locations, go en masse to a shrine at a specific period of time during the year. The temple and grounds are also known as Dakshina Kasi.

In Kottiyoor (Kerala), there are two shrines on the banks of the Vavali (Bavali) river. On the west bank sits the Thruchherumana Vadakkeshwaram Temple (called Ikkare Kottiyoor Temple by natives), which is a nalukettu temple complex. On the east bank, there is a temporary shrine called "Akkare Kottiyoor", where the festival ceremonies take place. This is opened only during the Vysakha Mahotsavam. During the Vysakha pilgrimage, puja is performed in a temporary temple (Ikkare Kottiyoor) in the same prehistoric Vedic location. Only temporary thatch huts, which are removed after the festival, are built. Every year, thousands of pilgrims[3] come to the Yajna bhoomi.[4] Yajna shala has a Swayambhu Shivalinga, where ablutions are performed. The Akkare Kottiyoor temple, where the yajna takes place, has no Sreekovil/Garbhagriha(Sanctum-sanctorium); instead, it is located on a raised platform made of river stones named Manithara (മണിത്തറ). The temple is located at the center of a pond that is the origin of a spring. From the pond, water flows towards the Vavali river to the west. The entire shrine looks like Shivalinga itself if viewed from the sky. This pond is called Thiruvanchira(തിരുവഞ്ചിറ). Devotees circumambulate the shrine within the pond, mostly in the rain. There is another raised circular platform beside the main shrine, called Ammarakal Thara(അമ്മാരക്കല്ല് തറ). Finally, there is a giant Jayanti vilakku (a type of Lakshmi lamp) and an idol covered by a palmyra leaf umbrella (ഓലക്കുട) there. It is believed that Sati immolates herself on Ammarakal Thara.[5]

Prajapati and his activities-Illustration

The Ikkare Kottiyoor temple and Akkare Kottiyoor temple are dedicated to Mahadeva. The Vavali River flows between the shrines. The Ikkare Kottiyoor temple is believed to have been created by Parashurama, whereas the Akkara Kottiyoor temple is a Swayam bhu, which means naturally formed. The system of rites and rituals of the temple were developed by Sankaracharya.

Period of pilgrimage[edit]

The festival occurs from the Swati Nakshatra of the Saka calendar month of Vaisakha to Chitra Nakshatra of Jyaistha month. This is equivalent to the Malayalam calendar months of Medam-Edavam to Edavam-Mithunam or the Gregorian months of May–June to June–July. The pilgrimage occurs during the monsoon season when there is abundant rainfall in the region. The flow of the Vavali river water is suitable for ablutions and the sacred pond Tiruvanchira is filled with water. The climate during the pilgrimage is moderate to slightly cold.[6]

Even though the pilgrimage is called Kottiyoor Ulsavam or Kottiyoor Festival, the programs related to the pilgrimage are only religious rituals there are no entertainment programs like festivals in other temples. Only Vedic hymns are recited and priestly rites and rituals performed.


The mythology of Daksha Yaga[7] has immense influence in the literature of Shaivism and Shaktism. The origin of Shakti Peethas, the marriage of Shiva and ShreeParvati resulting in the birth of Ganesh and Subrahmanya, and the story about the death of Kamadeva are a few among them.[citation needed]

Daksha was one of the Prajapati, son of Brahma, and among his foremost creations. The name Daksha means "skilled one". Daksha had two wives: Prasoothi and Panchajani (Virini). Sati (also known as ‘‘Uma’’) was his youngest daughter; born from Prasoothi (the daughter of the Prajapati Manu), she was the pet child of Daksha and he always carried her with him. Sati (meaning truth) is also called Dakshayani as she followed Daksha’s path; this is derived from the Sanskrit words daksha and ayana (walk or path).[8][9][10]

The mythology is mainly told in the Vayu Purana. It is also mentioned in the Kasi Kanda of the Skanda Purana, the Kurma Purana, Harivamsa Purana and Padma Purana. Linga Purana, Shiva Purana, and Matsya Purana also detail the incident. Additional references about Puranic texts on Daksha Yaga and alternate versions of the epilogue of the mythology are given in the notes section. [A]

Sati-Shiva marriage[edit]

Uma Maheshwara(Sati and Shiva with Bhutaganas); 7th CE wall engravings; Prince of Wales Museum, Mumbai

Sati, the youngest daughter of Daksha,[10] was deeply in love with Shiva and wished to become his wife. Her worship and devotion of Shiva strengthened her immense desire to become his wife. However, Daksha did not like his daughter’s yearning for Shiva, mainly because he was a Prajapati, the emperor of the south of Āryāvarta (according to Aryan culture an ancient Indian region comprising Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, Nepal, and Bangladesh), and the son of Brahma deva; and his daughter Sati was a royal princess. They were wealthy nobility and their imperial royal lifestyle was entirely different from that of Shiva. As an emperor, Daksha wanted to increase his influence and power by making marriage alliances with powerful empires and influential sages and adityas (gods).[8]

Shiva on the other hand led a very modest life. He lived among the downtrodden, wore a tiger skin, smeared ashes on his body, had thick locks of matted hair, and begged with a skull as bowl. His abode was Mount Kailasa in the freezing cold Himalayas where only mountains, rocks, and snow were present. He embraced all kinds of living beings and did not make any distinction between good souls and bad souls. The Bhutaganas’ (assembly of heads of clans), his followers, consisted of all kinds of ghosts, demons, ghouls and goblins. He wandered though garden and graveyard alike.[13]
As a consequence, Daksha had aversion towards Shiva being his daughter’s companion. However unlike Daksha, Sati Devi loved Shiva as she had the revelation that Shiva, the Supreme Rudra was in fact The Mahadev, or The Paramashwara (The Supreme Almighty-Parabrahma) himself.[8][14]

When his daughters grew up, Daksha conducted a Swayamvara yagam. Swayamvara was an ancient kind of marriage, where the woman was given the authority to choose her husband from the prospective proposals. Sati undoubtedly chose Shiva and the marriage ceremony was conducted, forcing Daksha to accept Shiva as his son-in-law, since he could not influence the groom selection process.

Brahma's yaga[edit]

Once Brahma dev Daksha’s father conducted a huge yaga, all the Prajapathi around the world and all the Adityas, Kings were called upon by Brahma for the yaga. Shiva and Sati were also called on to participate in the yaga. All of them came for the yaga and sat in the ceremonial place. Daksha came last. When he arrived, everyone in the yaga, with the exception of Brahma, Shiva and Sati Devi, stood up showing reverence for him as he was one of the Prajapati.[15]

It was a worldwide ceremony including all the emperors, kings, and revered people from around the world; strict adherence to etiquette was mandatory. Brahma Dev did not stand as he was Daksha’s father. Sati did not stand as she could only follow what her husband did.

Shiva was following the cultural etiquette of a son-in-law. According to the culture Son-in-Law is the one who is the guardian of a man's daughter; a highly respected stature. The culture is that once a girl is married to a man the girl moves out of her Gotra(clan) and joins her husband's. The couple is then considered outsiders to the girl's family.[16] Daksha is the son of the yaga host, Brahma deva; which apparently makes Daksha the host himself. A prevalent cultural practice in the region is that, for welcoming an incoming guest, hosts stand up and receive him i.e. the guest need not have to stand up and welcome an inmate in an inmate's home. However this practice is a little complex. Depending upon the situation a guest can stand up to show his reverence if the host is of a higher stature - e.g. if the guest is a King; however this rule never applies to the guest's son-in-law as whatever gestures he makes, it will become quite obvious when compared to other guests; i.e. in this mythology the gestures of guests such as Indra or Agni dev will not be specifically observed but the gestures of Shiva will be pin pointed as everyone knows he is the son-in-law of the guest.

Shiva was a guest of Daksha, and if he stood up, it would be like Shiva the son-in-law, welcoming his father-in-law in his wife's home i.e. if Shiva stood up he is indirectly proclaiming in-front of the whole world that he is an inmate of his wife's house, which is considered culturally as one of the worst social statuses a man and his family can possess. So Shiva sat in his chair when Daksha came in order to comply with the etiquette formalities. It was not only to guard he and his Gotra's prestige but also Daksha's prestige in front of the world. Shiva knew that Daksha being an Emperor, would be insulted in front of the entire world by making his son-in-law a member of his house. It will be a disgrace to Sati too. But Daksha, the pompous Emperor, misunderstood Shiva’s gesture. He thought Shiva was insulting him by not paying him respect. He vowed to take revenge on the insult in the same manner.[10]

Elaneer Ezhunnellathu_Tender-coconut offering convoy

Daksha yaga[edit]

Daksha’s grudge towards Shiva grew after these incidents. With the prime motive of insulting Shiva, Daksha started a great yaga similar the yaga conducted by Brahma. The Yaga was to be presided over by Sage Bhrigu. He invited all the Adityas(Gods), Prajapatis’ and Kings to attend the yaga and intentionally avoided inviting Shiva and Sati.[10][15]

Dadhichi-Daksha argument[edit]

The Kurma Purana discusses the dialogues between Dadhichi[B]and Daksha. After the sacrifice and hymns where offered to the twelve Adiyas; Dadhichi, one of the most sacred of the sages, noticed that there was no sacrificial portion (Havvis) allotted to Mahadeva and his wife, and no vedic hymns were used in the Yaga addressing Rudra which were part of Vedic hymns. He warned Daksha that he should not alter the Holy Vedas for personal reasons; the priests and sages supported this. Daksha replied to Dadichi that he would not do so and insulted Shiva. Dadhichi left the yaga because of this argument.[7]

Sati's entry to the ceremony[edit]

Sati came to know about the grand yagnja organized by her father and asked Shiva to attend the yaga. Shiva refused her request saying that it is not good manners to attend a function without being invited. He reminded her that she was now his wife more than Daksha’s daughter and, after marriage, is a member of Shiva’s family rather than Daksha’s. The feeling of her bond to her parents overpowered the social etiquette she had to follow. She even had a notion that there was no need to have reveived an invitation in order to attend as she was Daksha’s favourite daughter and no formality existed between them. She constantly pleaded and urged Shiva to let her attend the ceremony, and became adamant in her demands without listening to the reasons Shiva provided for not attending the function. He allowed Sati to go to her parents' home, along with Nandi, and attend the ceremony, but Shiva himself did not go with her.[14]

Upon arriving, Sati tried to meet her parents and sisters; Daksha was arrogant and avoided interacting with Sati. He repeatedly snubbed her in front of all the dignitaries but Sati maintained her composure. Because of Sati’s persistence in trying to meet him, Daksha reacted vehemently, insulting her in front of all the other guest at the ceremony to which she had not been invited. He called Shiva an atheist and cremation ground dweller. As planned, he took advantage of the situation he continued shouting repugnant words against Shiva. Sati felt deep remorse for not listening to her beloved husband. Daksha’s disdain towards her, and especially her dearly beloved Shiva, in front of all the guests was growing each moment she stood there. The shameless insult and humiliation of she and her beloved eventually became too much to bear.[8][18]

Ammarakkallu-The spot where Sati Devi immolated herself

She cursed Daksha for acting so atrociously toward his innocent child and her well respected husband and reminded him that his haughty behavior had blinded his intellect. She cursed him and warned that the wrath of Shiva would destroy him and his empire. Unable to bear further humiliation, Sati committed suicide by jumping into the sacrificial fire. The beloved daughter of the entire race was engulfed in fire.[7][8][15]

The onlookers tried to save her but it was too late.[10] They were only able to retrieve the half burnt body of Sati. She was no more. The most loved progeny of Daksha's clan, who was the source of their happiness, faded away like a gleam to satisfy her father's pride. Daksha's pride in being a Prajapati and his prejudice against his son-in-law created a mass hatred within himself, which resulted in the death of his daughter.[8][14]

The Nandi and the accompanying Bhootaganas left the yaga place after the incident. Nandi cursed the participants and Bhrigu reacted by cursing the Bhootaganas back.

Wrath of Shiva[edit]

Shiva was deeply pained upon hearing of his wife's shocking death. His sadness and grief grew into a terrible anger when he realized how Daksha had viciously plotted a treachery against him; but it was his innocent wife who fell into the trap instead of him. Shiva learned of Daksha’s callous behavior towards Sati. Even though Sati was once his favorite daughter, in order to satisfy his ego and pride, he forced her to die dishonorably. Shiva's rage became so intense that he plucked a lock of hair from his head and smashed it on the ground, breaking it into two with his leg. Armed and frightening Veerabhadra and Bhadrakali[10] (Invocation Bhadrakali along with Veerabhadra mentioned in Vayu Purana) emerged and Shiva ordered them to kill Daksha and destroy the yaga.[14]

The ferocious Veerabhadra and Bhadrakali, along with the Butaganas’, marched south and waged a terrible assault on Daksha. His army was swiftly and brutally crushed and slaughtered. The they started destroying the yaga surroundings, like a hurricane entering a city, people renounced the yaga and started running away from the turmoil. Sage Bhrigu created an army with his divine penance powers to resist Shiva’s attack and protect the yaga. Bhrigu’s army was not able to bear the brunt, they were demolished and the entire premises were ravaged. All those who participated, even the Prajapathis and Adityas(Gods), were mercilessly beaten, wounded or even slaughtered. Daksha was caught and decapitated, the attack culminated when the Bhutaganas started plucking out Sage Bhrigu’s white beard as a victory souvenir.[8][14]

According to the Shaiva and Vaishnava Puranas the mythology of Daksha Yaga ends here. The rest of the mythology is the epilogue of story of Daksha Yaga mentioned in Shakta Puranas like Devi Bhagavatha Purana, Kalika Purana and the folklores of various regions. The one following is a Shaiva version. The Vaishnava versions are also mentioned in the Notes section.

Sorrow of Shiva[edit]

Shiva wandering around holding Sati's corpse

The sacrificial ceremony of this extent, the yagna, was obstructed and desolated. As the obstruction of yaga will create havoc and severe ill effects on the nature, Brahma and Vishnu went to call the grief-stricken Shiva to the location of yaga. They comforted and showed their sympathy towards Shiva. They requested him to come to the yaga location and pacify the bhutagana s’ and allow the yaga to be completed. Shiva agreed and the Trimurthy together came to the site. Shiva found the burnt body of his wife. In the poignant surroundings, the world was saddened when they saw the heartbreaking sorrow of Shiva. Vishnu went and embraced his beloved friend Shiva and comforted him. Shiva gave permission to continue yaga. Daksha was absolved by Shiva and the head of the Ram(Male goat) meant for yaga was fixed on the decapitated body of Daksha and gave his life back. The yaga or yagnjam was completed successfully.[19]

Shiva was so distressed and could not part from his beloved wife. He took the dead body of Sati and wandered around the land. The parts of Sati’s dead body fell on the places Shiva wandered. These places commemorating each body part came to be known as The Shakti peethas. There are 51 Shakti peethas, representing the 51 alphabets of Sanskrit.[19] Shiva went to isolation and solitude for ages and wandered all around until Sati devi took birth as Shri Parvati as the daughter of the King Himavana. Parvati took penance and gave away all her royal privileges and went to forest She then came to be known as ‘‘Aparna’’ the one without sustenance. Shiva tested her affection and devotion in disguise and even persuaded her to go away by telling downbeat impression about Shiva, but Parvati’s contemplation towards Shiva was so strong, Shiva himself could not deter her. He eventually realized Parvati is Uma or Sati herself. Shiva later on married Shri Parvati as Sundareshwara.[8][19]

Shakti Peethas[edit]

Main article: Shakti Peethas

The mythology of Daksha Yaga is considered to be the story of origin of Shakti Peethas. Shakti Peethas are sacred abodes of Devi. These shrines are located all over South Asia. Most of the temples are located in India and Bangladesh; there are a few shrines in Pakistan, Nepal and Sri Lanka. There are 51 Shakti Peethas as per the puranas denoting the 51 Sanskrit alphabets.[20] However 52, and 108 are also believed to exist. Shakti Peethas are the revered temples of the Shakta (Shaktism) sect of Hinduism. It is said that the body part of the corpse of Sati Devi fell in these places and the shrines are mostly now associated with the name of the body part. Out of the 51 Shakti peethas, 18 are said to be Maha Shakti peethas. They are: Sharada Peetham (Saraswati devi), Varanasi Peetham (Vishalakshi devi), Gaya Peetham (Sarvamangala devi), Jwalamukhi Peetham (Vaishnavi devi), Prayaga Peetham (Madhaveswari devi), Kamarupa Peetham (Kamakhyadevi), Draksharama Peetham (Manikyamba devi),[21] Oddyana Peetha (Girija Viraja devi), Pushkarini Peetham (Puruhutika devi), Ujjaini Peetham (Mahakali devi), Ekaveera Peetham (Renuka Devi),[22] Shri Peetham (Mahalakshmi devi),[23] Shrishaila Peetham (Bhramaramba devi), Yogini Peetham (Yogaamba(Jogulamba) devi),[24] Krounja Peetham (Chamundeshwari devi), Pradyumna Peetham (Shrinkala devi),[25] Kanchi Kamakodi Peetham (Kamakshi devi), and Lanka Peetham (Shankari devi).[26]

Vaishakha Festival rituals[edit]

Akkare Kottiyoor

The Kottiyoor Vysakha Mahotsavam (Malayalam: കൊട്ടിയൂർ വൈശാഖ മഹോത്സവം) (Tamil: கோட்டியூர் வைசாக மகோற்சவம்)(Hindi: कोट्टीयुर वैशाख महोत्सव) festival rites are performed by Ikkare Kottiyoor temple on the west bank of Vavali river.[27]

Kottiyoor Ulsavam is conducted in the Tiruvanchira pond in rainy season where only hay thatched huts are allowed. The sacred pond is a spring and a tributory of the Vavali river and is an appealing environment - a reminder of ancient vedic times.Kottiyoor itself is a serene hilly area. It is believed that Bhutaganas brings the materials needed for the rituals from the Tirunelli MahaVishnu Temple (10 km south of Kottiyoor Temple) through the Brahmagiri valley. Kottiyoor Temple, as its name implies, is the meeting of the Trimurti - Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva. The Shivalinga of the Kottiyoor Temple is Swayambhu i.e. formed naturally. Kottiyoor Temple pilgrimage is a rarity where each community is given right to perform specific rituals and duties for their pilgrimage.

The ceremonies for the Kottiyoou Festival, performed in sequential order, are

Shiva as Nataraja- A Chola Age Statue-(Los Angeles County Museum of Art)

PurakkuvamMalayalam: പുരക്കുവം(പ്രാക്കുഴം, NeerezhunnallathuMalayalam: നീരെഴുന്നെള്ളത്, VavalikettuMalayalam: വാവലിക്കെട്ട്, Neyyattam Malayalam: നെയ്യാട്ടം, Bringing Agni and Ooda (Reed)Malayalam: ഓടയും അഗ്നിയും എഴുന്നെള്ളത്, "Vaal” EzhunnallathuMalayalam: വാൾ എഴുന്നള്ളത്, “Chothi Vilakku”Malayalam: ചോതിവിളക്ക്, “Naallam Thurakkal” Malayalam: നാളം തുറക്കൽ, “Bhandaram Ezhunnallathu” Malayalam: ഭണ്ഡാരം എഴുന്നെള്ളത്, Thiruvona Aaraadhana Malayalam: തിരുവോണ ആരാധന, Ilaneervaipu Malayalam: ഇളനീർ വെയ്പ്പ്, Ilaneerattam Malayalam: ഇളനീരാട്ടം, Revathi Aaraadhana Malayalam: രേവതി ആരാധന, Rohini Aaraadhana Malayalam: രോഹിണി ആരാധന, Thrikur Ariyalavu Malayalam: തൃക്കൂർ അരി അളവ്, Makam Malayalam: മകം, Kalam Varavu Malayalam: കളം വരവ്, Atham naal Malayalam: അത്തം നാൾ, Vallattom Malayalam: വാളാട്ടം, Thengaeru Malayalam: തേങ്ങ ഏറു, Chithra naal Malayalam: ചിത്ര നാൾ, Thrikkaleshattam Malayalam: തൃക്കലശാട്ടം, Thandilmeil Oonu Malayalam: തണ്ടിന്മേൽ ഒന്നു, Vaal madakkam Malayalam: വാൾ മടക്കം, Valiya Vattalam Payasam Malayalam: വലിയ വട്ടളം പായസം, Purakkuvam (Prakuzham, Purakuzham)Malayalam: പുരക്കുവം (പ്രാക്കുഴം, പുരക്കുഴം)

Rohini aradhana is an important ceremony. Kurumathoor Nayikan Brahman, the title of the head of a Vaishnavite family in the area, who has the birthright for the ceremony, performs the rite. He is considered a representation of Vishnu. The Namboothiri performs the rites and embraces the Swayambhu Shivalinga, i.e. Alingana Pushpanjali. This commemorates the incident which took place during the Daksha yaga. Shiva was in heartbreaking sorrow, when he saw the burned dead body of his beloved wife Sati. Rohini aradhana, is a reminder of how Vishnu embraced Shiva to pacify and comfort his dear mate.

Entry of Parashurama[edit]

Ages after the dreadful incident and havoc, carrying Sati Devi's tears and curse, the land started being governed by Kali (the personification of Kali Yuga, the reigning power of calamity). Kerala was submerged under water. Parashurama, who donated all his conquered land to Brahmins, needed a place to live. At the request of Varuna, he threw his axe from Gokarna to Kanyakumari and Kerala reemerged from the sea. Parashurama was attacked by Kali in Kottiyoor. He overpowered Kali and, as he raised his axe to kill him, the Trimurti materialised there and stopped Parashurama. He released Kali on the condition that he would never ever come into the premises of the swyam bhuu linga of his Guru, Shiva, in Kottiyoor. He started the twenty-seven day festival to remember the incidents that happened in the place.[28]

Exclusiveness in rites[edit]

  • Usha pooja is only for twenty-four days to match with the standard yaga period. However the rest of the pooja is conducted for all twenty-seven days.
  • The quantity of Nivedyam is fixed as in ancient time. It not increased proportional to an increase in the number of pilgrims.
  • No pooja is performed at Ammarakkal (Sati Devi's suicide site) only Pushpanjali and Nivedyam is offered.
  • Punyaham is never performed, as the location is blessed with the congruence of the Shaiva, Shakta, Vaishnava divinities. Kottiyoor is so pure that all impurities are washed away. The location is the origin of a spring which form part of the Vavali River. The festival takes place during the rainy season.
  • Ganapathi Homam is performed every day in morning.
  • The whole premises is a temporary shelter and it is a replica of the ancient Vedic worship and culture, thousands of years ago. Unlike most pilgrimage sites there is no permanent temple structure. The pradakshinam (circumambualtion)is through a pond.
The Kottiyoor Vyshakha Mahotsavam
A panoramic view of Ikkare kottiyoor, The Kottiyoor Vyshakha Mahotsavam


Main article: Kottiyoor

The nearest railway station is Thalassery, however the Kannur railway station can be used for pilgrims from the north and Kozhikode or Vadakara railway stations for pilgrims from the south. There are regular bus services during the Mahotsavam period at regular intervals and there is also bus service to Kottiyoor throughout the year. The nearest airport is Calicut.[29]

Image gallery[edit]

See also[edit]

Notes on various Puranic references on Daksha Yaga[edit]

  1. ^ The mythology is derived from the ancient Sanskrit texts called Puranas.
    • The mythology of Daksha Yaga is mainly from the Vayu Purana. There are also descriptions about the mythology in Padma Purana, Skanda Purana, Kurma Purana, Harivamsa Purana, Matsya Purana, Linga Purana, Shiva Purana in the perspective of the Shaiva Vaishnava philosophies. Puranas which are more inclined to Vaishnavism are Vaishnava similarly there are Shaiva and Shakta Puranas.
    • The Vayu Purana mentions the invoking of Bhadrakali and addresses her also as Rudrakali.
    • The Vayu Purana do not mention the decapitation of Daksha, instead it says 'Yagnja', the personification of Yagam took the form of an antelope and jumped towards the sky. Veerabhadra captured it and decapitated Yagnja. Linga Purana and Bhagavatha Purana mention the decapitation of Daksha.[7]
    • Vayu Purana mentions the attack of Bhutaganas: the nose of some goddesses were cut, Yama Deva's staff bone was broken, Mitras' eyes were pulled out, Indra was trampled by Veerabhadra and Bhutaganas, Pusha's teeth were knocked out,, Chandra Deva was beaten heavily, all of the Prajapathis' were beaten, the hands of Vahini were cut off, and Bhrigu's beard was cut off.[7]
    • Certain other puranas like Harivamsa, Kurma, and Skanda narrate the story from the perspective of the Vishnava-Shaiva community feud prevalent in ancient times. In these puranas, there are fights between Vishnu and Shiva or Veerabhadra, with various victors throughout.
    • In Vaayu Purana, Daksha is not decapitated as said before; instead he begs mercy from the Parabrahma (the Supreme Almighty who is formless), who rose from the Yagna fire and forgives Daksha. The Parabharma informs Daksha that Shiva is in fact a manifestation of Parabrahma. Daksha then becomes a great devotee of Shiva.
    • The story of Daksha Yaga in Vaishnava and Shaiva puranas end with the surrendering of Daksha to the Parabrahma or with the destruction of Yaga and decapitation of Daksha.[7]
    • The epilogue of the mythology is the creation of Shakti Peethas. This epilogue is usually told along with the story of Daksha Yaga by the Shakta sect of Hinduism. There are two different versions of the formation of Shakti Peethas in post puranic texts or regional stories: the Vaishnava version says Vishnu cut the corpse of Sati Devi using sudarshana chakra to pacify Shiva, whereas the Shaiva version says the parts fell while Shiva was carrying the corpse of Sati in various places. Both versions have a common ending, which says the places where these body parts fell came to be known as Shakti Peethas. The Shakti Peethas are mentioned in Shakta (Shaktism) puranas like Devi-Bhagavatha Purana and Kalika Purana. Some of the puranas which came in later ages gave more importance to their supreme deity (depending on Vaishnava, Shaiva, and Shakta sects) in their literature.[11][12]
    • Various locations: In addition to Kottiyoor, two other shrines are believed to be the site of Daksha Yaga: they are Kanakhala, near Haridwar in Himachal Pradesh, and Draksharamam, in Andhra Pradesh.
  2. ^ Sage Dadhichi is an embodiment of self sacrifice, as mentioned in Puranas. Indra was able to make Vajrayudha using the Sage's ribs and vanquish Vritra.[17]


  1. ^ "Vaisakha Maholsavam dates for year 2013". 2013. Retrieved 20 July 2013. 19-June-2013, Wednesday - Thrukkalassattu 
  2. ^ "Daksha Yagnam". The Hindu. Aug 19, 2009. Retrieved 2013-07-20. 
  3. ^ "Thousands throng Kottiyur temple". The Hindu. Jun 7, 2005. Retrieved 19 August 2013. 
  4. ^ "Huge crowd at Kottiyur temple". The Hindu. Jun 17, 2006. Retrieved 19 August 2013. 
  5. ^ "Few Facts about the temple". Kottiyoor Devaswom. Retrieved 11 August 2013. 
  6. ^ "Kottiyoor Shiva Temple". touristplaces.org. Retrieved 13 August 2013. 
  7. ^ a b c d e f "Vaayu Purana". Horace Hayman Wilson. pp. 62–69. Retrieved 12 August 2013. 
  8. ^ a b c d e f g h Ramesh Menon (2011). Siva: The Siva Purana Retold (1, Fourth Re-print ed.). Rupa and Co. ISBN 812911495X. 
  9. ^ "The list of Hindu sacred books". John Bruno Hare. 2010. Retrieved 2013-07-23. 
  10. ^ a b c d e f Skanda Purana (Pre-historic Sanskrtit literature), G. V. TAGARE (Author), (August 1, 1992). G.P. Bhatt, ed. Skanda-Purana, Part 1. Ganesh Vasudeo Tagare (trans.) (1 ed.). Motilal Banarsidass. ISBN 8120809661. 
  11. ^ "What are Puranas? Are they Myths?". boloji.com. Retrieved 12 August 2013. 
  12. ^ Wendy Doniger, ed. (1993). Purana Perennis: Reciprocity and Transformation in Hindu and Jaina Texts. State University of New York Press. ISBN 9780791413814. 
  13. ^ "If one is hurt by the arrows of an enemy, one is not as aggrieved as when cut by the unkind words of a relative, for such grief continues to rend one's heart day and night". Naturallyyoga.com. Retrieved 2014-02-17. 
  14. ^ a b c d e "Essence Of Maha Bhagavatha Purana". Shri Kanchi Kamakoti Peetham. Retrieved 2013-07-23. 
  15. ^ a b c "ഇതു ദക്ഷ യാഗ ഭൂമി". Malayala Manorama. 2013. Retrieved 2013-07-23. 
  16. ^ "Samskaras the sacrament of Hinduism-The role of women". Hinduwebsite.com. Retrieved 2014-02-17. 
  17. ^ "The story of Sage Dadhichi and Vajrayudha". Hindu=-blog.com. Retrieved 19 August 2013. 
  18. ^ "Lord Shiva stories, Shiva purana". Sivaporana.blogspot.in. 2009. Retrieved 2013-07-23. 
  19. ^ a b c (Translator), Swami Vijnanananda (2007). The Srimad Devi Bhagavatam. Munshiram Maniharlal. ISBN 8121505917. 
  20. ^ Roger Housden (1996). Travels Through Sacred India (1 ed.). Thorsons. ISBN 1855384973. 
  21. ^ "Manikyamba devi, Draksharamam (Andhra Pradesh)". specialyatra.com. Retrieved 2 August 2013. 
  22. ^ "18 Shakti peethas". shaktipeethas.org. Retrieved 2 August 2013. 
  23. ^ "Mahalakshmi Temple Kolapur". mahalaxmikolhapur.com. 2010. Retrieved 2 August 2013. 
  24. ^ "Jogulamba Temple, Alampur". hoparoundindia.com. Retrieved 2 August 2013. 
  25. ^ "Travel Guru: Ashta Dasha Shakti Peethas (Shankari devi, Kamakshi Devi, Srigala Devi, Chamundeshwari devi, Jogulamba devi, Bhramaramba devi, Mahalakshmi devi, Ekaveerika Devi, Mahakali devi, Puruhutika devi, Girija Devi, Manikyamba devi, Kamarupa devi, Madhaveswari devi, Vaishnavi devi, Sarvamangala devi, Vishalakshi devi, Saraswathi devi)". Badatravelguru.blogspot.in. Retrieved 2014-02-17. 
  26. ^ E. Alan Morinis (1984). Pilgrimage in the Hindu Tradition: A Case Study of West Bengal. US: Oxford University South Asian studies series, Oxford University Press. ISBN 0195614127. 
  27. ^ "Kottiyoor Devaswam Temple Administration Portal". Kottiyoordevaswom.com. Retrieved 20 July 2013. 
  28. ^ "Parashurama’s entry". Kottiyoordevaswom.com. Retrieved 11 August 2013. 
  29. ^ "Sri Kottiyoor Temple, Kannur, Kerala". keralaholidays247.com. Kerala Holidays. Retrieved 3 August 2015. 

Bibliography of notable offline sources[edit]

Further reading[edit]

  • (Translator), H.H Wilson (January 31, 2003). Select Works Of Sri Sankaracharya: Sanskrit Text And English Translation. Cosmo Publishing. ISBN 8177557459. 
  • (Translator), F. Max Muller (June 1, 2004). The Upanishads, Vol I. Kessinger Publishing, LLC. ISBN 1419186418.