Arts & Culture Kerala

Koodalmanikyam Temple: A Unique and Sacred Hindu Temple in Kerala

Meera Ramachandran

Koodalmanikyam Temple in the Thrissur district of Kerala, India is a revered Hindu temple steeped in rich tradition and history. This ancient temple is the only one in India dedicated to the worship of Bharata, the second brother of Rama, although the deity idol is that of god Vishnu. Known by the name “Sangameshwara” (“the Lord of the Confluence”), the temple comprises a main structure, a walled compound with citadels, and four ponds, one of which is within the walls.

Koodalmanikyam Temple is part of a set of four temples in Kerala called “nalambalam”, with each temple dedicated to one of the four brothers in the epic Ramayana: Rama, Bharata, Lakshmana, and Shatrughna. The temple hosts its chief annual festival for ten days each year in the month of Medam (April/May), with the first day of the festival marked by the appearance of the uthram asterism and signified by hoisting a ceremonial flag. Notably, the start day falls one day after the famous Thrissur Pooram festival in nearby Thrissur.

During each day of the festival, a seeveli (procession of caparisoned temple elephants) is held twice, once in the morning and once at night, accompanied by panchari melam (sacred music). The procession includes a remarkable sight with two baby elephants on either side of the elephant carrying the deity. Also, the headdresses of seven elephants in the procession are made of pure gold, while the rest are made of pure silver. This makes the seeveli at Koodalmanikyam Temple unique and awe-inspiring.

The last two days of the festival feature panchavadyam (sacred music from an orchestra of five instruments), and the festival ends at the thiruvonam asterism. This event is a magnificent spectacle, attended by countless devotees and tourists alike, and is a must-visit attraction for anyone seeking a glimpse into the cultural and religious traditions of India.

4.50 avg. rating (89% score) - 2 votes

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *