Makara Jyothi The Grand Lighting Festival

Makara Jyothi is the festival of delight, where “Makara” is a zodiac sign “Capricorn” and “Jyothi” is light. The Sun shall navigate from one orbit to another to Capricorn, marking the end of “Margazhi” closing the dark days, starting with bright sun, for longer days.

“Sankranti” is the day devoted to Lord Surya which falls on every January and being a leap year, this year it falls on 15th being Krishna Paksha Tithi which is basically arrived according to sunspot cycles. In North India, this day is called “Maghi” by Hindus and Sikhs. It is also called as “Pedda Pandaga” in South Eastern and Poushsôngkrānti” in South Western Regions.

Many devotees who fast for 41 days worship the celestial abode during ‘Makara Jyothi’ celebrations where Lord Ayyappan in his joyful attire asserts himself as a divine light blesses the devotees with pride and delightful.

Birth History Of Lord Ayyappan

Once a devil Mahishini appeared in penance for a very long period to attain immortality. Lord Brahma was pleased by his devotion blessed the devil with her desire. Instead, the devil due to evil thinking turned herself with bad intentions and want to take an avenge of her brother’s death Mahishasura, who was killed by Goddess Durga. Devil Mahishini evil forces went uncontrollably creating a lot of hurdles to Devas. In order to defeat the devil, Lord Vishnu took the form of the female goddess “Mohini” who married to Lord Shiva. This instances has given birth to Lord Ayyappa. Soon after his birth, he was abandoned by his parents in the banks of river Pamba.

Lord Ayyappan -The Divine Ability Rejoices People

Pandalam Rajasekaran is a childless king, who while hunting in the forest, came across the divine child near the bank of the Pamba river. The child was born with a bell around his neck and was called as “Manikandan” who is none other than Lord Ayyappa. The King and the queen adopted the divine child who was looking glorious and was admired for his appearance. The child was grown under the care of the king like a prince in the palace. Later, Lord Manikandan has to go to Gurukulam to gain eternal knowledge through his magical powers and divine ability. While Lord Manikandan was completing his learning, his master demanded in return, to cure the dumbness of his son as a fee for teaching Lord Manikantan. The divine power of Lord Manikandan made the teacher’s son to speak and cleared the master’s request, which reveals his superhuman nature of Lord Manikandan. Finally, Lord Manikandan has completed his studies and returning back to the kingdom. Meantime the queen gave birth to a child named as “Rajarajan”.

Lord Ayyappan Journey In Forest To Get Tigress Milk

Pandalam king wants to crown Manikandan but the queen wants their son Rajarajanto to be crowned. The king did not expect the intentions of the queen and want Lord Manikandan to assume duties for the queen. One day the queen was ill and an unidentifiable disease. Lord Manikandan was asked to fetch milk from the Tigress which is only solution curing the queen from the disease. Subsequently, Lord Manikandan went to the forest to get tigress milk to treat a queen’s mysterious disease. During the visit to the forest in search of the milk happened to face the devil Mahisini on the banks of AzhuthaRiver. Lord Shiva and Lord Vishnu witness the battle between Lord Manikandan and devil Mahishini. Lord Manikandan defeated the devil by dancing on her chest, which has killed the devil at a place called Kalakatti. Later, Manikandan traced the tigress and happened to get defeating the tigress too and returning back to the palace with blessings from Lord Shiva by riding on the tigress who is the form of lord Indra. On his return to the Kingdom, the Pandalam King and people understood the divine spirits of Lord Manikandan and got the blessings with great devotion. King Pandalam made the shrine with a remembrance of Lord Manikandan is named as Sabarimala. The statue of Lord Ayyappa was established by Lord Parasuram on Makara Sankranti day signifies the Makara Jyothi festival.

Lord Ayyappan Different Names During Worship

Lord Ayyappan has a lot of names includes Hariharaputra because of his parents Hari (Lord Vishnu incarnated as Mohini) and Hara (Lord Shiva ), Bhoolokanathan, Lokapujya, Pambavasan, Erumelivasan, Sabareeshwara, Veeramanikandan the prayers while devotees used to get blessings from Lord Ayyappa.

The Sabarimala Shrine -A Great Pilgrimage Place

Lord Ayyappan Shrine in Sabarimala is famous and one among the Sastha temples. The deity Sastha who is none other than Lord Ayyappan bless devotees in the form of a child, Celibate, Appearance with two wives namely Purna and Pushkala. Yet another form is Vanaprastha at Sastha shrines of Kulathupuzha, Aryankavu, Achankovil Sastha temple located in Kerala. The temple sanctum was built with a golden roof. Balikalpura hall is admired for the architectural structure. The Karupu Swami and Kadutha Swami are the guard shrines is a sacred place of Sabarimala. Lord Ayyappa’s immortality place is called Manimandapam located on-premises of shrine. The Malikappurathuamman blesses the devotees in a shrine adjacent to Sasthasannidhanam.

Makaravillaku Festival -A Glorious Devotion

The people used to have prayers starting from day one of Vrischika month to the 11th day of Dhanu month in Malayalam calendar. Devotees of Lord Ayyappa shall wear a blue or black dress, the sincere attire to undergo fasting of 41 days, follow vegetarianism, away from family life, strive to get the blessings of Lord Ayyappan who asserts himself as Makara Jyothi light. Devotees address each other as “Swami” with great respect. During Pilgrimage to Sabarimala, devotees keep chanting the names of the divine God Lord Ayyappa, to forget the difficulties and hurdles they face while climbing Sabarimala. Chanting of “Swamy Saranam Ayyappa Saranam” echoes everywhere in the shrine to get the blessings of Lord Ayyappa. The deity Lord Ayyappa shall be decorated with the costumes and jewels brought from Thiruvabharanam, maintained from the period of Pandalam Rajasekar King which render glorified and amazing appearance lightsSabarimala with the glorified look. Malikapurathuamman procession mounted with 18 elephants gives a sacred look at the starting of the Makaravillakku festival which is amazing magnificence light lit in mountain kantamala gives blessings to devotees. The benefits of this temple worship make a good impact on change in life. It gives all wealth and prosperity in future life.