Makara Vilakku
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Swamiye Saranam Ayappa
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Mandala puja - 17.11.2006 to 27.12.220
Laksharchana - Monday, 25th December 2006
Makara Vilakku 14.01.2007

The Ayappa temple at R.K puram is one of the most important and prominent places of workship in Northern India. A large number of devotees from different parts of the country such as Uttar prades, Haryana, Punjab, Rajasthan etc. are visiting the temple and participating in all important religious festivals like Mandalam, Makara vilakku, Ulsavam etc. Lord Ayappa's sublime manifestation and reaching his abode and having his darshan is indeed a transcendental experience. The worship of Lord Ayappa expresses in practical terms the profound significance of the vedic saying 'Tat Tvam Asi' - essentially you are the Transcendental reality. So whenever we chant ' Swamiye Saranam Ayappa' we experience an inner transformation. With this chant. we consign our bestiality and depravity to the sacrificial fire that keeps burning in the abode of the Lord.

Mandalam, Makavilakku and Annual Ulsavam are the most important festivals in this temple. The 41 days Mandalam celebrations begin on the 16/17th of November and conclude on 26/27th of December every year. The ten days long annual Ulsavam is celebrated every year during the month of February/March with great enthusiasm and fevour.

This year the Ayappa Seva Samithi celebrated the mandala puja from 17th November to 27th December 2006 and the Makara Vilakku on the 14th of January 2007 in a befitting manner. During this period cultural programmes be the renowed artistes of all disciples will be held in the Sabari mandapam, an auditorium adjacent to the temple.  During Mandalam leghubhakshanam will be served on all 41 days in the morning for Ayappas and in the evening for all those who visit the temple. Apart from this Sasthapreethi/Annadanam will also be served on all important days, holidays, Saturdays and Sundays for all devotees. The temple also offers a poor feeding scheme which is on every Sunday at 12.00 noon food to all children below 15 years of age from poor families.Devotees who are interested to offer poor feeding under scheme are most welcome. The rate for one time offering (one sunday) is Rs 2,500/-

The Laksharchana will be performed on Monday, the December 25th 2006. The rate for each Archana is Rs 15/-.
Ayyappa Temple
Ayyappa Sewa Samithi
Ayyappa mandir Marg,
Sector - 2, R.K puram
New delhi - 110022
Tel - 011-2617962, 26191129
Temple timings - 5.30 to 11.00 am, 5.30 to 8.30 pm
Mandalam timings - 5.30 to 11.30, 5.30 to 8.30 pm

About lord Ayyappa

According to the legend, Lord Ayyappa - the incarnation of ' Sastha' is the son of Hri (lord narayana or maha Vishnu in the form of Mohini) and hara (lord Parama Shiva) thus Hari hara putra. Also known by diffreent names as Dharma Sastha ( who chastises and leads to righteous living), Taraka Bhrama (the deliverer), Kaliyuga Varada (the protector from the evil propensities of kaliyuga) and Sarva Roga Nivarana Dhanwantari Murthi (who cures all diseases. The most attractive truth about Lord Ayyappa is that the credibility of the curious mythology woven around him is not relevent for the millions who yearns for his darshan. The pilgrims.devotees include Muslims, Christians, and followers of other religions as well.

Puja details
The Ayyappa temple is a Mahakshetra so pujas are conducted at 5 times. They are Usha puja(which is performed at dawn or early mornings), Prabatha puja ( performed after the first puja when the sun has risen sufficiently high to let its rays strike the abode), Pantheeradi puja (the puja performed around 10.30 am) and finally Athazha puja (in the evening around 8.00 p.m). For devotees the day start with Nirmalaya Darshanam at 5.30 a.m followed by Ganapathy homam. Usually the following schedule is maintained:-

In the morning

(During the mandalam the temple remains open till 11.30 in the morning)

In the evening

5.30 p.m - Temple re-opens for darshan
6.30 - 7.00 p.m - Deeparadhana
7.30 - 8.25 p.m - Athazha puja followed by athaza shiveli
8.30 p.m - Harivarasanam (closing time)

On the Udayasthamana puja day, the temple observes diffrenet schedule or timings for pujas and devotees darshan. This is because altogether 18 pujas are conducted at diffreent times for Udayasthamana puja of which the first puja is performed along with the Athaza puja of the previous day.  In other words out of the total 18 pujas, the first puja starts with the Athazha puja of the previous day and the remaining 17 pujas are conducted on the Udayasthaman puja day of which, 16 pujas are performed in the morning itself. At the end of the morning pujas ie around 12.00 noon, Navakalasabhishekam is performed followed by Uchha puja and shiveli. In the evening after Deeparadhana there is Athazha puja followed by Athazha shiveli, Shribootha bali and Vilakkacharam and in the end Harivarasanam. On the day of the Udayasthamana puja, the temple remains open from 5.30 to 12.00 noon (in the morning) and from 5.30 to 9.15 (in the evening). Udayasthamana puja is an important vazhipadu (offering) in this temple.

Important offerings of the Lord
It is implied that the devotee who makes the offering to the Lord takes part partially or fully in the performance of puja. This is why offerings made in any form is considered as homage paid to the diety like pradakshinam, worship and prostration. Th worship with flowers, garlands, lamps, nivedyam, abhishekams on the diety are all part of the puja. They are related to what is known as Shodasopacharam. Offerings such as pushpanjali, archana, Neyyabhishekam, honey, palabhishekam, one time puja, one day puja, Udayasthamana puja, chuttu villakku, Deepasthambam nalunada, eru thenga, neyyu villakku, chandana kappu, swarna (gold) kireedom with gold face, poor feeding on all sundays, annadanam, laghu bhakshanam, Sasthapreethi (specially during mandalam), thulabharam are very important and popular offerings in this temple. Also Neeranjanam and Ellukizhi have become very popular among the devotees to ward off the evil effects of Saturn (Shani)

It is known fact that a coconut filled with ghee is an important offering for a devotee making a pilgrimage to Sabarimala, the original abode of Lord Ayappa. The ghee reflects the principles of the sun. Therefore ghee is a symbol of spiritual power. The coconut represents teh Sahasraram of the subtle body. The idea of pouring ghee into the coconut is to symbolise the placing in the Sahasraram of the spiritual power accumulated by 41 days of pure life and austerities. When the ghee is showered on the head of the Idol which symbolises the Sahasraram it is as though the spiritual power of the devotee is being merged with the Universal spiritual power of the world. The supreme state of happiness which is the experienced by the devotee is beyond expression. If that state has to be experienced fully it is essential to undergo the austerities for all 41 days as is normally the case preceeding the pilgrimage to Shabarimala. This year about 50 million devotees are expected to undertake pilgrimage to Sabarimala.
Important events during mandalaam makara Villakku period

November 17
Mandala puja Arambham

November 25
Ayyappan Vilakku

December 01
Guruvayoor Ekadashi

December 04
Karthika Deepam (Thrikarthika)

December 14
Narayaneeya deepam

December 25

December 27
Mandala puja day
January 03
Thiruvathira (Ardra Vritham)

January 14
Makara Vilakku
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