Vazhappully Shree Rajarajeshwari Temple is an ancient temple located towards the west of Edamuttom in Thrissur District
, in the Indian state of Kerala
. The temple dedicated to Shree Rajarajeshwari Temple celebrates many festivals with much pomp and show. Devotees from far off places throng the temple during these festivals.
Makarapathu Maholsavam is one of the popular and beautiful temple festivals of Kerala that is celebrated every year, on the 10th day, in the month of Makaram as per the malayalam calendar i.e. at the end of January. Makarapathu Maholsavam is celebrated by everyone residing in the region of the temple. The festival witnesses a huge gathering of people and elephants. The elephants are richly decorated and look very elegant. On this day many elephants pass through this temple ground. The elephants are adorned with their nettipattam (decorative headdress), beautifully crafted kolam, decorative bells and ornaments etc. they are the main attractions of the temple here. The panchavadyam adds to the charm and festive mood of the celebrations. It is the rhythmic beating of 5 types of drums. Later in the evening deeparadhana is done. The fireworks lighted after the deeparadhana enhance the beauty and splendour of the festival. The bright colors that fill the dark sky look stunning. On this day devotees are served with free food by the temple from breakfast to dinner. After dinner a grand cultural program by a famous group is performed.
Vidya Gopala Mantrarchana
Vidya Gopala Mantrarchana is held once a year at Vazhappully Sree Rajarajeswari temple. It is celebrated for improving the knowledge of the students. Havana (Homam) is performed to worship Lord Vishnu
. Later on the students chant the "Vidya Gopala mantram" 108 times and do the archana by themselves. It is said that Vidya Gopala Mantrarchana help to remove the obstacles caused by the moon which usually obstructs the understanding of the kids while learning. Kids are given a thread with 8 "pavithra" knots after energising it for 21 days by doing puja in front of Bhagavathi. The kids are given prasadam, and also a "Sree Rajarajeswari Devi Pen" for writing the exam.
Ponkala festival is celebrated on Prathistadinam every year on Makeeryam star of Medam month, as per malayalam calendar. It is usually celebrated in the month of April or May. Ponkala is a sweet offering of rice, jaggery, ghee and coconut made in earthen pot. Ponkala is an exclusive festival for women devotees. It is believed that by offering Ponkala women devotees pray for the well being of their husband and children. It is also believed that Ponkala offering brings good life partner for unmarried girls. All devotees irrespective of nationality, caste, creed, religion and social status participate in this auspicious occasion. During the festival the temple priest lights the hearth. This is then passed on to every woman devotees who light up their hearth for preparing the payasam. Finally the temple priest sprays holy water to the payasam.
Sarpa Bali is celebrated in the temple premises every year on Aayilyam star in the month of Midhunam, as per malayalam calendar. Usually this is held in the month of July. This special pooja gives relief from Sarpa Dosha and Dhristi Dosha.
Ramayana Masam - Karkitakam
The last month in Malayalam calendar is the Karkidaka Masam. This month is also known as the Ramayana Masam. During this month the famous epic Ramayana
is read at homes and in temples. At Vazhappully Temple Ramayana Masam is celebrated by reading Ramayana every day and Ganapathi Homa is arranged for every birth star.
Navaratri - Saraswathi Pooja - Vidyarambham
Vidyarambham or Ezhuthiniruthu is a Hindu tradition that is celebrated on Vijaya Dashami day. It is organised during the nine day festival of Navaratri
Pooja in the month of Kanni as per Malayalam calendar. It is an important custom in Kerala in which the children belonging to the age group of 2 to 5 years old are initiated into the knowledge world. Vidyarambham literally means `starting of knowledge gain`.
Vazhappully Sree Rajarajeshwari temple is one of the major venues where Vidyarambham is performed socially. On the day of Vijaya Dashami, ninth day of Navaratri, many people visit this temple and perform Vidyarambham. The children write the mantra `Om Hari Sri Ganapathaye Namah` on sand or on rice and the child writes the mantra again and again for five times. The priest writes the mantra on child`s tongue with small gold ring. It is believed that by writing this mantra on tongue the devotees are blessed by Goddess Saraswati
Kalamezhuthu Pattu is another important festival celebrated in Vazhappully Shree Rajarajeshwari Temple. It is a traditional form of worship where devotees draw on the ground using powders. It is an essential ritualistic art that is organised for the deities Goddess Rajarajeshwari and other sub deities like Aadi Guru, Suranaattu Muthappan and Avanappulli muthappan. This beautiful art is done with bare hands without any geometrical tools. Kalamezhuthu paatu celebration usually comes in the month of December. During this time every one is allowed to keep their books or other tools for pooja in the specially made "Saraswati Mantapam."