Ankamma Festival is concentrated among the people who live in the central part of Andra Pradesh. They offer the heap of cooked rice and a ram is sacrificed on the evening of the following day.
Ankamma, a conventional local goddess who is placed on a tiger shaped vehicle and her sister Mahalakshmamma shaped of jackal. Goddess Ankamma is said to be one of the Seven Matrkas (Sapta Matrikas) and she is also considered to be an appearance of goddess Ankali or Kali. In order to include her worship into Vedic Hinduism, Ankamma is considered to be the mother of the Trimurtis, the Hindu male trinity of Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva. Though, Ankalamma is a non-Vedic deity and, like so many Tamil well-liked deities, she seems to have originated in a violent protector figure. In the rituals dedicated to her she is appeased with blood.
Ankalamma's shrines are typically located outside of the village in groves of trees. They are typically no proper temples, but very simple stone structures.
Celebration of Ankamma Festival
Ankamma festival is celebrated for five days in the month of Ashadha. The goddess is placed in a palanquin and taken in a parade early in the morning. The floor is decorated with rangavali. A stack of cooked rice is offered and a ram is sacrificed on the evening of the following day. Ankamma on a tiger - shaped vehicle and her sister Mahalakshmamma on a jackal - shaped vehicle are taken to a four- shelled cart, along with a basket.
Villagers drop neem leaves and cooked rice into the basket. A lizard, a pig, a goat, a fowl and a human appearance made of flour are impaled on the spikes of the handcart. The procession goes to the temple accompanied by the music and dance. On the fourth day devotees observe a fast and fulfil their vows. Balls of rice flour and jaggery are offered to Ankamma, Mahalakshmamma, poleramma and poturaj carts with vessels of cooked rice. A ram and a goat are sacrificed to Ankamma, Mahalakshmamma respectively. On the fifth day, Ankamma and Mahalakshmamma go hunting towards the north of the village on the individual vehicles. There a ram’s ear is cut and the ram is driven to the temple. All things are essential for a feast to Ankamma and her relatives are provided in the temple and its doors are closed for three days. It is believed that if anyone opens the door within these three days, his head would break into pieces.
(Last Updated on : 02-05-2017)
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