Chelamattam Krishna Temple is known as Dakshina Kashi. Its origins date back to 1,200 years. The temple is on the banks of River Periyar.
Avatars of Maha Vishnu in Chelamattam Krishna Temple
Three avatars of Maha Vishnu are worshipped at Chelamattam Krishna Temple. Lord Krishna, Lord Narasimha and Lord Vamana are the principal deities. The first shrine of Lord Vamanamurthy came into existence on the north-east side of the present temple complex. It is more than 1,200 years old. Later came Lord Vishnu’s Narasimha avatar, followed by the holy arrival of Lord Krishna.
Devotees believe the idol of Lord Krishna in the sreekovil is in a meditation pose assumed by him for granting eternal bliss to his parents after slaying Kamsa.
Sree Krishna is installed in the sreekovil facing east. This shrine is on the south. On the north side is the sreekovil of Sree Narasimha who faces east. The chuttambalam has six entrances. There are two different balikal, one for each shrine. The one for Lord Narasimha is smaller. Two bronze deepasthambhams (light posts) stand in front of the Sree Krishna shrine and one before Lord Narasimha’s shrine. The stone dwarapalakas at the entrance to the shrines are exquisite carvings.
The sub-shrine of Lord Sastha is on the south-west to the main shrines. The sub-shrine of Nagas is also on south-west and outside the chuttambalam.
Bali Tharpanam at Chelamattam Krishna Temple
Bali Tharpanam is an important part of Hinduism, paticularly in Kerala. It is meant to giive salvation to departed ancestors. The ritual involves making offerings in memory of one’s ancestors. Sesame and water are the key ingredients for the offering.
Devotees perform the rites early in the morning. They come down the steps from the temple towards River Periyar. Here it flows from west to east. On the banks of the river, sheds have been erected. Priests instruct the people in making bali tharpanam. After the ritual, believers float the ingredients down the river.
On the Thiruvonam star in the Malayalam month of Kumbham, Arrattu takes place. The purohits ceremoniously carry the invoked idol on elephant back in procession. The temple celebrates Valiya villakku on previous day.
A few of the sought-after offerings or vazhipadu are:
Prathima Samarppanam : Rs 750.00
Namaskaram (vavu) : Rs 20.00
Pushpanjali : Rs 10.00
Vavuthilahavanam : Rs 20.00
Palpayasam (minimum): Rs 50.00
Palpayasam (1 litre): Rs 100.00
Oil : Rs 05.00
Mornings: 04:30 – 10:30 AM
Evenings: 05:15 – 08:00 PM
The temple is 35.8 km (1 hr 6 min) from Ernakulam South railway station. Kochi International Airport is 12.4 km (25 min) by road. Nearest railway stations are Aluva and Angamaly. The place is midway between Kalady and Perumbavoor. Parking is free. Washrooms are clean.
Traditonal Kerala dress, which includes dhoti for men and saree for women. Salwar and churidar are okay. Men have to take off their shirts. Electronic gadgets and cameras are taboo.
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