Uttara Guruvayoorappan Temple (Day 27 – 10 minutes from Home)

I have been participating in a month long blogging challenge with daily prompts and I have completed 26 days successfully.

Today’s prompt, 10 minutes from my home made me want to share information about this pious place which is just 10 minutes from my home. 

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Uttara Guruvayoorappan Temple, New Delhi

This temple, Uttara Guruvayoorappan Temple,  which gives us a peaceful, distraction less space to communicate with the Supreme Power, that I believe controls us and keeps us sane. I am a firm believer but not a very regular visitor to the temple. But at times when I’m stressed out and am searching for solutions, I do go there and spend some time in peace. A great relief indeed!

Our first visit to this temple was during the winters of 1983, for my little sister’s Choroonu (Annaprashan or First Rice). My parents believe that it is because of the blessings of this Lord that they were able to settle down here within a year and a half. I have been visiting this temple along with my mother and sister since the age of 5. Almost 3 decades now, and I believe that we too are blessed because we could finally settle down in our nest closer to this temple, that I adore so much. The unique architecture, the serene surroundings, the rich traditions, all of which make it an ideal place for worship and self-realization. I love the calmness and peace that it provides to your otherwise struggling minds.

The main deities worshiped here are Lord Guruvayoorappan (an incarnation of Lord Maha Vishnu), Lord Ganesha and his father Lord Shiva, his brother Lord Ayyappa (an offspring of Lord Shiva and Vishnu’s Mohini avatar) and Goddess Chotanikkara Devi (an incarnation of the trinities: Lakshmi, Durga and Saraswati). There’s also a Thulasi Thara where Yatheeswaran is worshipped.

I have tried to take you through most parts of the temple through a picturesque tour.

(Pictures reproduced with permission from regular visitors/devotees of Lord Guruvayoorappan)

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Uthara Guruvayoorappan Temple’s Brass decorated Sopanam

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Uthara Guruvayoorappan Temple’s Brass decorated Sopanam

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Uthara Guruvayoorappan Temple’s Brass decorated Sopanam

It is religious centers like these that ensure that our rich culture and tradition that we have inherited through generations are passed on to our future generations in an age when joint families are becoming extinct and visits to our hometown are shorter due to the corporate work pressure. I believe we are so blessed to be able to live in the close vicinity of the temple, thus closer to our roots.

Culture, rituals and traditions from grandmother stories do help when the little souls get a visual tour of places similar to those in the stories or anecdotes. This is one way to get our children to learn the various age-old traditions. 

Thayambaka

Panchavadyam and Thayambaka performed during Utsavam

Panchavadyam

Panchavadyam and Thayambaka performed during Utsavam

Arattu Kadavu

Arattu Kulam (The Sacred Pond)

With the annual Utsavam (Festival) just round the corner, the temple is undergoing the annual painting/whitewash and other small renovation work. Interested people may visit the temple during the Utsavam to revisit the traditions. The Kodiyettam (Sacred Flag Hoisting) is on Monday, 2nd September, 2013 and the Arattu (closing of Utsavam) coincides with Vinayaka Chaturthi (Ganesh Chaturthi) on Friday, 9th September, 2013.

A video of one of the Arattu is available here.

The salient features of the Utsavam are the Laksharchana and Kalabhabhishekam under the aegis of Thantri, Praasada Sudhi Kalasa Pooja, Bimba Sudhi Kalasa Pooja, Kodiyettam, Special Ayilya Pooja, Utsavabali, Special Ashtadravya Ganapathy Homam on the occasion of Vinayaka Chaturthy, Mahakalasam, Pushpabhishekam for Ganapathy, Pallivetta and at the end the Kodiyirakkam.

A YouTube Video tour of the Utsavam is available here.

Night View

Night View of Temple

Ashtapadi Pattu

Ashtapathy and Sheeveli are performed during Deeparadhana and Athazha Pooja

It is only because of a temple like this so close to us that we ensure observing the rituals as best as possible. On Vishu, our new year day, people throng to this temple from far off places by 3 a.m. just to get this sacred glimpse of Lord Guruvayoorappa and get the Vishu Kainettam from the temple priest. My little ones tell me on the previous night, “Don’t forget to call us and take us to the temple. You’ll reduce our pocket money.” 🙂

So the entire family ensures to wake up at 2.30 a.m., get ready and reach the temple premises. After the sacred darshan and receiving the token amount as Kainettam from the temple priestwe head straight to my parents’ place to get our rightful Vishu Kainettam. Of course, I still fight to get it first from Achan (my Dad), though he has changed priorities and prefers to give it to Lil Love (my youngest one) first. A little biased he is. 😛 I hope he reads this. He is a regular reader and critic and hence I am sure he will. 🙂 😀

Vishu1

Vishu Kani

temple back

The Backside entrance to the temple.

Vijayadashami

Ezhuthiniruthal or Saraswati Pooja on Vijayadashami

Mandala Pooja is a 41-day strict fast that devotees observe before their pilgrimage to the sacred abode of Lord Ayyappa, at the famous shrine, Sabarimala in Kerala. Residing here in Delhi, it is courtesy this and many other temples in the National Capital Territory that allow devotees to observe the rituals, austerities and fast with utmost devotion and with proper elderly counseling.

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Kettunira during Mandala Kaalam

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Kettunira during Mandalam

Kettunira

Kettunira during Mandalam

The temple has facilities that offer classes in traditional dance forms like, Kathak, Bharathanatyam, Mohiniattam, Music, Geetha Classes, Malayalam Classes etc.

Sakthi

Sakthi, a dance performance on Chottanikkara Makam

Shakthi on Chottanikkara Makam

Dance Forms kept alive for the future generations

keethu2

Krishnanjali

keethu

My niece performing a traditional dance form

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Lakshadeepam at Uttara Guruvayoorappan Temple

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Lakshadeepam at Uttara Guruvayoorappan Temple

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Lakshadeepam on Maha Shiva Raathri

Lakshadeepam was organised at the temple premises on Maha Shiva Rathri this year and it indeed was a visual delight. The Youtube video available here provides a video recording of the event. 

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Mural Painting near the entrance

Utsavam

Ezhunalippu during annual Utsavam (Festival) – the main diety doing the rounds of the temple

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Ottamthullal performance in the Panchajanya Hall

During the annual Utsavam, there are traditional performace like, Kathakali, Chakyar Koothu, Ottamthullal and many more. Regular Bhagavatha Sapthahams and other religious discourses are held

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Ayyappan Villakku during Mandala Kalam

Mandala Kalam

The Ayappa Swamy Kshetram during Mandala Pooja

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Nirapara during annual Utsavam (Festival)

During Onam celebrations, Pookalams (Floral Rangolis/Patterns) are made by various groups and the winner is declared based on the judgement of the jury.

Kalamezhuthu

Kalamezhuthu Pattu (Snake Dance) during Mandala Kalam

Sarpam Thullal is the ritual art form associated with Kalamezhuthu. My Ammamma’s (grandmother’s) house had a special snake shrine, Sarpa Kavu and Brahmarakshassu.

Sarpam Thullal is usually performed in the courtyard of houses having snake shrines. This is a votive offering for family wealth and happiness. The dance is performed by members of a community called Pulluvar. In the first stage the pulluvandraws a kalam (the field) in with two or more twining snakes in the courtyard. An oil lit traditional lamp and one full measure (nirapara) each of paddy and rice are then placed in front of the kalam. In the second stage, the idol of the snake is brought out from the Kavu in a procession called thalapoli to the uproarious tumult of percussion instrument (panchavadyam).

Information courtesy: Wikipedia | More info available here.

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Sarpa Kaavu (The sacred grove of the serpent) – Nagarajavu and Paambumaar

Thirumenis

The Thirumenis (Priests)

Ramayana Parayanam

Ramayanam Parayanam (Reading) during the holy month of Karkidakam (Ramayana Maasam)

Kootu Ganapathi Homam

Kootu Ganapathy Homam

Garlands

Garlands for the Dieties

This 'Aal Maram' was replanted from inside the Temple Complex (for construction of the old Auditorium) 23 years ago

This ‘Aal Maram‘ (Sacred Fig) was replanted from inside the Temple Complex (for construction of the old Auditorium) 23 years ago. It is said that now this tree is Lord Guruvayoorappan’s favorite..

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The Temple all illuminated for Janmashtami/Ashtami Rohini

Choroonu/Annaprashan or First Rice Ceremony

Choroonu/Annaprashan or First Rice Ceremony

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Marriage ceremony solemnized at the temple

The temple is a cultural centre for Keralites and non-Keralites around Delhi NCR and marriages, birthdays and other functions are accommodated with grandeur in the three available complexes: Panchajanya Hall, Gokulam and the latest Karthyayani Auditorium and Karthyayani Socio Cultural Complex.

For more information on the temple and its offerings, please do visit the temple website:

Sri Uttara Guruvayoorapan Temple, Mayur Vihar, New Delhi

Part of August Photo a Day Challenge

16 thoughts on “Uttara Guruvayoorappan Temple (Day 27 – 10 minutes from Home)

  1. This is such a fabulous pictorial tour of the temple. Such a magnificent place and some really grand ceremonies and rituals are celebrated here. Enjoyed the virtual tour. Thanks 🙂

  2. its a thumps up.. great job.. i guess its not just compiled in one day.. it was worth reading.. i didt read d other articles by u.. but am goin to.. ur post on facebook page of UGT brought me here.. good luck n best wishes mam.. keep writing 🙂

    • Thank you so much for dropping by and taking time to comment! Yes, it ain’t done in a day. It took me about a week to compile this snd select the pics. But, this is something I was longing to do.

  3. Rekha, Truth be told… Today on Krishnashtami, It is Guruvayurappan’s blessing only that I visited the Mayur vihar temple through this picturesque writing… I have a vivid memory about the temple. I first visited this temple in 1989 on the day of the pratishta. Since then this temple has been an icon of faith for me… Wishing You Most and More… God Bless

  4. Guruvayoorapan has always been the sun around which I. revolve like the earth.around the sun
    He is limitless endless ……………
    your blog on the ambalam is wonderful
    blessed are you that you stay close to him
    om namo narayana

  5. Great effort to know all the important functions of Uthara Guruvayurappan Temple to reach the devotees. Lord Guruvayurappan’s blessing is with you for making this blog of UGT to the devotees. Hope you can do again like this for the devotees…!

  6. Pingback: The Great Backwaters, Kerala, India | Dew Drops

  7. I haven’t been to Kerala in ages, but what I remember very well is the ambience of its temples, particularly my kudumbakshetram and Guruvayoor, which are a must visit whenever I go there. Your mini Guruvayoor in Delhi and the pictures and descriptions brought back those memories, and a smile. I’ve never been to Guruvayoor on Vishu morning of course, so that part of the post brought a wider smile than the rest. 🙂 Thanks for the happiness!

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