The Chottanikkara Temple was a famous temple for Goddess Shakthi devi (or) Rajarajeshwari, who was known as Sree Bhagavathi. Maha lakshmi was in Chottanikkara temple with Lord Vishnu.
Chottanikkara Bhagavathy temple is the most important temple in Chottanikkara town, it is 17kms away from Ernakulam. The Goddess Rajarajeswari the mother Goddess, is the presiding deity of the temple also known as Bagavathy.
Devi in Chottanikkara temple :
Devi is worship at the temple, in three different forms: as Maha Saraswati (mother of knowledge) in the morning, draped in white; Maha Lakshmi (mother of wealth) at noon, draped in crimson; and as Sree Durga (mother of power) in the evening, decked in blue.
The ‘Devi’ in the temple is known for the healing power, particularly relating to mental illness and disorder. The temple situated in a hilly region, is surround on all sides by green farms. The entry is through the west and the spiritual atmosphere in the temple gives mental peace and harmony to devotees.
History of chottanikkara Temple:
The area of this temple was dense jungle it was believe that there is yakshis and raktharakshass. A tribesman Kannappan live in this forest. He worships a kali and he will sacrifices cow on every friday for goddess.
One day , he found a beautiful black calf in forest and he stole it and tried to sacrifice it. ust before he sacrificed the calf, tribesman’s daughter Manimanga came and pleaded him to stop the sacrifice. He loved his daughter so he left it and keep it as a pet. After somedays Manimaga passed away, due to snake bites.
Kannappan decide to cremate his daughter’s body but it disappeared. Then A priest told him the reason; Kannappan always take young calves from their mothers and sacrificed them. As punishment, he met the same fate when his daughter died.
However, when the tribes man looked for the calf, he found two divine stones in its place. The priest again tells him that the stones were actually divine. They are divine couple Vishnu and Lakshmi. He told him to pray before these stones everyday and god will forgive for what he had done in the past.
Since Kannappan’s death, the stones was forgot. One day, a grass-cutter came to the forest to cut some wild grass. Since her knife was blunt, she sharpened it on Stone,she thought it was a big stone. But then it start bleeding. she brought the matter to the public’s attention. A nearby priest after devaprasnam, it was concluded that the stones were divine.
History 2 :
Another History of this temple are: The spiritual leader Shankaracharya(Adi Shankara), he realised there should be a temple in Kerala to worship goddess saraswathi.As a result, he himself went to the Chamundi hills in Karnataka and meditated for many days for the goddess to appear before him.
In response to his meditation, before him stood the stunningly beautiful goddess, clad in white. On enquiry he said that he wants to take her to kerala in the sake of old people who have to this much far to worship. After his pleasing , Sarawati is accept to come with him but she told she will follow his step. She put one condition in the way he won’t turn back to see she is coming or not, he agree it.
They were walking down the Kodachadri hills, with Shankara leading the way and goddess’ anklets tinkling and letting him know that she was with him. After walking some distance, the tinkling stopped all of a sudden. Shankara waited a few moments and stole a quick look backwards to find the goddess still with him, watching him with reproach. Then Shankara asked forgiveness and pleased her.
After many pleas, the goddess agrees to a compromise. From early hours of morning, she would come and appear before the devotees at the Chottanikkara temple. Then in the afternoon, she would return to the spot where she stopped. This is the spot which would turn out to be the Mookambika temple.
The idol at Keezhkavu :
The idol at Keezhkavu didn’t come until after the temple built. One night, a Brahmin was walking along a moonlit trail. Suddenly, he saw a beautiful woman, standing all alone. He offered to escort her home, and she agreed. In between he stopped at priest home and woman agree to wait out. After he told the priest about that lady . Sensing danger, the priest warns him that the woman could be a Yakshi. The priest gives some holy stones and says that whenever he felt that the woman was near him, he had to throw the stone at the woman without turning back. By doing same he reached bagavathy temple. the woman held him down and transformed into her true form; a blood thirsty vampire. The Brahmin calls for help, to which goddess Parvati appeared and transformed into Mahakali, an aspect representing her anger. She subdues the vampire and kills her.
Festivals of Chottanikkara Temple:
- ” MAKOM Thozhal “ – (worship on the Makom day) is the most important festival of the temple which is celebrate in the month of Kumbham.(Feb / March). The Bhadrakaali at Kizhukkavu is believed to excerse evil spirit from devotees, after conducting bhajanam.
- Chingam – Thiruvonam festival was celebrate in this temple to all Pilgrims
- Kanni – is one of the famous festival during Navarathri aghosham ,which attracts large number of devotees.
- Vrishchikam – is celebrate during the entire season of mandalam.
- Kumbam – The annual festival of the temple comes in Kumbham. It begins with Kodiyettu (Flag hoisting ceremony) on Rohini day, lasts for 7 days and ends on Uthram star
- Medam – On the Vishu day, there will be Vishukani, Vishusadya and ezhunellippu on 3 elephants.
- Karkitakam – Ramayana masam (Ramayana Month) is celebrate during this period.
- Navarathri aghosham:- is a famous festival,which attracts large number of devotees. On Vijayadasami day of the Navarathri ulsavam. Annadanam and stage programmes are arrange on every day.
- Anna Prasam or Choroonu:- Choroonu’ in Kerala is usually perform when the baby is 140-168 days old, that is between his/her 5th and 6th month, calculate according to the Malayalam calendar