Saranam Ayyappa ! Swamiye Saranam Ayyappa ! The loud holy chants
break the ear-piercing silence of the forests. The fervor and
the zeal is unbeatable. Absolutely consuming. The pilgrims are
so involved in their communion with the God that all the hardship,
the exhaustion of the long journey and the trek doesn’t register.
All that matters is beyond the realm of the matter…
Hindu god Ayyappan is one of southern India’s most revered deities.
He is worshipped in a number of shrines across south India and in
various stages of his life…. as a child, in conjunction with his
consorts, at Sabarimala as an ascetic, a celibate meditating in
solitude for the benefit of all mankind. Pilgrims
trek through the steep hill track in the dense forest only to attain
the Sabarimala experience.
IS that time of the year when those staunch devotees take out
their black (or orange) attire and rudraksha beads - it is time
for Ayyappa devotees, called swamis, to take up the 40-day `deeksha'
restraining the devotee from wearing any other coloured clothes,
eating out, wearing footwear and sleeping on the cot/mattress
— which culminates in a visit to the temple of the Lord at Sabarimala,
on the banks of river Pampa in Kerala. Many devotees are attracted
to Ayyappa. Just uttering `Swamiye Saranam Ayyappa' a few times,
believe the bhaktas, will rid them of all sins and lead to salvation.
this season, other aspects like the sale of black clothes, music
albums and the mad rush for bulk bookings to the temple town is
on the rise. - Says www.Hinduonnet.com