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Meenakshi Thirukalyanam is celebrated today in my city Madurai !

Discussion in 'Festivals, Functions & Rituals' started by Chitvish, Apr 29, 2007.

  1. Chitvish

    Chitvish Moderator Staff Member IL Hall of Fame

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    The history of Madurai dates back to Puranic days.

    Indiran, the king of the devas had once violated the norms of of battle and had no peace of mind. He came down to earth and when passing by a forest of Kadamba trees in Pandyanadu, he suddenly felt, cleansed of his sin. When his men saw what was there, they found there was a Shivalingam beside a lake and beneath a kadamba tree. Convinced that it was Shiva himself who had cleansed him of his sin, he paid homage to this lingam and also built a vimanam over it. This is believed to be the same lingam, now enshrined in the Meenakshi temple.

    Lord Shiva is said to have appeared in the dream of the Pandyan king Kulasekaran and directed him to build a temple and a city around this lingam, which he did.

    This was the origin of the Madurai Temple and city, and although Pandyan actually built them, in the ultimate analysis Lord Shiva himself is believed to have been the chief achitect.

    Kulasekharan’s son Malayathuvasan and his wife Kanchanamalai performed many yagas to be blessed with a child. Kanchanamalai was an ardent devotee of Goddess Parvathi in her previous birth and had prayed for the goddess to be born her daughter in her next birth. This promise was kept up and when the yaga was performed, a three year old girl came out of the holy fire and sat on Kanchanamalai’s lap.

    Malayathuvasan was disappointed, first, because he was not blessed with a son and also because the girl had three breasts ! But God’s voice (asariri) said
    “Name this girl as Thadathagai and bring her up like a boy. On the day she meets the man who will become her husband, the third breast will disappear.
    Thus, the girl was brought up as a Pandya princess in a befitting way. Her father named her his successor and performed her coronation when the right time came. She was bold and embarked on a series of wars inflicting devastating defeats on all her foes.

    Emboldened by these victories, she marched on Mount Kailash, the sacred abode of Lord Shiva. Nandi released his Bhuthaganams, but they were defeated by Thadathagai. So, finally Lord Shiva himself rode to the battle scene in his full glory. There his eyes beheld the form of his divine consort-to-be. The moment Thadathagai set her eyes on the Lord, her third breast disappeared ! Her face lightened up and now everyone knew, He was her match. The Lord bade Thadathagai to return to her capital where He promised that He would come and marry her on the eighth day. The divine marriage was celebrated in Madurai city with all pomp and pageantry.

    Even today one can see the famous sculpture of Meenakshi Thirukalyanam in Kambathadi Mandapam. We see the majestic form of Shiva and the shy, smiling form of Goddedd Meenakshi.

    The attachment carries the photo of Meenakshi Thirukalyanam.

    Love,
    Chithra.
    Wedding_of_Sri_Meenakshi_Sundereshwarar[1].jpg
     
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2010
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  2. Chitvish

    Chitvish Moderator Staff Member IL Hall of Fame

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    Today's feast in Madurai, my city !
    <HR style="COLOR: #ffffff" SIZE=1>In Madurai Meenakshi temple, Meenakshi Thirukalyanam is celebrated today.
    Coming from Madurai, I am offering you all, the feast which is supposed to have been served for the occasion !

    சர்க்கரை பாயசம், கக்கரிக்கா கோசுமல்லி, கடலை சேர்த்த கல்கண்டு கோசுமல்லி, இளம் வாழைத்தண்டு எலுமிச்சங்காய் கோசுமல்லி, பிஞ்சு கொத்தவரங்காய் பருப்பு ராயத்து.
    நேர்ந்து கூட்டுமே டாங்கர் பச்சடி, விஸ்தாரமாய் இருக்கும் வெள்ளரிக்காய் பச்சடி, மாங்காய் பச்சடி, தேங்காய் பச்சடி, வாழைக்காய் உப்பேறி, பலாக்காய் பொடிகறி.
    பரங்கிக்காய் முத்தகறி, அவரக்காய் துவட்டல், ஆயிரம் கறி சேர்த்த அவியலும் உண்டு ! கீரைத்தண்டு கூட்டு, பாவக்காய் பிட்லை, பூசணிக்காய் சாம்பார்,வெண்டைக்காய் தயிர்கடி.
    மோர்க்குழம்பு திட்டம். வத்தல் குழம்பு முருங்கை பாகற்காயும் சேர்த்து குழம்பு வாசனை வீசுது; எல்லாம் சேர்த்த மைசூர் ரசமும்.
    ஜீரகம் மிளகு காட்டா ரசமும் பித்தத்தைத் தணிக்க வேப்பம்பூ ரசமும், கடுப்பு தீர்க்கும் திப்பிலி ரசமும்.
    சன்னச் சம்பா சால்யன்னமும், குத்துப் பருப்பும், புத்துருக்கு நெய்யும், அற்புதமானதோர் ஆமவடையும் மதுரமானதோர் மசாலா வடையும்
    ருசிதமுள்ள உளுத்தம் வடையும்.
    சந்திரோதயம் போல் சிறு அப்பளமும், சுக்ரோதயம் போல் ஜவ்வரிசி வடாமும் தாவள்யமாயிருக்கும்.
    தேன் குழல் வடாமும் என்ன வெளுப்பு !
    இட்லியும் போளியும் முந்திரி திராக்ஷா
    மெதுவாய் இருக்கும் சர்க்கரைப் பொங்கல்
    பயத்தம் பொங்கல் உளுத்தம் திமிறல்
    எள்ளோதரையுடன் புளியோதரையும்
    தேங்காய்ச் சாதம் மாங்காய் சாதம், தத்யோன்னமும்.
    கேசரி பாத்து பகாளா பாத்து
    ஜிலேபி அல்வா தூத் பேடாவும்
    திரட்டுப் பாலும், நல் சோமாசி குல்கந்தல்வா
    குஞ்சாலாடு ரவாலாடு பேஷாயிருக்கும் பேசரிலாடு
    இன்னும் பல பக்ஷணங்கள் தின்னத் திகட்டாத தினுசுகள்
    எத்தனை , எத்தனை இனிப்புகள் !
    ஒட்டு மாம்பழம், வெடிக்கும் பலாச்சுளை கிச்சிலி நாரத்தை
    மலைவாழைப் பழமும் மொந்தன் பழமும்
    பேயன் பழமும் பச்சை நாடன் செவ்வழையும்.
    ஆடைத் தயிரும் நீர் மோர் ரகமும் இளைச்ச நாக்குக்கு
    எலுமிச்சம் ஊறுகாய், ஒரனை ஓரலை.
    ஓடற நெல்லிக்காய், வெடுக்கென கடிக்கிற வடு மாங்காயும்
    எடுத்துப் பரிமாறினார்கள் !

    மீனாக்ஷி -சுந்தரேச்வரர் அருளை நாடுவோம் !

    அன்புடன்
    மதுரை சித்ரா.
     
  3. vmur

    vmur Silver IL'ite

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    Dear ChitVish,

    I have been following the Chithirai festival in Madurai Meenakshi temple on Dinamalar.com and your article is like the icing on the cake. I loved reading the story, our mythological legends can be read and heard over and over again, it is soo sweet to the ears!

    Thanks for the legend and bringing this to our notice!

    Love
    Vidya
     
  4. vmur

    vmur Silver IL'ite

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    Looks like our posts crossed each other! Wow! what a feast!!
     
  5. Chitvish

    Chitvish Moderator Staff Member IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear Vidya,
    I am so thrilled My M T received the quickest feed back.
    I have attended it before marriage in the temple. My mother says that the crowd is mutifold now & annadhanam goes on all Adi veedhi & extends even on Chithirai veedhai, where the streets are wiped clean & food served ! - can you believe?
    There is no parallel to my Meenakshi & the Thiruvilayadals !
    Oh, I am so Madurai-sick now !:icon_frown:
    Love,
    Chithra.


     
  6. Chitvish

    Chitvish Moderator Staff Member IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear Vidya,
    My patti used to make us repeat this every year on Thirukalyanam day.
    Whatever I forgot, I just added on my Sonda Sahithyam !:mrgreen:
    Love,
    Chithra.


     
  7. anjana

    anjana Bronze IL'ite

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    Dear Chitra,

    Wow what a story behind MTkalyanam.I had no idea and the reason behind this. I can imagine the crowd today and I miss reading the feast that you have written.Does the celebration end as of today Chitra. I have visited Madurai when I was a girl,just have vague memories.I can imagine how homesick you feel.

    Love,
     
  8. Chitvish

    Chitvish Moderator Staff Member IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear Radha,
    Thanks for the F b.
    Madurai has 2 parts - S & N, divided by Vaigai River.
    With thirukalyanam, the festival ends in S Madurai.
    Tomorrow is edir sevai, when the festivities sart in N Madurai, where my amma lives. Kallazakar comes fro Azakarkovil with "seer" for his sister's wedding.
    That is a big day of festivity around our house. On pournami, is the Azakar athil irangaradu !
    The festivities continue for 4, 5 days more.
    Love,
    Chithra.
    Feeling home-sick all over again !

     
  9. Cheeniya

    Cheeniya Super Moderator Staff Member IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear Chithra
    Thank you for giving us the background of Goddess Meenakshi and Her wedding to Lord Shiva. I never cease to marvel at the exquisite sculpture of Menakshi Tirukalyanam, a picture of which adorns almost every Kalyana Mantapam across Tamilnadu.
    Worship of Shakthi is quite unique to Hinduism. The Divine Shakthi is worshipped as a Mother, Spouse, Friend and in almost all conceivable forms. the celestial event of Meenakshi Kalyanam has special significance. My own efforts to understand the significance of celestial weddings as a form of worship led me to this meanigful text-
    ' Throughout the Hindu world, elaborate, extensive temple rituals and festivals celebrate the goddess's wedding to her divine spouse (examples include Meenakshi Kalyanam, Rama-Sita Kalyanam, Parvati-Siva Swayamvaram, etc.). The extraordinary dedication of time, resources, and priestly knowledge to the periodic reenactment of these divine weddings underscores the profound spiritual significance of the marital bond. In fact marriage is considered the most important samskara, or rite of passage, in the human lifespan. In the marriage ritual the bride is identified with the goddess Lakshmi, adorned and worshipped as the bringer of supreme auspiciousness into her new family. As she undertakes her new responsibilities as wife and mother, a woman joins the daily round of domestic worship conducted by women of the family, centering around the kitchen shrine. Upon rising in the morning she will bathe and draw a kolam or rangoli on the doorstep, to welcome the goddess Lakshmi into the home. In all her activities the wife and mother embodies the divine feminine force of life, auspiciousness, and joy. It is she who is believed to keep the husband and children alive and happy through her careful attention to their welfare and satisfaction, through cooking, fasting, prayer, teaching, and self-care and beautification. The auspiciousness of goddess Lakshmi, so necessary to life in the world, is also celebrated lavishly at Diwali, the festivals of light and life in dark times.'
    Sri
     
  10. Chitvish

    Chitvish Moderator Staff Member IL Hall of Fame

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    Dear Sri,
    Excellent supplement to my post on Thirukalyanam.
    You give in a nutshell, what "Grahalakshhmi" is all about ! This is one aspect, where our thinking on the role of a woman varies vastly from the west.
    Bharathiyar woeships her as Shakthi.
    Thiruvalluvar has devoted so many kurals to the woman's role in life. I love the following 2 verses:

    மனைமாட்சி இல்லாள்கண் இல்ல்லாயின் வாழ்க்கை
    எனைமாட்சித் தாயினும் இல்.

    தற்காத்துத் தற்கொண்டான் பேணித் தகைசான்ற
    சொற்காத்துச் சோர்விலாள் பெண்

    I cannot stand people passing a comment about a house as Madurai or Chidambaram ! The former is like a well oiled machine, running smoothly !
    I want to reserve my comments on the latter.

    I loved best your words

    In all her activities the wife and mother embodies the divine feminine force of life, auspiciousness, and joy. It is she who is believed to keep the husband and children alive and happy through her careful attention to their welfare and satisfaction, through cooking, fasting, prayer, teaching, and self-care and beautification

    There lies the greatness of Indian womanhood.
    I thank you profusely, Sri, for joining us in this thread & sharing your thoughts, glorifying a woman's role in life.
    Love,
    Chithra.
     
    Last edited: Apr 29, 2007

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