MakaraVilakku at Sabarimala Temple is a seven-day festival which begins on Makara Sankranthi day. According to Puranas, On Makara Sankrathi Sun pays a visit to the house of Shani (Saturn) who is the God of Makara Rashi (Capricorn Zodiac Sign). As per the Legends, on this day, DharmaSastha enshrined in this temple and to honor this event Makara Vilakku festival will be celebrated.
Ponnambala Medu the divine place where Makaravilakku will be lit thrice after Deeparadhana to Ayappa. Makaravilakku is the holy fire which Indra (God of Heaven) passed it onto Parasurama with the help of Sage Narada. Parasurama used to offer Harathi to River Saraswathi with this holy fire and it is same fire where Amba self-immolated herself. As per the Legends, Parasurama failed to convince his friend Bheesma to marry Amba. Angered Parasurama declared war against Bheeshma and war went for years. With the interference of Devas, Parasurama withdraws from the war. With no hope, Amba sacrificed herself jumping into this hot camphor fire.
It is said that this Vedic fire which Parasurama received from Indra was in practice from 4000 B.C and it was carried by Malayar who were the followers of Parasurama.
3 days prior to the Makaravilakku event, Ornaments procession will start from Valiya Koyikkal Sastha Temple in Pandalam and reaches Sannidham on the evening of Makara Sankranthi. Lord will be decorated with jewels on this day. This event ends with Guruthi Pooja and everyone will leave this place immediately at the end of this pooja.
Best places to View Makaravilakku
- Sannidhanam is the one of the best places with a good view, but this place will always be crowded.
- Pandithavalam is another place for good view
- Marakoottam, this is the place where the paths merge
- Malikappuram which is near Manimandapam is another good spot.
- Hilltop parking ground at Pamba River
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Reference Link: Deepam History