This 300-YO Kulasai Mutharamman Temple In Tamil Nadu Celebrates Dussehra In A Unique Fashion

by Shreya Rathod
This 300-YO Kulasai Mutharamman Temple In Tamil Nadu Celebrates Dussehra In A Unique Fashion

India is a diverse country, not just in food and languages. Every city has its unique tradition and way of celebrating the festivals. In almost every part of the country Dussehra is celebrated, but this 300-year-old temple in Tamil Nadu has a unique way to celebrate this festival and it is known as Kulasai Dasara!

Kulasai Dussehra Celebrated At 300-YO Temple In Tamil Nadu

Kulasai dasara
Credits: Mutharamman Temple Kulasai/ Facebook

The Navaratri or Dasara festival is celebrated in an impressive way at the Kulasai Mutharamman Temple in the Tamil Nadu district of Thoothukudy, which is located at Kulasekharapatanam. Arriving for the holiday, devotees collect alms from houses to pay for their expenditures.

And whatever funds are left over after paying for their bills is given to the temple. The idols of Swamy Gnanamoorthiswarar and Goddess Mutharamman were set together at the temple, which is thought to be 300 years old. The biggest celebration at this temple is Dasara, which takes place in Kulasekharapuram, a historic port city.

The pilgrims who travel for the event fast for 41 days. The believers dress themselves in the likeness of the gods and goddesses of the local pantheon during the last 10 days, which include the Navarathri days. Moreover, they must abstain from all forms of indulgence, including intoxication, and any violent and wicked behaviour. Some of the followers even dress up as Goddess Kali.

Others dress as local deities such as Chudalamadan, Kariyilamadan, Changalamadan, Asuran, etc. These well-dressed followers receive a lot of visitors who ask for their blessings.

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After the rites, the worshippers remove their attire and wash it off in the sea as they make their way to the temple in these outfits.

What Do The Legends Say?

Mutharamman Temple Kulasai
Credits: Mutharamman Temple Kulasai/ Facebook

The most well-known of the various legends relating to the history of the temple is the one involving the demon Mahishasura. As per this legend, the Goddess assumed the form of a young girl named Lalithambika in order to kill the demon Mahishasura as he obtained abilities to rule over all the realms. Within nine days, the girl reached adulthood; on the tenth, she transformed into Parasakthi Lalithambika and vanquished the demon. In this temple, the Dasara celebration takes place on the tenth day.

Another tradition claims that this town experienced a smallpox outbreak. The followers took a collection and offered an offering to the Goddess. It helped to alleviate the ailment, which was thought to have been brought on by the wrath of the Goddess. Therefore, it is believed that the custom of holding a grand annual festival was developed in order to preserve the memory of this tragedy.

Vijayadashami or Dussehra is a festival celebrated at the end of Navaratri. In South India, the celebration of goddess Durga’s victory over Mahishasura to restore and safeguard dharma is commemorated on Vijayadashami. Finally, the festival concludes with Durga Puja.

During Vijayadashami celebrations, clay figurines of Durga, Lakshmi, Saraswati, Ganesha, and Kartikeya are carried in processions to a river or seaside.

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The idols are then submerged in the water for dissolution and farewell.

Cover Image Courtesy: Wikimedia

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