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Chittoor Ekadashi

 

Chittoor Ekadasi at Chitoor Sree Krishnaswamy TempleChittoor Ekadasi is celebrated with great fervour in the Chitoor Sree Krishnaswamy Temple. On this day, taking a bath early in the morning, devotees come to the temple and worship the idol and fast the whole day. At 7.30 am 'Abshishekam' or anointing the idol with milk, sandalwood paste etc is performed followed by Panthiradi Pooja. 'Anjanasila' or idol of Lord Vishnu is brought out of the Sree kovil wrapped in silk, decorated with thulasi (basil) leaves or garland and is held by the main priest. Poojas are performed with the accompaniment of vadya melam including thimila, elathalam, chenda, a percussion instrument and wind instruments such as kombu and nadaswaram etc and people join in the worship. Then the idol is carried around the temple placed inside a decorated chariot (Radham). Two people carrying thooku vilakku (hanging lamps) lead the procession and they circle the temple thrice. The first and second rounds are accompanied only by Chenda melam and the third round along with panjavadyam (five instruments). Prayers are continued for a long period, the whole procedure may last around two hours and the idol is returned to the sanctum sanctorum. After some time, the idol is taken out again for Sree Bhootha bali, i.e giving food to the bhoothagana. Then the whole procedure is repeated again.The devotees are given 'prasadam' in the Uttupura - including boiled wheat and puzhukku made with 2-3 root vegetables like potato, yam etc. On Ekadashi, some people content themselves with one meal avoiding rice while others do not take anything but a few drops of 'Thulasitheertham', i.e water poured over a Tulasi plant, sacred to Vishnu. The time between the end of the Ekadashi day and the wee hours of the Dwadeshi day is the time for fasting and devotees keep awake the whole night. The more devout feed a few Brahmans and give them money. 

In the evening, around 4.30 pm the idol mounted on top of Garuda, Vishnu's vehicle, is taken around the temple in procession with the accompaniment of Vadyamelam. Devotees join in the procession which lasts for about 2 hours. After that, devotees light up thousands of metal lamps, attached to the outside walls of the Nalambalam. It is a spectacular sight to see the lamps lighted up during deeparadhana. After 'Deeparadhana' cultural programs, mainly Kathakali is conducted till 11.30 pm. Then the idol is taken to the 'nelapattu thara' and kept there along with lighted lamps.

Early next morning, i.e. on Dwadesi, the 12th lunar day, the sanctum sanctorum opens at 4.00 am in the morning, devotees worship in the temple again, apply sandal paste to their forehead, obtain 'Prasadam' or 'Malartheertham' and break the fast.


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›› Chittoor Sree Krishnaswamy Temple
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