Sri Rama Temple, Triprayar

Sri Rama Temple, TriprayarThe Sri Rama temple at Triprayar is probably the most popular of Rama temples in the region. It is at the very heart of the region's cultural legacy. The place earned its name probably from the belief that the river on whose banks the temple is beautifully located, once used to surround the temple on three sides and hence the name Thirupuriyar which became Triprayar. The Lord is depicted in the classic Chaturbhuja Vishnu form with four hands holding the traditional paraphernalia - the Conch, Chakra, Bow and the Garland respectively. The image is festooned with fine jewelry. The Lord is flanked on either side by his consorts – Goddess Sri Devi and Goddess Bhu Devi. An image of Lord Dakshinamurthy also accompanies the Lord in the Sanctum. Aspects of Lord Shiva and Lord Brahma can also be ascribed to the Lord here and hence the Lord is also worshipped as 'Trimurthy'. The huge temple complex is built in the Kerala style of temple architecture and is known for its exquisite wooden carvings and artistic murals. This is especially true of the Namaskara Mandapam which is home to some 24 panels of ornate wooden carvings and murals. The Sanctum Sanctorum is circular in shape and is home to some of the finest sculptural depictions of scenes from the Ramayana. The Sanctum is covered by a pyramidal copper plated roof.  Though there isn't any image, Lord Hanuman is believed to be present in the Namaskara Mandapam. People possessed by evil spirits are brought to this temple as devotees strongly believe that the grace of Lord Hanuman will cure the affected of their ailments. The temple is also popular for the ancient theatrical art form, the 'Angya Koothu'. Various episodes from the epic Ramayana are enacted as part of the 12 day celebrations in the month of Vrishchikam (November/December). The temple complex is also home to the shrine of Lord Ayyappa.

Based on some inscriptions the temple can be dated back to the eleventh century. The temple originally used to be under the Zamorins. Over the centuries, it fell under the domain of the Dutch, the sultans of Mysore and the Cochin rulers.

According to the most popular legend, the images of Lord Rama and his brothers Lakshmana, Bharata and Satrugna were found entangled in the fishing nets of some local fishermen after returning from a trip to the high seas. They handed over the images to Vikkal Kaimal, the local chieftain. Apparently these images have a glorious past and the local chieftain consecrated the image of Lord Rama here at Triprayar, Lakshmana at Moorikunni village – the Tirumoozhikkalam, which is also one of the 108 Divya Desam shrines dedicated to Lord Vishnu, Bharata at Koodalmaanikkam and Satrugna at Payammel. Devotees strongly believe that a pilgrimage to all four of these shrines is very auspicious.

Legend has it that a divine voice ordained that the image of Lord Rama was to be consecrated at the exact spot where a peacock will appear. The image was instead consecrated at a spot where a devotee bearing peacock feathers appeared. This act was regretted later as the peacock appeared at another spot and devotees had to erect the Balikkallu, the sacrificial altar, at the spot marked by the peacock to make up for the blemish. However, this altar used to spin on its axis and had to be stabilized by a Yogi, who accompanied by the chanting of mantras, drove a nail through it. The great Villwamangalathu Swamiyar consecrated the images of the Lord's consorts – Goddess Sri Devi and Goddess Bhu Devi on either side of the Lord in the Sanctum as measure to make up for the 'Dosha', flaw, that resulted from the consecration of the Lord's image at a place other than the one ordained by the divine voice. He also shut down the western doors of the temple and these remain closed to this day.

Temple administered accommodation is available in the form a choultry. However, Thrissur offers numerous facilities and is very convenient to travel from.
Triprayar Devaswom Satram
Cochin Devaswom Board runs a small pilgrim shelter, 'Triprayar Devaswom Satram', near the Temple. Few rooms are available there with rates Rs 200/-, Rs. 300/- per day.
For more details contact 0487-2391375.

Upadevathas/Sub Temples - Sub Dieties


Though there is no separate idol for Rama's best devotee Hanuman, it is believed that his presence is always there at the Namaskara mandapam(in front of the Sreekovil) of the temple. Devotees generally bow before the mandapa imagining the presence of Hanuman there before worshipping Sree Rama. The offering of flattened rice (avil) made from dried paddy is meant for Hanuman.

There are two Ganapathy prathishtas inside the Nalambalam. Devotees can see a Ganapthy prathishta(facing south) in the garbhagruha(near south door) of Sree Rama's Sreekovil. Another Ganapathy prathishta(facing east) in a small sreekovil is located at south west corner of the Nalambalam.

Dakshinamoorthy is worshipped in the garbhagruha(near south door) of Sree Rama's Sreekovil. The idol of Dakshinamoorthy is in Shiva Linga form adorned with Rudraksha garlands, crescent moon etc.

Outside the nalambalam, in the southern side of the courtyard there is an Ayyappa (Shastha) shrine. It is believed that the Shastha shrine is ancient than the Rama Temple. With the arrival of Sree Rama idol, a new temple was constructed near the Ayyappa shrine. Thriprayar Thevar is the presiding deity of the Arattupuzha Pooram, one of the important festivals of central Kerala. Lord Ayyappa of this temple also participated in this pooram before the installation of Lord Rama. Except Triprayar Thevar, all other participants in this pooram are Sasthas and Bhagavathys of different temples. This also points to the prominance of Shastha shrine

Gosala Krishnan
Near the main temple, in the northern side of the courtyard, there is a shrine of Gosala Krishna. The temple have a nalambalam in traditional gosala form. The idol of Lord Krishna faces east. There is mention about this Gosala Krishna temple in earlier sandesa kavyas.

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