Prathishta / Presiding Deity : Durga
Upadevatha / Sub Deities : xx
Perandoor Bhagavathy Temple, a major temple among the “108 DURGA” temples in Kerala, is situated in Elamakkara, in Kochi . Main deity (‘Prathishta’) of the temple is ‘Durga’ worshipped in ‘Karthyayani Bhava’
History reveals very interesting facts about the origin of the temple. Cheraman Perumal, the last emperor of the great Chera dynasty who ruled Kerala during the 10th century AD, renounced his empire and all material possessions in order to lead an ascetic life. The empire was divided and given among the regional chiefs and lords under him. At the last minute he remembered that the royal priests “Elangallur namboothiris”.who were not given anything. He made amends for this by taking back some portions of land from other lords and gave it to the Royal priest family. Thus began a new dynasty called the “Elangallur swarupam” (The kingdom of Elangallur family) in Edappally, which is one of the only two brahmin royalties in Kerala. The kingdom included Edappally, parts of Karthikapally, Haripad, Cherthala and places in and around Mavelikkara.
Kings of Elangallur Swaroopam (known as “Edappally Thampuran” meaning of Lord of Edappally) were known to be great patrons of temples and there were several prominent temples under them including the Ganapathy (“Lord Ganesa”) temple at Edappally and Sastha Temple at Thrikkunnapuzha (near Cherthala in Alleppy district)). It was their practice to personally oversee the running of the festivals under them. One one such occasion the “Thampuran” was staying at Thrikkunnapuzha during the festival at the Sastha Temple there. At night he had a dream in which the Goddess Durga appeared to him and expressed her wish to stay at Edappally near “Ganapathy”.(The idol of Ganapathy –Ganesa- who is the Chief deity of the royal family was always carried by the king along with him). Accordingly next morning, the king started towards Edappally carrying an idol of “Durga” together with the idol of “Ganesa”. He travelled up to the west end of Edappally by boat and got down there and started towards the Palace. On the way the idol of Durga fell down from his hand. King was very much upset at this incident and called his astrologers for advice. The astrologers found that at the place where the idol had fallen there had been a Durga Temple built by “Parasurama” the sixth incarnation of Lord Mahavishnu and that the “Goddess Durga” (“Devi” or “Bhagavathy”) liked to be there at the same place. Accordingly a temple was duly constructed which became a prominent one among the 108 Durga temples of Kerala. Since the idol had “Perandu Veenu” (Malayalam phrase for falling down unexpectedly) the place became known as Perandoor and the temple became known as Perandoor Bhagavathy Temple.
Being the main deity of the people under the “Elangallur swaroopam” the Perandoor Bhagavathy is the family goddess of a great many families (who are called the “moola kutumbams”) in southern and middle Kerala.
:: Thrikkarthika : “Karthika” star day of the month Vischikam (Malayalam calendar)
is celebrated as Devi’s birthday. On the day “ANNADANAM” (free food for all ) is
performed in the temple. Thousands across Kerala throng to the temple on that day
to partake the mealbelieved to be the prasadam of Devi. “Annadanam” (“donating food”)
is considered as the noblest act of donation and the happiness of the donor and
satisfaction of the recipient are unparalleled.
:: Thiruvutsavam : Major festival of this temple is celebrated every year in the month of Medam (Malayalam Calendar) for eight days ending with the Star Uthram as the last day. The festival is held in the traditional style with splendor and grandeur and the devotees join the festivity passionately. “Annadanam” is performed on the last day of the festival and thousands of devotees participate in it.
:: Makam Thozhal : On the starting hours of Makam Star in the month of Makaram (Malayalam Calendar) is believed to be a very special divine moment and numerous devotees flock to offer prayers on the day in this temple.
:: Navarathri / Durgapooja : Durgapooja / Navarathri is celebrated every year and hundreds of children do their Vidyarambham on the VIJAYADASAMI day in the temple. Nine day long music festival is also held during the period which has gained wide popularity.
A distinctive feature of this temple is about it’s “Prathishta” (Deity) which is
goddess “Durga”, first of the five forms of “Adiparasakthi”. Durga in the “Karthyayani
Bhavam” is worshipped here as an eight year old child.
Perandoor Bhagavathy Temple,Elamakkara (P.O),Cochin -26