Sep 15, 2007

Mannarasala Temple

Mannarasala Temple is devoted to serpent worship. It is located near Harippad, 32 km south of Alappuzha, Kerala. In this temple, the rites are presided over by a priestess. The temple covers an area of 16 acres of dense green forest grove. The two main idols are Nagaraja or the serpent king and his consort, Sarpayakshini. The most popular offering of this temple is 'Uruli Kamazhthal', the placing of a bell metal vessel upside down in front of the deity, which is believed to restore fertility to childless couples.

The temple is reputed for having 30,000 images of snake-gods. On the day of Ayilyam, in the months of September and October, all the serpent idols in the grove and the temple are taken in procession to the illam (the house of the priestess connected with the temple) where Noorum Palum, and 'Kuruthi', a red liquid made of turmeric and lime, offerings are made.

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