2018 Vaigasi Visakam Festival: Monday, 28 May 2018, starting at 6pm
Vaigasi (May to June) is the second month of the Thamizh year. On the full moon day in that month, before the solstice, is the Visakam Nakshatra. On this auspicious day, is Lord Muruga’s birthday. Interestingly, one of the names of Lord Muruga is Visakan.
Legend behind Vaikasi Visakam
According to our Puranas, there were three asura brothers, Soorapadman, Singamuhan and Tarakan who attained great powers through deep penance. As Lord Shiva was an ascetic, the brothers chose to die at the hands of Lord Siva’s son, as they believed that the Lord would never again marry after the death of Sati.
Soorapadman, Singamuhan and Tarakan persecuted the Devas who then appealed to Lord Vishnu. Maha Vishnu then requested Kama Dev to get Lord Siva to fall in love with Parvathi, who wanted to marry no-one other than Lord Siva. As result, Lord Siva married Parvathi.
Soon thereafter, the Devas pleaded to Lord Siva for help. As a result, Lord Shiva opened his Third Eye – the one seen in his forehead (in Tamil, Nettrikkan) and emanated six sparks. Agni (God of Fire) and Vayu (God of Air) carried these sparks to the Ganges. Mother Ganga carried them to a stream called Saravana Poigai. In the stream, the fire sparks formed six divine male babies who were cared for by six young girls called Karthigai Pengal.
When Mother Parvathi discovered their existence, she went and embraced these babies united them into one with six faces and twelve hands. Consequently Lord Shanmugan (meaning one with six faces) emerged on the full moon day in the month of Vaikasi. He is the embodiment of pure perception and divine knowledge, with His six faces representing: creation, preservation, destruction, evolution, supreme grace, and primal source of wisdom. He imparted the meaning of the primordial cosmic word OM to his father, Lord Siva.
As Subramanyan, He is the Su Brahmanya, the All-pervading spirit of the Universe. As Skanda, He is the Omnipresent One, the Commander-in-Chief seated on a peacock with the Vel to destroy adharma. As Karthikeyan, He was nursed by the Krittika maidens. As Guhan, He resides in the cave of one’s heart. As Saravanabavan, He belonged to Lake Saravanai. As Arumugan, He has six faces. Due to His six faces, Lord Murugan can see in East, West, North, South, Heaven and Patala (netherworld) simultaneously. Lord Muruga is called the Tamil Kadavul (The Lord of the Tamil people).
The three syllables of the Lord’s names are derived from: MU – Mukundan (Maha Vishnu), RU — Rudra (Lord Siva) and KA — Kamalan (Lord Brahma).
Lord Muruga appeared for the sole purpose of destroying the evil spirits. With the Sakthi Vel given by Mother Parvathi, Subrahmanya fought and destroyed the Asuras.
As devotees of our beloved Lord, His birthday is the perfect time to establish a heart-to-heart connection, making our Lord alive for us, and He can help us in tangible and practical ways through our daily lives.
Vaikasi Visakam is celebrated with great religious reverence at the Arupadaiveedu of Lord Muruga or the six adobes of Lord Murugan in Tamil Nadu. These temples are the Palani Hill Temple, Thiruchendur Murugan Temple at Tuticorin, Arulmigu Swaminatha Swami Temple at Swamimalai, Thiruthani Murugan Temple, Sri Subramanya Temple at Pazhamudircholai, and Thiruparamkundram Subramanya Swamy Temple.
A visit to Murugan temple on this day would confer immeasurable merit and earn the grace of the supreme Lord. Devotees carry Pal kudam (milk pots) to do milk abishegam to Lord Muruga.
Moola Mantra Of Lord Murugan: Om Shaam Sharavanabhavaaya Namah
He can also be invoked by reciting the six-syllable fire mantra: SA RA VA NA BA VA. Reciting the mantra protects us from all evil and grants good merit.
The Murugan Moola Mantra is a very powerful divine mantra which gives protection and assures us success. Individuals suffering from fear, insecurity and loneliness (mentally or emotionally) can chant the Murugan Moola Mantra to receive the blessings of Lord Muruga.
Moreover, constant chanting of the Murugan Moola Mantra is said to bless a person and his/her family with success, victory, good fortune and good health. According to the Skanda Purana, anyone chanting the mantra of Lord Muruga will be blessed with all kinds of spiritual powers especially knowledge and courage.
How to observe Vaikasi Visakam?
At our temple, we celebrate Lord Muruga’s birthday with Pooja, egyium, abishegam, archanai and upachoras. Devotees are invited to offer paal kodums (pots of milk) for the abishegam.
The chariot will also be taken around the Temple three times.
The milk offering is symbolic of the offering to a baby and allows us to establish a heart-to-heart connection with the Lord allowing him to guide us in our daily lives.
All things sweet, such as Sarkarai Pongal are offered to the Lord as Neivedyam.
Famous hymns, such as Kanda Shasti Kavacham, Subrahmanya Bhujangam, Thiruppugazh (Muthai Tharu Bakthi), and Shanmuga Kavacham are recited with devotion to protect everybody from negative energy.
Booking and Registration Details
Devotees wishing to carry paal kodums (pots of milk) to offer to our beloved Lord are kindly requested to send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org to make their bookings. Note that only paal kodums will be allowed, and no kavadies. Please register to ensure that we are able to accommodate all devotees.
Donations will be most welcome and may be made directly into our banking account indicated above, and an email sent to email@example.com confirming your participation. We remind devotees that their generous contributions will be used to sustain and maintain the temple during the year.
Important Reminders for this festival:
- Devotees must be suitably dressed for a festival of this stature. No tight fitting, or short clothing is appropriate. The appropriate requirements are on the notice board at the temple.
- Devotees offering paal kodums should bring a suitable sized brass container, sufficient milk for the container and banana leaves for open mouthed containers. If unable to source banana leaves, please bring heavy duty foil for your lids. Offerings in milk bottles will not be directly offered to the Lord; they will first be poured into a suitable container for offering.
- If the chariot is in procession, devotees must FOLLOW the chariot. No devotees will be allowed to be in front or on the side of the chariot.
As soon as the egyium offerings are done, devotees are requested to have their paal kodums smoked, filled with milk and then sealed. The paal kodum carriers will join the procession around the temple before their offerings are made to the Lord inside the temple.
Offerings to Lord Muruga
Inside the Temple, after devotees have made their offerings, the temple abishegam will then be performed. Thereafter, Lord Muruga and his consorts will be decorated. Guru will then start with the archanai and food offerings to all the deities inside and then proceed to the deities around the main temple.
Upon entry into the Temple thereafter, Guru will offer the shodasha upachoras and then the Lord’s mangalam will be sung followed by the concluding prayer. Guru will offer blessings to devotees thereafter.
Devotees may then proceed to have supper.
Appeal to devotees:
Please help with the cleaning of inside and outside of temple of litter and other disposal items. Ensure that all your tray offerings are collected and packed away.
To ensure the least inconvenience to the community and devotees, the Chinese Park will be open for parking. The parking facilities on the Temple property have been extended to the First Street entrance. Devotees will enter through Second Street and drive to the extended parking available beyond the toilets.
We humbly request drivers to park their cars close to one another in order to maximise the space usage. Please do not obstruct another vehicle.
Devotees are kindly requested not to park in First, Second or Third Streets, if possible. Under no circumstances are any of the drive ways to be blocked or obstructed. Residents have been advised to have these vehicles towed away without notice.
Sponsorship of the day’s Prayer
It is an honour and privilege to host an obayam at a temple festival. Devotees who wish to sponsor, either in part or in full, the cost of the festival are kindly requested to contact our treasurer at firstname.lastname@example.org for details.
We remind devotees, sponsors, donors and well-wishers that all funds generated are used exclusively to conduct the prayer festivals on our calendar, maintain the temple, pay salaries and wages and upgrade facilities.
Lord Muruga’s Gayathri Manthra
Om Karththikeyaya Vidhmahe
Sakthi Hasththaya Dhimahi
Thannoh Skandha Prachodhayath