Kaarththikai Vilakkeedu Festival of Tamil Nadu

Thread started by virarajendra on 21st November 2010 02:44 PM



Author - Virarajendra

Kaarththikai Vilakkeedu (Thirukkaarththikai) - An Ancient Tamilian "Festival of Lights" of Tamil Nadu & Kerala - Part 1

கார்த்திகை விளக்கீடு தமிழர் தம் தொன்மை மிகு தீபத் திருநாள்


(1) Introduction

In Tamil Nadu among the many religious festivals observed in the name of “God Siva” (God - as Siva), is the "Kaarththikai Vilakkeedu" also known as "Thirukkaarththikai" falling within the period from November 16th to December 15th the eighth Tamil Month of the year known as Kaarththikai Thingal (Thingal = Maatham). (This year being A.D.2017 the "Thirukkaarththikai Vilakkeedu" falls on the 3rd of December being the Fullmoon day in conjuction with the "Karththikai" Natchaththiram).

It was essentially an ancient Religious Festival - of worship of "God Supreme" in the form of Fire, being one among the five element forms namely the earth, fire, water, air and space, which evolved among the Tamils (both Saivites & Vaishnavites) of ancient Tamil Nadu the Chera, Chola & Paandiya countries (the present Tamil Nadu & Kerala), long before the Tamil grammer Tholkaapiam was composed during the early second Thamil Sangam period around B.C.650. The five element forms are referred to in Tholkaapiam as follows.

".....Nilam Thee Neer Vali visumbodu iynththung kalantha mayakkam Ulagam aathalin....."
Tholkaappiam - by Tholkaappianaar


The worship of God in the form Fire is presently celebrated among the Tamils and Keralites of "Saivite and Vaishnavite - sects" throughout the world, as a day of Koyil Valipaadukal (Temple Worship), Illaththu Poosai Valipaadukal (Household Puja Worship) in all Saivite and Vaishnavite homes in the evening of the "Thirukkarththikai" day - with the Lighting of Lamps in the main Shrines decorated with Pookkal, Pooch Charangkal and Poo Maalaikal (Flowers, Flower Strands & Flower Garlands) and sweet smelling (Santhana Kutchikal) Incense Sticks lighted, followed by the (Sambirani) Thupa valipaadu, (Katpoora) Theepa valipaadu with the ringing of Kaimani (hand bell), the recitation of Religious Hyms with variety of flowers strewn to the Images of God invoking the blessings of the God Supreme, rejoicing with Thoranam decorations done both in 'Maavilai' and 'Thennam Kurutholai' (Mango leaves & young Coconut leaves), and the beautiful Kolam designs done on the floors either in white rice flour or in coloured dried coconut scrapings or coloured decorative powders, and Lighting of Lamps (Ahal Vilakkukal of Clay and other standing and hung Vilakkukal of Brass & Bronze) among them - representing the Fire form of "God Supreme" in the 'Flames' (bright light) of these Vilakkukal lit on this day in the Temples and Households, and serving of Fruits and Sweet Meals among the family members that were kept as Amuthu (Avi-Pali = Neiveththiyam) to the Images of God in the respective main Shrines during the Poosai Valipaadukal. This event, could be very correctly referred to as the "Ancient Tamil Festival of Lights" of Tamil Nadu.

The Video on the following URL gives a glimpse of various types of Brass Vilakkukal available today in addition to the traditional "Mann(clay) Ahal Vilakkukal" used on this holy day of Kaarththikai Vilakkeedu in Tamil Nadu & Kerala.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1LLdE...yer_detailpage

https://c1.staticflickr.com/3/2175/2...2c0a23d623.jpg

http://blog.srisankaramatrimony.com/...THIKA-MASA.jpg

http://www.indianholiday.com/picture...eepam-354.jpeg

http://www.indianetzone.com/photos_g...m_Festival.jpg

https://encrypted-tbn1.gstatic.com/i...log74zhW49leGA http://festivalsofindia.in/karthigai...img/karhti.jpg

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9jIG...layer_embedded

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8Ghz3...eature=related

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Kaarththikai Vilakkeedu falls on the special day when the “native star - Karththikai” in the “month of Karththikai” falls in conjunction with the full moon astrologically, which was considered "among the ancient Saivites of Tamil Nadu" as a very holy day for the worship of “God Siva”. In some years the Karththikai natchaththiram falls either on the day before or after the full moon day.

However all Karthikai natchatthiram days of the month of Karththikai of each year irrespective of it being or not in conjunction with the full moon on the same day, they were known as the Karththikai Vilakkeedu days, and the Karththikai natchatthiram day in the month of Karththikai of any year which falls on the day of the full moon was called as Maha Karththikai Vilakkeedu day.

The term Vilakkeedu seperates as Vilakku + Idu and means Lamp Lighting, which brings forth the enlightenment from darkness to the surroundings and to the minds of those who light these lamps from the Sudar Oli (flame light) coming from them, to do their intense Prayers to “God - as Siva” on this holy day to invoke his blessings on themselves.

Kaarththikai Vilakkeedu in Tamil, is also populerly known as the Kaarththikai Theepam (also spelt as Deepam - Deepam is the Sanskrit word for Vilakku in Tamil). The Kaarththikai Vilakkeedu was also known as Thirukkaarththikai both in Tamil Nadu & Kerala and further as Thrikarthika in Kerala.

(2) The religious Significance of the Kaarththikai Vilakkeedu Festival

God Siva” (God as Siva) in the Saivaism that developed and practised in Tamil Nadu - known as Tamil Saivaism was of three aspects. The “formless” (Aruvam in Tamil), of “semi-form” (Aru-Uruvam in Tamil), and of “human forms” (Uruvam in Tamil).

In the Aruvam form “God Siva” was represented as the “Infinite” - of no defined shape - known as “Ongkaaram” in Tamil and “Pranavam” in Sanskrit. “God Siva” in his “Ongkaaram” (Aruvam) form was represented as the five “elements” of the Universe - namely as Fire, Water, Air, Earth and Space - with which he created this world.

The Kaarththikai Vilakkeedu Festival of the Saivaites of ancient Tamil Nadu, was essentially an intense 'worship' of "God Siva" in the element form of Fire, which was signified by their lighting of lamps in the evening on this auspicious day, and had no mythological legends attached to same at that time.

Note:

The Saivam or Saivaism which developed in Tamil Nadu was called the "Thamil Saivam" (or Tamil Saivaism), as much as the Saivam that developed in Kashmir was known as "Kashmira Saivam" and that developed in Karnataka as "Vira Saivam".

The Saivaism that originated from Nepal and spread all over India and Sri Lanka in the ancient times 'further developed in Tamil Nadu' - with the comingforth of the "new"- Siva Sakthi forms as indicated in the Agamic Texts of Tamil Nadu; with the composition of holy religious texts the eleven Tamil "Thirumuraihal" of the Tamil Saiva Naayamar (Saints), nurtured by the 'life histories' of the 63 - Tamil Saiva Saints of Tamil Nadu & Kerala in the Tamil "Periyapuranam", nourished by the Tamil "Meiyarivumudivu (Saiva Siththantham) Nookal" of 12 Tamil Santhana Kuravar, with the evolution of "Pancha Pootha Thalams" and "Atta Viratta Thalams - all being within the then Tamil Nadu, with the new modes of worship and religious practices - that took shape independently "influenced by and blended with" the "ancient culture and traditions of Tamil Nadu" that existed during those periods
.


(3) Antiquity of the Kaarththikai Vilakkeedu Festival

The earliest reference to this Saivite religious ritual is found in the third Sangam period “Tamil Literature” in the poetic work the “Ahanaanooru” which refers to the Kaarththikai Vilakkeedu - as a vilakku eartru valipaadu (ritual) as follows:

“…..Malai kaal neengiya maha visumbil
kurumuyal maru niram kilara mathi nirainthu
arumeen serum aha iru naal
maruhu vilakku uruththu maalai thookki
pala viral muuthoor palarudan thuvantriya
vilavu ayara…..”

Ahanaanooru - poet Nakkeerar

Meaning
“..… on the day when the Kaarththikai natcaththiram (Arumeen) was in conjunction with the full moon, when the ‘rainy season’ has cleared the …sky (Tamil season Kaar Kaalam - from mid September to mid November) ended, and the ‘kurumuyal season’ (Tamil season Kuthir Kaalam - from mid November to mid January) commenced (also being the dawn of the Kaarththikai month) whence the nights were long, the sacred festival was celebrated with lamps lit in the streets and (flower) garlands hung, by many people crowded in the ancient famed country….”


There is a further reference in Ahanaanooru to Lamps lit on Karthikai Vilakkeedu festival as follows:

"......Vaanam uurnththa vayangu oli mandalam neruppu ena sivantha uruppu,
am kaattu ilai ila malarththa muhai il ilavam, kali kol Aayam malipu thohupu eduththa,
am sudar nedungkodi pottpa thoantri
, kayam thuhalkal aakiya payan thapu kaanam emmodu kalinthanar....."

Ahanaanooru - poet Avvaiyaar

Another early reference found in this period “Tamil Literature” to same is from the poetic work “Nattrinai” which compares the bloomed flowers of the forest to the Vilakkuhal lit on Kaarththikai day as follows:

“…..Arumeen Keli Iya aram sei thingat
Selsudar nedungkodi poala pal poo Koangam anintha kaade…..”

Nattrinai - poet Perum Kadungo

Meaning
“…..the forest with many flowers of Koangam that resembled, like the long root of a creeper of bright flames on (the day of) Kaarththikai natchaththiram (Arumeen) conjoining the full moon (Keli Iya) in the month (of Karththikai) when “aram” (religious & virtuous duties) were done….”.


Another reference in the “Tamil Literature” is found in the post- Sangam period “Kalavali Naatpathu” which compares the Kaarththikai Vilakkuhal as follows:

“…..veerl tharum ohn kuruthi Kaarththikai sartrit kali vilakku pontranave…..”
Kalavali Naatpathu - poet Poikaiyaar

Meaning
“….. the streaming blood from the fallen warriors looked like the array of clay vilakkuhal lit for Kaarththikai (festival)…..”


From a further reference from the “Tamil Literature” of the post Sangam period known as “Kaar Naatpathu” which compares flowers bloomed to the Vilakkuhal lit on Kaarththikai day as follows:

“….Nalam mihu Kaarththikai naatavar itta thalai naal vilakkit Thahai udaiyavai yaahi pulam elaam pooththana….”
Kaar Naatpathu - poet Mathurai Kannangkooththanaar

Meaning
“…. the flowers bloomed everywhere resembled like the vilakkuhal lit by the country people on the great day of the Karththikai (month) full of (deeds of) virtue…..”


From the above four references it is clear that the Kaarththikai Vilakkeedu is an auspicious religious festival of early Tamil Nadu celebrated on the Kaarththikai natchaththiram day of the month of Kaarththikai whether it was cojoined or not with the full moon.

(4) The mythologial legend of Kaarththikai Vilakkeedu over ages

In Tamil Saivaism the God Siva who was worshipped in the element form of Fire during the first Sangam Period of Tamil Nadu, and in the other four element forms namely Water, Earth, Air and Space in subsequent periods, were also represented in his “Symbolic” (Aru-Uruvam) form as the Panchalingams (five Lingams), with each Lingam representing an element form of the Ongaram form.

However there cameforth a mythological legend about the origin of the Kaarththikai Vilakkeedu. Once God Thirumaal (Vishnu) and God Ayan (Pirammaa) had differences among them as to who was superior among them. At this instance God Siva appeared to them and with a view of sorting out their differences advised them - whoever who finds the extremities of his form would be deemed as the superior and turned into an infinite flame of Fire.

God Ayan (Pirammaa) took the form of swan and flew sky high, while God Thirumaal (Vishnu) took the form of boar and dug the earth deep below to find the limits of God Siva in his form of an infinite flame. Both failed in their mission and God Siva appeared to them again, and both Ayan and Thirumaal worshipped him and accepted God Siva the - God Supreme.

The Adi-Mudi thedal legend of was found for the first time in the Lingapuranam in Sanskrit from North India, that was re-composed with more legends added on God Siva around the beginning of the fifth century A.D. (A.D.401), during the period of Gupta kings of North India.

However 'the earliest reference to the Adi-Mudi Thedal legend in Tamil Nadu' was found in the Thiruvaasakam Paadal of the Tamil Saiva Saint Maanikkavaasakar of the period A.D.285-317 as follows:

“…..Alaravanum Maalavanum ariyaame alal uruvaai
nilamuthat keel andam mura nintrathuthaan ennedi
nilamuthat keel andam mura nintrilanel iruvar tham
salamuhaththaal aangaaram thaviraar kaan chalalo…..”

8th Thirumurai : Thiruvaasakam - by Saint Maanikkavaasakar

"....Ariyodu Prammatku alavari yaathavan..."
8th Thirumurai : Thiruvaasakam/Keerththi Thiru ahaval - by Saint Maanikkavaasakar

".....Thiru Nedumaal antru Ad-Mudi ariyum aatharavathanil kadumuran enamaki mun kalanththu earl thalam edanthu pin eithu ooli muthalvaa saya saya entru aluththiyum kaanaa malaradi enaikal....."
8th Thirumurai : Thiruvaasakam/Poattri Thiru ahaval - by Saint Maanikkavaasakar

The other earliest reference to this legend is found in the paadal of “Atputhath Thiruvanthathi” of the female Tamil Saiva Saint Kaaraikkaal Ammaiyaar of early fourth century A.D. as follows.

“…..Maalukkum Naanmuhatkum antruu alappariyan aanaan…..”

“…..thiruththakka Maal Ayanum kaanaathu arartri mahilnthu eartri….”

11th Thirumurai : Atputhath Thiruvanthathi - by Saint Kaaraikkaal Ammaiyaar

The next references to this legend is found in the Thirumurai Thiruppaadal of the Tamil Saiva Saint Thirugnanasampanthar and Tamil Saiva Saint Thirunaavukkarasar.

Saint Thirugnanasampanthar says:

“ongiya Naaranan Naanmuhan unaraavahaiyil
Neengiya theeuruvaahi nintranan nimalan…..”


Saint Thirunaavukkarasar says:

“….mannai unda Maal kanaan malaradi
Vinnai vin Ayan kaanaan viyanmudi”


Finally what happened:

“Parunthu uruvathaaki vinnadaithavan oar
Pantri peruththu uruvathaa ula
Kidanthavanum entrum karuththu ona vakai
Nimirntha avan (Sivan)….”

2nd Thirumurai - Thiruvaiyaaru Pathikam by Saint Thirugnanasampanthar

"Ayanum Maalum kaanaa thee urvai nintraai poattri...."
2nd Thirumurai - Thiruvaiyaaru Pathikam by Saint Thirunaavukkarasar

The Tamil Saiva Saint Suntharamoorththy too refers to this legend as:

“….Ayanodu antru Ariyum adiyum mudi kaanba ariya
payane emparane paramaaya paranjsudare….”

7th Thirumurai - Thirukkadavur Pathikam by Saint Suntharamoorththy

This same legend is also found in Saint Thirumular’s Thirumanthiram (fifth century), in sage/poet Kallaadanaar’s Kallaadam, in Saint Cheramaan Perumaal's Thirukkailaaya Gnana Ulaa, and in Saint Karuvurthevar's Thiruvisaippaa - all being Saivite religious compositions in Tamil.

(5) Evolution of Lingothbavar Uruvam (form) of God Siva

The Siva who stood as a infinite column of fire to Thirumaal and Ayan on they failing to find his Adi-Mudi exhibited himself to them in the form of a Lingam. This is confirmed by the Tamil Saiva Saint Thirunaavukkarasar as follows:

“Senkannaanum Piramanum thamulle
Engum thedi thirinthavar kaankilaar
Ingkuttrenentru “Lingaththe thontrinaan
Pongu senjsadi punniya moorththiye….”

5th Thirumurai - Lingapuraana Kurunthokai Pathikam by Saint Thirunaavukkarasar

This special form of Lingham was known as the “Lingothbavar”. The Lingothbavar form of God Siva is the normal Sivalingam but with the half or full height standing Siva carved within on the vertical face of the Lingam, with Swan shown on the side above him and the Boar shown on the other side below him. The Lingothbavar form of Siva is seen in many Siva temples on the outside of the Karuvarai of the temple right behind the Moola Moorthi within the Karuvarai.

The name Lingothbavar for this form of Siva came into use from the Nayakkar period of Tamil Nadu. During the period prior to same especially during the Chola period this form was known as Lingapuraanathevar.

Though this legend was known in Tamil Nadu before the composition of Lingapuraanam, with the coming of Pallava dynasty from the north of Tamil Nadu this legend - as found in the Sanskrit "Lingapuraanam" - had more impact on the Saivaism of Tamil Nadu that began to further develop under Pallavas but with heavy Sanskritisation.

This impact could be seen in the Tamil Saiva Saint Thirunaavukkarasar’s Thevaarems which has many pathikams referring to this legend glorifying God Siva, and in his "Lingapuraana Kurunthohai" pathikam he specifically refers to God Siva in the infinite form (Ongaarm - Aruvam form) as a column of fire and later turned into the Lingam form (Aru-uruvam form) and blessed the Maal and Ayan.

This impact could also be seen during the Chola Period when one of the Queens of Rajaraja Chola - 1 named Abimaanavalli has gifted the Rajarajaeswarem Temple of Thanjavur with a bronze image of Lingapuraanathevar.

(6) ‘Adi-Mudi thedal’ legend connected with Karththikai Vilakkeedu

All the above references mention about the legend but have not co-related it to “Kaarththikai Vilakkeedu” ritual. The only reference which connects this legend with Kaarththikai Vilakkeedu is found in the Santhaana Kuravar “Umapathi Sivaachaariyaa”s Koyil Puraanam (in Tamil), as follows:

“….ennai aanda Annai enthai Piraan, Maintharkalodu eluthchi kolla
eluntharuli varunth Thiru Noanpiyai iya vaiththu
sinthaiyil Maal Ayan naana eluntha senthee
thiralu Annalai noakki
thikal Kanangkal
vanthevaiyum alalaaki malkal polum
valang kol Thiru Vilakkeedu vilanga vaiththaar….”

Koyil Puranam - by Umapathi Sivachariyaar

(7) Thiruvanaamalai temple being associated with ‘Adi-Mudi thedal’ legend

The worship of "God Siva" in the form of five elements were further associated with five important Siva Temples Shrines of Tamil Nadu and were known as Panchabootha Thalams (Bootham = element). These Temple Shrines were namely the Thiruvannaamalai (Fire), Thiruvaanaikkaa (Water), Thirukkaalaththi (Air), Kanchipuram (Earth) and Chithamparam (Space).

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iDw4f...yer_detailpage

The form of God Siva as a column of Fire at Thiruvannaamalai was referred to as one of his Ongaram (in Tamil) or Pranava (in Sanskrit) - forms. In the “Ongkaaram” forms God Siva was worshiped with the repetitive utterance of the holy syllable “Om” sung in piety, referred to as the ‘Ongkaara Manthiram’ or “Muthal Eluththu” in Tamil Saivaism. “Om” in Tamil is represented by the Tamil - alphabet “Oo with the Tamil alphabet “m” encompassed within. However in Tamil Nadu the holy syllable “Om” was also common to Vaishnavaism and Vedism, as the “God Supreme” of all these religions were ‘none but one’.

The legend of ‘Adi-Mudi thedal’ being associated with the Thiruvanaamalai temple which in Tamil Nadu is confirmed by the four foremost Tamil Saiva Naayamaar (Saints) of Tamil Nadu namely the Thirugnanasampanthar, Thirunaavukkarasar, Suntharamoorthy and Maanikkavaasakar.

It was at this Thiruvannaamalai temple the Tamil Saiva Saint Maanikkavaasakar composed the famous "Thiruvempaavai Pathikam" sung in piety in all the Siva temples worldover during the period of the Tamil month Maarkali. In this Pathikam (a collection of ten verses) too the Adi-Mudi thedal legend finds reference.

"......Maal ariyaa Naamuhanum kaanaa malaiyinai......"
8th Thirumurai : Thiruvaasakam/Thiruvembaavai - by Saint Maanikkavaasakar

".....Poattri Maal Naanmuhanum kaanaatha pundarikam...(thiruvadikal)
8th Thirumurai : Thiruvaasakam/Thiruvembaavai - by Saint Maanikkavaasakar

The other three Tamil Saiva Naayamaar too has made reference to Adi-Mudi thedal legend as follows:

“….kilar thaamarai malar meluri kedil puhalonum
Alavaa vanam alalalaakiya Annaamalai annal…..”

1st Thirumurai - Thiruvannamalai Pathikam by Saint Thirugnanasampanthar

“….Maalum Naanmuhanum koodi kaankilaa vahaiyul nintraai
Aalu neer kondal pooka mani Annamalaiyulaane…..”

4th Thirumurai - Thiruvannamalai Pathikam by Saint Thirunaavukkarasar

“……Maraiyinaannodu Maalavan kaankilaa
Niraiyum neermaiyul nintraul seithavan
Uraiyum maanpinan Annamalai…..”

5th Thirumurai - Thiruvannamalai Pathikam by Saint Suntharamoorththy

Further Tamil Saiva Saints Thirugnanasampanthar and Thirunaavukkarasar too have sung Tamil Thevaarap Pathikamgal on God Siva at Thuruvannaamalai. They could be viewed at the follwing URLs.

http://www.projectmadurai.org/pm_ete...150.html#dt110
http://www.projectmadurai.org/pm_ete...151.html#dt169
http://www.projectmadurai.org/pm_ete...86.html#dt5004
http://www.projectmadurai.org/pm_ete...86.html#dt5005

It is from the Pathikam of Saint Thirugnanasampanthar we are made aware for the first time of the names of the God and Goddess represented at the temple of Thiruvannaamalai as "Unnaamulai Amman" and as "Annaamalaiyaar" in one verse in his pathikam as,

உண்ணாமுலை உமையாளொடும் உடனாகிய ஒருவன்
பெண்ணாகிய பெருமான்
மலை திருமாமணி திகழ
மண்ணார்ந்தன அருவித்திரள் மழலைம் முழவதிரும்
அண்ணாமலை தொழுவார்வினை வழுவாவண்ணம் அறுமே.

1st Thirumurai - by Saint Thirugnanasampanthar

The Ongaram or Pranava form of of God Siva and his form as Arunachaleswara at Thiruvannaamalai are glorified in the two Videos having the following URLs by the two great 'Tamil Classical Music' exponents of the present day Tamil Nadu namely Thirumathi Nithyasiri Mahadevan and Thiru S.B.Balasubramaniyam and "Arunachala Suprapatham by Bombay Sarada"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WiGO6...yer_detailpage

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w4yCd...yer_detailpage

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ynCA...yer_detailpage

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0Rk3...yer_detailpage

Important Note: - The Adi-Mudi Thedal legend has no connection whatsoever with the "Sivaraththiri Festival" but only with the "Kaarththikai Vilakkeedu Festival", and the "Kaarththikai Festival" too is not an extension of the Deepavali Festival. as wrongly portrayed by some Religious Scholars. Further the "special" worship of "Lingoathbava" form of Siva which emanated from the Adi-Mudi Thedal legend - is 'purly' associated with the Kaarththikai Vilakkeedu festival.

The "Kaarththikai Vilakkeedu" was essentially an Ancient "Tamilian Festival of Lights" of Tamil Nadu"

{It should also be noted the "Sivaraathiri Festival", and the "Deepaavali Festival" were introduced into Tamil Nadu, "only" during the period of Naayakar kings (A.D.1543-1736) who ruled from Mathurai, Thanjavur and Senji (Gingee) regions of Tamil Nadu, followed by Maraattiar kings (A.D.1675-1855) who also ruled from Thanjavur}

https://youtu.be/jJNV10S3OXY

https://youtu.be/84gLZifyTqo

(8) Kaarthikai Vilakkeedu during the period of rule of Pallava dynasty in Tamil Nadu

We have references to Kaarththikai Vilakkeedu in late Sangam period & post Sangam Tamil Literary works. But towards the end of post Sangam period we note the Kalappirar (Kalabra) dynasty from Karnataka invaded and ruled over Tamil Nadu, and spread their Aruka Samayam (Jain religion) in this region during the period. Hence we lack Tamil Literary works belonging to the Kalappirar period of Tamil Nadu between A.D 350 to A.D.550 (approx’) referring to the Kaarththikai Vilakkeedu.

Then from A.D 550 we note the rise of a new dynasty the Pallavas invading the northern & central regions of Tamil Nadu from the Karnataka and brought them under their rule, while Pandiyans regained the sway over their heraditary southern regions of Tamil Nadu during this same period.

Both these dynasties were Hindus (Saivite & Vaisnavate) and we note the next reference to the "ancient Kaarththikai Vilakkeedu" comes from the Thevarem of the Tamil Saiva Saint Thirugnanasampanthar sung in praise of God Siva at Kapaaleeswarem temple in Tamil Nadu during Pallava period, as follows:

“…..Valaik kai mada nallaar maMayilai van maruhit
ulakkil Kapaaleechcharan thol Karththikai naat
alaththil eanthina mulaiyaar thaiyalaar kondadum
Vilakkeedu kaanaathe pothiyo poompaavaai…..”

1st Thirumurai - Kapaaleechcharam Pathikam by Tamil Saiva Saint Thirugnanasampanthar

Meaning:
“……where the women folk with hands full of bangles lived in great Mayilaapur in the neighbourhod of the Kapaaleeswarem (temple) on the ancient Karththikai day (i.e.Karththikai natchathiram day), the young girls and women celebrating the Vilakkeedu - Poompaavai you have gone without seeing same.....”

The picturesque description seen above on the celebration of the Kaarththikai Vilakkeedu Festival by young girls and women at Mayilaapur, could have been somewhat similer to that have been shown in the Video at the following URL.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9N8No...yer_detailpage Courtesy: Nisa Raja - Raj video vision - YouTube

During the period of the Pallava king Nanthivarman - 2 in the year A.D.808 Keeraippiriyan of Maamallapuram remitted to the Village Sabai(council) of Aamur Koattam 10 kalanju gold, the interest from which was to be utilised to conduct the Kaarththikai Naal (festival) in the month of Kaarththikai which was confirmed by the Sabai.
Avanam Journal - Vol 17, Ins No: 23 published by Thamilaka Tholiyal Kalakam, Thanjavur


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