Secrets and Controversy Behind Sabarimala Makara Vilakku

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Makara Vilakku is an event that takes place every year in Sabarimala. People from all over India to get the blessings of the Lord Ayyappan and to witness the celestial event that happens on 14th January or during the Makara Sankranti.

A bright light appears in the sky at night time on the day of Makara Vilakku. People consider it as an appearance of the Lord, and hence they come in millions.

However, is the light really a celestial event? The answer is No! The light that appears bright in the sky is not a celestial event, and it is purely man-made.

The Mystery Behind the Light

The tribesmen used to live near the area of the temple, which used to Perform their Puja every year on the day of Makara Vilakku day. For this, they used to light ghee and camphor in the night time which appeared on the Ponnambalamedu hills. This light disappears once the Makara Vilakku event gets over, and people consider it as a miracle performed by God as a celestial event.

However, we also need to understand that there is a celestial event that happens on the day of Makara Vilakku or makara jyothi. A bright star appears in the sky, which starts appearing from 14th January and can be seen every evening at the time of Sunset. This is also the time when the Sun changes its position and enters the Northern hemisphere, and marks the beginning of Summer.

Other than this bright star that appears at the time of Sunset, there is nothing that is celestial. The bright light that people see in the sky is the result of the tribesmen performing Puja to their Lord instead of a celestial event. Every year millions of people visit Sabarimala, and hence Kerala Government makes a lot of money out of it.

Government has told that the bright light is a result of the Puja performed by the tribesmen only. However, since it is a matter of belief, the Kerala Government handles the lighting now and arranges the same light on the hill during Makara Vilakku. This makes Sabarimala the second largest pilgrimage, which benefits the state financially.

Other than that, people visit the temple to get the sanctification of Lord Ayyappan, whob wakes up from his tapas and bless the devotees on this day.

About Lord Ayyappan

Ayyappan is a Hindu deity popular in South India and is one of the few deities who are worshipped by every religious community. He is the son of Mohini (Vishnu) and Shiva, and hence stepson of Parvati. He is the example of self-control, dharma, truth, and righteousness. Ayyappan is a popular Lord, especially in Kerala, where he is worshipped in Sabarimala in a grand manner.

Various scriptures mention him, and he is depicted as a handsome God doing Yoga. People believe that Ayyappan was brought to existence to defeat the shape-shifting evil Buffalo demoness Mahishi. He rides a tigress as per the beliefs of South Indian temples; however, in Sri Lanka, he is shown riding a white elephant.

The Sabarimala shrine of Ayyappan is the most popular one and receives millions of devotees every year. Many people start preparing before weeks, and they walk all barefoot to get the glance of the Lord. Devotees from all the communities and cast come to visit Ayyappan; however, no women can go inside the temple. This is because Ayyappan is considered a celibate deity, and hence a female, after reaching her fertile age, can’t visit the place.

The Creation of the Fire

The light that people see in the sky on Makara Vilakku comes as a result of a huge fire that is created by burning a huge amount of camphor from the Ponnambalamedu hills. The area is not under the control of the Kerala Government; hence it is Government that arranges the fire and does not let anyone enter the area. The fire is then extinguished by using wet sacks once the event in the Makara Vilakku gets over. This is performed to support the years of belief of the devotees.

The Appearance of the Eagle

There is a mysterious thing that happens every year on this day. The temple authorities take the precious ornaments of the Lord from the Old Palace to the temple of the procession. In this duration, an eagle flies in the sky; it seems to guide the people, and once the ornaments reach the temple, it makes nine rounds in the sky and goes away. Despite cracking the truth behind the skylight, the matter of the eagle still remains a mystery.

This year too, the event will happen on 14th January 2022, where the lighting of the lamp will take place, taking care of the beliefs of the devotees.


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