Had a wonderful opportunity last week to visit Pandalam and have the dharshan of Lord Sastha and the holy Thiruvabaranam at the Palace. I was there at the premises almost for the whole day and from what I heard there - I thought of sharing with our readers...
Thiruvabharanam the sacred ornaments of Sastha which is brought to Sabarimala temple during Makara Sankramana. The ornaments are made of pure gold. It is traditionally in the hands of the Pandalam King, who adopted Ayyappan as his child.
While I was waiting near the Sri Kovil, one person was telling "These Abharanams were actually worn by Ayyappan".... Oh God... Devotees... please understand first -what are all there in the Abharana Box and then give your statements....
If one carefully observes the Thiruvabarana - its a a very great myth breaker....
Let me explain
Myth No 1. - The ornaments are worn by Ayyappam
Myth No 2. - Sastha is a bachelor
Thiruvanbharanam set comprises of three caskets. ie they are called main Thriuvabharanam box, the Velli Petti and the Kodi Petti.
Main Thiruvabaram Box : Box 1
The Main Thiruvabaranam box which is given into the Sactum Santorum of Sabarimala is suppose to have the following items in it... (and now we see only a very few of these)
Thirumugham - Face of Sastha
Valia Churika (Dagger - Big)
Cheria Churika (Dagger - Small)
Aana (Elephant) - 2 (idols)
Kaduva -(Tiger) 1 (idol)
Velli Kettia Valampiri Sankh - 1 (Conch shell right handed spiral - with silver)
2 Roopams of Poorna and Pushkala
Poothattam (A ceremonial plate for carrying flowers)
Navarathna Mothiram (Navarathnam ring)
Sarapoli Mala - necklace
Vilwa Mala - necklace made of golden vilwa leaves
Mani Mala - necklace made of navaratna
Erukkum Poomala - necklace made of golden erukkum poo
Velli Petti : Box 2
Thaila Kudam for Kalasam
Kodi Petti : Box 3
Netti Pattom for the elephant
Flags of Talapara and Udampara
Mezhuvatta Kuda and other items for the elephant
Now coming to our Myth that its Ayyappan's own ornaments- how can Ayyappan wear a Golden Face mask ? Though not found now, even the golden Vilwa mala is suitable only for decorating the Lord and not for wearing it normally...
And the Abharanams are meant for Sastha and not for Ayyappan's personal use( i mean during his human incarnation) because in the Thirumukham - face you find a wonderful Meesai - Mustache ( whereas Ayyappan's human life was maximum 12 or upto 16 years according to some other versions )
So the Abharanams are meant only for decorating the idol as instructed by Ayyappan and not actually used by Ayyappan...
And the Thiruvabharanams has the roopams of Poorna Pushkala which makes very clear that Sastha is with Poorna Pushkala - this might have been the original form which was installed earlier in Sabarimala..
Later after the human incarnation of Ayyappan - and destruction and resurrection of Sabarimala temple over a period of time, the present form of Yoga Sastha might have originated...
Everything said and done the Abharana Darshanam was a wonderful Vision of my life time... My mental state was in ecstasy and beyond description... and which gave a heart full of Satisfaction which will last long for ever