Sri Sudarshana & Sri Yoga Narasimha
On the ninth and final day of the festivities, Lord Malayappa Swami is given abhisheka with His consorts, Sri & Bhu devis, and His weapon Sudarshana Chakra (known in south India as Chakrathalzwar). Offenses committed during the nine day celebration, as well as any shortcomings in the performance of the festivities are overcome by bathing and worship of Sri Sudarshana Chakra.
After the bathing of the Lord, His consorts, and Sudarshana, the deity of Sudarshana is taken for a dip in the Swami pushkarini (temple pond). It is commonly believed that if one dips in these sacred waters at the same moment as the Lord’s discus, then one is absolved of one’s own sinful reactions, and attains great blessings.
Thousands of devotees line the steps of the pushkarini, waiting for the pujaris to arrive bearing the deity of Sudarshana. To loud cries of “Govinda! Govinda!,” the devotees leap into the water as Sudarshana is immersed in the waters of the pond.
The Garuda dwaja (flag) hoisted on the first day is lowered from the dwajastambha (flag pole) – a ceremony called dwaja avarohanam. Sri Malayappa Swami attends this occasion dressed as Lord Ramachandra, with Sita Devi, Sri Lakshmana and Sri Hanuman (as today is Vijayadashami – the day marking Lord Ramachandra’s victory over Ravana).
Sri Dwaja Avarohanam
Sri Malayappa Swami dressed as Sri Sita Ramachandra Murthi with Sri Lakshmana & Sri Hanuman
Having experienced the divine on earth during these nine days, the devotees return to their respective homes (near or far), renewed by the experience, and touched by the merciful Lord, Sri Venkateswara Swami of Tirupati!
A note to my readers: I have enjoyed posting about this beautiful nine day festival, and I have seen the readership of this small blog swell to 5 times its normal traffic! Please continue to visit and read this blog for more wonderful content and pictures, and pass the link to friends and family you may feel are interested in its content. Thanks again! Hare Krsna!
ஓம் நமோ நாராயணாய!