How Much Do You Know About Sabarimala Temple?

Photo: business-standard.com

This is recently most talked and viral issue in the social media. While we all may have an opinion on the Sabarimala issue, how much do we know about its history?

Ayyappan is the Hindu god who is worshipped religiously by the visitors. This temple is the place where God Ayyappan meditated after he killed the powerful demoness, ‘Mahishi’. This beautiful temple is situated between the 18 hills. The people who come here on the pilgrimage have a strict colour code to follow, without which they will not be allowed inside the temple. They have to wear a black or blue dress when they are in the pilgrimage. You may have noticed that they also apply sandal paste and vibhuti on their forehead during the time of the pilgrimage.

When the devotees are on a pilgrimage, they are strictly expected to follow a fast of 41 days, which is known as ‘Vratham’, before they start the pilgrimage. During the time the devotees are fasting they are strictly forbidden to have non-vegetarian food, have sex, use tobacco, drink alcohol, cut hair, shave, use foul language and they have to take a bath twice in a day. During the journey to the temple, each and every devotee is placed under a visitors category, to identify them. The visitors are given special bags during their pilgrimage to the ‘Sabarimala’, the Navy blue coloured bags they use are valid till their third visit. Recoloured bags indicate that it is their first journey to the temple. After the third visit, the visitors use saffron-colored bags.

Photo: thehindu.com

This is one of the most popular temples in India. The Hindu pilgrimage centre is located at the Periyar Tiger Reserve in the Western Ghat mountain ranges of Pathanamthitta District. Some time back the temple was open only to males, what about females? The people who are managing the temple are rigid enough, to not to allow females who are between the age of ‘10 to 50’ years. The reason according to the people who did not even allow the females to enter the temple, even after the ‘Supreme Court of India’ observed that the right of a woman to pray was equal to that of a man, is that the females entering the temple can potentially act as the distraction on the deity’s path.

This is harming the equality of the woman by not allowing them to enter inside the temple even after the hearing. This is a kind of a poison who just want to promote such practices and treat the women in the worst form. India is a democratic country and as an Indian, the policy of equality, dignity, and protecting the rights of the females should be put first irrespective of a deep-rooted underground tradition, which simply harms the people, and snatch away their rights.

Females will bleed and if they don’t bleed have you ever thought that how would you be alive and in this world? Such rigid norms should be put to an end, it is the right time to educate themselves and introspect about what they are doing.

People living in the 21st Century have a thought process like this it is beyond imagination, and just the ‘Sabarimala’ temple in India, this practice which does not allow the females who are ‘menstruating’ to enter inside the temple should be abolished. This is a good step from the Supreme Court of India but it is not going to end anything, this is the starting of a revolution where people have to come together and put an end to these practices being promoted by the mob, in the name of ‘impurity’.

Photo: thehindu.com

There is a tensed situation in the state of Kerala, in between the threats of ‘mass suicides’. Many women journalists were attacked who are there to witness this historic change which has been made possible with the Supreme Court of India’s verdict. The protesters over there also attacked a woman journalist’s car. There is a turnaround in the chain of events happening in the ‘Sabarimala’ temple, that as per the reports in ‘The Indian Express’ the Pamba Police have detained, Rahul Easwar. A non-bailable FIR has been registered against him, he is a member of the Thantri family. He is the President of ‘Ayyappa Dharma Sena’. The Sena is protesting against the Supreme Court’s order with their ‘Save Sabarimala’ campaign. There is a news of an elderly woman hurt in the stone pelting which took place in between the protesters and the police. India Today journalist, Mausami Singh, and her crew were in a police vehicle after they were attacked by the protesters at the Nilakkal Base Camp. The protests are turning more violent because after 5 pm women from all ages will be allowed inside the temple.

The ban on the entry of females was lifted on 28th September. Sabarimala holds one of the largest annual pilgrimages in the world which has an estimated 17-20 million devotees visiting every year.

What do you think about the issue?

Samyak Sheth
Samyak Sheth

A traveller and journalist who views the world wearing multi-coloured goggles. He believes that life is to live not to survive.

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