Lord Ayyappa Temple at Sabarimala will be opened on Tuesday afternoon for the five-day monthly ritual (puja) in the Malayalam new year month of Chingom that begins on Wednesday.

Kandararu Maheswararu, senior-most member of the Brahmin family of Thazhamon Madhom at Mundankavu near Chengannur, will assume charge as the chief priest (Tantri) at Sabarimala for the next one-year period on Tuesday evening.

The tantric rites at the Ayyappa Temple and other shrines at Sabarimala is being performed by the heads of the two branches of Thazhamon family headed by Maheswararu and his nephew, Kandararu Rajeevaru, in alternate years as part of an internal arrangement.

The Tantri will prepare kalasom (holy water) in 1000 copper urns and Brahmakalasom in a golden vessel at the northern mandapam of the temple on Tuesday evening for the Sahasrakalasapuja to be held on Wednesday.

The five-day monthly puja at the Ayyappa shrine will begin with the Tantri performing Ashtadravya Maha Ganapati homom on Wednesday morning. A Laksharchana will be performed in the forenoon.

The Sahasrakalasabhishekom and Kalabhabhishekom will be performed prior to th Uchapuja. Padipuja, Ashtabhishekom, Pushpabhishekom and Udayasthamanapuja are the other important rituals to be performed at the Ayyappa Temple on all five days.

The temple will be closed after the Athazhapuja on August 21 evening, marking the culmination of the monthly rituals in Chingom.

Onam festival

The temple will be opened on September 7 afternoon for the Onam festival. The rituals will begin with the Asthadravya Ganapati homom the next day morning.

The temple will be closed after the Onam festival on September 11 evening.

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