SRI HANUMAN AMBALAM, ALATHOOR, MALAPURAM, KERALA....
sri m p sekharan, thrichur
Ayurveda the Indian system of Medicine
Ayurveda provides various treatment methods to achieve good health, both physically and mentally. The treatments in Ayurveda are based on the 'Tridosha' principle. According to the 'Tridosha' principle illness is due to the imbalance of three elements in the body such as Vatha(air), Pitha(heat),and Kafa(water). Ayurveda suggests remedial medicines to make these three elements balanced.
This ancient science of medical treatment is considered to have been bestowed on this land through Dhanwanthari considered an incarnation of Lord Vishnu and is worshipped as the patron God of Ayurveda. It is said that he initiated surgery in this land. His numerous works on Ayurveda helped spreading of this science throughout this land.
Kerala and Ayurveda
In the present day when thinking of Ayurveda, one cannot escape thinking about Kerala. It is Vagbhadan a master of Ayurveda and Sanskrit scholar of 12th century who brought this science to Kerala. The tradition established by Vagbhadan in Kerala known as "Ashtanga Ayurveda".
Ashta vaidyas of Kerala
Ashtanga Ayurveda had been followed, practiced and propagated by proficient eight families who later came to be known as the "Asta vaidyas". These eight families include Alathur Nambi, Pulamanthol Moossu, Pazhanellippurathu Thaikkattu Moossu, Kuttancheri Moossu, Vayaskara Moossu, Velludu Moossu, and Chirattaman Moossu. Now there are seven Ashta vaidya families are in existence.
Sri Alathoor Nambi and Sri Anjaneya
One of the Ashta vaidyas is Alathur Nambi and hails from Alathoor near Tirur in Malappuram district. It is said that Alathoor Nambi had the blessings of Aswin Devas the twins of Ayurveda doctors of Heaven and the blessings of their family deity. The family deity of Alathur Nambi is Lord Hanuman of Alathur, the Lord who had brought the Himalayan herbs to Lanka for bringing to life the Lakshmana. It is known that Lord Hanuman has been named as "serva rooga haran" meaning healer of all diseases and "Lakshmana pranna datha" meaning a life giver. The best guide for a physician!.
Alathiyur Sri Rama Temple
The temple is located in Alathiyur near Tirur in Malappuram district Kerala. The temple is popularly known as "Perumthrikkovil" in the Malappuram district. The temple was maintained by Alathiyur Grama Namboodiri. Afterwards it was taken over by Vettath Raja. Then after the management of the temple was taken over by Zamorin Raja of Kozhikode. After formation of Kerala Government Devaswam Board the management of the temple is with the Devaswam Board. It is believed that the installation of the Lord Hanuman's idol in this temple was performed by non other than Sage Vasishta himself.
Significance of the Temple
The temple is built in the "Kerala Ammbalam" architecture. Here in the main sanctum Lord Sree Rama is seen with a peculiar expression on his face and is seen without his concert Mata Sita by his side. Sree Rama seen here is after Ravana's extortion of Mata Sita. The main idol of Lord Sree Rama is seen as he was giving the message to Sree Hanuman about Sree Sita before Sree Hanuman embarked on the mission of locating Sree Sita. Such a peculiar expression is vividly seen on the face of Sree Rama’s vigraha of this kshetra.
The temple of Sree Hanuman is adjacent to the main temple of Sree Rama. In the main sanctum Lord Hanuman is seen standing leaning forward to hear his master’s words with a club in His hand. He is facing south and it is very rare or one could say nowhere lese you could see a South facing Hanuman.
Sree Lakshmana’s temple is situated few meters away form the main temple and it is believed that Sree Lakshmana was keeping away to avoid hearing the confidential talk between sree Rama and Sree Hanuman.
Significance of Anjaneya in the Temple
It is said that the consecrated (installation) of the Lord Hanuman's vigraha (idol) in this temple was performed non other than Sage Vasishta himself. Here Lord Hanuman is seen as the messenger of Sree Rama to Sree Sita, who had unified Paramathma with Jeevathma.
Before embarking to Lanka in search of Maa Sita, Lord Hanuman tells his fellow vanaras thus: -
yatha raghavanirmuktha: sharah: ssvasnavikrama:
ghacheth thathvatth ghameshyaame lankam ravana paalithaam.
(As arrow sent by Lord Rama, travels speeder than air, I shall penetrate the Lanka ruled by Ravana.) The main idol of Lord Hanuman in this temple depicts the descriptions of mahakavi Valmiki as stated in the sloka.
Here there is a platform to commemorate Sree Hanuman’s leap over the sea to Lanka.
There is a long granite stone at one end of this platform and it symbolizes the sea. Devotees come running and leap over this long stone. By doing this, auspicious result is expected especially for the better health and life of children.
The main offering to Lord Hanuman in this temple is "Pothi Avil" and is famous. The "Prasadam" of "Pothi Avil" is made of hundred coconuts, hundred measures of Rice flake (Avil), twenty-eight kilos of jaggery, 12 kilos of country sugar, 750 grams of dry ginger, 800 grams of Jeera. All these ingredients are mixed to make "Pothi Avil".
Renovation of the temple
On the advice of famous astrologers such as Manappuzha Raman Namboodiri, Parappangadi, Unnikrishna Pannikar and Tanur Preman Panikar the renovation of the temple had been undertaken. Well architect such as Vezhapparamb Brahmadattan Namboodiri and Kanippayyur Unni Namboodiri had planned the renovation at an estimated cost of about Rupees ninety five lakhs and the renovation work had since commenced.
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Devotees from all over Kerala and Tamil Nadu throng the temple seeking the blessings of Lord. The Lord of this kshethra who is "serva rooga haran", "Lakshmana pranna datha" and the guiding figure for one of the "ashtavaidyas" is ever ready to bestow on us good health and longevity.