SASS Celebrates Makara Jyothi Festival & Swachh Sabarimala Service

By: P. Shanmuganandan, National Administrative Secretary

On 14th January 2022, at about 6.30 pm, when the divine Makara jyothi appears on the skies of Sabarimala, Crores of Ayyappa devotees all over the world will welcome the divine presence of Swamy Ayyappa to their houses, converting their Houses as Sabarimala (Bhavanam Sannidhanam), by enlighting innumerable lamps.

Erode Rajan National General Secretary of Sabarimala Ayyappa Seva Samajam (SASS) informed that Ayyappa Sevaks / volunteers of SASS have made arrangements to light large number of lamps (ideally lamps made of clay called Cherath or any other lamps using Oil and Vicks).

Lamps will be lighted at about 6.15 pm and will remain lighted till 7.15 pm and devotees will chant / sing devotional songs, make Saranaghosham and conclude with Karpoora- Arathi. Devotees may light minimum 18 numbers of lamps or more in their houses and 108 or 1008 or 10008 etc. lamps at local temples, bhajan mandalies, public places etc. depending upon the Covid situation in that area. Programmes may include spiritual discourses, especially about Ayyappa Dharma and Makara Jyothi and various activities like Bhajan, Ayyappa Sahasranama japa yajna, special poojas, colour full processions etc.

At the same time, Shree Ayyappa Sewa Sangham, Raipur is also celebrating Makara Sankranti at Shree Ayyappa Temple at Tatibandh, Raipur with activities of Puja, Bhajans and by deep alankar (enlightening of lamps).

Rajan clarified that during the covid pandemic situation, current year also entry to Sabarimala is restricted and direct darsan of Makarajyothi will be limited to about a lakh of devotees only. However, SASS have decided to celebrate the Makarajyothi as a great event every year, so that gradually this auspicious Day will be considered & observed by the general public as a “Makara jyothi Festival Day” nationally or even globally.

Further, another special significant programme of SASS – Swachh Sabarimala- Erumely programme will be inaugurated at Erumely at 9.00 am on 19, January 2022 by Ananthagopan, President of Travancore Devaswam Board in the presence of National and State leaders and about 2500 Ayyappasevaks / volunteers of SASS, selected from various States.

On 19th after cleaning the entire area around Erumely Sastha temple, the team will move to Sabarimala. While trekking from Pampa to Sannidhanam, both the “Neelimala” and “Swamy Ayyappan Road” routes will be cleaned.

Upon reaching Sabarimala, Ayyappa sevaks divided into various batches will undertake cleaning of Sannidhanam and surrounding areas completely before sunset. After darsan of Swamy Ayyappa and Guruthi ritual at Malikappuram temple, next day morning Ayyappa Sevaks will be giving a warm, divine sent off to the Thiruvabharanam being taken back to Pandalam palace.Rajan clarified that this Swachh Sabarimala programme is a regular master piece programme of SASS, being done annually, after the season.

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