Guruvayur Temple, Thrissur, Kerala

Date built: Believed to be around 5000 years old
Deity:
Architectural style: Architecture of Kerala
Major festivals Janmashtami, Kumbham Utsavam, Ekadasi
Locale:
District:: Thrissur
Address: Guruvayur Devaswom, East Nada, Guruvayur, Kerala 680101
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Guruvayoor, the abode of Lord Sree Guruvayoorappan, is located 29 kms north west to the cultural capital of the ‘God’s own country’, Kerala. This narrow coastline strip of land on the south western edge of Indian subcontinent is one of the 10 paradises in the world.

Guruvayoor is a thriving township in Trichur district of Kerala state in the South of India, its scenic beauty and serenity are breath taking. Guruvayoorappan is the chief diety here – The God which hears the prayers of its pilgrims. Guruvayoorappan is adorned with the holy tulasi (Basil) garland, and pearl necklace the Lord here appears in all radiance to bless the devotees.

Architecture

Legend / Local stories

Guruvayur Sri Krishna Temple is a Hindu temple dedicated to the Hindu god Guruvayurappan (a four-armed affiliation of the Hindus god Vishnu), located in the town of Guruvayur in Kerala, India. It is one of the most important places of worship for Hindus of Kerala and is often referred to as Bhuloka Vaikunta, which translates to as “Holy Abode of Vishnu on Earth”.

The presiding deity of the Guruvayur Temple is Vishnu, worshipped in the form of his avatar Krishna. The central icon is a four-armed standing Vishnu carrying the conch Panchajanya, the discus Sudarshana Chakra, the mace Kaumodaki and a lotus with a Holy basilgarland. This image represents the majestic form of Vishnu as revealed to Krishna’s parents Vasudeva and Devaki around the time of Krishna’s birth; this is the reason why Lord is worshipped in his baby form. Also, the temple is called “Dwarka of South India” due to Krishna’s widespread presence. He is currently worshipped according to routines laid down by Adi Shankara and later written formally in the Tantric way, the inter-religious spiritual movement that arose in medieval India, by Cennas Narayanan Nambudiri (born in 1427). The Cennas Nambudiris are the hereditary tantris (high priest) of the Guruvayur Temple.

The temple (puja) routines are strictly followed. The Thanthri is available full-time at the Temple to ensure this. The Melsanthi (Chief Priest) enters the sanctum sanctorum in the morning and does not drink anything up to the completion of “noon worships” at 12:30 PM. The temple is managed by a special Devaswom (Guruvayur Devaswom) under the control of the Government of Kerala.

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