The Ettumanoorl Mahadeva Temple is a temple for Lord Shiva in Ettumanoor, 11 kms from Kottayam,Kerala.The temple, along with Kaduthuruthy Siva Temple, Vaikom Mahadeva Temple are considered as three very sacred and powerful Siva temples.
As per the legends an asuran called Khara, a great devotee of Lord Shiva, on receiving the Saiva Vidya Upadesam from Malyavan (great grand father of Ravana), went to Chidambaram and did severe penance for the attainment of moksha. Pleased with his penance Lord Shiva not only granted all the boons he asked for and also and presented him with three great Shiva Lingas. When Khara was returning south from Kailash with the three Lingas carryinng them one in his right hand, one in left hand and other over neck, he felt tired and placed the lingas to rest for awhile. When he tried to pick up the lingas, they wouldn’t move. Khara having attained Moksha then entrusted the Lingas to Maharshi Vyaghrapada who was following him and asked the sage to protect and worship them.
It is beleived that the Shiva Linga placed by Khara Asura by his right hand is the one at Vaikom, the one that was in his left hand at Ettumannoor and the one by neck at Kaduthuruthy even today. Getting a darshan of all these three Lingas on a same day is considered as good as the Shiva darshan at Kailash.
The Temple : The temple is built in a typical Kerala architectural design.There is a huge oil lamp called as"keda vilakku". It is beleived to be special as this was made by none other that Ettmanoorappan himself who came in a mortal form.The temple has a circular moolavar sannidhi (main sanctum) covered with a conical copper plated roof with a kalsam on top. The manadapam in front of the sanctum has two idols of Nandi, one of stone and another of metal. The rear of the sanctum is Parvathi's sannidhi.The door to Parvathi's sannidhi is always closed and it is said that there is no idol for Parvathi.Lord Shiva has a ugrava roopam (fierce face) at Ettumanur temple.
A inner praharam has splendid wood carvings portraying legends from the Ramayana and the Bhagavata puranam. The Kerala murals on the western entrance of the temple are magnificent displaying the dance of Shiva, Maha Vishnu in a reclining pose and other purana stories. There are also sannidhis for Ayyappa, Ganapati and Dakshinamurthy in the temple.
Temple Festivals :
Apart from the regular pooja,Shivrathri is an important festival of this temple.
Temple location The temple is situated in the town of Ettumanoor.
Temple Timings The temple is open from 4:00 AM till 12:00 noon am and from 5:00 pm till 8:00 pm
Dress code Stringent dress code exists for entering the temple as in most of the Kerala temples. Men can only wear Veshti without shirts. Women can wear Saris, skirts & Salwar Kameez.
How to reach?
The nearest airport is Cochin and Kottayam is the nearest major railway station, about 11 Km from the town.