Kukke Subramanya Temple

4.1 / 5 52 votes


Weather:

Time Required: 1-2 hrs

Timings:

5:00 AM - 9:30 PM

Entry Fee:

No entry fee
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Kukke Subramanya Temple, Kukke Subramanya Overview

The Kukke Subrahmanya Temple is a famous Hindu temple that is located in Karnataka, India. Lord Kartikeya, who is the lord of all serpents, is worshipped here as Lord Subrahmanya; and the temple provides tranquillity and peace like no other. It is located in the heart of the village of Subrahmanya, in the Sullia Taluk of Dakshina Kannada, and is surrounded by the beauty and glories of nature on all sides. The mountain Kumara Parvatha overlooks the temple adding seven stars to its charm. If seen geographically, Shesha Parvatha, a mountain shaped like a six-headed cobra, adjacent to Kumara Parvatha seems to protect the temple.

The Kukke Subrahmanya Temple is considered to be the abode of 'nagas', and pooja or prayer here is offered to Lord Subrahmanya, along with the serpent king Vasuki. According to legends, Lord Indra was so pleased with Lord Kumaraswamy's annihilation of the demonic forces that he offered his daughter Devasena's hand in marriage to him. Accordingly, the ceremony took place, and Lord Kumaraswamy then decided to bestow his grace on the Serpent King Vasuki, who was performing Tapasya at that time. It is believed that Lord Kumaraswamy now dwells in this temple along with his wife, Devasena, and Vasuki.

Devotees also believe that the holy bath here in the Kumaradhara Thirtha and Madesnana eradicates dreaded diseases like leprosy. According to devotees, diseases related to skin even get cured here. The temple is also considered to be the ultimate place to attain salvation for all those who are suffering from any kind of 'naga doshas'. This is the ideal place for Naga Dosha Pariharam (remedy), by performing Sarpa Samskara Pooja, Ashlesha Pooja and other such rituals. In fact, a lot of devotees from all across the country visit the temple for precisely this purpose.

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There is an exciting story that is related to the Kukke Subrahmanya Temple in Karnataka. According to legends, Lord Kumaraswamy reached the Kumara Parvatha with his brother Ganesh and a few others after having triumphantly killed the demon rulers Tharaka and Shurapadmasura, and their followers in a war. Lord Kumaraswamy was received by Lord Indra and his followers. Since Lord Indra was thrilled and pleased, he requested the Lord to marry his daughter Devasena, to which the Lord gladly agreed. The divine union took place on Margashira Shudha Shashti at Kumara Parvatha, and the couple was blessed by Gods like Brahma, Rudra and others.

Lord Kumaraswamy also gave darshan to Vasuki, the Serpent King, who had been performing tapas since many years in the Biladwara caves of Kukke Subrahmanya to avoid the attack of Garuda. When Vasuki prayed to Lord Kumaraswamy to stay with him permanently at that place, the Lord agreed to stay with his 'parama bhakta' forever.

It is believed that from that time onwards, the Lord Kumaraswamy has made his spiritual presence in the shrine, accompanied by his wife, Devasena, and Vasuki. Every year, a famous festival is also celebrated on 'Margashira Shuddha Shashti' and special poojas are offered to the Lord.

Devotees who are going to the Kukke Subrahmanya Temple first have to cross the Kumaradhara River and take a holy dip in the river before they enter the main temple for the divine darshan. The main entrance to the temple lies towards the eastern side, while devotees enter the temple from the west through the main Gopuram, and then reach the inner quadrangle from the east. Between the sanctorum and the portico entrance, one can see a majestic Garuda pillar covered with silver. Devotees circumambulate this pillar since it is widely believed that the pillar is enchanted and has been erected in the temple to protect them from the poisonous flames that arise from the breath of Vasuki.

Beyond the pillar, one can find the outer hall, inner hall and the sanctorum of Sri Subrahmanya. There is a pedestal in the middle of this sanctorum, with the deities of Sri Subrahmanya and Vasuki on the upper dais, and the deity of Shesha at a slightly lower level. Worship is offered to these gods on a daily basis.

The temple is considered to be the ideal place to perform Naga Dosha Pariharam (Remedies).  These available remedies include Sarpa Samskara Pooja, Ashlesha Pooja, Sarpa Dosha Puja, Naga Dosha Pooja, Kuja dosha puja, Nagaprathishta Pooja and Sarpa Shanti.

The Sarpa Dosha or the Sarpa Samskara is perhaps the most famous pooja that is performed at the Kukke Subrahmanya Temple to get rid of the Sarpa Dosha. This pooja is suggested for unmarried people or couples who have trouble conceiving. According to popular beliefs, a person can be afflicted by the curse of the serpent either knowingly or unknowingly, in this birth or any of his previous births, if his/her soul has caused any harm to snakes. Such people are advised by astrologers to perform this pooja for their well being. This pooja can be performed by the afflicted person only if he is a male and married; else the ritual is performed by a priest.

The cost of the pooja ranges from INR 1500 to INR 1800, and devotees who perform the Sarpa Samskara Seva are required to stay at the temple for two days. The seva occurs in the daytime, while no particular pooja is to be performed in the evening. A maximum of four people can participate in the pooja at one time.

The Ashlesha Bali Puja is an important Kaalasarpa dosha puja that is performed at the Kukke Subramanya Temple on Aslesha nakshatra in each month since Lord Subramanya is believed to be the protector from Kaalasarpa dosha and Kuja Dosha. Ashlesha Bali is performed for Sarpa Dosha or Kal Sarpa Dosha.

The pooja takes place in two shifts; one at 7:00 AM and one at 9:15 AM.

Devotees who wish to perform the pooja are required to report inside the temple at these two times along with their Purohita. After the Homa Poornahuthi Puja is completed, the Ashlesha Bali Pooja Prasadam is delivered in the inner quadrangle itself. The Shravana Masa, Karthika Masa and Margashira Masa are considered to be the most auspicious months to perform the Aslesha Bali Puja at the Kukke temple. The pooja has to be performed on Ashlesha Nakshatra. If performed on other days, it has no power.

The cost of performing this pooja is INR 400 on all days except Ekadashi and fasting days.

The annual festival celebrated at the Kukke Subrahmanya Temple begins from the 'Karthika Bahula Dwadashi' and goes on till the 'Margashira Shudha Poornima'. The day of Karthika Bahula Amavasya is celebrated as 'Lakshadeepotsava', which is followed by the celebrations of Chandramandalotsava, Ashwavahanotsava, Mayura Vahanotsava and Flower Chariot Utsava respectively on the four succeeding days. On the fifth day, 'Panchami Rathotsava' is celebrated at night.

On the Shashti day, Sri Subrahmanya Swamy and Umamaheshwara appear at an auspicious hour in the morning to partake in the celebrations of the festival. Sri Subrahmanya Swamy mounts the 'Brahmaratha', while God Umamaheshwara boards the 'Panchami Ratha'. This Shashti Day is marked by a very curious and strange event. The Garuda Pakshi or the kite bird, which is not found in the place on any day of the year appears at the time of the Ratharohana, and on the time of the Avabrath Mahotsava the next day.

During the time of the car festival, the chariot is pulled using a cane. Once the festival ends, the devotees compete with each other to get a piece of this cane, since this cane is considered to be an effective cure for dangerous situations. Following this, Gods alight from the chariot and devotees perform various kinds of worship for the Almighty. Finally, the Mahapooja and the 'Mahasantharpana', or the feeding of Brahmins, take place.

On the next day of Shashti, Sri Kumaraswamy also comes out to take part in the celebrations. After the holy water is sprinkled in the Okuli Pooja, God proceeds to the Matsya Thirtha where 'Nauka Viharotsava' and the Avabritha take place. After this festival, the devotees and pilgrims start returning. The festivals, however, continue till Poornima when 'Maha Samprokshana' is conducted, and the annual festival is finally concluded.  

The timetable that is followed at the Kukke Subrahmanya Temple is as follows:

Temple Doors Open, Govu Pooja is performed- 5:00 AM
Ushakala Pooja- 5:30 AM - 6:00 AM
Devotees perform Sevas- 6:30 AM - 10:00 AM
Madhyanna Pooja (Consisting of Kalashapooja, Panchamrutha Abhisheka, Archana, Mahanaivedya, Mahamangalarathi)- 10:00 AM - 12:15 PM
Distribution of Theertha Prasada- 12:30 - 1:30 PM
Anna Santharpane- 11:30 PM - 2:00 PM
Hannukai Seva, Mangalarathi by the devotees- 3:30 PM - 6:00 PM
Nisha Pooja, Mahamangalarathi- 6:00 PM - 7:45 PM
Distribution of Theertha Prasada, Main doors are closed- 7:45 PM - 8:30 PM
Anna Santharpane (Night Meals)- 7:30 PM - 9:30 PM

1. Ensure that you follow all the rules that have been set up by the temple. Note that devotees should not enter the temple without taking a bath and that they should not wear shirt, coats, caps or vests while entering the temple.
2. Devotees are not permitted to enter the temple with their footwear.
3. Mobile phones are prohibited inside the temple.
4. The annadaana (food) facility that is available at the temple is very popular and also excellent. Satvik meals are served for lunch from noon to 2:30 PM and for dinner from 8:00 PM to 9:30 PM.

The Kukke Subrahmanya Temple is easily accessible by road from Mangalore, Bangalore, Mysore, etc. KSRTC operates buses on a daily basis between these places and the temple. There are also regular passenger train services from Mangalore and Bangalore to the temple, following which one can catch a local transport for a fifteen-minute journey to the temple, which costs approximately INR 20 per head.

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