Traditional Kerala : Day of Lights – “thrikkarthika” Day in Kerala
Traditional Kerala : Day of lights – “Thrikkarthika” day in Kerala
Thrikkarthika is one of the celebration in Kerala. It's known as various names in Kerala, "Thrikkarthika", "Karthika Deepam","Karthika vilakku" and so on. This celebration falls in the Kerala Malayalam schedule month vrishchikam and collaborates on star day "Karthika". It is a propitious day for the malayalees. In our families, we celebrate it by illuminating the lights, particularly manchirathu (clay lights). Many people from different states also celebrate this celebration.
It is believed that this day was especially liked by the Goddess and their powers were at its peak. Hindu devotees believe that Lord Subrahmanya born on this day. It is basically on the full moon day (Pournami).
In each custom, there may be some sort of legends and stories behind it. Karthika Deepam additionally has numerous accounts related with it. I know one famous story related to this. As per the Hindu folklore, Tridev is in charge of the creation, upkeep and annihilation of everything that take place in the universe. Lord Brahma, Lord Vishnu and Lord Siva is known as Tridev.
Lord Brahma and Vishnu had a quarrel on who's more powerful and superior. Their argument to prove who's better led to a fight and they were both neglecting their responsibilities. In order to stop the dispute, Lord Shiva appeared in the form of a fire challenged them to find either the top or bottom of the fire to be deemed as the greatest. Immediately, Lord Brahma took the form of a bird and started to fly up to find the top while Lord Vishnu assumed the appearance of a boar and dug deep to find the bottom. Both their efforts proved to be futile, as Lord Shiva (fire) continued to grow in size. In the end, they gave up and admitted Lord Shiva's supremacy.
The day this incident took place was on the full moon of Karthigai month and later it's believed that Lord Shiva appeared as a hill at Thiruvannamalai, Tamilnadu(India). Till today, the Shivan temple in Thiruvannamalai holds grand Karthigai Deepam celebration.
For this purpose, we generally use a clay lamp (manchirath) and Kerala bronze lamp in houses. But now, because of the busy life, we can see candles replacing a distinctive place at home that day instead of clay lamps.