Kshetrapala is a guardian deity in Jainism, Buddhism and Hinduism. According to Hinduism and Hindu mythology, Kshetrapala, that is, the lord of the farmland is a deity who was originally a deity of the farmland, particularly in south India. Over a period of time, Kshetrapala became a generic name applied to deities associated with a piece or parcel of land, or a particular region (kshetra in Sanskrit). His temples are generally constructed on the northeastern corner of temples devoted to Shiva, and he is worshipped prior to each ritual to ensure the efficacy of that particular ritual.
Madian Sree Kshetrapalaka Temple
Sree Madiyan Koolom is a 500 years old temple located near Kanhangad in Kasaragod district of Kerala. Dedicated to the main deity ‘Kshetrapalakan’ and Kalarathri Amma (Bhadrakali), this is one of the most prominent Hindu temples in the district.
One of the oldest temples in North Kerala, Shri Madiyan Kulam is an ancient shrine. Sri Madiyan Kulam is the headquarters of the ‘Allada Swaroopam Mookatham Nadu’. The temple, famous for its centuries old wooden carvings is also known for its epic poems which portrays unity of different religions and castes.
The temple covers six 2.4 hectares (6 acres) of land, of which half the area consists of monuments built in traditional Kerala-style architecture. The temple is also famous for its sculptures and astonishing wooden carvings, depicting ancient stories from Ramayana and other epics.
Most of the carvings are found in Thekkini, western Gopuram and the Mandapa near the pond. The ‘Thekkini Mandapam’ near the temple kitchen has the etchings of Dakshayagam, Seethaswayamvaram and the Vanayathra of Rama and Lakshmana. All the wooden etchings in this temple portion are partially or mostly destroyed as they are turned black due to the continuous exposure to smoke from the kitchen. Similarly, the wooden carvings of 12 Raashis and Navagraha devatas in the Gopuram pond have been destroyed by painting them silver.
The origins of the Sri Madiyan Kovilakam are found in devotional stories. It is also famous for a temple that had an entry for lower caste people even before the Temple Entry Proclamation in Kerala.
Eshwaran is the main deity of the Madiyan Kovilakam, who is a symbol of religious unity. The ‘ Paattu’ festival in the month of Dhanu and Kalasham festival in Edavam are held together with unity and harmony irrespective of castes. The temple exists as a link for Hindu-Muslim unity in the region. The devotion of the Muslims in this area and their respect for other religions was why the site where an Athiyal temple was located was granted to build the first mosque. The friendship between Muslims and Hindus is inevitable for the rituals.
The Kshethrapalakan came to the earth under the command of Mahadeva to conquer that “Allada swaroopam.” Alladaswarupam was a town stretching from Chittari River in the north to the “Olavara” River in the south.
Festivals/Events Celebrated at Sree Madiyan Koolom Temple
During Pattu, a special ritual called Kalam Pattu is held. On the first day the Kalam is for the main deity with Pacha Varnam, the second day the Kalam is for sub-deity with Manja Varnam. On the last day, the Kalam picturises Darika Vadham in Manja Varnam, and it is for Kalarathri Amma.
Another annual festival celebrated in the temple is Kalasham. It falls in the Malayalam month of May-June. The highlight of the festival is Theyyam.
How to reach
Address: Madiyan, Near Kanhagad, Kasargod District, Kerala, India.
District: Kasargod District
Nearest City: Kanhangad, Kudlu, Mangalore, Hosdurg and Thiruvallam.
Best time to visit: Janauary.