Construction Of Temple

The king was deeply distressed at the departure of the Lord. At that time, the sage Agasthya appeared before him and consoled him. He reminded the king of his duty ahead, the construction of a temple for Dharmasastha.

The king and his retinue consisting of priests, ministers, soldiers, architects and builders set out for Neelimala. On the way at Erumeli temples were built for Dhannasastha and Vavar a trusted Muslim lieutenant of Ayyappa. After performing necessary poojas and other rituals the party resumed their journey. Crossing the river Alasa (Azhutha) and the mountains ot Azhutha and Karimala, they reached the banks of the sacred river Pampa at the nightfall.

The king and his entourage were thoroughly tired. After ablutions and refreshments they soon tell fast asleep. But the king who was preoccupied with various thoughts remained awake. Presently, to his amazement, he saw a strong-built person standing before him. The stranger introduced himself to the king as Vavar, a trusted friend of Ayyappa. Then he said the Lord had summoned him to take the king to His presence on Ponnambalamedu. Before long both of them were in the golden temple of ponnambalmedu where 'the king of kings' was seated on the throne of gold. The radiance that emerged from the Lord dazzled the king's eyes. Overwhelmed with joy the king prostrated before Ayyappa Swami and praised him in exalted terms with folded arms. Boothanatha was extremely pleased and embraced the king warmly. He then explained to the king as to how his idol at Sabarimala should look like. According to the Lord it must be in sitting position with a belt round the knees (patta handha) and with chin mudra (the symbol of giving refuge to the aspirants). Afterwards He presented to the king a powerful sword, which, he said, would be useful to him on a later occasion and the king was blessed with His boundless grace. Before others woke up from their deep sleep the king was taken back to the banks of the Pamba. No one was aware of the miraculous event. The king engaged himself in deep meditation of Tharakabrahma moorthy.

Being aware of the lavish grace bestowed upon the king Rajasekhara, Devendra was apprehensive of losing his position as the king of gods. So, he made of his mind to put an end to the king's life. Next day, when the king was engaged in collecting materials for the construction of the temple, Devendra appeared before him disguised as a hunter. The hunter accused the king of trespassing his territory and rebuked him in harsh terms. Even though, a man of mild temperament by nature, the indecorous behavior of the indecent hunter infuriated the king. A fight followed between the two. The king shot sharp arrows at his opponent, but they were easily defended by lndra the hunter, using his powerful weapon Vajra. The king realized that time was due to make use of the extraordinary sword presented to him by Dharmasastha. He lost no time in unleashing its miraculous power. No sooner was it released against the hunter than it blazed and dashed forward towards the opposing rival who fled in fear to save his life. He took refuge at the Lord's feet. But the Lord directed lndra to go back to the king Rajasekhara and ask his pardon. Devendra soon came and fell at the feet of the king and begged for his mercy. lndra disclosed to the king his identity and also what impelled him towards the mischief. The king who had no ambition for worldly pleasures readily forgave him. Devendra felt ashamed and praised the king for his benevolence. He offered the king the services of the royal architect Viswakarma for the construction of the abode for Sriboothanatha. Accordingly the temple was built at the appointed spot under the guidance and supervision of Viswakanna.

Next thing to do was the carving and installation of the idol. Suddenly a carver approached the king with several images of Dharmasastha. He was none other than Parasurama. Among these idols the king found one with Pattabandha and Chinmudra as prescribed by the Lord himself. Naturally it was chosen for installation. The idol was enshrined with appropriate rituals and ceremonies by Parasurama himself on the auspicious day of Makara Sankranthi. Parasurama prescribed the poojas and the annual celebrations for worshipping the Lord. The events consummated in the King's attaining perpetual bliss.