Lord Skanda-Murugan

Lord Tanikesan with divine consorts Valli and Teyvanai Amman. See full size image.
Tiruttani steps
Annually on the night of Dec 31 to January 1, thousands of Murugan devotees gather at Tiruttani to offer Tiruppukazh to Lord Tanikkai.

Tiruttani Tiruppugazh Tiruvizhaa

Tiruttani Tiruppugazh Tiruvizha (New Year Step Festival) will be celebrated on 31st December, 2000 and 1st January, 2001 at Śrī Subramanya Swami Kovil, Tiruttani.

In the 19th Century, Tamil people developed a custom of calling on dignitaries and foreign bureaucrats under British Raj on New Year's Day, January 1st every year, offering fruits and garlands, to get or continue to get pecuniary benefits from them. Swami Satchidananda of Valli Malai, a born patriot and devout personality, found no reason for such a custom. On the other hand he wanted and fervently desired that this way of submission if moved Godward, will enable everyone to get the merciful Blessings of the Lord.

With this aim in mind, Swami Satchidananda started the Tiruttani Tiruppugazh Tiruvizha in the year 1917 with just a few disciples. The festivity was so planned as to obtain His mercy in the year's end, 3lst December, against our misdeeds committed throughout the year, in order to crave His indulgence and to invoke His blessings for a progressive New Year. This invocation has to be made by prayers singing Tiruppugazh on the Lord.

Over six hundred years ago, Saint Arunagirinathar tasted the sweetness and bitterness of mundane life alike and turned out to be a gifted poet chanting Tiruppugazh and attained salvation as a parrot (sukha). For the jeevatmas suffering from the pains of Maya, Swami Satchidananda felt the only way out is to go to Tiruttani singing the Tiruppugazh of Lord Subrahmanya, at each of the 365 steps invoking His mercy at year's end and further blessings in the New Year. This prayer is customarily followed by a mass feeding (annadanam) at Tiruttani for His devotees.

The entire process has by now gained momentum and spread its roots through many associations and bhajan troupes. This shows that a noble endeavour well started by a saintly person like Swami Satchidananda never fails but only grows by strides, proving the words of Arunagirinathar's Tiruppugazh in the following couplet.

Tiruppukazh ottum karuttinar ceyrum
Tiruttani meyvum Perumaanee

Śrī Valli Malai Swami Satchidananda Tiruppugazh Sabha has been carrying on this mission annually since 1917 as ordained by Swami Satchidananda. In 2000 we are to the 83rd year of uninterrupted devotional service. We request fellow devotees to join us in our prayers at Anna Madam (Nagarathar Choultry) Tiruttani and strengthen our hands to conduct this celebration in a grand manner and receive the blessings of Lord Muruga and Swami Satchidananda.

Tiruttani Subramanya Swami Tirukovil home page
Valli Malai Tiruppukazh Asramam home page
Murugan.org home page