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Thirukalyanam: Murugan-Devasena

Tirukalyanam, the ceremonial wedding ceremony of the Murugan and Devasenai amma, is observed on the day following the Surasamharam.

In the Vana Parva of the Mahabharata, we get a mention of the divine union.

Devasenai amma also known as Jayanti and Devayani. Devasena and Daityasena were the daughters of Daksha. Once, while the sisters were enjoying leisure at the banks of Lake Manasa, the asura (demon) Keshi abducts them, and persuades them to marry him. While Devasena refuses, Daityasena consents. During this time asuras take the lead in battle with devas. But Devasenai amma did not relent. She was rescued by Indradeva and protected. Upon consulting Brahma, Indra considers that Skanda was undoubtedly destined to be her pati with devaguru Brihaspati performing the necessary puja. She who is called Shashthi, Lakshmi, Asa, Sukhaprada, Sinivali, Kuhu, Saivritti, and Aparajita, is known by us as Devasenai amma.

Valli was dedicated to Murugan and would always pray with fervent devotion and love, to be with him. Once, the tribal chief planned to develop a field for growing thinai (foxtail millet), and assigned Valli in charge of its protection from pests. Skanda saw Valli amma in the fields and took the form of a handsome tribal hunter and asked maa for her hand, as she refused, Skanda now takes the form of a old man. He asked Valli amma for food & she offers him food and water, during this time Bhagawan Ganesha appears as a wild elephant, and upon seeing the elephant charging and approaching closer, Valli amma runs back to the old man pleading to save her. Murugan says, he shall save her only if she agrees to marry him. In that shock Valli amma agrees to marry him, as she agrees Muruga reveals his true form. It was then that Valli realized that it was her ishta deva, to whom she had been praying and taking up vrata to gain his sannidhya.

The tribesmen were all overjoyed. The whole village, thus, rejoiced. The young pair was seated on a tiger-skin.

Valli amma and Devasenai amma represent the Iccha Shakti and the Kriya Shakti of Lord Muruga. Iccha Shakti is the energy of will and desire. while Kriya Shakti is the energy of action and transformation.

In contrast when action and desire come out of apurnata, incompleteness, or ignorance: inevitably we tend to get bound by the forces of creation - "maya" with each individual bound according to their capacity (a farmer by his land, home, and family, a raja bound by his rajya, palace, and praja). it can wind you down make you feel burdensome and move away from all of it, creating a turmoil in one's heart and mind. These external bindings delve into loss of our inner freedom, our ananda swarupa.

When one's identity is completely rooted in the Jnana of the self, mastery over the task we take up or manifestation of the vision we set for ourselves is a natural outcome. It becomes a lila of Murugan.

Thus the Tirukalyanam (divine marriage) is Life’s three energies: Iccha Shakti, Jnana Shakti, and Kriya Shakti coming together and a reminder that only when guided by Jnana the Shakti’s of ichha and kriya, manifest a Divine Life!

Live Liberated! Om Muruga!


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