Observed during Nov-Dec/Vrischikam-Dhanu.

The month Vrischikam (Nov-Dec) or Karthikam/Karthigai is the month in which the full moon falls on the star ‘Karthika’.

Mandalam season is important for various reasons.
It is believed:

  • Lord Vishnu goes to sleep in the month of “Aashaadha” (mid-July to mid-Aug) and gets up in the month of Karthika.
  • Somavaaara Vrtha’ -the ritual of vrtha/penance undertaken on Mondays, to propitiate Lord Shiva is given a special place in the month of ‘Karthika’. Thus Karthika/ Vrischikam is significant for both Shaivites and Vaishnavites.
  • Lord Ayyappa’s origins are linked to both Lord Shiva and Lord Vishnu, hence worship of Lord Ayyappa gains special importance.
  • The worship of Ayyappa removes ‘troubles’ caused by Shani (represents the planet Saturn in our Solar System) and is capable of fulfilling one’s righteous earthly desires.
  • The universe had its beginning in this month.
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