Basics of Ayyappa Mala Vratham

The austerities (Vratham) starts on the 1st day of Malayalam month Vrichikam ( comes on November 14 or 15 or16 ) for the devotees who intend to Pray Ayyappa on the Mandala Pooja Day( comes around December 25th) or the Makara Sankranti day (comes around 14th Jan). “Makara Sankranti” day is the good day at Sabarimala and the ” Mandala Pooja day ” is measured as 2nd good day. At present the Sabarimala temple is opened to devotees on 1st 5 days of every Malayalam month and also on other kerala festivals day like “Thiru Onam”, “Vishu”, etc. But 41 days minimum vratham is essential before traveling to Sabarimala according to conditions of pilgrimage. But so many swamis are doing Ayyappa Mala Deeksha for less than 41 days. It is advisable them to not to dosuch type of Deekhas. Instead of that we can go and see the Sabarimala Ayyappan. It is a condition that we have to do the vratam for 41 days minimum. No one is insisting us to wear Mala. Then why should we do the less time Deekhas? If we can not do the Deeksha, let us not do that. No one including god will ask us, why you have not wear the Mala? Doing less than 41days deeksha is harmful to us. After doing such Deekshas, people are suffering a lot. Instead of that go in normal dress to Sabarimala to see the got. It is thousand times better than the doing less than the 41 days deeksha.

The vratham starts from a day of putting “Thulasi Mala” or “Rudraksha Mala”(garland) with Lord Ayyappa locket in the neck. Mala is supposed to be accepted from the temple Priest or Periya Swami / Guru Swami (The devotee who visited Sabarimala Temple many times and can guide others in every matter relating to the Sabarimala pilgrimage) and after mala is duly hallowed in the temple or in pooja room. The “Dakshina” has to be given to priest/ Periya Swami / Guru Swami concerned. Then wearing “Mala” that person is called as “Swami ” or “Ayyappan” ( in a name of God Ayyappa) till finishing point of his Sabarimala pilgrimage as well as removal of the Mala. Appropriate female( age should be between 1 to 9 or above fifty years) devotees can be called as “Malikapuram”( Shakti of God Ayyappa).

During this period of Vratham extreme care must be taken by every devotee to keep the body and mind pure, clean and also balanced. Devotee is anticipated to survive like “Yogi”, “sadhu” and his word, action, thought every thing should not hurt the others feelings. Devotee must avoid all Luxury pleasure and should avoid taking tobacco, alcohol and also non vegetarian food. And also should not cut nails and hair or shave. Black shirt and dhoti is dress code for the vratham. Wearing Shoes, Chappal are not permissible as per the traditional rule of Vratham. Complete Bramacharya in this period is necessary to go to the Sabarimala Temple. Devotee has to pray in morning and the evening subsequent to taking bath. Prior to every meal the devotee must pray the Ayyappa and take that meal as the “Prasadam” of Ayyappa.

With out proper Vratham, Sabarimala Pilgrimage should not be done. The real mental-satisfaction of pilgrimage can attain only by correct Vratham. May the God Ayyappa help every body to follow rule of the traditional Vratham for attainment of rescue of soul.


K.N.Murthy 4 December 2008 at 5:21 PM  

you copied all matter from my site www.andhrapradshstate.in. Delete my posts from your site.

kumar 20 October 2009 at 3:59 AM  

Dear Sir,
Thank u for writing so much of information in this blog.Realy it helps me to get an clear idea and understanding abt sabarimala and the holi viratham.
I kindly request u to clear my doubt.
I used to wear a rudraksha mala always in my neck. While taking Ayyappa diksha shall i wear the Tulsi mani mala along with that?
pls clarify my doubt.
Thanks & Regards

samputi2009 30 October 2009 at 11:48 AM  

in samputi.com site having all the information about kaarthikamasam 30 days pooja procedure and having all the other pooja procedures,vrathas also and having for children rhymes, shathakamulu.and sathyanarayana vrathapooja, dhaamodhara, kedhaareshwara, ksheeraabdhi vratha poojas are also available.in English and telugu languages. audio also available for each pooja, daily panchangam and astrology also available.
The Specific Link is
visit samputi.com website once.

Anonymous,  9 December 2009 at 2:41 AM  

Please do not scare people by saying wrong thing will happen if you observe less than 41 days. Because of people like you everyone has fear for the God. DO NOT DO THAT. Iyyappan has lot and lot of Kaarunyam and even if you observe sincerely for 1 day also HE will take it. All that is important is pure very pure mind and soul....that's all...

Anonymous,  28 December 2009 at 3:51 PM  

thank u for for giving a lot of infornation about ayappa

Sai Kishore,  28 December 2009 at 3:54 PM  

lord ayappa is a karuna mayi , but in a year only 41 days we are doing deeksha , we should do it sincerely with out any thinking just our mind should be clean by chanting ayappa sharanu gosha

Jay 5 July 2010 at 11:20 PM  

I would like to do 41 days vratam. Can i do more?? Also, since i am working at a senior level, wearing formal dress,shoe and having proper shave is a must. I am already wearing mala. I prefer wearing shoe because, whenever we walk on barefoot, we may walk on lot of dirty things which is not good for health. Correct me if i am wrong

Vishnu,  2 November 2010 at 4:35 PM  

I agree with what is posted in the comment. I agree that 1 day pure dedication is sufficient to see the lord (but people shouldnot give the name vratham for this)
If you meam Manadala Vratham, it is supposed to be 41 days, else just go to the temple with a pure heart as a devotee and Ayyappan will take you as your are.
Dont go the temple with half vrath cos the moment you take the vrath you are consider "Lord Ayyappan" himself and if vrath is to followed, follow it sincerely for 41 days and visit the temple as a part of Lord Ayyappan or else visit the temple as a "Devotee" only...
However, both are good... just dont try fool yourself that you are also Swami by doing the half hearted vratham.

Anonymous,  16 November 2010 at 9:01 AM  

Mr jay,
i have taken this vratham for past two years. am also a starter by myself and same as you. i don't shave, cut my hair, use shoe, belt, purse or use any leather item. I got permission from my boss for this 41 days and people nowadays are accepting and are aware of this vratham in corporate levels too. its basically our wish as how we take this vratham. but during hill climbing, ensure that u accomplish with a bare foot.

Anonymous,  24 August 2011 at 3:37 PM  

Can somebody who's spouse is carrying wear Ayyappa mala?

SaiChand 27 August 2011 at 9:45 PM  

Great Information.
Lord Ayyappa will bless you.

Unknown 1 November 2011 at 4:10 PM  

I already wore the Sabarimala on 26/oct/2011(Diwali).I will be going to Temple by Dec 10.It comes around 46 days of vratham.Please tell me is it good or bad if i take more than 41 days of vratham.Please Clarify my doubt.
Thanks & Regards
Siva Kumar

Swamy 3 November 2011 at 3:28 PM  

@ Siva Kumar swamy- deksha can be greater than or equal to 41 days

This is just for information.

Santhosh swamy

moorkoth 4 November 2011 at 11:50 PM  

Thank you so much ... very informative link for Sabarimala vratham. Cleared lot of doubts.

Unknown 6 November 2011 at 9:38 AM  

Thank You Santhosh swamy.

Anonymous,  8 November 2011 at 8:38 PM  

Hari Hara sutan ananda chittan

Om Swamiyeee Saranam Ayyappa

Om Swamiyeee Saranam Ayyappa

Om Swamiyeee Saranam Ayyappa

RU 11 November 2011 at 2:48 PM  


Hi, I am wearing a mala for 6 days prior visiting Sabarimala this is the second time i am wearing mala but only now i came to know that its a vratha to be done for 41 days and also since all my cousin & friends have already planned & booked to leave on the 3rd day from putting maala, can i continue the vratha for 41 days after returning from sabarimala and get the maala removed after 41 days.

Viran 16 November 2011 at 8:56 AM  

Hi Ru,

Someone have misguided you totally, the person from whom you have received the mala should have guided you on this. It is a must that you observe the 41 days minimum virtham before going to sabrimala. As I m from Malaysia, it will take us about 60 days to complete the yatra. I m going to sabrimala for the 8th time this year. Should anyone need more information kindly contact me on facebook "mviran@hotmail.com" i will do my best to explain as clearly as possible. Lets do the virtham and the yatra the proper way. Swamy Saranam.

Anonymous,  18 November 2011 at 9:36 AM  

Hi everybody,

Some clarifications. My Dad has been going to sabarimala from the past 35 years and I think he has been to the temple 32 times by now. He and everybody in our family follows the vratham strictly for 41 days or sometimes more depending on when he goes.
1. It is not neccessary that you should wear mala strictly for 41 days and not more or less. Even 7 days is fine if you follow the rituals. This is better than taking vrath for 41 days without following the proper methods. It defintely good if you can take vratham for 41 days.
2. It is good to wear mala and do sabarimala darshanam when your spouse is carrying. The only time you should not do is if her delivery date is due during the time of your vratham or sabarimala trip.
3. One is not supposed to climb the 18 steps of sabarimala without a mala in his neck.
4. For details on the vratham check out http://sabarimalaayyappan.org/vratham.html I don't know if the informations are prefect, but it seems to tally with what my Dad believes.

Anonymous,  18 November 2011 at 9:40 AM  

Ru, you can continue the vratham if you wish to but the mala should be removed once you are back. It not necessary that you should take 41 days vratham only and not more or less.

rajasekhar reddy / katiperi / chowdepalli mangal 27 November 2011 at 9:39 PM  

by seeing all these i am totally confused right now i am wearing ayyappa mala and i am planning to take eerumudi on 3rd dec'2011, is it ok are i have to continue for 41 days,

but 41 days is very very difficult for me to continue my working hours is more than 12 hours per day

let me what to do whether 9 days wearing mala is good or bad

rajasekhar reddy

rajasekhar reddy / katiperi / chowdepalli mangal 27 November 2011 at 9:43 PM  

i am totally confused because of right now i am wearing ayyappa mala for 9 days but everybody saying that mala should be minimum for 41 days other wise it is useless like,
but i am planned on 3rd dec'2011 to go for sabarimalai, but continuing 41 days is very big issue for me, because my working hours is more than 12 hours per day,

let me know whether i am doing good or bad

rajasekhar reddy/ katiperi

prasad,  28 November 2011 at 10:26 AM  

im wearing mala from last 1o years this is my 11th year im married before 1 year i was completely helpless to stop my temptation and i participated in sex can u tell a solution for it

Unknown 28 December 2011 at 1:21 PM  

Swamye sharanam ayyappa.

I following 60 days of vratham and i am kanni swamy, past night unknowingly i did dream wet(swapna skpalana),so i was so depressed about this, please can any one guide me for this?? whether i can get total blessing of lord ayyappa or not?? dream wet is harm full time of vratham?? and what i should for this??

Harish 9 January 2012 at 6:08 PM  
This comment has been removed by the author.
Harish 9 January 2012 at 6:10 PM  

Please tell me If Grand father's Mother had expired means then we have to remove the Mala? Please mail me with the answer to harish.puramsetti16@yahoo.in

Thanks in Advance.

Raghu 10 January 2012 at 5:17 AM  

Swami Sharanam .. Harish Swami.. please speak to your guru swami. follow as he guides you.. Swami Sharanam

Suryanarayana Ramanthan 28 August 2012 at 7:01 PM  

Dear All,

My father passed away last year and I had to take off my Mala after nearly 4 - 5 Days. My Father's first anniversary finishes on the 9th of December this year. I will not have 41 Days time to finish my Vratham. Can anyone tell me if it is ok for me to complete the Vritham even after I come back?

Swami Saranam

karthikeya 23 November 2012 at 12:44 AM  

hello every one i have a big clarification !! can any one clear my doubt please ??? my father's mother expired this year April which is April. can i perform the vratham this yer or not please let me as early as possible ??? please help me out !!

karthikeya 23 November 2012 at 12:47 AM  

hello !! i lost my father's mother this year in April (2012). can i perform Ayyapa swami vratham this year because i wanted to do this vratham from last year but unexpectedly due to demise of my grandmother i was in a die-lamaif to continue or not .please help me out

Vijayakumar Saravanakumar 15 May 2013 at 7:59 AM  
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sabarimalai Sri Ayyappan Saranam 17 June 2013 at 6:51 PM  

We are making Iyyappa mala,Rudhraksha mala since more than 30 years and we are doing this as a "Kudisai thozhil".I would like to inform here we are manufacturing Swami ayyappa mala,Rudhraksha mala in our village and supplying to kerala,andhra and few other countries.we could supply the best quality of Iyyappan malas, Rudhraksha malas,Stone variety malas and Pooja items in very low cost.Contact us on sabarimalaisriayyappan@gmail.com

Anonymous,  1 August 2013 at 6:29 PM  

can anyone tell if we can visit the temple without the viratham.
we are strict vegetarian and following strict brahmacharyam
I was told we cannot go by the 18 steps but there is another way.
Please someone reply details

Anonymous,  10 October 2013 at 12:53 AM  

Am saying it to evrybody ..if u ppl wore mala fo more than 100 times thn also nobody is eligible to justify the rules..
Just goo on wid your heart..coz ayypa wil b in yur heart during the maala

Prasanth bhooshan,  5 November 2013 at 9:28 AM  

Swami saranam ayyappa,

Thank u so much for the information. Really it helps me to get an clear idea and understand about the holi vritham.

Swami saranam ayyappa....

Anonymous,  7 November 2013 at 3:14 PM  

I'm really surprised with some of the answer given here.
Ayyapan virutham contains of 41 days which is
1 Mandalam.That's it..you can't change that as
per your like or dislike.Just as you can't add nor
remove days in English calendar,same goes to
Malayalam calendar.1 mandalam is 41 days and
if you're going to sabarimala carrying irumudi,then you
should observe 41 days of virutham.During this virutham,
you should and must follow the strict rules of bramachariem,
(cutting hair,nail,shaving and wearing shoe to work were
given flexibility today cause God never tell you to stop
earning while you are praying Him)One who get wet dream
during this period does not effect one's virutham cause
any action happen during dreams is out of your control but
if you do have sex with a conscious mind during this virutham
period,then you will face the reaction for your action
as you did it with conscious mind.Remember,don't rush
if you're not ready.Just believe your day will come,
till then be patient.And when the day comes,Lord Ayyapa
himself will be with you to guide you thru out this virutham.

Anonymous,  8 November 2013 at 1:20 PM  

My husband has taken 41 days fasting he has Tulsi Mala. the issue is when i am at home he try touch me i just suggest its wrong. Only he touch me,I am little afraid there should not be any health problem to my Swamiye.Please reply what to do ...Soniya

Unknown 16 November 2013 at 7:48 PM  

I believe its in your heart and mind. If you are a true believer, even if you break down in a moment it doesn't mean anything. Pray to Lord Ayyappa. Pray for his forgiveness. Lord is your friend and kind hearted. You just gave into the temptations, its not your fault... I believe you can achieve Ayyappa Darshan if you follow the Vratham whole heartedly. If its not Mandalam, at least a few days. By the time you go to Shabarimala, your heart should be full of Lord. Swamy Sharanam.

A devotee,  25 November 2013 at 6:30 PM  

Some people say that while observing Vratham for Swamy Ayyappa, one should not go on pilgrimage to other hill temples. I cannot understand the logic behind this (although some say that going to other temples diverts attention from Lord Ayyappa). Kindly clarify this issue. Thanks.
Swamiye Saranam Ayyappa

Venkat Mallela 8 December 2013 at 8:41 PM  

sir i am Venkatesh from Hyderabad
i am started my deeksha but my body is not permitting to take bath with cold water,(hitching) i am taking bath with hot water by twice a day whether it is permissible

thank you sir

kanuparthi vamsi 23 August 2014 at 5:27 PM  

Hi everybody i am working in coporate company where the rule of my company says that i have to wear shoe for must as it is symbol of professionalism, now my concern is that can i wear swamy mala for 41 days with wearing shoe only in office timings as it is my working rule and no exemptions are given regarding this.... i am eagerly waiting for their valuable reply who can guide me in correct path to attain the blessings of LORD AYYAPPA...................

vijil vijayan 4 November 2014 at 3:36 PM  

What can i do when my tulasi mala broken during my vratham ?

Anonymous,  5 January 2015 at 10:07 AM  

I have been addicted to internet & masturbation. During mala I couldn't control and had done for thrice. I couldn't say it to my Guru swamy. Can anyone tell me a solution for it.

Anonymous,  6 March 2015 at 11:13 PM  

Reg - Question of Vratham for 41 days - is that a must?

First of all, one should understand Vratham is a process to mature mind and body, to bring in a mental and physical harmony by controlling five senses. Any behavior done with sincerity and followed for a period of time becomes a habit and gets inculcated in sub-conscious mind. Mandalam or 41 days period is considered by our spiritual ancestors to make one naturally instill in himself a quality which he is following for those period. Any Vratham would ultimately lead one to understand himself, control himself and realize the supreme power in himself.

Sabarimala Pilgrimage is also a process which conditions mind and body and ultimately enables one to attain moksha.

Any practice, for that to be followed in strictest sense, ancestors has made some conditions which must be followed without fail. To be precise, many years before, a person who decides for Sabarimala Pilgrimage, will leave his house and live with other swamis till he completes his pilgrimage. He would try to avoid meeting any normal person, male or female, for those days. This means he abstains from everything, the worldly life/pleasure. He may or may not eat for most of the time, lives like a 'pandaram'. Is this possible in these days. Every practice is getting changed and accustomed according to practical life. Sabarimala Vratham is also compromised a lot nowadays, We are only concerned about the number of days now.!!

Lets not do it for the sake of just Vratham, Lets understand what it is and where it leads us.. If anyone can understand and perform Sabarimala Pilgrimage, for him Vratham of One day or 41 days doesn't matter.

Let us understand 'Thathwamasi' and perform the pilgrimage.

Swamiye Saranam Ayyappa!!!

sr devraj 25 July 2015 at 2:59 PM  

Swamye sharanam ayyappa.

Awesome article by admin.... hanuman chalisa

Anonymous,  13 August 2015 at 12:21 PM  

I am a chain smoker. I can't control smoking. I have been smoking during my viritham . I really wanna see Lord Ayyappan. What should I do ?

Ravi Tej Jujjavarapu 7 November 2015 at 2:31 PM  


I'm wearing mala on November 13th.. This is my first time.. My office timings are afternoon 3PM-12AM.. Is it ok if I do my evening pooja before 3PM or skip evening pooja. My roommate is also wearing mala.. Is it ok if he do the evening pooja and I pray to god in office only?

Anonymous,  11 November 2015 at 10:29 PM  

I am wearing mala first . i don't any guru swamy to guide . shall wear mala separately
are guru swamy gudieness is must

robin ayyappalal 13 November 2015 at 5:25 PM  


What is the logic in not shaving. during the time of vritham, we should be clean know. if possible kindly clarify my doubt, sir.

S.Govindarajan Chetty 16 November 2015 at 5:06 PM  

Dear Sir..

Please advise whether someone can follow viratham even though they are not going to temple...

Unknown 19 November 2015 at 12:17 PM  

Swami sharanam,
It has been seven days I took deeksha, this is my fourth time. All of sudden my paternal aunt died this morning.Can I continue deeksha. I am a bramhin, normally as per my knowledge I will have asoucham for three days, please respond asap

Yuvaraj S 20 November 2015 at 9:18 AM  

It is believed that when you don't shave you decrease your face attraction and don't give a space for any infatuations. Wearing a towel around your neck is also to denote ppl that you're on vritham. Swamy saranam

Yuvaraj S 20 November 2015 at 9:20 AM  

It is believed that when you don't shave you decrease your face attraction and don't give a space for any infatuations. Wearing a towel around your neck is also to denote ppl that you're on vritham. Swamy saranam

Ram Moudgalya 22 November 2015 at 7:07 PM  

is it compulsory to go to sebarimalai ..cant we stay back going to sebarimalai

Anonymous,  26 November 2015 at 5:33 PM  

my father took deeksha and i am not. should i also maintain celibacy

Akshay kurkoti 30 November 2015 at 7:16 PM  

Am takeing deeksha for 1 day is it ok ??

Umesh reddy 1 December 2015 at 11:00 PM  

My grandfather's brother passed away recently. Can I be a kanni swamy and put mala?

Umesh reddy 1 December 2015 at 11:02 PM  

My grandfather's brother passed away recently. Can I be a kanni swamy and put mala?

Anonymous,  2 December 2015 at 12:59 AM  

hii every one please help me i have done 7 days vratham sincerly by some family problems and my bad habits got addicted to tobacoo and told my parents everything then i removed mala is this good or bad for me and i will do next year mala nicely already i wore first time and i lost second time can u pleaase help me...

shaker,  7 December 2015 at 10:51 AM  

Hello Everyone

I ma kanya swami, I wore maala 5 days before, due to some problems, I want to remove ayyappa mala. Could anyone suggest me how to remove the mala (Procedure)

aravind 9 December 2015 at 10:49 AM  

i am 2yr to sabarimala i am having the habit of masturbation and addicted to internet . Can i masturbate during these days . I cant ask to any one plz....help me

VASANTH 10 December 2015 at 9:16 AM  

Swami Saranam... We a group of 10 Ayyappa Sami visit Sabarimala on 18 Dec by tempo Travellor for 4 days. 01 seat avl. If any 1 going single or without any guru samy presence can join us from Chennai . cont me if any 1 need. 9500156025. Swamy Saranam

VASANTH 10 December 2015 at 9:16 AM  

Swami Saranam... We a group of 10 Ayyappa Sami visit Sabarimala on 18 Dec by tempo Travellor for 4 days. 01 seat avl. If any 1 going single or without any guru samy presence can join us from Chennai . cont me if any 1 need. 9500156025. Swamy Saranam

Anonymous,  3 January 2016 at 9:22 PM  

suddenly I got semen in 2 mins when I hug my gf
I have not kissed her or haven't touched at any sensible parts.but I am doing the pooja everytime with devotion.second time when we met we both hug.but we have became controlled.I was very tensed abt my life.Wat to do.I can't say to guruswamy

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