The MahaNavaratri festival was celebrated at the famous Sri Mookambika Temple established by the exponent of Advaita philosophy, Sri AdiSankaracharya, at Kollur in Udupi district and several other temples in Kerala.
Devotees in large numbers from Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Puducherry and Andhra Pradesh participated in the festival.
An attraction was the Vidyarambha ceremony, which began at the SaraswatiMandira in the temple from 4 a.m. During the "Vidyarambha" ceremony, the symbol "Om" is written on the tongue of children, aged between two and three, with a turmeric twig.
The children then write alphabets on rice grains. More than 2,000 children participated in the Vidyarambha ceremony this time.
In Kerala, devotees thronged various temples right from early morning today, the tenth or the final day of the celebrations. This day is considered auspicious among Hindus to start anything important, whether it is academics, music, arts or any other skill.
Till the auspicious day of Vijayadashami, a child is not generally introduced to paper or any kind of learning. There are several temples in Kerala where Vidyarambham, the ceremony of introducing a child to the world of knowledge, is performed.
Thiruvullakkavu Temple in Thrissur is one of the temples known for Vidyarambham.
And hundreds of Thousands of devotees visited the temple with their children to help them enter the world of education with the blessings of Sree Dharma Sastha or Lord Ayyappa.
It is said that many famous poets and writers have entered the world of letters from Thiruvullakkavu Temple, and unlike other Ayyappa temples, Vidyarambham is the most important festival here. As per Hindu belief, every Hindu irrespective of his age writes the mantra on sand or a plate of rice grains, which is considered as a new beginning after the Ayudha Puja is done.