This is one of the Beautifully carved Padmanabha, in Gold which was excavated by the Archeological dept a few Years back! The very look of this Idol brings Serenity and Happiness!
One has to witness the sincere devotees of this Temple Town, queuing as early as at 5 in the morning . to have a Darshan . Shear devotion! This Royal History is a dedication to Padmanabha of unimaginable Faith, unheard of in any other Kingdom!
Even today the current Ruler does the Puja sincerely to this Deity!
:In the sanctum sanctorum, Padmanabha reclines on the serpent Adi Sesha. The serpent has five hoods facing inwards, signifying contemplation. The Lord’s right hand is placed over a Shiva Lingam . Sridevi-Laxmi the Goddess of Prosperity and Bhudevi, the Goddess of Earth, two consorts of Vishnu are by his side. Brahma emerges on a lotus, which emanates from the navel of the Lord. The deity is made from 12,000 Saligramams These saligrams are from the banks of the Gandaki River in Nepal.
The deity of Padmanabha is covered with, “Katusarkara yogam”, a special ayurvedic mix, which forms a plaster that keeps the deity clean. The daily worship is with flowers and for the abhishekam, special deities are used.
The platforms in front of the Vimanam and where the deity rests, are both carved out of a single massive stone and hence called “Ottakkal-mandapam.” On the orders of Marthanda Varma (1706-58)the Ottakkal-mandapam was cut out of a rock at Thirumala, about 4 miles north of the temple. It measured 20 square feet by 2.5 feet thick and was placed in front of the deity in 1731. At the same time, Marthanda brought 12008 Saligramams to carve this exemplary work of Art!
In order to perform Darshan and Puja, one has to ascend to the Mandapam. The Deity is visible through three doors – the visage of the reclining Lord and Siva Linga underneath the hand is seen through the first door; Sridevi and Divakara Muni in Katusarkara, Brahma seated on a lotus emanating from the Lord’s navel, hence the name, “Padmanabha”, gold abhisheka moorthies of Lord Padmanabha, Sridevi and Bhudevi, and silver utsava moorthi of Padmanabha through the second door; the Lord’s feet, and Bhudevi and Kaundinya Muni in Katusarkara through the third door. Only the King of Travancore may perform sashtanga namaskaram, or prostrate on the “Ottakkal Mandapam”. It is traditionally held that anybody who prostrates on the mandapam has surrendered all that he possesses to the Deity. Since the ruler has already done that, he is permitted to prostrate on this mandapam.
If you haven’t visited this architectural marvel of India, better do it Now!