1. Previously known as Arulmigu Sri Maha Mariamman Temple, Bukit Rotan.
2. Neighbouring towns are:
Batang Berjuntai: 22 km to the North
Klang: 48 km to the South
Kuala Lumpur: 60 km to the East
Kuala Selangor: 10 km to the West
3. Directions to the temple:-
Those travelling along the North-South Highway, from the north should exit either at the Guthrie Highway immediately after the Rawang Exit or at the Sungai Buluh Exit. Follow the road signs to Kuala Selangor. Along the road you will pass a small town called Ijok. The Temple is located along the main road of the Bukit Rotan town.
Those travelling along the North-South Highway, from the south should exit at Sungai Buloh and follow the road signs to Kuala Selangor. Along the road you will pass a small town called Ijok. The Temple is located approximately 12 kms from Ijok.
Those travelling along the coastal road from Klang should take a right turn at Assam Jawa into the road leading to Kuala Lumpur. The Temple is located approximately 2 kms from Assam Jawa.
Similarly those travelling along the coastal road from Teluk Intan should take a left turn at Assam Jawa into the road leading to Kuala Lumpur.
One could also board the bus to Kuala Selangor in Pudu Raya bus station and alight in front of the temple.
Events up to 1970:-
While there are no records available to establish the date of completion of this temple, this temple is estimated to have been established more than 100 years ago based on the following facts. When our Chairman, Shivasri A. P. Muthukumara Sivaachaariyaar's father, by the name of Sri Pagavathiappan, arrived in Bukit Rotan at the age of 17 years in 1912, the Sri Maha Mariamman Temple was already in existence for many years. Therefore, it is safe to conclude that the temple has been in existence for more than 100 years.
The Sri Maha Mariamman Temple in Bukit Rotan was established jointly by the Bukit Rotan Hindu business community and the Hindu staff of the local Public Works Department. Among the supporters of the temple were Sri Jambulingam, Sri Krishnan and Sri Munusamy. In fact, we are proud to record that their descendants are still involved in the management of the temple.
1. What was the Hindu population in Bukit Rotan then?
Since Bukit Rotan is located along the main road, there was a sizeable Hindu business community. In addition,Bukit Rotan was the main supply centre for about 20 rubber estates that were located around it. As we are fully aware, the labour force in rubber estates then was predominantly Hindu.
2. Where was the Temple first located?
The Temple was first located in the PWD reserve adjoining the main road. The first Temple was a small shed built using mangrove timber and facing the East. The first Temple housed a small, 1 foot tall statue of Mother Maha Mariamman.
3. What were the daily and annual poojas conducted then?
In the beginning, Sri Pagavathiappan, the father of our Chairman, Shivasri A. P. Muthukumara Sivaachariyaar, conducted poojas in this temple on a part time basis. However, from early days on, Chitra Pournami was celebrated as the Temple's principal annual pooja.
During this festival, Mother Maha Mariamman would be taken around Bukit Rotan in a horse pulled vaahanam.
The devotees carrying kaavadis for Lord Muruga would begin their walk to the 2nd Mile Sri Subramaniar Temple from our Maha Mariamman Temple.
Events from 1970 to 1990
1. When was the first Temple renovated?
In 1969 -1970, the existing Temple was renovated with a single tier tower or gopuram. Subsequently the Temple walls, the Temple entrance and a hall were constructed.
2. How were these renovations financed?
These renovations were financed both by public donations and a government grant.
Kumbaabishegam and Installation of Deities.
The first kumbaabishegam was conducted in 1970, when in addition to Mother Maha Mariamman, Lord Vinaayagar and Lord Muruga were also installed in the Temple.
In preparation for the kumbaabishegam, a statue of Maha Mariamman (the one that is now installed in the temple) was procured from Tamilnadu, India. However, due to an oversight, that statue was not installed in the temple. Instead, the old and existing statue of Mother Maha Mariamman was retained and consecrated again during the kumbaabishegam. Meanwhile, the new statue was wrapped and stored away. Furthermore, the newly renovated temple now faced north.
Daily and Annual Poojas
After the kumbaabishegam, daily and annual poojas were conducted as in the past. The Navaraathri Poojas that were introduced soon gained popularity. Thousands of devotees used to gather to participate in the Vijaya Dasami pooja. Weddings and other social activities were also organised in the new Temple hall.
However, since the daily poojas were not conducted properly, there were minor problems faced by the temple employees and devotees. It was to overcome this important flaw that Mother Maha Mariamman decided to enlist the services of our Sivaachariyaar i.e. Shivasri A. P. Muthukumara Sivaachaariyaar.
In 1968, after having completed his Senior Cambridge Examination (the equivalent of the present day SPM examination), Shivasri A. P. Muthukumara Sivaachaariyaar spent his time in Kuala Lumpur at a desk job.
One night, Mother Maha Mariamman, in the form of a little girl, appeared in Sivaachaariyaar's dream and commanded him to leave for Bukit Rotan. "There is no job for you here. Come to Bukit Rotan immediately," She commanded.
Immediately, our Shivasri A. P. Muthu Kumara Sivaachaariyaar packed his meagre belongings and left for Bukit Rotan as commanded by Mother Maha Mariamman.
In addition to performing the daily poojas in the temple, Shivasri A. P. Muthukumara Sivaachaariyaar also began to speak to the devotees present about Hinduism and its practices.
In fact, our Sivaachaariyaar was serving Mother Maha Mariamman without any payments or fees. One day, our Sivaachaariyaar, came across the statue of Ambal that was wrapped and stored away. It was then that the grace of Mother Maha Mariamman engulfed our Sivaachaariyaar. "Amma, I will not rest until you are properly installed and consecrated," declared Sivaachaariyaar. It was a promise that he would keep.
In 1974, only 4 years after the first kumbaabishegam in 1970, our Aiyah installed and consecrated the present representation of Mother Maha Mariamman in the temple as the Moola Moorthy (principal deity). It was a success that was attained after many heart rendering struggles.
However, the Temple continued to face the North. According to the Aagamas, an Ammam temple should face the East and not the North. As a result, the Temple growth was hindered and many problems cropped up every now and then.
In due course, Sivaachaariyaar's brother, Sri P. Thiagaraja joined him in performing poojas in the temple as its achargar. It was during this time that the Temple adopted the Aadi Pooram as one of its annual festivals.
Under our Sivaachaariyaar's guidance, the annual Naavaratri Pooja developed into a 10-day event with homas, special poojas, recitation of Vedas and the Thirumurai. Today the Navaraatri Pooja has become a not-to-be-misssed event in Kuala Selangor.
Additionally, in 1991, while the Sri Sooktha Mahayagam was being conducted, the "Niraipani Katchi" ritual was conducted in this temple in conjunction with the Aadi Pooram festival, for the first time in this country.
From 1990 onwards
With the passage of time, defects in the Temple structure including the sanctum sanctorum became more pronounced. Structural cracks in the sanctum sanctorum meant that there was water leakage whenever it rained. It has been more than 12 years since the last kumbaabishegam in 1974.
There was also an urgent need to correct the Temple front orientation from North to East. To overcome these three pressing problems, efforts to rebuild the Temple began in earnest.
Our Sivaachaariyaar decided that this divine effort should begin with a Sri Sooktha Mahayagam. The Sri Sooktha Mahayagam was truly memorable. It was a great divine event, the likes of which have never before been witnessed in Malaysia. It was conducted for 48 days with 2 homas daily.
Preparatory work towards the construction of the new Temple began even before the Sri Sooktha Mahayagam was completed. The proposal was to construct the new Temple using the RM500,000 that was estimated to be raised through the Sri Sooktha Mahayagam.
The services of Sirpa Aagama Kalaamani, Sri Suppiah Stabathi from Sri Kanchi Kamakoti Peedam was retained and plans for the new Temple were drawn up and submitted to the authorities for approval.
When the plans of the new Temple were placed before Mahaswamigal Sri Sankarendra Saraswati Swamigal of the Sri Kanchi Peedam for his blessings, he meditated for awhile and made the following statement:
“There is a tree in front of the temple. There is also a road in front of the temple. This road will be improved and it will encroach on the site of the new temple. Therefore the new temple cannot be built on its present site”.
As predicted by Mahaswamigal, the plans of the new Temple submitted were rejected by the authorities. The reason given was that part of the Temple site was required for road extensions.
It was then decided that the new Temple be constructed on the small hill adjacent to the existing Temple. At the same time, it was also decided that a majestic temple be constructed according to our ancient Sirpa Aagamas (architectural scriptures). Undoubtedly it was Mother Maha Mariamman's wish.
Immediately, efforts were begun in earnest to acquire that land on the hill from the local authorities. At the same time, new plans for a grand temple were drawn and duly submitted to the relevant authorities. The process was labourious, with opposition and obstacles from various sources which had to be overcome.
Thus in 1999, by the Grace of Mother Maha Mariamman, the authorities agreed to alienate the land to the Temple. Soon the new plans that were submitted were also approved with minimum amendments. It was only after all approvals were received from the relevant government authorities that the construction works commenced.
The construction of the new Temple was undertaken as a divine service. The primary objective was that the new Temple must be constructed by adhering to all the dictates of our scriptures. Anything else would be a compromise. And Shivasri A. P. Muthukumara Sivaachaariyaar was determined that there will be no compromises in the construction of the new Temple.
Unique Features of Shakti Temple
1. The Sanctum Sanctorum and Tower
To the best of our knowledge, outside India, this is the only temple that includes such delicate and intricate sculptural works.
The focal point of the temple, the sanctum sanctorum of Mother Ambal incorporates an extremely sophisticated and ancient type of sculptural design known as ‘thundu pathirippu pathroba pathram”.
This exceptional methodology has been used in the past in the construction of the Sri Subramaniyar shrine in Brahadeesawarar Temple, Tanjore, more popularly known as Tanjai Periya Kovil and the Sri Kumara Kottam Murugan Temple in Kanchipuram in India.
We believe, that in recent times, no temple has been constructed, either in India or elsewhere, using this delicate and painstaking method.
2. Sri Chakra and Navaratnas in the Sanctum Sanctorum
The sanctum sanctorum and its tower were constructed in 8 phases. Special poojas were conducted before the commencement of the construction of the phases. Eight Sri Chakras and high quality navaratnas were embedded in each of the 8 phases. Thus a total of 64 Sri Chakras and 64 sets of high quality navaratnas (the 9 gems) have been embedded in the wall of temple’s sanctum sanctorum.
The wall of Mother Ambal’s sanctum sanctorum too received special attention. The walls are 4½ feet thick to render it suitable for the intricate sculptures that constitute the “thundu pathirippu pathroba pathram” works.
Inside the sanctum sanctorum, behind the statue of Mother Ambal, 4 pillars have been constructed facing Ambal. These pillars represent the 4 Vedas – Rik, Yajur, Sama and Atharvana – that form the basis of Hinduism. This is to remind us that Mother Ambal is indeed the source of these Vedas.
Since the construction of the structure of the sanctum sanctorum, a lamp has been kept lighted continuously and daily poojas are conducted with the recitation of Ambal’s Sahasranaamam i.e Mother Ambal’s 1008 namahs.
3. The Temple Towers
The Temple's entrance tower (Rajagopuram) is 5 tiered and boasts a height of an amazing 80 feet. Meanwhile, the tower (gopuram) over the sanctum sanctorum is 3 tiered and is 60 feet tall.
Finally, the towers over the Lord Vinayagar and Lord Murugan sannithis are 2 tiered while the towers over the sannithis of the other deities including Mother Durga, Mother Laxmi and Mother Saraswathi are single tiered.
4. The Temple Pillars
In total, there are 96 pillars that support and adorn the temple structure. These pillars represent the 96 tatvas (philosophies) that exist in Hinduism. The pillars have been painstakingly crafted to depict 7 different architectural designs.
The number of pillars in the main hall, also known as the Gayatri Mandapam total 24 representing the 24 letters that constitute the Gayatri mantra in Sanskrit.
There are 6 pillars around the sannithi of the Lord of Dance - Lord Nadarajah, representing the 6 sastras.
5. The Gayatri Mandapam (Hall)
In every temple, the main hall will be a prominent feature. Most halls are shaped in rectangular formats.
Unlike other temples, the main hall in our temple, referred to as the Gayatri Mandapam, has a unique shape known as "sokkttaan patthi".
In addition, there is a dome above the Gayatri Mandapam called the Gayatri Dome (or Vimaanam).
It is believed that 70,000,000 Veda mantras constantly echo in our skies. This knowledge was passed down to us by venerable Rishis who could hear the continuous recitation of these mantras.
The Gayatri Mandapam dome has been constructed to depict the sky where these mantras are constantly recited. The designs sculpted in the Gayatri Dome represent the 70,000,000 mantras. Thus, the area where devotees will stand to worship Mother Ambal will be saturated with divine vibrations, adding to the sanctity of the environment.
The Gayatri Dome will be held in place by 24 pillars. These 24 pillars represent the 24 sanscrit letters are constitute the Gayatri Mantra. Thus the Gayatri Mandapam with its Gayatri Dome is unique to this temple alone.
6. The 51 Shaktis
The representations of the 51 Shaktis have been sculpted along the temple’s internal corridor. These statues all face inwards. These statues represent the 51 peedams of Shakti worship in the world.
These 51 Shakti peedams are found in regions that use to constitute ancient India. They are located as follows:
44 in India
3 in Nepal
1 in Pakistan
1 in Bangladesh
1 in Sri Lanka
1 in China
Earth from these 51 Shakti peedams is being collected and will be placed inside the pedestal where Mother Sri Maha Mariamman will be installed.
There are 51 Aksharas (alphabets) in Sanskrit. They are also known as Maathruka Aksharas. Each Akshara (or alphabet) represents 1 of the 51 Shaktis.
These 51 Shaktis have been installed in the temple’s inner corridor to continuously bless the devotees who come to worship.
Our temple will be the only place of worship where these 51 Shaktis have been installed in a single venue.
7. Temple Walls
Saint Thirunaavukkuarasar popularly known as Appar sang "Kovilluku Karungkalam Kootam Illathu" which means that the structure that gives beauty to a temple is its walls. That is why, most, if not all temples, have walls all around. Our temple too has walls on all 4 sides. The walls are 13 feet high.
Statues of the Ashtadik Paalagars or the Guardian Deities of the 8 Directions have been installed on the walls at appropriate locations. In addition, representations of apsaras i.e., divine ladies and various poses from the Shakti Thaandavam have been alternately embossed all along the walls.
These representations will help to calm devotees and help then concentrate on Mother Ambal while they circumbulate the temple along these walls as a preliminary ritual before performing prayers inside the temple.
In Malaysia, walls with such divine decorations are unique to this temple.
8. Temple Steps
There are steps to enter the temple in 10 locations. Of these, 6 sets will feature the elephant’s head at the side while the other 4 sets will feature the head of a yaali i.e. a mythical animal.
In addition, ramps have also been installed in 2 places to assist the handicap to also enter the temple on their own to perform their prayers. This temple is thus handicap friendly.
These 10 sets of steps are all made of granite and sculpted in Tamilnadu, India.
9. Navagraha Shrine
The pedestal of the Navagraha shrine in our temple is shaped like a lotus flower. It is carved out of granite and imported from India.
The navagrahas installed here are special. Each of the navagrahas will be seated on His vehicle and will be accompanied by His Shakti. They will indeed be a wonderful sight.
10. Temple Corridors
A temple without corridors is not a complete temple. Our temple will have 3 corridors.
The 1st corridor will be around the sanctum sanctorum and the Gayatri Mandapam. The 2nd corridor is where the various other deities are installed. These 2 corridors are located inside the temple. The 3rd corridor is the one that runs around the whole temple and is located on the outside of the temple.
Before commencing his or her prayers, a devotee will walk along these 3 corridors before entering the Gayatri Mandapam and standing before Mother Ambal.
11. Ashtabandhanam and Svarnabandahanam
In temples, the statue of a deity will be attached to its pedestal using a type of paste made of 8 types of herbs (ashta means 8 in Sanskrit). This paste is called ashtabandhanam. This material is usually used during most if not all maha kumbabishegam (consecration) ceremonies.
Likewise in our temple, deities will be mounted onto their pedestals using the ashtabandhanam technique. However, our Moola Moorthy (main deity) will be installed on Her pedestal using the rare svarnabandhanam technique. In this case,pure gold will be melted and poured all around the foot of the statue of the deity placed upon the pedestal.
Using svarnabandhanam to fix the statue to the pedestal is considered extremely auspicious. In addition, by using the svarnabandhanam technique, there will be no need to remove the Moola Moorthy during the Balastabanam ceremony at subsequent kumbaabishegams.
To the best of our knowledge, no other temple in Malaysia or our neighbouring countries has utilised svarnabandhanam to seal the statues to their granite pedestals. This temple then will be the first to use svarnambandhanam.
12. The Bell Tower
The temple bell is an inalienable component of a temple. It is usually located in the Eesana (northeast) corner of the temple. The bell will usually be hung on a beam mounted on 2 pillars. Our bell tower will be similarly located in the northeast of the temple and will be mounted on a single pillar. The pillar will be 15 feet high. A brass bell weighing 150 kilos will be hung from the top of the pillar.
The top of the pillar will have 4 branches that will branch out in the 4 directions. On these 4 branches will be hung 4 separate bells made of 4 different materials such as brass, silver, copper and granite.
13. Poojas and other Ceremonies Conducted in Conformity with our ancient’s scriptures
As required by the Kaamika Aagama and the Kasyapa Sipa Sastras, the foundation laying ceremony known as Silaastabanam must be conducted only after performing the Ganapathy homam, the Navagraha homam, the Prevesha Bali pooja, the Vaastu Santhi pooja, the Bhugarshanam, the Govaasam, the Kadakkaal Iduthal and the Silaasana ceremony.
The Ganapathy Homam is conducted to seek the blessings and grace from Lord Ganapathy, the remover of obstacles.
The Navagraha Homam is conducted to pacify and gratify the Navagrahas.
Prevesha Bali Pooja
The Prevesha Bali Pooja is conducted to firstly appease the spirits and beings already resident on the site and to invite and install the various Devas to reside on the plot of land as the Astha Dik Baalagars.
Vaastu Santhi Pooja
The Vaastu Santhi Pooja is conducted to appease and court Lord Vaastu so that He is favourably disposed towards the project.
According to Kaamiga Aagama, the Bhugarshanam Ceremony is necessary as this ritual will invoke the blessings of both Mother Bumadevi and Lord Dharma. Lord Dharma was represented in this ceremony by two strapping bulls, suitably dressed, decorated and garlanded, who proceeded to plough the land using a 1 kg gold plated plow. Subsequently, navathaniam cereals were sowed into the ploughed land.
The Govaasam ceremony involves allowing cattle to contently graze at the sprouted navathaniam cereals and is conducted to invoke the blessings of Mother Laxmi, the Goddess of Wealth and Auspiciousness.
Kadakkaal Iduthal Ceremony
The Kadakkaal Iduthal Ceremony is the ground breaking ceremony and is a key phase in the process of constructing a temple.
The Silaasana Pooja is the foundation laying ceremony. There must be a bridge or connection between the foundation and the actual building. Therefore, the foundation laying ceremony is only carried out after the piles have been driven in.
Accordingly, all these Poojas and other ceremonies were duly conducted before the foundation stone was laid.
14. Statues installed in the temple
The Bukit Rotan Maha Mariamman Temple is a Shakti temple. Mother Shakti is the principal deity here. Therefore, only the deities who should be installed in such a temple as provided in our ancient scriptures are installed in this temple.
In addition all deities installed in this temple will be in the company of their respective Shaktis.
The following deities are installed in this temple:-
Mother Sri Maha Mariamman (Principal Deity)
Lord Vinayagar as Laxmi Ganapathy accompanied with Mother Laxmi
Lord Muruga with Mother Valli and Mother Devanai
Mother Durga, Mother Laxmi and Mother Saraswathi
Lord Nadarajah with Mother Sivagami
Lord Bhairavar with Mother Swarnaambiga
Navagrahas with their respective Shaktis
Lord Surya with Mother Usha and Mother Prathusha
Lord Chandra with Mother Kirtiga and Mother Rohini
Lord Angaragan with Mother Shakti Devi
Lord Butha with Mother Nyana Devi
Lord Guru with Mother Dhara Devi
Lord Sukra with Mother Sringgini Devi
Lord Lord Saneeswara with Mother Mother Jeshta Devi
Lord Raagu with Mother Simhi Devi
Lord Kethu with Mokt