Once Saint Sankaracharya went to Mookambika temple in Kollur.He stayed in meditation for some days and Goddess Sarawathi appeared before him .She asked him what was his wish.He prayed to her to accompany him to Kerala,his homeland. She agreed but on one condition.He has to walk ahead and never look back till they reached Kerala.In case he looked back, she will stop there itself.The saint agreed.So, they started the long journey to Kerala by foot.
Sri Sankara was walking in front, Devi followed him.He could hear the sound of her anklets from behind.After they covered a long distance,suddenly the sound of anklets stopped. Sankara was puzzled.He waited for some more time but couldn’t hear any sound behind him. At last, he lost his patience and he decided to look back come what may.He turned and looked back.Actually,Devi was testing him,she was still accompanying him but because of her divine power,he was not able to hear the tingling sound of her anklets. He was shocked to see her behind him.She smiled and told him that she won’t come any further. It was a thick forest but it was in Kerala anyway.
She decided to stay there and directed him to build a temple for her there on that particular spot.Thus,duly a temple was built for her there and she stayed there ,protecting and blessing the people of Kerala.That place is called Chottanikara and the deity is said to very powerful.
Even today,Chottanikara temple has the poojas conducted there only after the poojas at Mookambika Temple.The reason is that the Devi is said to be in Mookambika first and when the poojas there is over,she will be present in Chottanikara temple.She is worshipped in two different forms in Chottanikara- one as Saraswathi the Goddess of Learning and the other as the ferocious Kali who killed Darika,the evil and powerful asura(demon).
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