One story about the origin of MariammanMariamman
One story about the origin of Mariamman... is she was the wife of Tirunalluvar, the Tamil poet, who was a pariah, outcaste. She caught smallpox and begged from house to house for food, fanning herself with leaves of the nim or margosa It is a native tree species of India and its scientific name is Azadirachta indica. It is majorly grown in tropical regions. It is also known as neem and has many medicinal properties. Its fruits and seeds are used for making oil. The flowers and shoots of this tree is also eaten as a vegetable. The leaves of this tree are also used for ayurvedic purposes. It is anti-fungal, anti-bacterial, anti-viral, anti-diabetic and sedative. It is also used to cure skin diseases. The twigs of this tree is used as a tooth brush and tongue cleaner. Powdered neem is used as a pack on the face to beautify and cleanse skin.
tree to keep the flies off her sores. She recovered and people worshipped her as the goddess of smallpox. To keep smallpox away they hang nim leaves above the doors of their houses.
Another story involves the beautiful virtuous Nagavali, wife of Piruhu, one of the Nine Rishis. One day the Rishi was away and the Trimurti (an image with three heads representing BrahmaBrahma
According to Hinduism, the whole creation is the work of Trimurti (the Hindu Trinity)..., VishnuVishnu
Vishnu is one of the Supreme Gods of Hindus and is a part of Hindu Trinity,.., and ShivaShiva
Shiva is one of the Supreme Gods of Hindu Trinity that ...) came to see if her famed beauty and virtue was true. Nagavali did not know them and, resenting their intrusion, turned them into little children.
The gods were offended and cursed her, so her beauty faded and her face became marked like smallpox. The Rishi returned, found her disfigured, and drove her away, declaring she would be born a demon in the next world and cause the spread of a disease which would make people like herself. She was called Mari, meaning 'changed.' Both stories are reported by Whitehead and he remarks that in Mysore he was told that Mari meant sakti, power.
Mariamman is an ancient goddess, whose worship probably originated in the tribal religion of Dravidian India before the arrival of the Aryans and the brahman religion. According to tradition, among the Dravidian mountain tribes as in Coorg in southern Karnataka, human sacrifices were offered to Mariamman. These were replaced with animals and as we have seen, in some villages no animal sacrifices are offered. Here we can see a historical gradation.
Local goddesses such as Mariamman She is a South Indian Goddess of rain who is majorly worshipped in southern states like Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Maharashtrawho protect villages and their lands and represent the different castes of their worshippers have always been an important part of the religious landscape of South India. However, we can note periods of special significance. The eclecticism of the Vijayanagar period (1336-1565) encouraged folk religion, which became more important and influenced the more literate forms of religion.
In the last century and a half there has been a rebirth of Tamil self-consciousness (see Devotion to Murukan). In the middle of the present century deities such as Mariamman have become linked to the "great tradition" as the strata of society which worship the goddess has become integrated into the larger social order.