As per the existing customs, the duration of penance to be performed for the Sabarimala pilgrimage is 41 days. The significance of these 41 days is very interesting. Almost in all austerities which are being performed in India, the influence of astrology is highly observed. Similarly, all festivals and customary celebrations are observed with respect to the principles and rules of astrology.
In India, generally two types of calendars are being used. One is Solar calendar and the other Lunar calendar. In Solar calendar year, there are 365 days while in Lunar calendar year the days are only 324. The difference between the Solar calendar days and Lunar calendar days are 41. Thus, the devotee can connect these two years by performing 41 days penance.
According to the principles of ayurveda (traditional life-science of India), the intake of food, lifestyle and customs require 41 days duration to cope-up with human body, mind and wisdom. Thus, by performing austerities involved penance, customs and formalities, a Sabarimala devotee can attain splendor, vigor, vitality and strength and come close to the energy of God. This is the concept which is hidden behind the godly word ‘TATWAMASI’
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Video on Sabarimala pilgrimage