Karkkidakam month and its significance

Karkkidakam is the last month in the Malayalam calendar, and the significance of this month is immense. Considered the worst month of the year by many of our ancestors due to the heavy monsoon rains and floods, Ayurveda is also known as the “Ramayana masam” or Ramayana month. Ayurvedic physicians confirm that this is the best time of the year to undergo many Ayurvedic therapies and treatments, so it is also known as the month of rejuvenation. In today’s perspective, it can be seen as a month of self-care, and the special traditions and rituals that have specific meanings highlight the significance of this time period in Kerala. In this article, we will discuss these traditions and their significance.

The ‘Karkkidaka Masam’

The Karkkidaka month, as we discussed before, is the last month in the Malayalam calendar, and it starts around mid-July and ends around mid-August. Karkkidakam, the month of heavy monsoon, was spent indoors, and it served as a time to connect with family and spirituality. Long ago, due to the heavy monsoon falls, illnesses, loss of cultivation, and poverty were very common in Kerala during Karkkidakam. Regular work was also not possible in Karkkidakam, and as a result of all these, auspicious occasions such as weddings and house warmings never took place during this time in Kerala.

Karkkidaka chikitsa, Karkkidaka vavu, Ramayana parayanam, Nalambalam pilgrimage, Ayurvedic therapies, Sheepothi Orukkal, and Pilleronam are some of the most well-known traditions of the Karkkidakam month. Karkkidakam is the month of self-reflection, and it is a time for Malayali people to prepare for the arrival of the new year. Due to its spiritual aspects and rituals, Karkkidakam is also considered a holy month. Now let's explore the traditions and rituals associated with Karkkidakam.

Ramayana Parayanam

The Ramayana, or Ramayanam, is one of the ancient Hindu epics that depicts the story of Prince Rama. This text holds great religious and cultural significance in India and many other Hindu cultures. The Ramayana has been translated into countless languages over the years, and the standard Malayalam version is the Adhyatma Ramayanam, written by Ezhuthachan. During the Karkkidakam month, it is customary to read Ramayanam in Hindu homes in Kerala. Due to this, Karkkidakam is also known as Ramayana Masam, which translates to the month of Ramayanam. The recitation of Ramayanam during this month during Karkkidakam is said to bring peace, spiritual growth, and good fortune to the family. Reading Ramayanam is done individually at homes and in groups around Kerala from the start to the end of Karkkidakam.

Karkkidaka Kanji

Karkkidaka Kanji is a special porridge prepared during the Karkkidakam month in Malayali homes to be consumed. Also known as Oushadha Kanji, Karkkidaka Kanji is a rice porridge infused with medicinal herbs. The medicinal properties of this porridge strengthen immunity and keep away illnesses. It is considered a rejuvenating meal, and most Malayali households prepare this porridge in the month of Karkkidakam.

Karkkidaka Vavu

The Karkkidaka Vavu, also known as ‘Karkkidaka Bali’ and ‘Pithru Tharppanam’, is a ritual performed by the Hindus in Kerala during the new moon day of Karkkidaka month. This ritual is performed to appease the deceased ancestors and is often performed at seashores, river banks, and temple ghats.


Anayoottu is a unique tradition of Kerala; to put it simply, it is a mass feast and medicinal treatment for elephants in Kerala. It happens on the first day of Karkkidakam and is held in the famous Vadakkumnatha temple in Kerala.

Ayurvedic treatments

Like we mentioned before, Karkkidakam is a month for self-care and self-reflection, and it is considered the best month to undergo rejuvenating Ayurvedic treatments and therapies. There are also special Ayurvedic diet plans specifically for the Karkkidakam month, followed by many in Kerala. Panchakarma is a prominent Ayurvedic rejuvenation therapy people opt for in Karkkidakkam.                       


Pilleronam is a Karkkidakam tradition that is not very popular today but used to be a fun day for children in the past. Celebrated on Thiruvonam Day in the Karkkidakam month, Pilleronam is an event for children that includes a delicious meal and games. The word Pilleronam literally translates to Onam for children, so if you feel like bringing back this tradition for your kids for the coming Karkkidakam, go ahead!


Karkkidakam is a month with considerable significance in Kerala. Self-refection, traditional practices, and self-care are the focus points of this month, and Akshharam Malayalam language communication class online wishes you a healthy and prosperous Karkkidakam. Connect with us to learn more about our Malayalam classes for children.