Shri Kamakhya Devi
Kamakhya temple is a famous pilgrimage located on the Nilanchal hill in Guwahati, Assam. The Kamakhya temple is dedicated to the tantric goddesses. Apart from the deity Kamakhya Devi on Nilanchal Hill compound of the temple Ten Mahavidyas i.e. Bhuvaneshwari (at maximum height), Baglamukhi, Chinnamasta, Tara, Kali, Bhairavi, Dhumvati, Tripur Sundari, Matangi & Kamla. The three Devi i.e. Tripur Sundari, Kamla & Matangi reside inside the main temple dedicated to Kamakhya.
The most important part of the temple is the ‘Garbhagriha’ which is a cave below almost 20 feet from the ground level. The ‘Garbhagriha’ is small, dark and reached by narrow steep stone steps.
The Sanctum is actually a cave, which consists of no image, but a natural spring that flows through, a yoni shaped cleft in bedrock, covered all the way with a big silver dome on which flower mala, sindur, chunri, sari, prassad etc are offered by the pujari sitting there. The sacred water coming through yoni shaped rock is considered as the most powerful Jal, which if taken regularly after having darshan, gives moksh to the bhakt.
Kamakhya devi is famous as the bleeding goddess. The mythical womb and vagina of Shakti are supposedly installed in the 'Garvagriha' or sanctum of the temple. In the month of Ashaad (June), the goddess bleeds or menstruates. At this time, the Brahmaputra river near Kamakhya turns red. The temple then remains closed for 3 days and holy water is distributed among the devotees of Kamakhya devi.
History: The God of love, Kamadeva had lost his virility due to a curse. He sought out the Shakti's womb and genitals and was freed from the curse. This is where 'love' gained his potency and thus, the deity 'Kamakhya' devi was installed and worshipped here. Some people also believe that the Kamakhya temple is a place where Shiva and devi Sati had their romantic encounters. As the Sanskrit word for lovemaking is 'kama', the place was named Kamakhya.
The temple of Kamakhya has a very interesting story of its origin. It is one of the 52 Shakti peeths. The story of the Shakti peeths goes like this; once Sati fought with her husband Shiva to attend her father's great yagna. Despite her husband Lord Shiva’s disapproval, Sati had gone to attend the universal ‘yajna’ organised by her father Daksha. Shiva was not invited, and was also abused by Daksha. Unable to bear the insult, Sati committed suicide. When Shiva came to know that his beloved wife had committed suicide, he went insane with rage. He placed Sati's dead body on his shoulders and did the tandav or dance of destruction.
To calm him down, Vishnu cut the dead body with his chakra. The 52 places where Sati's body parts fell are called Shakti peeths. Kamakhya temple is special because Sati's womb and vagina fell here.
Most Powerful Tantric Peeth: Apart from Ten Mahavidya temples, there are shiva temples also there named Kotilinga Mahadev, Kameshwar Mahadev, Sidheswra Mahadev but not in idol form. So here yoni and linga is worshipped which is must in Tantric pooja. So it is very popular saying that no tantric is complete without visiting the Kamkhya Temple. Since this is the most powerful tantric peeth, animal sacrifices is a must for getting tantric siddhis. Animals includes male small goats, buffalo etc The temple attracts lacs & lacs of tantric devotees in an annual festivals known as Ambubachi Mela, Manasha Puja etc.,
Several Festivals are celebrated inside Kamakhya Temple which attracts lakhs of Visitors. Prominent among them are Durga Puja, Pohan Biya, Durgadeul, Vasanti puja, Madandeul, Ambuvaci and Manasa puja.
Durga Puja: This is celebrated annually during Navratri, in the month of September-October.
Ambuwasi Puja: This is a fertility festival. It is believed that the Goddess goes under menstrual period and the temple remains closed for 3 days and then opened with great festivity on fourth day.
Pohan Biya: A symbolic marriage between Lord Kamesvara and Kamesvari during the month of Pausa.
Durgadeul: During the month of Phalguna, Durgadeul is observed in Kamakhya.
Vasanti Puja: This puja is held at Kamakhya temple in the month of Chaitra.
Madandeul: This deul is observed during the month of Chaitra when Lord Kamadeva and Kamesvara is offered special puja.
Manasa Puja: Manasa Puja is observed with Sankranti or Sravana and continues up to the second day of Bhadra.
Other temples in Guwahati: It is old belief that before offering prayer to Ma Kamakhya, the bhakt must visit Umanand Bherav situated in center of Brahmputra river near fancy bazar. You must visit Sukreswar Mahadev, Bhimashankar Mahadev, Vashist Kund, Navgraha Temple, Tirupatti Balaji temple and Anapurna Temple in Rangia.
The nearest railway station to Kamakhya temple is Kamakhya Junction a small station which is 5.6 km away from the temple. Guwahati is the main railway station which is the largest Railway Station of North-Eastern India in a distance of 7Km from the temple.
The nearest Bus station is Kamakhya Bus Stop, Assam Trunk Road in 1.6 Km. Regular Buses of Assam Tourism Department also ply to and fro Kamakhya Temple connecting it to parts of Guwahati.
To reach by flight Lokpriya Gopinath Bordoloi International Airport, Borjhar, Guwahati is the nearest one to reach the temple which is in 20.2Km distance and is linked to all major Airports across India.
If you have the spirit of Mountaineering and desire to reach the temple top by climbing, you can do so using two rock-cut stairs from connecting the bottom of Nilachal hill to the Kamakhya temple.
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