Tarapith shakti peeth

Tarapith shakti peeth
Tarapith shakti peeth

Tarapith, located in Birbhum District of West Bengal near Rampurhat, is renowned for the Tarapith Mandir dedicated to Tara Ma and Sadhan Pith – a significant spiritual site associated with Sadhak Bamakhyapa. Additionally, Tarapith’s Maha Smashan (Hindu cremation grounds) draws devotees from all over the world due to its reputation as one of Hinduism’s most sacred sites for worshipping goddess Sati and Kali in their manifestations as Ma Tara.

Tarapith holds a special place in the Hindu faith, as it is believed to be one of 51 Shakti Peeths – holy sites where Devi Sati’s eyeball allegedly landed. This city has also been immortalized by Sadhak Bamakhepa, the ‘mad saint’ who resided in Tarapith’s temple and cremation grounds. His devotion remains an inspiration for many devotees from all over India.

In Hindu mythology, Sati Devi was Lord Shiva’s bride who felt humiliated when her father Daksha Maharaj had deliberately not invited Shiva to the great yajña “fire worship rite” he organised. Despite being uninvited, Sati arrived only to find her husband insulted with cuss words in front of all the attendants by none other than Daksha himself. Unable to bear this shame and embarrassment, she made a final decision that would change their lives forever – she jumped into the Yagna fire and gave up her life. Lord Shiva, enraged by this occurrence, initiated the Tandava Nritya (Dance of Destruction). Lord Vishnu utilised his Sudershan chakra to cut Sati’s body into multiple parts to pacify LordShiva, and thus avoided the annihilation of all creation. Sati’s body parts fell all over the Indian subcontinent (India, Nepal, Bangladesh, Pakistan & Tibet). Across India, 51 Shakti Piths are worshiped for their spiritual power. In West Bengal alone, 15 temples exist, three of which – Tarapith, Kalighat and Bakreshwar – are particularly renowned. Legend attributes the origin of Tarapith to Sati’s third eye that purportedly descended there; ‘Tara’ being Bengali for eyeball is how this village was renamed from Chandipur to its current name: Tarapith.

According to lore, Saint Bashistha (Vasistha) achieved divine power while meditating beneath a Simul tree situated on the banks of the river Dwaraka in ancient times. He was able to gain this level of spirituality by venerating Goddess Sati or Tara (in her aspect as Kali) and sitting atop the panch mundi ashan –an area encompassed by five skulls from different species including human, owl, elephant, black snake and monkey. Sadly that same Simul tree has since vanished along with its neighboring river Dwaraka. Following that, numerous saints, like Saint Bamakhyapa (19th century devotee) and Kamalakanta (18th century devotee, who penned many hymns that are still sung), came here to adore the Goddess for spiritual redemption.

The original Tara temple has unfortunately been affected by the passage of time. However, in 1225, Jagannath Ray from Mallarpur village constructed the current Tarapith Temple and designed its entrance gate to feature a sculpture of Goddess Durga and her family members; Mahabharata’s Kurukshetra conflict is represented on the left panel while Ramayana episodes are displayed on its right side. Its solid walls made with red brick form an imposing base which supports eight roofs as well as multiple arches that lead up to a spire (shikara) at its peak. The image of the deity is enshrined under the eaves in the sanctum

Located inside the Mandir are two Tara images. The first is a stone image of her depicted as a mother nursing Shiva, known as the “primordial” image which is hidden by another three feet tall metal one with four arms donning a garland of skulls and tongue sticking out. This sculpture has been adorned with an elegant silver crown and flowing hair further complemented by its sari-clad body decorated in marigold blossoms held up high under an umbrella overhead – all finished off perfectly with red kumkum (vermilion) on its forehead.

Every Sankranti day of the Hindu month, Tarapith Temple celebrates its illustrious festivals. Dola Purnima is organized during February/March; Basantika Parba occurs in Chaitra (March/April); Gamha Purnima happens in July/August; and every Tuesday, Chaitra Parba takes place. However, definitely marking a high point each year is the renowned Tarapith Amavasya Annual Festival which always transpires in August!

For the best experience, schedule your visit to Tarapith Temple during September through March when the weather is most pleasant. November and December are particularly popular tourism months for their mild temperatures and festive Durga Puja celebrations. To fully appreciate this holy temple’s beauty, plan accordingly in order to have a magical time!

By Flight
The nearest airport Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose airport is at Kolkata. One can avail taxi or bus services from Kolkata to reach Tarapith.

By Train
Rampurhat is the closest railway station. To reach the temple by train, take a direct train from Kolkata and alight at Rampurhat railway station. Tarapith temple is located at around 9Km (or 30 min driving distance) from the Rampurhat Station. There are taxis, auto rickshaws & tuktuks available that can take you to the temple.

By Road
The state owned and private buses connect Tarapith with Esplanade / Dharamtala bus stand of Kolkata and with the neighboring cities of the state.

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