Bakreshwar – A Shakti Peeth

This is one of the 42 Shakti Peethas in India; 10 in other countries like Pakistan, Bangladesh, Nepal and Sri Lanka which makes the count 52. Shakti Peethas are places where body parts of Goddess Sati are believed to have fallen after Lord Shiva refused to give up her dead body. Goddess Sati is believed to have immolated herself after her father Daksha humiliates her husband Lord Shiva. So deep is His love for His wife that He is angry and goes into a trance with Her dead body on his shoulders. Lord Vishnu cuts down the corpse little by little till nothing is left and Lord Shiva calms down.

In one of my earlier post, Kankalitala, I mentioned how it is believed that waist of Goddess Sati is said to have fallen there. The portion between the eyebrows is believed to have fallen here in Bakreshwar.

The curvilinear shikhara (rising tower above the sanctum sanctorum) is visible from a distance. It is quite different from the terracotta structure we kept seeing throughout our tour. It is a two temple complex, along with it being a Shakti Peetha, there is a temple dedicated to Lord Shiva too. The legend is that Ashtavakra (8 curves), a crippled stage meditated upon Lord Shiva for 10,000 years. Pleased with him, Lord Shiva cured him of his physical deformity. From then on it is believed that those pilgrims who prayed to Sage Ashtavakra there would be blessed with many boons.

In addition to these temples Bakreshwar is famous for kund (hot water pools). There are several of them with varying degrees of hotness. At agni kund, you will get to see steaming water. There are more water bodies: bhairav kund, khar kund, dudh kund and Surya kund. One of them has good dressing room facilities and you can dip yourself in the warm pool before proceeding to the temple. Use of soaps and oil are prohibited here.

Water from here is collected for scientific and research purposes.

Science and religion coexists!

Our World Tuesday

Birds of Chandigarh Rock Garden
Sky Watch at Srirangam, Tamil Nadu.

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