Sunday, 18 October 2009

Dakhineswar Kali Temple Kolkata


It was fairly cloudy and humid day when started my journey to Dakhineswar Kali temple. The temple is situated on the other side of the Hooghly river. One has to go Belur Math by bus from Howrah station and then walk through the Belur Math and cross the Hooghly river by boat or one can go by road via Jubilee bridge, which connects one end of Hooghly river to the other end.




Unlike Kalight temple, this temple is free from corrupted temple priest, one can buy prasad for the goddess and go straight to temple and offer prayer to the kali goddess.



From History

In the year 1847, Rani Rashmoni, a wealthy zamindari widow prepared to go upon a long pilgrimage to the sacred Hindu city of Kashi to express her devotions to the Divine Mother. Rani was to travel in twenty four boats, carrying relatives, servants and supplies. According to traditional accounts, the night before the pilgrimage began, Rashmoni had a vision of the Divine Mother, in the form of the goddess Kali in a dream and reportedly said

Profoundly affected by the dream, Rani immediately looked for and purchased land, and promptly began construction of the temple. The large temple complex was built between 1847 and 1855.

The 20 acre plot was bought from an Englishman, John Hastie and was then popularly known as Saheban Bagicha, partly old Muslim burial ground shaped like a tortoise, considered befitting for the worship of Shakti according to Tantra traditions, it took eight years and nine hundred thousand rupees to complete the construction, and finally the idol of Goddess Kali was installed 31st May 1855, amid festivities at the temple formally known as Sri Sri Jagadishwari Mahakali, with Ramkumar Chhattopadhyay as the head priest; soon his younger brother Gadai or Gadadhar (later known as Ramakrishna) moved in and so did nephew Hriday to assist him.

The next year, Ramkumar Chhattopadhyay died, the position was given to Ramakrishna, along with his wife Sarada Devi, who stayed in the south side of the Nahabat (music room), in a small room on the ground floor, which now a shrine dedicated to her.
From then until his death 30 years later in 1886, Ramakrishna was responsible for bringing much in the way of both fame and pilgrims to the temple.(wikipedia)


Asitagirisamam syat kaijalam sindhupatre  
Surataruvarasakha lekhanipatramurvi
Likhati yadi grihitva Sarada sarvakalam
Tadapi tava gunanamisa param na yati


which means: "Oh Lord, if the blue mountian be the ink, the ocean the ink-pot, the biggest branch of the heavenly tree be the pen, the earth the writing leaf and taking these if Sarada, the goddess of learning, writes for eternity, even then the limit of Your virtues will not be reached


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