5 Apr 2021

Maa Taratarini Temple

Maa Taratarini Temple (Odia: ତାରାତାରିଣୀ ମନ୍ଦିର) is a shakti peetha in Odisha situated on the Kumari hills at the bank of the Rushikulya River near Brahmapur city in Ganjam District, Odisha, India.

Festivals:  Chaitra Parba/Chaitra Mela/Chaitra Yatra is the most important among the festivals, celebrated at the Tara Tarini Hill Shrine. It takes place on each Tuesday of the month of Chaitra, i.e., during mid-March to mid-April (according to the English calendar). Lakhs of devotees come from every corner of world to have darshan of the Tara Tarini and perform their Manasika after fulfillment of their desires. Grand congregations take place on the first, second, third and fourth Tuesdays. On Tuesday, the shrine remains open for the Darshan of the deities from 1.00 AM (mid-night on Monday) till 11 PM (of Tuesday). During that period, Pahada (daytime rest) of the deities is confined to night-time only. Devotees come to offer the first bunch of hair of the newborn babies with the belief that goddesses Tara Tarini will protect the newborns from all evils and ensure their well-being. Also in each Sankrati (1st day of solar Hindu month), special pujas are done in temple.

Two goddesses named Tara and Tarini are worshiping at this place. This place is worshiped as the Breast Shrine (Sthana Peetha) and manifestations of Adi Shakti.

The Tara Tarini Shakti Peetha is one of the oldest pilgrimage centers of the Mother Goddess and is one of four major ancient Tantra Peetha and Shakti Peethas in India.

Welcome Gate of Maa Taratarini Temple, Berhampur, Odisha

The mythological texts recognize four major Shakti Peethas:

  1. Tara Tarini (Stana Khanda), near Brahmapur.
  2. Bimala (Pada Khanda) inside the Jagannath Temple, Puri.
  3. Kamakhya (Yoni Khanda), near Guwahati.
  4. Dakshina Kalika (Mukha Khanda) in Kolkata.

Welcome Gate of Maa Taratarini Temple

There are 52 other sacred Shakti Peethas, which originated from the limbs of Mata Sati's corpse in the Satya Yuga.

Location: 

The temple is situated at the bunk of river Rushikulya (also called the Rushikalyani Saraswati and known as the elder sister of the Ganges in the Vedas) enhanced its religious and cultural significance.

Rushikulya River from Taratarini Temple

Rushikulya River from the top of Taratarini Temple

The nearest airports are Bhubaneswar (174 km) and Vishakhapatnam (240 km) from the temple. The nearest railway station is Brahmapur railway station, 32 kilometers from the temple.

Singhadwara of Maa Taratarini Temple

Lion Gate of Maa Taratarini Temple

Taxi services are available from Brahmapur, Bhubaneswar, Puri to Tara Tarini, and regular bus service is available from Brahmapur to the Tara Tarini Junction.

Entrance of Maa Taratarini Temple, Odisha

Deities of Taratarini Temple:

The goddesses Tara and Tarini are represented by two ancient stone statues with gold and silver ornaments. Two brass heads, known as their Chalanti Pratima, or Living Image, are placed between them.

Narasimha or Nursinha Avatar

Adi Shakti goddesses Tara Tarini have been regarded as the presiding deity (Ista-Devi) in many parts of India and in most of the households in Odisha. This holy shrine is on the eastern coast, about 30 km from the commercial nerve center of Odisha, Brahmapur.

Idol at Maa Taratarini Temple

The historically famous Jaugada rock edict of Emperor Ashoka and the pious river Rushikulya, which has been described in Rig Veda as ‘Gangayah Jyestha Bhagini’ (the elder sister of the Ganga), are also present near this shrine.

Taratarini Temple Side Idols

Since time immemorial, Adyashakti is being worshiped here as Devi Tara Tarini on the blue-capped holy mountain of Tarini Parvat/Kumari hills/Ratnagiri/Purnagiri. At the hilltop, a beautiful stone temple is the abode of Maa.

Side Idols of Taratarini Temple, Berhampur, Odisha

Two stones anthropomorphized by the addition of gold and silver ornaments and shaped to be seen as human faces are the main shrine of this temple which represents the goddesses Tara and Tarini. In between them, are two fully celebrated and beautiful brass heads as their Chalanti Pratima or their Living Image.

Side Idols of Taratarini Temple, Odisha

Side Idols of Taratarini Temple

Festivals:

Chaitra Parba/Chaitra Mela/Chaitra Yatra is the most important among the festivals, celebrated at the Tara Tarini Hill Shrine.

It takes place on each Tuesday of the month of Chaitra, i.e., during mid-March to mid-April (according to the English calendar).

Entrance of Maa Taratarini Temple

Lakhs of devotees come from every corner of the world to have darshan of the Tara Tarini and perform their Manasika after fulfillment of their desires.

Grand congregations take place on the first, second, third, and fourth Tuesdays. On Tuesday, the shrine remains open for the Darshan of the deities from 1.00 AM (mid-night on Monday) till 11 PM (of Tuesday).

Frontside of Maa Taratarini Temple

During that period, Pahada (daytime rest) of the deities is confined to night-time only. Devotees come to offer the first bunch of hair of the newborn babies with the belief that goddesses Tara Tarini will protect the newborns from all evils and ensure their well-being.

Also in each Sankranti (1st day of solar Hindu month), special pujas are done in the temple.

More Articles:

Photo Source: Dandapani Satapathy

Some photos of Danda Jatra:

Danda Nata or Danda Jatra (Odia: ଦଣ୍ଡ ନାଟ, ଦଣ୍ଡ ଯାତ୍ରା) is one of the oldest traditional dance festivals of the world, still alive in Ganjam District (The ancient Kalinga Empire) in Odisha. 

Danda Nata at Taratarini Temple

The Danda Nata festival is being held in the month of Chaitra every year. It is an ancient festival of the Kalinga kingdom and still alive in & around the ancient Kalinga capital Sampa/Samapa i.e modern-day Ganjam District.

Danda Jatra at Taratarini Temple

Danda-Jatra at Taratarini Temple

The Participants are called Danduas(also known as Bhaktas). They pray to the Goddesses Kali & Shiva during this 13 or 21 day Danda period.

Danda-Nata at Taratarini Temple

Danda Nacha Photo & Content Source: Tara Tarini Temple Twitter Handle.

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