The Mangla Gauri Temple in Gaya, Bihar, India. It has been specified in Padma Purana, Vayu Purana, and Agni Purana and in tantric works and other Scriptures. This temple is amongst the eighteen Maha Shakti Peeth. Today temple goes back to the 15th century. The temple is devoted to Shakti or the Mother Goddess in the mainly Vaishnavite trip center of Gaya. Mangala Gauri is worshiped as the Goddess of goodness. This temple constitutes an Upa-Shakti Pitha— where it is strongly believed that a part of the body of Shakti fell according to legend. Here Shakti is worshiped in the form of a breast, a sign of nourishment.
The chief legend of Chandika Sthan relates to the creation of the Shakti Peethas. Sati, the daughter of Prajapati Daksha, was married to the god Shiva versus his wishes. Daksha arranged a great yajna but did not invite Sati and also Shiva. Uninvited, Sati reached the yajna-site, where Daksha ignored Sati as well as Shiva.
Sati was not able to withstand this insult. So, Devi Sati gave her life by jumping into the fire of Havan organized by her father King Daksh. When Lord Shiva was running around the planet carrying her body that Lord Vishnu divided the body into 51 parts utilizing his Sudarshan chakra. Out of those 51 parts, from which the ‘Breast’ of Sati fell to this place.
There is a very old temple built in the 15th century. We have to climb up a small hillock to visit the temple. The steps route is in between houses of local people. At the starting of the steps route, there is the temple of Bhima (One of Five Pandavas). We can see his knee impression here. Here Bhima did Shraddhakarma, So it is known as Bhimvedi Gaya.
There is an ‘Akhand Deep’ that is kept lit in the temple for the whole day. It is said that the highest of blessings are received just by the darshan of this Akhand Deep. This Akhand Deep has been burning since time immemorial and has never gone off.
The temple is facing east and is constructed on top of the Mangalagauri mountain. A flight of steps and a motorable route lead to it. The temple houses the sign of the Goddess and it has some carefully sculpted historical relief sculptures. A little hall or mandap locates in front of the temple. The courtyard houses a fire pit for the house.
The temple complex includes of temples of Maa Kali, Lord Ganesha, Lord Hanuman and Lord Shiva. After climbing up 200 steps, one arrives at Mangla Gouri temple grounds. There are numerous temples on that campus. A Bilwa tree is also present in the temple.
One can do pradakshina to the temple. In the behind of the temple, nearby to temple wall, there is a spiritual place where Sati Devi’s Sthana fell. The main temple is a really little temple and just 2 to 3 members can enter the temple at a time.
There is no idol in the temple. We can see the Breast of Satidevi in Deepa lights. Lord Shiva is also existing in the form of Shivaling next to maa. Some Tantriks offer Bali to Mother Goddess.
There are 2 small temples devoted to Shiva and pictures of Mahishasura Mardini, Durga, and Dakshina Kali.
How to Reach
- By Air: The nearby Airport is the Gaya Airport and it is 6 km away from the temple.
- By Train: The nearby Railway Station is the Gaya Junction and it is 3 km away from the temple.
- By Road: GT Road connects Gaya to the northern cities of India. Buses, taxis and other local transports are available to visit the temple.
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