Jwalamukhi Temple is perched on a ridge called Kali dhar. The
shrine has a gilt dome and soaring pinnacles. Inside is a square
pit, three feet deep with a pathway all around. The rock in the
middle has a crack, through which a gas is emitted, and on
lighting it the gas bursts into a huge flame. The priest keeps
applying the flame to the gas — which is seen as a blessing of the
deity. The shrine has
no idol as such, the emanation of the gas is believed to be a
manifestation of the goddess Jwalaji.
Jwalamukhi is said to be the spot where the half-burnt tongue of
Sati fell, hence the burning flames or 'tongues' of fire. Mughal
Emperor Akbar visited the temple with Jodha Bai and presented a
solid gold umbrella to the shrine, which can be seen even to this
day. The King of Nepal presented a magnificent bell, which adorns
the front hall. Milk and water is offered to the flames, the 'puja'
going on for the whole day.
Jwalaji is 473 Km from Delhi and 212 Km from Shimla.
Brajeshwari Devi (Kangra Devi )
Brajeshwari Devi Temple, located in the old Kangra township, is
said to have been built over the charred breasts of Sati. This
shrine, once renowned for its great wealth, has been plundered
relentlessly over the ages. The
first of the plunderers was Mahmud of Ghazni, who looted it in
1009. A mosque was built on the ruins and a garrison was left
behind. 35 years later, the local king regained its possession.
The shrine was repaired and a replica of the idol was enshrined.
The temple was filled with gold, silver and diamonds only to be
ransacked again in 1360 by Firoz Tughlaq. Later Emperor Akbar
visited the shrine with his dewan, Todar Mal and restored it to
its former grandeur.
The temple was razed to the ground by an earthquake in 1905, but a
new one came up the very same year, thanks to the Kangra
Naina Devi Temple is located atop a hill, commanding an awesome
view of the Punjab plains on one side and the Gobind Sagar lake on
the other. This is the spot where Sati's eyes — nain — are
believed to have fallen. Some
devotees cover the last few miles of the climb by crawling up.
This method is called 'sashtang dandvata'. The puja is performed
by thirty priests. The temple is also frequented by Sikhs. Guru
Gobind Singh is believed to have spent a few days here.
Chintpurni Temple stands on the spot where the charred feet of
Sati fell. The 'Pindi' or the stone hall symbolises her feet. The
Chintpurni 'mantra' is very popular with devotees.
Also known as Chamunda Nandikeshwar Dham, it is situated on the
banks of Ban Ganga. This Sidhapeeth is a place where saints and
priests pray amidst natural surroundings.
This is the place where the demons Chand and Mund came to conquer
Devi Mahakali. In the fight that ensued, the Devi cut their heads
and presented these to Maa Ambika, who in turn told Mahakali that
you will be worshipped as Chamunda Devi.
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