The mighty Brahmaputra river flows through the northern banks of the temple. In the vicinity of the temple there are many other temples of Lord Vishnu, Lord Shiva and other Mother Goddess incarnations. Thousands of pilgrims from different parts of the country and abroad throng the temple to offer their prayers to Goddess Kamakhya.
Kamakhya Temple Legend
However, the “Devi Bhagavata” does not support this view. It lists 108 places associated with Sati’s body. And Kamakhya finds its name in the supplementary list.
The “Yogini Tantra” ignored Kalika Purana’s concept of the origin of Kamakhya temple. According to the “Yogini Tantra” the Kamakhya temple is associated with Goddess Kali and it emphasized the creative symbol of the “Yoni”.
According to another legend, demon king Narakasura fell in love with the Goddess and wanted to marry her. However, the Goddess refused to the proposal and forwarded a condition that if the demon built the temple in one night then she would marry him. However the Goddess could not marry a demon and so she played a trick on him in avoid the marriage. As the temple was nearly finished, the Goddess created a cock which crowed indicating dawn when it wasn’t actually dawn. Narakasura eventually couldn’t marry the Goddess as per the condition. This is the same temple built by Narakasura for the Goddess.
Structure of Kamakhya Temple
Chilarai of Koch Dynasty constructed the present temple structure in 1565. There are three major chambers in the temple. The middle chamber is a square with a small idol of Goddess Kamakhya which was a later addition to the temple. The middle chamber leads to a sanctum sanctorum in the form of a cave. The western large chamber is rectangular and is not used by general public for worship. In the inside walls there are carved inscriptions of Naranarayana and other related inscriptions.
There is no idol here in the temple but only an underground spring which breaks out from a fissure in a large rock symbolizing the “Yoni”. The Ambubachi festival is held every year in the temple celebrating the the menstruation of the Goddess when the water of the spring turns red with iron oxide resembling menstrual fluid. Although like the other Hindu temples the temple is aligned facing east but rituals and worship is done facing north.
The Kamakhya temple has a bee-hive like shikhara. On the walls of the temple there are sculptured images of Chamundeswari, Ganes and other dancing features. For its development the temple was renovated and rebuilt many times. In 1658 Ahom King Jayadhvaj Singha and latter other Ahom kings also renovated the temple. King Rudra Singha and his son Siba Singha are also known to have taken care of the temple during their lifetime.
Worship Method in Kamakhya Temple
The Kamakhya Goddess is worshipped according to both the Vamachara (left-hand path) and the Dakshinachara (right-hand path) worship modes. The offerings to the Goddess mostly include flowers and sometimes it might also include sacrifices of animals. Generally female animals are exempt from sacrifice.
Festivals and Puja in Kamakhya Temple
Durga Puja is another most important puja celebrated in the Kamakhya temple. Goddess Durga is worshipped for sixteen days in “Asvina” month in the temple. The other pujas celebrated are Durgadeul, Pohan Bia,Vasanti Puja, Manasa Puja and Madandeul.
Important Information on Kamakhya Temple
- Snana or bathing of the Pithasthana at 5:30 AM
- Nitya puja at 6:00 AM
- Temple door open for devotees at 8:00 AM
- Temple door closed for offerings to the goddess at 1:00 PM
- Temple door reopens for the devotees at 2:30 PM
- Aarati of Goddess after which temple door closes for the night at 5:30 PM
You can contact on the following address and number for any information on the temple:
Official Address of Kamakhya Debutter Board
Kamakhya Temple Complex,
Kamakhya, Guwahati - 781010, Assam.
Phone : 91-0361-2734624, 91-0361-2734654
Office Timing: 8 AM to 5.30 PM)
Where to Stay in Kamakhya Temple
How to Reach Kamakhya temple
By Air: Lokapriya Gopinath Bordoloi International Airport is the nearest airport to the Kamakhya temple. The temple is about 20 km from the airport.
By Rail: The Kamakhya temple is about 6 km from the Guwahati railway station. There is also the Kamakhya station where one can drop down.
By Road: Regular buses, taxis and cabs run from the city to the Kamakhya temple. From the airport as well as from the railway station cars and taxis are available for the temple.
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