Maa Bamleshwari Temple in Chhattisgarh
Maa Bamleshwari Devi Temple is of great spiritual importance & the people of Chattisgarh consider Dongargarh as a Pilgrimage or teerath. The famous temple of Goddess Bamleshwari, is on a hilltop of 1600 feet in the town of Dongargarh. This temple is referred as Badi Bamleshwari. Another temple at ground level is situated about 1/2 km from the main temple complex. This temple is referred as Chhoti Bamleshwari. Around many hundred thousands of people from, in and around Chattisgarh flock the shrine during the navratris of Kavar (during Dussera) and Chaitra (during Ramnavmi). During these navratris, melas (fair) are organised in the premises of the temple, which run 24 hours. One has to climb 1100 stairs to reach here. The devotees don’t find it hard reaching the temple, firstly because of devotion and faith towards Maa and secondly because of the pure & natural environment of the place, which is surrounded by mountains and ponds.
Roughly 2200 years ago, Dongargarh was a fairly renounced territory named Kamavati ruled by Maharaja Kamsen also called Kamakhya Nagri. When his Queen gave birth to a son they named him Madansen. Since Raja Veersen considered it a blessing of Lord Shiva & Parvati,he constructed the temple of Maa Bamleshwari at Dongargarh. Now Raja Madansen had a son named Kamsen because of whom the area became famous and came to be known as Kamakhaya Nagari.
A big battle took place between Raja Kamsen and Raja Vikramaditya, reason being the love between Maadhavnal & Kaamkandla, which led to the complete destruction of Kamavati. Legend has it that after the death of Maadhavnal & Kaamkandala, Raja Vikramaditya felt guilty as he thought that he was responsible for Kaamkandala committing suicide. He underwent deep anguish and started constant worship, resulting in Maa Bagulamukhi Devi appearing before him. Raja Vikramaditya requested the goddess to make both Maadhavnal and Kaamkandala alive again and also asked Maa Bagulamukhi Devi to stay at the temple. Since then it is believed that Maa Bagulamukhi Devi is present here. As time passed by the name got transformed from Maa Bagulamukhi to Maa Bamlai to Maa Bamleshwari as it is known today.
The Temple Trust manages two Dharamshalas (Guest Houses) to accommodate the devotees. Names are the Chhirpaani Dharamshala and Maa Bamleshwari Dharamshala. The accommodation is allotted on first-come-first-served basis.All the expenses incurred to run these dharamshalas are borne by the Trust. The power supply to these dharamshalas is backed up by an electric generator which is a stand-in power source for the Mandir itself. However another paid accommodations are available only at Dongargarh city, just 1 kms away from the Temple. The road is in excellent condition and journey will take around 5 minutes at most. There are several large hall with free electricity and water. For any type of accommodation, pilgrims may contact the Niche mandir office or any Reception office of trust. Pilgrims can also rest in and Dormitory Halls provided by the mandir trust.
Significance of the Temple
The temple here is dedicated to Maa Bagulamukhi Devi who is a powerful manifestation of Goddess Durga. Devotees here have to climb a flight of 1100 stairs to reach this holy destination. It is believed that Raja Veersen, the then ruler of Dongargarh, in order to appease the Gods for his true successor, had built the temple 2200 years ago. This particular temple is referred as Badi Bamleshwari and there is another temple at the ground level, known as the Chotti Bamleshwari, situated at a distance of ½ km from the main temple complex. There is also available ropeway path, built keeping in mind the comfort level of the devotional climbers. The magnificient view from the top is an added attraction for the devotees to witness the might of Bamleshwari Devi. An enormous statue of Buddha in golden is visible on the opposite mountain, as if placed there in some mysterious circumstances.
Rituals done at Temple
Hawan is the worship done to Agni Dev for internal energy and power. Every Sunday between 10 am to 12 noon a Hawan is conducted at the Badi Bamleshwari temple on the mountain.During the Navratri Festival offering worship at the temple is been believed to be of great importance for the fulfilment of one’s aspirations.
Besides this , temple also undertakes rituals like marriage , mundan tonsuring etc
The Maa Bamleshwar Devi temple would be open to devotees from 4.00 AM to 12.00 PM on weekdays and 5.00 AM to 10.00 PM on weekends. Devotees flock here in huge numbers during the Navratris of Kavar (during Dusshera) and Chaitra (during Ramnavami).
Places to Visit
Choti Bamleshwari Temple –
There is another temple on the plain of Maa Bamleshwari Devi and is popularly known as Choti Bamleshwari Devi. In ancient times, when there was lack of facilities and many people because of age and other reasons could not climb the mountain for darshan, they established a temple on the plains that slowly took the shape of Choti Bamleshwari Temple.
Lord Shiv ji Temple –
The temple of Lord Shivji is almost 3/4th of its way towards Badi Bamleshwari on the mountain and has been recently constructed. The temple here has the outer decoration of many snakes in different postures. The devotees before going to the main Shrine worship the Shivling and a statue of Lord Shiv that is there in the temple.
Hanuman ji Temples –
There are two temples of Lord Hanuman, one which is situated on the plain near Choti-Bamleshwari temple and second one is on the mountain on the way towards the main Maa Bamleshawari temple.
It is located in Rajnandgaon district and is 18 km. away in north west of kawardha. A famous temple of Bhoramdev was built during 11th century in Chandela style of architechure of beauty and grace. It is also refered as ‘Khajuraho of Chhattisgarh. It is also the oldest temple here. As per the saying this temple was the important monument of the gondas of Chhattisgarh. But, as per the histroians, this temple belongs to the Nagvanshis. This historical is situated near a villlage called Chhapri, in a valley shaped place among the circular range of Makel mountains. The megastically raised 100 ft. high above ground, this temple is an exclusive piece of sculpture depicting beautiful carvings of secret postures ofcouples, elephants, horses, dancing male & female, idols of Lord Ganesh & Natraj etc. The enterence of the garbh-grah of the temple is made of shining black stone with beautiful statues. As Khajuraho temple is well known in India, so will Bhoramdev temple will become a well known name in the proposed state of Chhattisgarh. As soon as this state comes into existence, the place will get its importance. In this connection , the Union Minister Dr. Raman Singh has stated that Kawardha will become a tourist spot and by his efforts this valuable temple of archaeological importance will be saved.
It is 37 km. from Rajnandgaon by bus. It has proud to be the owner of the only Arts & Music University of whole Asia.
Getting there and around
By Air –
You have to go Nearest Airport which is Raipur Airport (IATA: RPR, ICAO: VARP) aka Mana Airport is located 15 km (9.3 mi) south of Raipur, in the state of Chhattisgarh, India.
By Rail –
Almost the whole state is connected with good railway network internally and even externally. Raipur and Bilaspur are two major railway stations that are connected to every part of the country.
By Bus –
It is about 35 km from Rajnandgaon and 67 km from Durg. One can hire a local taxi or catch a bus to reach here.
Shri Maa Bamleshwari Trust Samiti , Dongargarh (M.P.) 491445 , INDIA
Ph: 91-7823-22090, 22209, 22099, 22219, 22093
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