Overview :Sankata Temple which is dedicated to Goddess Durga has been constructed in accordance with Tantric Philosophy and dates back to the 6th Century.This tranquil and quiet two storied temple is situated in the corner of a square with two smaller shrines and lamps standing in front of it. The complex of the temple is always teeming with people - may it be the elderly sharing their stories or children indulging in playful activities. Pigeons can be found in large numbers at this temple.Sankata temple is revered by Hindus and Buddhists alike.As per Buddhists, this temple is a shrine of Chanda Maharoshan Padmantak BhairavBut as per Hindu tradition,Goddess Sankata is perceived as a form of Goddess Durga.Under Secretary at the Department of Archaeology, Ram Bahadur Kunwar states that Sankata is construed as the sister of Baishno Devi and is honoured on the 8th day of Dashain.Legend has it that a Buddhist sorcerer well versed in Tantrik practices with the consent of the Malla King Narendra Dev used his Tantrik powers and brought Sankata and Yogini into two different holy pitchers and worshipped them. With the passage of time, a temple for the goddess was built during the rule of King Gunakama Dev.Once every 12 years the priest, a Buddhist Gubhajyu belonging to the Newar Bajracharya clan, performs the traditional ritual of worshipping the holy pitchers of Sankata and Yogini. This tradition is upheld even in the present day.Neither the priest nor the idol of the deity can be touched as per Tantrik practices. The deity can be seen enveloped in cloth. In Patan, replicas of this idol of the Goddess is sold sans cover and is depicted in a close embrace with another figure which insinuates sexual intercourse. Cultural expert, Mali is of the opinion that perhaps the idol in the temple is swathed in cloth due to this reason.A contrary legend was brought to light by Mali. He says that Dya was brought from Kamakhya in Assam. Dya later gained widespread acknowledgement as Goddess Sankata.
Devotees visit this temple to seek fulfillment of the following:-
- Auspicious beginnings of work
- Removal of obstacles
- Renewal of energy
- Agricultural productivity
Vakratunda Mahakaaya Suryakoti Samaprabha Nirvighnam Kuru Mey Deva Sarva Kaaryeshu Sarvada
Meaning -I pray to thee O Lord, who has a curved trunk and a strong body, the shine of a million suns, to remove all the hurdles that may block me from all the tasks I intend to perform.
Agajaanana Padmaarkam Gajaananam Aharnisham Anekadantham Bhaktaanaam Ekadantam Upaasmahey
Meaning -The sun to Mother Parvati's lotus face, I worship Lord Ganesh, with the elephant face, the one who grants a lot of wishes, the one with the single tusk, I salute thee to grant my wish.
Gajaananam Bhoota Ganaadhi Sevitam Kapitta Jamboophaala Saara Bhakshitam Umaasutam Shoka Vinaasha Kaaranam Namaami Vighneswara Paada Pankajam
Meaning -Oh elephant-faced Lord, who is served by all the Ganas, who consumes the essence of Kapitta and Jamboophala, His favourite fruits, who is Uma's son, who destroys the gloom of His devotees, who handles hurdles, we worship your lotus feet.
Tatpurushaaya Vidmahe Vakratundaaya Dheemahe Tanno Danthihi Prachodayaat
Meaning -We meditate on the great power, we call upon the single tusked Ganesh, who grants wishes.